In this sensitive and personal investigation into Benin's occult world, Douglas J. Falen wrestles with the challenges of encountering a reality in which magic, science, and the Vodun religion converge into a single universal force. He takes seriously his Beninese interlocutors' insistence that the indigenous phenomenon known as àze ("witchcraft") is an African science, credited with fantastic and productive deeds, such as teleportation and supernatural healing.
Although the Beninese understanding of àze reflects positive scientific properties in its use of specialized knowledge to harness nature's energy and realize economic success, its boundless power is inherently ambivalent because it can corrupt its users, who dispense death and destruction. Witches and healers are equivalent to supervillains and superheroes, locked in epic battles over malevolent and benevolent human desires. Beninese people's discourse about such mystical confrontations expresses a philosophy of moral duality and cosmic balance. Falen demonstrates how a deep engagement with another lived reality opens our minds and contributes to understanding across cultural difference.
Indigenous people of wisdom have offered prayers of power, protection, and healing since the dawn of time. From Wovoka, the Ghost Dance prophet, to contemporary healer Kenneth Coosewoon, medicine people have called on the spiritual world to help humans in their relationships with each other and the natural world. Many American Indians—past and present—have had the ability to use power to access wisdom, knowledge, and spiritual understanding.
This groundbreaking collection provides fascinating stories of wisdom, spiritual power, and forces within tribal communities that have influenced the past and may influence the future. Through discussions of omens, prophecies, war, peace, ceremony, ritual, and cultural items such as masks, prayer sticks, sweat lodges, and peyote, this volume offers examples of the ways in which Native American beliefs in spirits have been and remain a fundamental aspect of history and culture. Drawing from written and oral sources, the book offers readers a greater understanding of creation narratives, oral histories, and songs that speak of healers, spirits, and power from tribes across the North American continent.
American Indian medicine ways and spiritual power remain vital today. With the help of spirits, people can heal the sick, protect communities from natural disasters, and mediate power of many kinds between the spiritual and corporeal worlds. As the contributors to this volume illustrate, healers are the connective cloth between the ancient past and the present, and their influence is significant for future generations.
R. David Edmunds
Joseph B. Herring
Troy R. Johnson
L. G. Moses
Richard D. Scheuerman
Al Logan Slagle
Clifford E. Trafzer
Over the past few decades, maternal childbirth injuries have become a potent symbol of Western biomedical intervention in Africa, affecting over one million women across the global south. Western-funded hospitals have sprung up, offering surgical sutures that ostensibly allow women who suffer from obstetric fistula to return to their communities in full health. Journalists, NGO staff, celebrities, and some physicians have crafted a stock narrative around this injury, depicting afflicted women as victims of a backward culture who have their fortunes dramatically reversed by Western aid. With Beyond Surgery, medical anthropologist Anita Hannig unsettles this picture for the first time and reveals the complicated truth behind the idea of biomedical intervention as quick-fix salvation.
Through her in-depth ethnography of two repair and rehabilitation centers operating in Ethiopia, Hannig takes the reader deep into a world inside hospital walls, where women recount stories of loss and belonging, shame and delight. As she chronicles the lived experiences of fistula patients in clinical treatment, Hannig explores the danger of labeling “culture” the culprit, showing how this common argument ignores the larger problem of insufficient medical access in rural Africa. Beyond Surgery portrays the complex social outcomes of surgery in an effort to deepen our understanding of medical missions in Africa, expose cultural biases, and clear the path toward more effective ways of delivering care to those who need it most.
Could that weed you just pulled have provided a cure for cancer? Scientists have warned that the destruction of the world’s rain forests may mean that plant species are being lost before we recognize their potential as sources of new medicines. This is equally true for the plants much closer to home. New Jersey, while heavily industrialized and densely populated, is extraordinarily rich in plant resources. Botany and Healing: Medicinal Plants of New Jersey and the Region describes nearly 500 species of plants found in the Garden State and in nearby areas that have been used medicinally.
Cecil Still lists plants by family and, within each family, by genus and species, to underscore the close relationships among medicinally valuable species. This arrangement is familiar to every botanist and easy for the amateur naturalist and herbalist to use as well. For each entry, Still discusses both the natural history and the historical and modern medicinal uses of the plant: scientific and common names, description, habitat, geographic range, and preparations and applications in Native American, European, African, and Asian herbal traditions. Most species are illustrated with Still’s line drawings. The book also contains a helpful index (with cross references by usage, common or scientific name), a glossary of terms, and a list of resources for further reading.
Botany and Healing explains the history and present status of the uses of herbal medicines, explains what makes a plant medicinal (or poisonous), how herbal medicines are prepared for use, and why they should be used only with great caution.
In Brilliant Imperfection Eli Clare uses memoir, history, and critical analysis to explore cure—the deeply held belief that body-minds considered broken need to be fixed. Cure serves many purposes. It saves lives, manipulates lives, and prioritizes some lives over others. It provides comfort, makes profits, justifies violence, and promises resolution to body-mind loss. Clare grapples with this knot of contradictions, maintaining that neither an anti-cure politics nor a pro-cure worldview can account for the messy, complex relationships we have with our body-minds. The stories he tells range widely, stretching from disability stereotypes to weight loss surgery, gender transition to skin lightening creams. At each turn, Clare weaves race, disability, sexuality, class, and gender together, insisting on the nonnegotiable value of body-mind difference. Into this mix, he adds environmental politics, thinking about ecosystem loss and restoration as a way of delving more deeply into cure. Ultimately Brilliant Imperfection reveals cure to be an ideology grounded in the twin notions of normal and natural, slippery and powerful, necessary and damaging all at the same time.
"Chinese Medicine and Healing is a comprehensive introduction to a rich array of Chinese healing practices as they have developed through time and across cultures. Contributions from fifty-eight leading international scholars in such fields as Chinese archaeology, history, anthropology, religion, and medicine make this a collaborative work of uncommon intellectual synergy, and a vital new resource for anyone working in East Asian or world history, in medical history and anthropology, and in biomedicine and complementary healing arts.
This illustrated history explores the emergence and development of a wide range of health interventions, including propitiation of disease-inflicting spirits, divination, vitality-cultivating meditative disciplines, herbal remedies, pulse diagnosis, and acupuncture. The authors investigate processes that contribute to historical change, such as competition between different types of practitioner—shamans, Daoist priests, Buddhist monks, scholar physicians, and even government officials. Accompanying vignettes and illustrations bring to life such diverse arenas of health care as childbirth in the Tang period, Yuan state-established medical schools, fertility control in the Qing, and the search for sexual potency in the People’s Republic.
The two final chapters illustrate Chinese healing modalities across the globe and address the challenges they have posed as alternatives to biomedical standards of training and licensure. The discussion includes such far-reaching examples as Chinese treatments for diphtheria in colonial Australia and malaria in Africa, the invention of ear acupuncture by the French and its worldwide dissemination, and the varying applications of acupuncture from Germany to Argentina and Iraq."
We all know the saying, “That which does not kill us, makes us stronger,” but is that really true? After all, for some people, traumatic experiences ultimately lead to truly debilitating outcomes. For others though, adversity really does seem to lead to “post-traumatic growth” where individuals move through suffering and find their lives changed in positive ways as a result. Why does this growth happen for some people and not others? How exactly does it happen? Can the positive results be purposefully replicated?
These are the central questions of a new study conducted by a team of researchers at the University of Virginia. They share their findings, along with practical advice and inspiring stories, in their new book Choosing Wisdom and the companion PBS documentary of the same name. Based on interviews with two distinct populations—medical patients coping with chronic pain and physicians coping with having been involved in serious medical errors—Choosing Wisdom delves into how average people respond to adversity, how they change, and what factors help or hinder positive change. Through these interviews, the authors chart each person’s journey, and though the circumstances of each case may be unique, the commonalities are remarkable.
By paying careful attention to the journeys of these exemplars, this cutting-edge research will shed new light on how we can grow, change, and develop wisdom through adversity. It will be a welcome source of inspiration for anyone facing their own difficult journey and for those who seek to aid them along the way.
For the Tumbuka people of Malawi, traditional medical practices are saturated with music. In this groundbreaking ethnography, Steven M. Friedson explores a health care system populated by dancing prophets, singing patients, and drummed spirits.
Tumbuka healers diagnose diseases by enacting divination trances in which they "see" the causes of past events and their consequences for patients. Music is the structural nexus where healer, patient, and spirit meet—it is the energizing heat that fuels the trance, transforming both the bodily and social functioning of the individual. Friedson shows how the sound of the ng'oma drum, the clapping of the choir, call-and-response singing, and the jangle of tin belts and iron anklets do not simply accompany other more important ritual activities—they are the very substance of a sacred clinical reality.
This novel look at the relation between music and mental and biological health will interest medical anthropologists, Africanists, and religious scholars as well as ethnomusicologists.
When she isn't eavesdropping on family gossip or gazing at taxidermy squirrels in smoky dives, Courtney Kersten charts the uncertainty of her midwestern homeland by looking to the stars and planets. As a teen she had plunged deep into the worlds of signs, symbols, and prophecy. But as her mother—her traveling companion into these spheres—lies dying, Kersten must learn to navigate without the person who always lit the way. Their last journey together, to swim in a Wisconsin lake, is a bittersweet, darkly comic, poignant climax to this transformative memoir.
“Old stories are universal and want to be told. To bring those stories out into the world as a vehicle for navigating sobriety and recovery is a glorious thing.
I was hired to be an addictions counselor for the therapeutic community at the Frederick County Adult Detention Center. Susan Gordon encouraged me to tell them stories. I thought she was crazy, but I trusted her judgment and told them stories. The impact those stories had on those men changed my life. I worked in addictions for 15 years, taking those stories with me to very agency in which I worked. The women at the Center 4 Clean Start in Salisbury, MD were every bit as receptive to story as the men who were in jail.”
Bodily pain and distress come in many forms. They can well up from within at times of serious illness, but the body can also be subjected to harsh treatment from outside. The medical system is often cold and depersonalized, and much worse are conditions experienced by prisoners in our age of mass incarceration, and by animals trapped in our factory farms. In this pioneering book, Drew Leder offers bold new ways to rethink how we create and treat distress, clearing the way for more humane social practices.
Leder draws on literary examples, clinical and philosophical sources, his medical training, and his own struggle with chronic pain. He levies a challenge to the capitalist and Cartesian models that rule modern medicine. Similarly, he looks at the root paradigms of our penitentiary and factory farm systems and the way these produce distressed bodies, asking how such institutions can be reformed. Writing with coauthors ranging from a prominent cardiologist to long-term inmates, he explores alternative environments that can better humanize—even spiritualize—the way we treat one another, offering a very different vision of medical, criminal justice, and food systems. Ultimately Leder proposes not just new answers to important bioethical questions but new ways of questioning accepted concepts and practices.
Today, China is a global power, home to the world’s fastest-growing economy and largest standing army—which makes it hard to believe that only 150 years ago, China was enduring defeats by Western imperial powers and neighboring Japan. For a time, the Middle Kingdom seemed like it was on the verge of being overtaken by foreign interests—but the country has quickly and ambitiously become a player on the world stage once again.
In this absorbing account of how China refashioned itself, Paul U. Unschuld traces the course of the country’s development in the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. Faced with evidence of the superiority of Western science and technology, Unschuld shows, China delivered an unsparing self-diagnosis, identifying those aspects of Western civilization it had to adopt in order to remove the cultural impediments to its own renaissance. He reveals that China did not just express its many aversions to the West as collective hatred for its aggressors; rather, the country chose the path of reason and fundamental renewal, prescribing for itself a therapy that followed the same principles as Chinese medicine: the cause of an illness lies first and foremost within oneself. In curing its wounds by first admitting its own deficiencies and mistakes, China has been able to develop itself as a modern country and a leading competitor in science, technology, and education.
Presenting an entirely new analysis of China’s past, this crisp, concise book offers new insights into the possibilities of what China may achieve in the future.
Offering prayers, meditations and readings for the inspiration and comfort of those suffering in the hospital or at home. Gates of Healing also reaches out to the family and friends of the patient. Its message comes from traditional and modern sources, combining the past and present to bring strength and support to those confronted with such devastating diseases as cancer and AIDS.
Originally composed in Latin by Gilbertus Anglicus (Gilbert the Englishman), his Compendium of Medicine was a primary text of the medical revolution in thirteenth-century Europe. Composed mainly of medicinal recipes, it offered advice on diagnosis, medicinal preparation, and prognosis. In the fifteenth-century it was translated into Middle English to accommodate a widening audience for learning and medical “secrets.”
Faye Marie Getz provides a critical edition of the Middle English text, with an extensive introduction to the learned, practical, and social components of medieval medicine and a summary of the text in modern English. Getz also draws on both the Latin and Middle English texts to create an extensive glossary of little-known Middle English pharmaceutical and medical vocabulary.
Scholars in folklore and anthropology are more directly involved in various aspects of medicine—such as medical education, clinical pastoral care, and negotiation of transcultural issues—than ever before. Old models of investigation that artificially isolated "folk medicine," "complementary and alternative medicine," and "biomedicine" as mutually exclusive have proven too limited in exploring the real-life complexities of health belief systems as they observably exist and are applied by contemporary Americans. Recent research strongly suggests that individuals construct their health belief systmes from diverse sources of authority, including community and ethnic tradition, education, spiritual beliefs, personal experience, the influence of popular media, and perception of the goals and means of formal medicine. Healing Logics explores the diversity of these belief systems and how they interact—in competing, conflicting, and sometimes remarkably congruent ways. This book contains essays by leading scholars in the field and a comprehensive bibliography of folklore and medicine.
Esther M. Sternberg Harvard University Press, 2009 Library of Congress RA770.S74 2009 | Dewey Decimal 725.51
Does the world make you sick? If the distractions and distortions around you, the jarring colors and sounds, could shake up the healing chemistry of your mind, might your surroundings also have the power to heal you? This is the question Esther Sternberg explores in Healing Spaces, a look at the marvelously rich nexus of mind and body, perception and place.
Sternberg immerses us in the discoveries that have revealed a complicated working relationship between the senses, the emotions, and the immune system. First among these is the story of the researcher who, in the 1980s, found that hospital patients with a view of nature healed faster than those without. How could a pleasant view speed healing? The author pursues this question through a series of places and situations that explore the neurobiology of the senses. The book shows how a Disney theme park or a Frank Gehry concert hall, a labyrinth or a garden can trigger or reduce stress, induce anxiety or instill peace.
If our senses can lead us to a “place of healing,” it is no surprise that our place in nature is of critical importance in Sternberg’s account. The health of the environment is closely linked to personal health. The discoveries this book describes point to possibilities for designing hospitals, communities, and neighborhoods that promote healing and health for all.
This timely book explores the troubled intertwining of religion, medicine, empire, and race relations in the early nineteenth century. John Rankin analyzes the British use of medicine in West Africa as a tool to usher in a “softer” form of imperialism, considers how British colonial officials, missionaries, and doctors regarded Africans, and explores the impact of race classification on colonial constructs.
Rankin goes beyond contemporary medical theory, examining the practice of medicine in colonial Africa as Britons dealt with the challenges of providing health care to their civilian employees, African soldiers, and the increasing numbers of freed slaves in the general population, even while the imperialists themselves were threatened by a lack of British doctors and western medicines. As Rankin writes, “The medical system sought to not only heal Africans but to ‘uplift’ them and make them more amenable to colonial control . . . Colonialism starts in the mind and can be pushed on the other solely through ideological pressure.”
Incorporating investigative journalism and drawing on interviews with participants and leaders, Sandy Smith-Nonini examines the contested place of health and development in El Salvador over the last two decades. Healing the Body Politic recounts the dramatic story of radical health activism from its origins in liberation theology and guerrilla medicine during the third-world country's twelve-year civil war, through development of a remarkable "popular health system," administered by lay providers in a former war zone controlled by leftist rebels. This ethnography casts light on the conflicts between the conservative Ministry of Health and primary health advocates during the 1990s peace process--a time when the government sought to dismantle the effective peasant-run rural system. It offers a rare analysis of the White Marches of 2002û2003, when radicalized physicians rose to national leadership in a successful campaign against privatization of the social security health system. Healing the Body Politic contributes to the productive integration of medical and political anthropology by bringing the semiotics of health and the body to bear on cultural understandings of warfare, the state, and globalization.
Healing the Herds: Disease, Livestock Economies, and the Globalization of Veterinary Medicine offers a new and exciting
comparative approach to the complex interrelationships of microbes, markets, and medicine in the global economy. It draws upon fourteen case studies from the Americas, western Europe, and the European and Japanese colonies to illustrate how the rapid growth of the international trade in animals through the nineteenth century engendered the spread of infectious diseases, sometimes with devastating consequences for indigenous pastoral societies.
At different times and across much of the globe, livestock epidemics have challenged social order and provoked state interventions, which were sometimes opposed by pastoralists. The intensification of agriculture has transformed environments, with consequences for animal and human health. But the last two centuries have also witnessed major changes in the way societies have conceptualized diseases and sought to control them. The rise of germ theories and the discovery of vaccines against some infections made it possible to move beyond the blunt tools of animal culls and restrictive quarantines of the past. Nevertheless, these older methods have remained important to strategies of control and prevention, as demonstrated during the recent outbreak of foot and mouth disease in Britain in 2001.
From the late nineteenth century, advances in veterinary technologies afforded veterinary scientists a new professional status and allowed them to wield greater political influence. In the European and Japanese colonies, state support for biomedical veterinary science often led to coercive policies for managing the livestock economies of the colonized peoples. In western Europe and North America, public responses to veterinary interventions were often unenthusiastic and reflected a latent distrust of outside interference and state regulation. Politics, economics, and science inform these essays on the history of animal diseases and the expansion in veterinary medicine.
A novel inquiry into the sociopolitical dimensions of public medicine, Healing the Land and the Nation traces the relationships between disease, hygiene, politics, geography, and nationalism in British Mandatory Palestine between the world wars. Taking up the case of malaria control in Jewish-held lands, Sandra Sufian illustrates how efforts to thwart the disease were intimately tied to the project of Zionist nation-building, especially the movement’s efforts to repurpose and improve its lands. The project of eradicating malaria also took on a metaphorical dimension—erasing anti-Semitic stereotypes of the “parasitic” Diaspora Jew and creating strong, healthy Jews in Palestine. Sufian shows that, in reclaiming the land and the health of its people in Palestine, Zionists expressed key ideological and political elements of their nation-building project.
Taking its title from a Jewish public health mantra, Healing the Land and the Nation situates antimalarial medicine and politics within larger colonial histories. By analyzing the science alongside the politics of Jewish settlement, Sufian addresses contested questions of social organization and the effects of land reclamation upon the indigenous Palestinian population in a decidedly innovative way. The book will be of great interest to scholars of the Middle East, Jewish studies, and environmental history, as well as to those studying colonialism, nationalism, and public health and medicine.
Healing to All Their Flesh asks us to step back and carefully rethink the relationship between religion and health. It does so by examining overlooked issues of theology and meaning that lie at the foundation of religion’s supposed beneficial function. Is a religion-health relationship consistent with understandings of faith within respective traditions? What does this actually imply? What does it not imply? How have these ideas been distorted? Why does this matter—for medicine and healthcare and also for the practice of faith? Is the ultimate relation between spirit and flesh, as mediated by the context of human belief and experience, a topic that can even be approached through empirical observation, scientific reasoning, and the logic of intellectual discourse?8 pag e photo insert
The editors of this collection, Drs. Jeff Levin and Keith G. Meador, have gathered together the writings of leading Jewish and Christian theological, pastoral, ethical, and religious scholars to answer these important questions. Contributors include Richard Address, William Cutter, Elliot N. Dorff, Dayle A. Friedman, Stanley Hauerwas, Warren Kinghorn, M. Therese Lysaught, Stephen G. Post, John Swinton, and Simkha Y. Weintraub, with a foreword by Samuel E. Karff.
Disenchanted with biomedicine and dismayed by its cost, increasing numbers of people are seeking alternative therapies such as the healing plants discussed in this book. Plant medicine is a billion-dollar business: health food stores, small yerberias, and even giant grocery store chains carry hundreds of medicinal herbs. By one estimate, up to one-third of the U.S. population uses alternative medicine—generally in addition to conventional therapy and commonly without telling their doctors. The heart of this volume is a complete description of 100 plants commonly used today, often for the same purposes reported by chroniclers of the Aztecs or eighteenth-century European explorers. Information for each plant includes botanical and common plant names, history, contemporary uses, a description of how the plant is prepared and administered, and brief phytochemical data. Discussions of folk efficacy and folk properties—beliefs in how and why the herb heals—help to explain the continued use of each plant into the present day. Are any of these plants dangerous, and do any of them really work? Where did they come from, and where are they available now? How can health-care practitioners gain the confidence of their patients to learn whether they are using alternative medicines for specific illnesses, symptoms, or injuries? Perhaps most intriguing, which of these plants might be waiting to take the place of known antibiotics as pathological organisms become increasingly resistant to modern miracle drugs? Answers to these and other questions will pique the interest of general readers and will be an invaluable resource for health-care providers—especially nurses and other primary-care providers, who often must find an interface between biomedical and more traditional therapies. For all readers, the book opens a window into many ethnic cultures of the region—Mexican American communities, desert Pima, coastal Seri, and others. Here is the fascinating saga of how their healing plants from prehistoric times melded with Old World herbs brought by the Europeans to create the unique pharmacopoeia available today here and in other parts of the world. Plants included:
Acacia (Cassie, Acacia)
Agastache (Giant Hyssop)
Agave (Century Plant)
Allium (Garlic, Onion)
Anemopsis (Yerba Mansa)
Arctostaphylos (Bearberry, Uva Ursi)
Argemone (Prickly Poppy)
Aristolochia (Bithwort, Snakeroot)
Artemisia (Wormwood, Mugwort, Western Mugwort, Sagebrush)
Baccharis (Desert Broom, Seep Willow)
Bocconia (Tree Celandine)
Buddleia (Butterfly Bush)
Bursera (Elephant Tree)
Caesalpinia (Mexican Bird-of-Paradise)
Chenopodium (Goosefoot, Wormseed)
Citrus (Lemon, Lime, Orange)
Datura (Jimson Weed)
Ephedra (Mormon Tea)
Eryngium (Eryngo, Button Snakeroot)
Gnaphalium (Everlasting, Cudweed)
Guaiacum (Lignum Vitae)
Gutierrezia (Turpentine Bush)
Heterotheca (Telegraph Plant, Falso Arnica)
Ibervillea (Coyote Melon)
Kohleria (Tree Gloxinia)
Larrea (Creosote Bush, Greasewood)
Mammillaria (Pincushion Cactus)
Opuntia (Cholla, Prickly Pear)
Exploring the moral foundations of the healing relationship, Edmund D. Pellegrino and David C. Thomasma offer the health care professional a highly readable Christian philosophy of medicine. This book examines the influence religious beliefs have on the kind of person the health professional should be, on the health care policies a society should adopt, and on what constitutes healing in its fullest sense.
Helping and Healing looks at the ways a religious perspective shapes the healing relationship and the ethics of that relationship. Pellegrino and Thomasma seek to clarify the role of religious belief in health care by providing a moral basis for such commitment as well as a balancing role for reason. This book establishes a common ground for believers and skeptics alike in their dedication to relieve suffering by showing that helping and healing require an involvement in the religious values of patients. It clearly argues that religion provides crucial insights into medical practice and morality that cannot be ignored, even in our morally heterogeneous society.
Central to the authors' message is the concept of patients' vulnerabilities and the need to help them recover not only from the disease but also from an existential assault on their personhood. They then show how this understanding can move caregivers to view their professions as vocations and thereby change the nature of health care from a business to a community of healing.
Physicians, nurses, administrators, clergy, theologians, and other health professionals and church leaders will find this volume helpful for their own reflections on the role of religion in the health care ministry and for making a religious commitment integral to their professional lives.
Life with others is messy. The bonds we form are often the source that drives us to helping professionals like therapists and pastors in the first place. And yet, it is from these relationships that our greatest moments of healing spring. Recognizing the value of relationships, pastors and therapists have been leading small therapeutic groups for years. Yet few leaders have a specific, easy-to-follow, and researched framework to structure their groups. Helping Groups Heal presents “The Healing Cycle,” a grace-based model that facilitates healing and growth in groups. It has been tested with a variety of settings, and can be adapted to nearly any small group, from sex addiction therapy to marriage therapy to Bible studies.
The basic components of “The Healing Cycle” are grace, safety, vulnerability, truth, ownership, and confession. Helping Groups Heal guides the reader through these elements, offering case studies and practical advice from the voices of researchers and practitioners. Each chapter shows how “The Healing Cycle” moves its members to share their truth, own it, and make positive change in their lives. Each step of the process allows participants to move past surface issues and find depth in their understanding of their pain.
Whether you have been leading small groups for years or are about to lead your first session, Helping Groups Heal is an accessible, easy-to-follow guide through “The Healing Cycle” that will give each group member what’s needed to grow, relate, and heal.
The ancient Hippocratic oath that every doctor pledges upon graduation from medical school is a code based on genuine devotion to people and a desire to serve them. It is also a code in urgent need of updating to reflect the technological and moral changes of modern society and the complicated dilemmas facing every practicing physician.
This collection of essays by some of the wisest observers of modern medicine probes the various forces affecting health care today: the power of the new technology in diagnosing and treating illnesses, the growing appreciation of mind/body interactions, the emergence of corporate hospitals and health care centers, and, most importantly, the essence of physicianhood—what makes a doctor want to practice medicine.
In considering these issues, the essayists question whether the medical-industrial complex will destroy physicians as we know them, making doctors employees of large profit-making institutions and more responsible to their companies than to their patients. Will increasing versatility in technological medicine remove doctors even further from the patient's bedside, weakening the diminishing bond between patient and doctor? Are there points of contact between western "scientific" medicine and holistic practices? Is there a place in modern medicine for work therapy and the placebo effect?
Each of these issues prevalent in medicine today has, in its own particular way, an effect upon the core relationship between doctor and patient. In Search of the Modern Hippocrates is dedicated to the premise that current changes in medicine can produce an altered and strengthened medical profession resolved to preserve the inextricable link between commitment and care. Ending with the development of a modern oath of ethics, it provides an important guide to medicine in the complex world we now face.
In 2012 Kateri Tekakwitha became the first North American Indian to be canonized as a saint by the Roman Catholic Church, an event that American Indian Catholics have awaited for generations. Saint Kateri, known as the patroness of the environment, was born in 1656 near present-day Albany, New York, to an Algonquin mother and a Mohawk father. Tekakwitha converted to Christianity at age nineteen and took a vow of perpetual virginity. Her devotees have advocated for her sainthood since her death in 1680. Within historical Catholic writings, Tekakwitha is portrayed as a model of pious, submissive femininity. Indian Pilgrims moves beyond mainstream narratives and shows that Saint Kateri is a powerful feminine figure who inspires decolonizing activism in contemporary Indigenous peoples’ lives.
Author Michelle M. Jacob examines Saint Kateri’s influence on and relation to three important themes—caring for the environment, building community, and reclaiming the Native feminine as sacred—and brings a Native feminist perspective to the story of Saint Kateri. The book demonstrates the power and potential of Indigenous decolonizing activism, as Saint Kateri’s devotees claim the space of the Catholic Church to revitalize traditional cultural practices, teach and learn Indigenous languages, and address critical issues such as protecting Indigenous homelands from environmental degradation. The book is based on ethnographic research at multiple sites, including Saint Kateri’s 2012 canonization festivities in Vatican City and Italy, the Akwesasne Mohawk Reservation (New York and Canada), the Yakama Reservation (Washington), and the National Tekakwitha Conferences in Texas, North Dakota, and Louisiana. Through narratives from these events, Jacob addresses issues of gender justice—such as respecting the autonomy of women while encouraging collectivist thinking and strategizing—and seeks collective remedies that challenge colonial and capitalist filters.
The twelve essays in this stimulating volume, written by health care professionals and others working with the important issue of institutional ethics, focus on the world of academic health centers and provide rich, informed commentaries on significant problems integral to the character and work of those centers. Daniel Steiner demonstrates how the viability of independent research may be threatened by university liaisons with industry. Donald Frederickson traces the history of the National Institutes of Health response to the ethical challenges in clinical investigation and fetal research. Edmund Pellegrino recommends ways in which health-related institutions may translate their concern into action. Robert Coles examines the tensions between institutional and personal values in a very provocative way. Other directions are explored by essayists Roger Bulger, Stephen Toulmin, H. Tristram Engelhardt, Kim Dunn, Mitchell Rabkin, James Haughton, Lawrence Green, and the editors themselves.
Every essay in this wide-ranging collection reveals the implications and effects of institutional values. The end result is a clear picture of conflicts of values: ethical, social, economic, ethnic, cultural, and pedagogic. Integrity in Health Care Institutions points out the need for a deliberate attempt to sort out the values of institutions and, when they are fully and clearly displayed, to use priorities as a guide to satisfying the obligations of academic health centers to those who work within their walls; to the patients, students, scientists, and teachers they serve; and to society in general.
Physicians and nurses, hospital and university administrators, attorneys, sociologists, and everyone concerned about the moral interaction between institutions and individuals will want to read this book.
Abby Phillips Metzger’s book of personal stories recounts a forgotten Oregon river, the Willamette, as it was before white settlement. Once a rich network of channels and sloughs, the Willamette today bears the scars of development and degradation.
Yet, through canoe trips and intimate explorations of the river, Metzger discovers glints of resiliency: a beaver trolling through a slough, native fish in quiet backwaters, and strong currents that carry undertones of the wild Willamette. Together with tales from farmers and scientists alike, these experiences lead Metzger to ask whether something scarred can fully heal, and whether a disjointed river can be whole again.
A story of re-discovery as told by a learner, Meander Scars will appeal to readers of literary nonfiction, river advocates, naturalists, and outdoor enthusiasts interested in sustaining healthy river systems for themselves, their children, and beyond.
The sixteenth-century encounter between Mesoamericans and Europeans resulted in a tremendous loss of life in indigenous communities and significantly impacted their health and healing strategies. Contributors to this special issue of Ethnohistory address how indigenous people experienced bodily health in the wake of this encounter. By exploring archival indigenous and Spanish-language documents, contributors address how bodily health was experienced in the wake of the European encounter and uncover transformations of health discourses and experiences of illness. They investigate eclectic healing practices and medical chants; changing notions of the causes of illnesses; and the language of cleansing ceremonies, bone-setting, midwifery, and maternal medicine.
Contributors. Sabina Cruz de la Cruz, Rebecca Dufendach, Servando Hinojosa, Timothy W. Knowlton, Gabrielle Vail, Edber Dzidz Yam
Currently in medicine, theories of pain regard pain and suffering as one and the same. It is assumed that if pain ceases, suffering stops. These theories are not substantiated in clinical practice, where some patients report little pain and extreme suffering and other individuals have a lot of pain and virtually no suffering. Based on the results of a scientific questionnaire, as well as evidence from and conversations with hundreds of patients, Beverley M. Clarke argues convincingly that suffering is often separate from pain, has universal measurable characteristics, and requires suffering-specific treatments that are sensitive to the patient’s individual psychology and cultural background. According to Clarke, suffering occurs when individuals who have experienced a life change because of medical issues perceive a threat to their idea of self and personhood. This kind of suffering, based on a lost “dream of self,” affects every aspect of an individual’s life. Treating the patient as a whole person—an approach that Clarke strongly advocates—is an issue overlooked in the majority of chronic care and traumatic injury treatments, focused as they are on pain reduction. Clarke believes passionately that the management of suffering in medicine is the responsibility of all health care practitioners. Until they come to identify and understand suffering as distinct from pain, the entire health care system will continue to carry the financial and moral burden of incomplete diagnoses, inappropriate referrals for care, ineffective treatment interventions, and lost human potential.
Few things get our compassion flowing like the sight of suffering. But our response is often shaped by our ability to empathize with others. Some people respond to the suffering of only humans or to one person’s plight more than another’s. Others react more strongly to the suffering of an animal. These divergent realities can be troubling—but they are also a reminder that trauma and suffering are endured by all beings, and we can learn lessons about their aftermath, even across species.
With Phoenix Zones, Dr. Hope Ferdowsian shows us how. Ferdowsian has spent years traveling the world to work with people and animals who have endured trauma—war, abuse, displacement. Here, she combines compelling stories of survivors with the latest science on resilience to help us understand the link between violence against people and animals and the biological foundations of recovery, peace, and hope. Taking us to the sanctuaries that give the book its title, she reveals how the injured can heal and thrive if we attend to key principles: respect for liberty and sovereignty, a commitment to love and tolerance, the promotion of justice, and a fundamental belief that each individual possesses dignity. Courageous tales show us how: stories of combat veterans and wolves recovering together at a California refuge, Congolese women thriving in one of the most dangerous places on earth, abused chimpanzees finding peace in a Washington sanctuary, and refugees seeking care at Ferdowsian’s own medical clinic.
These are not easy stories. Suffering is real, and recovery is hard. But resilience is real, too, and Phoenix Zones shows how we can foster it. It reveals how both people and animals deserve a chance to live up to their full potential—and how such a view could inspire solutions to some of the greatest challenges of our time.
Pilgrimage and Healing
Edited by Jill Dubisch and Michael Winkelman University of Arizona Press, 2005 Library of Congress BL619.P5P519 2005 | Dewey Decimal 203.51
Bikers converge at the Vietnam Veterans Memorial in Washington, D.C. Thousands flock to a Nevada desert to burn a towering effigy. And the hopeless but hopeful ill journey to Lourdes as they have for centuries. Although pilgrimage may seem an antiquated religious ritual, it remains a vibrant activity in the modern world as pilgrims combine traditional motives—such as seeking a cure for physical or spiritual problems—with contemporary searches for identity or interpersonal connection. That pilgrimage continues to exercise such a strong attraction is testimony to the power it continues to hold for those who undertake these sacred journeys. This volume brings together anthropological and interdisciplinary perspectives on these persistent forms of popular religion to expand our understanding of the role of the traditional practice of pilgrimage in what many believe to be an increasingly secular world. Focusing on the healing dimensions of pilgrimage, the authors present case studies grounded in specific cultures and pilgrimage traditions to help readers understand the many therapeutic resources pilgrimage provides for people around the world. The chapters examine a variety of pilgrimage forms, both religious and non-religious, from Nepalese and Huichol shamanism pilgrimage to Catholic journeys to shrines and feast days to Nevada’s Burning Man festival. These diverse cases suggest a range of meanings embodied in the concept of healing itself, from curing physical ailments and redefining the self to redressing social suffering and healing the wounds of the past. Collectively and individually, the chapters raise important questions about the nature of ritual in general, and healing through pilgrimage in particular, and seek to illuminate why so many participants find pilgrimage a compelling way to address the problem of suffering. They also illustrate how pilgrimage exerts its social and political influence at the personal, local, and national levels, as well as providing symbols and processes that link people across social and spiritual boundaries. By examining the persistence of pilgrimage as a significant source of personal engagement with spirituality, Pilgrimage and Healing shows that the power of pilgrimage lies in its broad transformative powers. As our world increasingly adopts a secular and atheistic perspective in many domains of experience, it reminds us that, for many, spiritual quest remains a potent force.
With over forty years of experience as a sought after diagnostician, Dr. Stuart Mushlin has cracked his share of medical mysteries, ones in which there are bigger gambles than playing the ponies at the track. Some of his patients show up with puzzling symptoms, calling for savvy medical detective work. Others seem to present cut-and-dry cases, but they turn out to be suffering from rare or serious conditions.
In Playing the Ponies and Other Medical Mysteries Solved, Dr. Mushlin shares some of the most intriguing cases he has encountered, revealing the twists and turns of each patient’s diagnosis and treatment process. Along the way, he imparts the secrets to his success as a medical detective—not specialized high-tech equipment, but time-honored techniques like closely observing, touching, and listening to patients. He also candidly describes cases where he got things wrong, providing readers with honest insights into both the joys and dilemmas of his job.
Dr. Mushlin does not just treat diseases; he treats people. And this is not just a book about the ailments he diagnosed; it is also about the scared, uncertain, ailing individuals he helped in the process. Filled with real-life medical stories you’ll have to read to believe, Playing the Ponies is both a suspenseful page-turner and a heartfelt reflection on a life spent caring for patients.
In the course of caring for the ill or dying, health care professionals are sometimes the only ones available to provide spiritual comfort to their patients. In our modern pluralistic society, where patients could come from any number of religious traditions, it can often be difficult to find exactly the right words in these situations.
Prayers and Rituals at a Time of Illness and Dying: The Practices of Five World Religions by experienced physician and theologian Pat Fosarelli offers clear instructions for health care professionals on how to better understand the needs of their Buddhist, Hindu, Muslim, Christian, and Jewish patients during these difficult times. Devoting separate chapters to each tradition, Fosarelli briefly outlines the basic beliefs and then looks at the main tenets of each religion, exploring the varied approaches that they take to illness and end-of-life issues. For each tradition, she also describes practices and offers suitable prayers. Each chapter suggests modifications that may be necessary for Western hospitals, modifications for children, and specific suggestions about what not to do or say in respect to different faith traditions.
This easy-to-use, pocket-sized resource will be referenced again and again by physicians, paramedics, hospital and military chaplains, pastoral counselors, hospice providers, and other medical professionals.
In this comprehensive work, Eugene Taylor uses the tenets of modern psychology, concepts from the world's religions, and a lifetime of spiritual experiences and interior exploration to show how true healing comes from within. Taylor asserts that "consciousness and healing are linked and this connection can best be understood within the context of a growth-oriented psychology of self-realization." Everyone has the capacity to develop a healing personality.
Drawing from such diverse interpreters of transcendental and psychological experiences as William James, Emanuel Swedenborg, Mircea Eliade, Carl Jung, Victor Frankl, and Abraham Maslow, Taylor explores the divisions between science and religious traditions; presents his own personal experiences, including his meetings with the Dalai Lama and Tenzin Norgay; and provides glimpses into the spiritual lives of others who have shared their experiences with him. The function of belief in the alleviation of suffering, the development of self-awareness, and the importance of human relationships form the basis for Taylor's psychology of spiritual healing. This cogent work both provides answers and raises questions for the spiritual seeker.
Realized Religion includes research that investigates the impact of spirituality in health and healing, faith healing, religion and mental health, religion and life satisfaction, religion and mental disorders, religion and martial satisfaction, the effect of religion on suicide, and the effect of religion on alcohol use and abuse. This book documents over 300 scientific studies published by reputable scientific journals demonstrating that religion has an ameliorating effect on the survival rate of surgical patients, on depression and anxiety, on suicide rates, and on promotion of a healthy lifestyle.
Realized Religion presents useful and helpful information to researchers and scholars who seek to understand the subtle connection between healing and spirituality. It will be an invaluable resource for libraries and others interested in the emerging field of spirituality and healing.
Faced with a world that is environmentally out of balance, that is unhealthy in many respects, and that reflects stark inequalities, anthropologists are challenging themselves and others to engage in recovery, renewal, and reclaiming. This volume of Southern Anthropological Society Proceedings seeks to grapple with these challenges head-on. The essays provide wide-ranging discussions of concrete problems, often with a focus on the Appalachian region. Among the important issues raised are the following: the effect of landscape on health in Huntington, West Virginia; food justice; drug use and its misrepresentation in Appalachia; the relationship between evangelical religion and depression; the changing definitions of mental illness over time and how those definitions are used as instruments of social control; how the spiritual practices of Eastern Band Cherokees are connected to medical care; and the challenges recent Haitian immigrants face in obtaining health care in a new culture.
While solutions to these problems are complex and always have their roots in local circumstance, the essays in Recovery, Renewal, Reclaiming will inspire strategies that will clear blighted environments, deliver nourishing food, ease the lives of marginalized people, and lead to respect for all beliefs as we work together to bring balance to our environmental, physical, and spiritual health.
Patrisia Gonzales addresses "Red Medicine" as a system of healing that includes birthing practices, dreaming, and purification rites to re-establish personal and social equilibrium. The book explores Indigenous medicine across North America, with a special emphasis on how Indigenous knowledge has endured and persisted among peoples with a legacy to Mexico. Gonzales combines her lived experience in Red Medicine as an herbalist and traditional birth attendant with in-depth research into oral traditions, storytelling, and the meanings of symbols to uncover how Indigenous knowledge endures over time. And she shows how this knowledge is now being reclaimed by Chicanos, Mexican Americans and Mexican Indigenous peoples.
For Gonzales, a central guiding force in Red Medicine is the principal of regeneration as it is manifested in Spiderwoman. Dating to Pre-Columbian times, the Mesoamerican Weaver/Spiderwoman—the guardian of birth, medicine, and purification rites such as the Nahua sweat bath—exemplifies the interconnected process of rebalancing that transpires throughout life in mental, spiritual and physical manifestations. Gonzales also explains how dreaming is a form of diagnosing in traditional Indigenous medicine and how Indigenous concepts of the body provide insight into healing various kinds of trauma.
Gonzales links pre-Columbian thought to contemporary healing practices by examining ancient symbols and their relation to current curative knowledges among Indigenous peoples. Red Medicine suggests that Indigenous healing systems can usefully point contemporary people back to ancestral teachings and help them reconnect to the dynamics of the natural world.
Rise of the Modern Hospital is a focused examination of hospital design in the United States from the 1870s through the 1940s. This understudied period witnessed profound changes in hospitals as they shifted from last charitable resorts for the sick poor to premier locations of cutting-edge medical treatment for all classes, and from low-rise decentralized facilities to high-rise centralized structures. Jeanne Kisacky reveals the changing role of the hospital within the city, the competing claims of doctors and architects for expertise in hospital design, and the influence of new medical theories and practices on established traditions. She traces the dilemma designers faced between creating an environment that could function as a therapy in and of itself and an environment that was essentially a tool for the facilitation of increasingly technologically assisted medical procedures. Heavily illustrated with floor plans, drawings, and photographs, this book considers the hospital building as both a cultural artifact, revelatory of external medical and social change, and a cultural determinant, actively shaping what could and did take place within hospitals.
Sex Talks to Girls: A Memoir
Maureen Seaton University of Wisconsin Press, 2018 Library of Congress PS3569.E218S49 2008 | Dewey Decimal 813.54
Maureen Seaton traces the emergence of her identity in quick, droll, often surprising sketches. She finds herself alternately in the company of winos, swingers, and drag kings; in love with Jesus H. Christ and a butch named Mars; in charge of two children (her own!); writing stories that shrink painfully to poems; and unable to reckon how she landed in any of these predicaments. In her passage from near-nun to suburban mom to woke woman, she shakes herself out of a sloshed stupor and delights in the spree.
“I highly recommend this book as reading for all physicians and would certainly recommend it for any course on medical ethics and/or required reading for any medical student.”—Journal of the National Medical Association
Since the publication of the first edition of Spirituality in Patient Care in 2002, the book has earned a reputation as the authoritative introduction to the subject for health professionals interested in identifying and addressing the spiritual needs of patients. The body of research on religion, spirituality, and health continues to grow at a dramatic rate, creating an urgent need for a new edition of this landmark work. In this, the third edition, Harold G. Koenig, M.D., updates every chapter by incorporating the newest research and introducing sensible ways of translating that research into caring for patients.
Like previous editions, this new one addresses the whys, hows, whens, and whats of patient-centered integration of spirituality into patient care so that health professionals, including physicians in primary care and the medical and surgical specialties, can utilize this information in clinical practice. Whole chapters are also included offering profession-specific information for nurses, clergy, mental health professionals, social workers, and occupational and physical therapists. Other chapters address topics like culturally and spiritually sensitive care for each major religious group, potential limitations or barriers to application, and even what may happen when research on spirituality and health is misapplied. Throughout these chapters, readers will find new case histories and clinical examples on how to integrate spirituality into patient care depending on their particular circumstances. A ten-session model course curriculum on spirituality and health care for medical students and residents is also provided, with suggestions on how to adapt it for nursing, social work, physical and occupational therapy, and mental health training programs.
For more than ten years Spirituality in Patient Care has offered sound guidance to anyone wishing to do more than simply treat their patients’ physical symptoms. Treating the whole patient often requires becoming something more than just a skilled technician. With this new edition, Dr. Koenig once again shows the way for any health professional seeking to bridge this gap and help patientsregain their lives by finding hope, meaning, and healing.
Candy Gunther Brown Harvard University Press, 2012 Library of Congress BR1644.7.B76 2012 | Dewey Decimal 234.131
Drawing on medical records, surveys of prayer recipients, prospective clinical trials, and multiyear follow-up observations and interviews, Brown shows that the widespread perception of prayer’s healing power has demonstrable social effects which can in some cases produce improvements in health that can be scientifically verified.
Self-determination is on the agenda of Indigenous peoples all over the world. This analysis by an Indigenous feminist scholar challenges the United Nations–based human rights agendas and colonial theory that until now have shaped Indigenous models of self-determination. Gender inequality and gender violence, Dian Million argues, are critically important elements in the process of self-determination.
Million contends that nation-state relations are influenced by a theory of trauma ascendant with the rise of neoliberalism. Such use of trauma theory regarding human rights corresponds to a therapeutic narrative by Western governments negotiating with Indigenous nations as they seek self-determination.
Focusing on Canada and drawing comparisons with the United States and Australia, Million brings a genealogical understanding of trauma against a historical filter. Illustrating how Indigenous people are positioned differently in Canada, Australia, and the United States in their articulation of trauma, the author particularly addresses the violence against women as a language within a greater politic. The book introduces an Indigenous feminist critique of this violence against the medicalized framework of addressing trauma and looks to the larger goals of decolonization. Noting the influence of humanitarian psychiatry, Million goes on to confront the implications of simply dismissing Indigenous healing and storytelling traditions.
Therapeutic Nations is the first book to demonstrate affect and trauma’s wide-ranging historical origins in an Indigenous setting, offering insights into community healing programs. The author’s theoretical sophistication and original research make the book relevant across a range of disciplines as it challenges key concepts of American Indian and Indigenous studies.
"A brilliant mixture of story, philosophy, humor and wisdom, this book reminds us that---if we are open to story, dreams, imagination, and myth---we can open doors within our soul."
—Jay O’Callahan, author, storyteller, and NPR commentator
A lifetime collection of stories, wise words, assembled musings and quotations about overcoming hurdles, elusive enlightenment, personal evolution, persistence in the face of discouragement, this pastiche is designed to encourage the downhearted, lift up the strivers, and add wings to the heels of spiritual seekers.
A study of American attempts to come to terms with the legacy of the Vietnam War, this book highlights the central role played by Vietnam veterans in shaping public memory of the war. Tracing the evolution of the image of the Vietnam veteran from alienated dissenter to traumatized victim to noble warrior, Patrick Hagopian describes how efforts to commemorate the war increasingly downplayed the political divisions it spawned in favor of a more unifying emphasis on honoring veterans and promoting national “healing.”
Voices from the Ancestors brings together the reflective writings and spiritual practices of Xicanx, Latinx, and Afro-Latinx womxn and male allies in the United States who seek to heal from the historical traumas of colonization by returning to ancestral traditions and knowledge.
This wisdom is based on the authors’ oral traditions, research, intuitions, and lived experiences—wisdom inspired by, and created from, personal trajectories on the path to spiritual conocimiento, or inner spiritual inquiry. This conocimiento has reemerged over the last fifty years as efforts to decolonize lives, minds, spirits, and bodies have advanced. Yet this knowledge goes back many generations to the time when the ancestors understood their interconnectedness with each other, with nature, and with the sacred cosmic forces—a time when the human body was a microcosm of the universe.
Reclaiming and reconstructing spirituality based on non-Western epistemologies is central to the process of decolonization, particularly in these fraught times. The wisdom offered here appears in a variety of forms—in reflective essays, poetry, prayers, specific guidelines for healing practices, communal rituals, and visual art, all meant to address life transitions and how to live holistically and with a spiritual consciousness for the challenges of the twenty-first century.
In this poignant and startlingly original book, Brian Doyle examines the heart as a physical organ—how it is supposed to work, how surgeons try to fix it when it doesn’t—and as a metaphor: the seat of the soul, the power house of the body, the essence of spirituality. In a series of profoundly moving ruminations, Doyle considers the scientific, emotional, literary, philosophical, and spiritual understandings of the heart—from cardiology to courage, from love letters and pop songs to Jesus. Weaving these strands together is the torment of Doyle’s own infant son’s heart surgery and the inspiring story of the young heart doctor who saved Liam’s life.
The Wet Engine is a book that will change how you feel and think about the mysterious, fragile human heart. This new paperback edition includes a foreword by Dr. Marla Salmon, dean of the University of Washington School of Nursing.
In When Sickness Heals, Dr. Siroj Sorajjakool draws on more than ten years of studies on health benefits in relation to spirituality, especially focusing on the function of "meaning." He expounds on his theory that healing is primarily the function of meaning, and meaning transcends sickness and even death itself. He concludes that what people ultimately seek in life is the healing of their souls.
Sorajjakool brings many Eastern and Western resources to his conversation on health, meaning, and healing. He incorporates the perspectives of theologians and philosophers like Paul Tillich, Carl Jung, Søren Kierkegaard, Raimundo Panikkar, Dietrich Bonhoeffer, and John Macquarrie; as well as references to religious texts, including yin and yang, and alchemy.
A clear, distinct understanding of spirituality in clinical contexts is presented, with an argument for the role of meaning in the healing process, based on evidence that there may be healing even in the face of death. Sorajjakool identifies the transitional processes people may go through as they seek to make sense of their experiences during a health crisis. He suggests an alternative approach to spiritual assessment and provides methods of spiritual care that speak to the soul.
"Whispers of the Ancients helps us reconnect with the spirit of story that is a part of all our heritages. With respect for the wisdom of the past and with an eye toward the cross-cultural links that legends can make between us, Tamarack Song offers a gathering of tales and insightful comments that point the way back to the circle."
---Joseph Bruchac, author of more than 70 books for children and adults, including (with coauthor Michael J. Caduto) the best-selling Keepers of the Earth: Native American Stories and Environmental Activities for Children
It's easy to imagine yourself transported back to a time when an Elder might have told stories like those in Whispers of the Ancients around a glowing hearth. Thanks to Tamarack Song's storytelling skills, monsters, heroes, and shapeshifters come alive and open a doorway to the mysteries of life. Easily accessible to all ages, this is a book that speaks to each person at his or her own level of comprehension and need. It is as beautiful to read as it is to look at.
Stunning Aboriginal artwork by Moses (Amik) Beaver combines with provocative storytelling to renew, in all their traditional splendor, exceptional legends from around the world. Entertaining, profound, passionate, glorious---these are stories that illustrate and evoke themes common to everyone's life, with an ancient wisdom that helps the listener to cope with today's opportunities for tenderness, grief, passion, and irony.
Easily accessible to all ages, this is a book that speaks to each person at his or her own level of comprehension and need. It's as beautiful to read as it is to look at.
Tamarack Song has sought out the stories of the North African and Central Asian tribal peoples from whom he is descended, and he has listened to the tales of indigenous people from the tundra to the tropics. His books include Journey to the Ancestral Self, and he has contributed to Lois Einhorn's Forgiveness and Child Abuse. He is also a counselor, wilderness skills teacher, rites-of-passage guide, and founder of the Teaching Drum Outdoor School. Song lives in the Nicolet National Forest near Three Lakes, Wisconsin.
Moses (Amik) Beaver is an Ojibwe artist from the isolated fly-in community of Nibinamik (Summer Beaver), Ontario, three hundred miles north of Lake Superior. Grants from the Ontario Arts Council and other sources support his ongoing work with youth, and partial support for this book's illustrations comes from the District School Board of Nibinamik.
This book is an invaluable key to self-understanding. Using examples from her own life and the lives of her clients, as well as from dreams, fairy tales, myths, films, and literature, Linda Schierse Leonard, a Jungian analyst, exposes the wound of the spirit that both men and women of our culture bear—a wound that is grounded in a poor relationship between masculine and feminine principles.
Leonard speculates that when a father is wounded in his own psychological development, he is not able to give his daughter the care and guidance she needs. Inheriting this wound, she may find that her ability to express herself professionally, intellectually, sexually, and socially is impaired. On a broader scale, Leonard discusses how women compensate for cultural devaluation, resorting to passive submission (“the Eternal Girl”), or a defensive imitation of the masculine (“the Armored Amazon”).
The Wounded Woman shows that by understanding the father-daughter wound and working to transform it psychologically, it is possible to achieve a fruitful, caring relationship between men and women, between fathers and daughters, a relationship that honors both the mutuality and the uniqueness of the sexes.
The Yakama Nation of present-day Washington State has responded to more than a century of historical trauma with a resurgence of grassroots activism and cultural revitalization. This pathbreaking ethnography shifts the conversation from one of victimhood to one of ongoing resistance and resilience as a means of healing the soul wounds of settler colonialism. Yakama Rising: Indigenous Cultural Revitalization, Activism, and Healing argues that Indigenous communities themselves have the answers to the persistent social problems they face. This book contributes to discourses of Indigenous social change by articulating a Yakama decolonizing praxis that advances the premise that grassroots activism and cultural revitalization are powerful examples of decolonization.
Michelle M. Jacob employs ethnographic case studies to demonstrate the tension between reclaiming traditional cultural practices and adapting to change. Through interviewees’ narratives, she carefully tacks back and forth between the atrocities of colonization and the remarkable actions of individuals committed to sustaining Yakama heritage. Focusing on three domains of Indigenous revitalization—dance, language, and foods—Jacob carefully elucidates the philosophy underlying and unifying each domain while also illustrating the importance of these practices for Indigenous self-determination, healing, and survival.
In the impassioned voice of a member of the Yakama Nation, Jacob presents a volume that is at once intimate and specific to her home community and that also advances theories of Indigenous decolonization, feminism, and cultural revitalization. Jacob’s theoretical and methodological contributions make this work valuable to a range of students, academics, tribal community members, and professionals, and an essential read for anyone interested in the ways that grassroots activism can transform individual lives, communities, and society.