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Becoming a Medicine Woman

You ladies will really enjoy this article. Well, you guys might want to keep the photos of the rock musician-belly dancer in your computer… if you are single, of course.

Being chosen as a medicine woman is not just a Native American tradition. It can be found in the history of Judaism, plus among several Celtic and Nordic cultures. Meet Bonnie, an Alabama medicine woman, who is also a high school art teacher, and Aviva, a Georgia medicine woman, who also leads a rock band, performs belly dancing professionally and builds ecologically sensitive structures.

Bonnie now combines her gifts in art and healing to help teenage girls, who have gotten in trouble with the law or into drugs. She does not want them to “screw up” like she did two decades ago.

Alas, other men brag about the beautiful strangers, who came up to their door and promised to rock their world. For unknown reasons, over the past 12 years, women, who were first going through the strange experiences of becoming a medicine woman somehow found me out. There must be a “Think you are going crazy because you are becoming a medicine woman hotline” that somehow keeps track of what hovel I am currently living in. I have lost count of the total number. Many are in POOF now.

The funny thing is that while I was married and goat cheese farmer, beautiful women in their twenties WOULD show up at my farmhouse door, always with bottles of wine in their arms and a desire to rock my world. I foolishly sent them away, unrequited. A feller jest can’t no respect!

Okay, I must confess that Aviva DID come up to my cabin door, but she had several chaperons and a high standard of personal moral conduct . . . not to mention the fact that she asked to use my photo for her community vegetable garden’s scarecrow.

If interested in hearing their stories, go to:  About More

Belly dancer? Yes, she is!

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Richard Thornton is a professional architect, city planner, author and museum exhibit designer-builder. He is today considered one of the nation’s leading experts on the Southeastern Indians. However, that was not always the case. While at Georgia Tech Richard was the first winner of the Barrett Fellowship, which enabled him to study Mesoamerican architecture and culture in Mexico under the auspices of the Institutio Nacional de Antropoligia e Historia. Dr. Roman Piňa-Chan, the famous archaeologist and director of the Museo Nacional de Antropologia, was his fellowship coordinator. For decades afterward, he lectured at universities and professional societies around the Southeast on Mesoamerican architecture, while knowing very little about his own Creek heritage. Then he was hired to carry out projects for the Muscogee-Creek Nation in Oklahoma. The rest is history. Richard is the Tribal Historic Preservation Officer for the KVWETV (Coweta) Creek Tribe and a member of the Perdido Bay Creek Tribe. In 2009 he was the architect for Oklahoma’s Trail of Tears Memorial at Council Oak Park in Tulsa. He is the president of the Apalache Foundation, which is sponsoring research into the advanced indigenous societies of the Lower Southeast.

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