We've been learning more and more about the indigenous forms of hands-on healing that exist in North America. We have traced the origins of American Osteopathy to Andrew Taylor Still's interactions with Native people in Missouri and Kansas before the American Civil War, including the Pawnee, Shawnee, and Cherokee. These tribes influenced each other with their healing practices and Still was fluent in the Shawnee language, their form of hands-on-healing being very similar to that of the Cherokee. We will see how Native American forms of bodywork and hands-on-healing have been passed through Still into contemporary American osteopathy and discover its indigenous origins.
Traditional Cherokee people called their techniques of hands-on healing “reading the body,” and in this workshop, we will demonstrate these indigenous techniques, comparing them to American osteopathy and traditional Chinese medicine. We will explore how these indigenous people used various strategies for touching the body, including deep pressure, rocking, shaking, running energy meridians, mobilization, and breath work as a means to restore spirit to all parts of the body, We'll guide you through supervised practice with the methods of Cherokee bodywork and offer examples of incorporating imagery and dialogue; the importance of ceremony, ritual, and intent; manipulative medicine as a means of dialogue with the body; Cherokee acupuncture and knowledge of energy meridians and energy medicine; understanding how this form of healing as mind-body-spirit integration takes place in community; and more.
Almost all indigenous cultures had direct, hands-on methods of healing, and the Cherokee were no exception. Learn the Cherokee art of healing touch, a form of bodywork that is rarely encountered today. The workshop includes
- Supervised practice of Cherokee bodywork
- Cherokee breathwork techniques, as a means of restoring spirit to all parts of the body
- The incorporation of imagery and dialogue into bodywork
- The importance of ceremony, ritual, and intent in bodywork
- Osteopathic or “manipulative” medicine as a means of dialogue with the body
- Cherokee use of acupressure, energy meridians, crystals, and energy medicine
- A closing ceremony
As we complete our time together with a prayer ritual, we ask for a blessing on the healing work we have done and the continuing journey that lies before us.
Note: Lewis invites massage therapists and bodyworkers as well as those without prior bodywork experience to this program, saying, “Some will want to practice giving more and some receiving more. It’s definitely a more indigenous way of teaching, but it works.” This program can accommodate people with serious illness
To Register email:
Cost weekend $250; one day $125
After April 15th, weekend $300 or one day $150.