The Huichols or Wewerika are an indigenous people living in remote areas of their homeland in the Sierra Madres of northwest central Mexico. They are one of the few original peoples of the world who have managed to maintain their sacred traditions and their relationship to the natural world despite the encroachments of Western culture. Central to this is a knowing that the world is sacred, a vast interrelationship of sacred beings who need to be honored and related to in the spirit of exchange.
They are people of the deer, the peyote and the corn. Tatewari, or Grandfather Fire, takes their prayers to the Gods and provides them with the guidance they need for their lives. Theirs is a culture that produces great shamans. These are both men and women who have a “soul calling” to undergo great hardship and austerities to become initiated into a life of service. Their lives are devoted to serving their community through conducting rituals, bringing healing and providing wisdom and guidance for their people.
The shamans are the link between the people and the Divine beings and energies of the natural world that sustain them. They maintain the traditions and conduct the rituals that keep the people in right relationship with the natural world. In this way they have lived sustainably since the beginning. And it is this traditional wisdom, that brings healing, relationship and connection, that can show us the way to our own future of sustainability in a time of great need.