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“Heal Thyself”: Holistic Women Healers in Middle America

“Heal Thyself”: Holistic Women Healers in Middle America

(p.137) Chapter Six “Heal Thyself”: Holistic Women Healers in Middle America
Diagnosing Folklore
Elaine J. Lawless
University Press of Mississippi

In chapter 6, “‘Heal Thyself’: Holistic Women Healers in Middle America,” Elaine J. Lawless profiles a local “healing community” of women in or near Columbia, Missouri, who regularly meet and share knowledge about and practice together various healing modalities. In addition to learning from each other, she notes, the women in the group also learn new healing practices offered by healers who were visiting from other areas, so mouth to mouth and hand to hand learning take place all the time. They all claim a holistic approach, which guides their daily lives as well as their healing practices, and includes attention to complex understandings of how mind, body, and spirit work in conjunction within the human body. Through the stories of these women, Lawless offers a unique glimpse into their shared corpus of knowledge and the traditional healing beliefs and practices they espouse, as well as her own place within the healing community.

Keywords:   Holistic Medicine, Reflexivity, Missouri, Healing, Alternative Medicine

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