Indigenous Knowledge, Spirituality and the Future of Humans in Nature



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Indigenous Knowledge, Spirituality and the Future of Humans in Nature

 OCTOBER 13, 2014     3-6 pm

 Opening Prayer Marcus Briggs-Cloud (Maskoke Nation)

  1. “Indigenous Ceremonialism”, Marcus Briggs-Cloud (Maskoke Nation, UFL);
  2. “Peyote women” by James Treat (Illinois);
  3. “The Interface of Quantum Mechanics and Magic”, by William Lyon (Missouri);


  1. “Shamanic Rebirth Through Mapuche Indigenous “Bibles,” Ana Mariella Bacigalupo (SUNY Buffalo);
  2. ‘The Falling Sky and ‘The Warnings of Mandu’: Prophetic Visions of Amazonian Shamans, R. M. Wright (UFL)


Co-sponsored by the International Society for the Study of Religion, Nature, and Culture; the American Indian and Indigenous Studies Program; the Department of Religion; UF Cultural Engagement


Location: Keene-Flint Hall FLI 0105



James Treat teaches courses on indigenous religious and ecological traditions and on the place of nature in contemporary criticism. My research focuses on American Indian ways of knowing, especially in the wake of imperial modernity; on a more theoretical level, I am interested in the human ecology of indigenous societies as a critique of industrial civilization. Earlier in my career, I studied the native encounter with Christianity in the contemporary period. I am the author of Around the Sacred Fire: Native Religious Activism in the Red Power Era (2003/2008) and the editor of Native and Christian: Indigenous Voices on Religious Identity in the United States and Canada (1996), For This Land: Writings on Religion in America by Vine Deloria Jr. (1999), and Writing the Cross Culture: Native Fiction on the White Man’s Religion (2006)

William Lyon

B.S. in mathematics, Un. of KS, 1963

Ph.D. in anthropology, Un. of KS, 1970

Academic positions:  University of Southern Oregon; University of California, Berkeley; University of Kansas; Haskell Indian University; University of Missouri at Kansas City.

Publications: Black Elk: Sacred Ways of the Lakota; The Encyclopedia of Native American Healing; The Encyclopedia of Native American Shamanism; Spirit Talkers: North American Indian Medicine Powers.



Ana Mariella Bacigalupo received her PhD in Anthropology from UCLA and is currently an Associate Professor of Anthropology at SUNY Buffalo. She has worked with Mapuche shamans in southern Chile for twenty years. Dr. Bacigalupo’s has published fifty articles and book chapters and four books. Her sole authored books include “Shamans of the Foye Tree: Gender, Power and Healing Among the Chilean Mapuche” (University of Texas Press, 2007); “The Voice of the Drum in Modernity: Tradition and Change in the Practice of Seven Mapuche Shamans” (Universidad Católica de Chile press, 2001); “Hybridity in Mapuche “Traditional” Healing Methods: The Practice of Contemporary Mapuche Shamans” (PAESMI 1996). She also co-authored “Modernization and Wisdom in Mapuche Land” (San Pablo Press, 1995); Bacigalupo is currently finishing a fifth book titled “Thunder Shaman: Making History with Mapuche Spirits in Patagonia” under contract with the University of Texas Press.

Dr. Bacigalupo has garnered numerous fellowships to support her research including a John Simon Guggenheim Fellowship, a Radcliffe Institute Fellowship, a School of Advanced Research fellowship, a National Humanities Center fellowship, a Rockefeller Fellowship, a Bellagio Fellowship, an American Association of University Women Fellowship,  and fellowships from the Divinity School and the Center for World Religions at Harvard University. She received the Outstanding Young Investigator Award, the UB 2020 award for Excellence in Cultural, Historical and Literary/Textual Studies, and the Milton Plesur Teaching Award from the University at Buffalo (2007).

Dr  Bacigalupo currently serves as the Anthropology Coordinator for the National Institute of Health Minority Health and Health Disparities International Research Training Grant on the cultural meanings and uses of medicinal plants by curanderos on the North Coast of Peru (through SDSU) and is training graduate and undergraduate students from SUNY Buffalo in medical anthropology through this program. Bacigalupo also serves as chair of the section of Religion and Spirituality of the Latin American Studies Association. She has served on the Board of thAnthropology of Religion section of the American Anthropological Association as and on the board of the Indigenous Religions section of the American Academy of Religion.


Robin M. Wright teaches courses in Indigenous Religious Traditions of the Americas; Indigenous Religious Traditions of the World; Shamanisms of the World; Religion, Medicine, and Healing. He is currently Faculty Advisor for the American Indian and Indigenous Studies Program at UF; and on the Board of Advisors of the International Society for the Study of Religion, Nature, and Culture. Among his publications are: Mysteries of the Jaguar Shamans of the Northwest Amazon (2013, Nebraska); (ed.) Religion, Medicine, and Healing: An Anthology (2014, kendallhunt); Historia Indigena e do Indigenismo no Alto Rio Negro (2005, Mercado de Letras); and “Indigenous Religious Traditions of the World”, in Sullivan, L. (ed.) Religions of the World (Fortress, 2011)


Marcus Briggs-Cloud of the Maskoke Nation, is an academic, activist and musician. He sits on various boards and committees that seek to protect the rights of Indigenous Peoples globally and has served as an Indigenous spokesperson at the United Nations. As a musician, Marcus served as the choir conductor and composer in Rome, Italy for the 2012 Vatican Canonization Liturgy of the first Native American Catholic Saint, Kateri Tekakwitha and in 2011 he was nominated for two Native American Music Awards for his Maskoke hymn album “Pum Vculvke Vrakkuecetv” (To Honor Our Elders).  A graduate of Harvard Divinity school, his academic concentrations intersect liberation theology, gender theory, linguistics and post-coloniality. He is currently a PhD student in Interdisciplinary Ecology at the University of Florida.