An academic study sets an anthropologist on a journey of spiritual exploration.
Travelling to Sierra de Puebla in 1978, Kodros sought to find examples of ancient folklore and mythology still in existence in Mexico. In the villages the author visited, he found vibrant communities that had maintained their traditional culture and language, hundreds of years after the Spanish colonized Mexico. Indeed, some who lived in these remote villages perceived â€œMexico” as a different country. Kodros spent ten years recording the traditional stories that had been passed down for generations through oral storytelling. He found that these tales were about far more than the history of these particular peoples and bore similarities, embedded in their symbology, with ancient myths found in cultures around the world. His visit to Don Ignacio, a local curandero, or shamanistic healer, to hear the story of the Lightning Spirits proved to be a turning point not only in the author’s research but in his life. On his way home, Kodros was caught in a rainstorm and struck by lightning. Following his near-death experience, Ignacio not only helped heal the trauma the author suffered, but showed him how such an experience gave unusual insight into life and death, which Kodros could use to help heal others. The author spent the next several years seeking out and documenting the traditional cultural practices and folklore of the region. He also travelled to Bali, where he found many commonalities in the indigenous cultures there. His curiosity about the origins of these ancient spiritual practices finally led him to make a pilgrimage to his own ancestral land, Greece. The author’s journey is compelling, regardless of one’s perception of its mystical aspects, as it touches upon the vast history of humanity. Kodros presents his studies of the indigenous cultures and customs he observed in a highly accessible way, and his deep personal involvement makes the narrative all the more engaging.
In studying the world, we find ourselves.