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Long Life, Honey in the Heart

Mayan Initiation, the Flowering of Eloquence

by Martín Prechtel
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Martín Prechtel, Long Life, Honey in the Heart: Long Life, Honey in the Heart (New York, NY: Tarcher/Putnam, 1999). Order on-line

Book cover
Long Life, Honey in the Heart: Mayan Initiation, the Flowering of Eloquence ,
by Martín Prechtel.
Order on-line

Book cover
Secrets of the Talking Jaguar: A Mayan Shaman's Journey to the Heart of the Indigenous Soul
by Martín Prechtel
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Book Description
A stand-alone memoir that continues Martin Prechtel's story and explores the Tzutujil Mayan concept of initiation and its relevance to our contemporary world.

"The Mayan gods, who hold eloquence above all else, must surely be pleased with this soul, who in this lifetime is named Mart'n Prechtel."--Clarissa Pinkola Estes

In Secrets of the Talking Jaguar, Martin Prechtel told of his fourteen years as a shaman in the ancient Mayan village of Santiago Atitlan. Now he continues his story, describing his role as village chief and initiator and examining the complexity of the Mayan religious and social universe against a backdrop of political and social intrigue.

During the period in which this book is set (the 1970s), Guatemala was in the midst of a brutal civil war. Prechtel's coming-of-age memoir relates his personal experience of the war, describing how Guatemala's ruling government outlawed the thousand-year-old traditional rites of the Maya, leading to the dissolution of Santiago Atitlan and ultimately forcing Prechtel to flee the country in fear for his life.

It's an amazing tale--and Prechtel is a spellbinding storyteller. His writing has been acclaimed as "colorful and revelatory in its insights . . . leagues beyond any ethnography I've ever read" (Common Boundary). At once a page-turner and a profound work of cultural anthropology, Long Life, Honey in the Heart makes a lasting contribution to our understanding of one of humankind's most significant ancient civilizations.

About the Author
Martin Prechtel was raised on an Indian reservation in New Mexico before moving to Santiago Atitlan in Guatemala. Prechtel returned to the United States, where he is now a nationally recognized public speaker, artist, and healer who writes frequently for anthropological journals and university publications. He lives in Santa Fe, New Mexico.


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