Encyclopedia Article


In the context of Native American belief systems, "medicine" is an Anglicized term referring of a range of concepts that focus on the connections between an individual or group and both the natural and the spiritual worlds. These connections at times seem to be harnessed to affect positive change that is generally discussed in terms of healing or reparation. To work or make "medicine" often entails a holistic approach that promotes balance, harmony, and equilibrium, but that also, and very pragmatically, accepts that balance, harmony, and equilibrium may manifest in a time, place, and manner other than that requested.

Photo Credit: 

"Navajo men work on a sandpainting, circa 1890" by Mullarky Photo is licensed under Public Domain.

Term Type: