hataałii, they are able to experience the power of an enchantment that appears to come from beyond our everyday world. Among the powers of the hataałii are the
ability to see into the past and future, to heal the sick, to summon spirits and to fight and destroy the evil of witches and witchcraft. Above all they conduct the sacred peyote medicine ceremonies in which life changing visions are encountered.Pressured by the modern world the way of the hataałii is coming to an end, bringing to a close thousands of years of unbroken tradition that may stretch back to the Ice Age.
In his dramatic first-person accounts—Meeting the Medicine Men and The Peyote Diaries—Langley, a former journalist from England, recounts the extraordinary experiences that befell him after becoming an apprentice of the powerful Navajo medicine man Blue Horse. He gives some of the only extant descriptions of real witchcraft, divination and healing ceremonies, as practiced among the Navajo in the opening decades of the 21 st century, as well as descriptions of the peyote ceremonies and visions that form the heart of a medicine man’s life and work.
As Blue Horse leads him deeper into his strange and sometimes dangerous world Langley, an anthropology graduate as well as a journalist, finds himself living a
parallel life in which the realities he experiences among the Navajo make it increasingly difficult to cling to the certainties of his western education and upbringing. As evidence accumulates, his dismissive notions about witches and
witchcraft, divination and spirit guides come under increasing pressure – until he is forced to confront the dangerous and terrifying reality of Navajo witchcraft and embrace the powers of Navajo medicine men that alone can defeat the evil.