The Seven Paths

Changing One's Way of Walking in the World

Anasazi Foundation (Author)

Publication date: 07/09/2013

The Seven Paths

Ultimately, it is in communion with our fellow beings and the natural world that we are made whole. We need to leave the path of Me and follow the path of We.

  • Tells a lyrical and moving parable of the healing wisdom of the wilderness
  • Supplies what's missing in traditional notions of "self-help": the importance of a connection to a community and to the natural world in achieving inner peace and personal fulfillment
  • Based on a book published and circulated privately by the award-winning Anasazi Foundation, which has helped thousands of people for twenty-five years

Too many people today have taken the wrong path. They walk alone, seeking peace and fulfillment in isolation. Countless well-meaning self-help books preach this gospel, as the name "self-help" implies. But this approach will take us only so far. Ultimately, it is in communion with our fellow beings and the natural world that we are made whole. We need to leave the path of Me and follow the path of We.

This poetic and evocative book, drawing on the personal experiences of Good Buffalo Eagle, presents the meditations of an ancient Anasazi tribesman who rejects his family and community and walks off into the desert. During his journey, he discovers the seven paths of the Anasazi way, each path teaching a lesson symbolized by an element of the natural world: light, wind, water, stone, plants, animals, and finally the unity of all beings with the Creator, the path of We. By walking these paths, he discovers the roots of his conflict and the way toward reconciliation.

For years, this book has been privately distributed by the Anasazi Foundation, an award-winning nonprofit organization whose work with troubled youth in a wilderness setting has been extraordinarily effective. But there is benefit here for all. The Seven Paths gives access to a source of wisdom and renewal familiar to native people but lost to the rest of us. As Good Buffalo Eagle writes in the foreword, this book "presents what might be described as a course in healing-seven elements among nature that combine to heal human hearts."

Founded in 1988 by renowned wilderness pioneers Larry D. Olsen and Ezekiel C. Sanchez (Good Buffalo Eagle), Anasazi Foundation gives young people an opportunity for growth through a primitive living experience and a philosophy that invites healing at the hands of nature. Anasazi's family-focused intervention programs inspired the international bestseller The Anatomy of Peace and were the subject of an episode of the Emmy-award-winning MTV series True Life. It is estimated that more than 40,000 people have participated in programs designed by Olsen and Sanchez.

Read more and meet author below

Read An Excerpt

Paperback:
9781609949198

$14.95
(member price: $13.46)
Free shipping on all orders from the BK Publishers store.
Or find a local bookseller with Indiebound.

Other Available Formats and Editions

9781609949204

$14.95
(member price: $10.47)

9781609949211

$14.95
(member price: $10.47)
Bulk Discounts
Rights Information


Featured Books



Invisible Martyrs

“This is an extraordinary book, written by an extraordinary woman. Qazi is a master storyteller, capturing the emotion as well as...

Leadership and Self-Deception

This third edition of an international bestseller—over 2 million copies sold worldwide and translated into 33 languages—details how its powerful insights...

More About This Product

Overview

Ultimately, it is in communion with our fellow beings and the natural world that we are made whole. We need to leave the path of Me and follow the path of We.

  • Tells a lyrical and moving parable of the healing wisdom of the wilderness
  • Supplies what's missing in traditional notions of "self-help": the importance of a connection to a community and to the natural world in achieving inner peace and personal fulfillment
  • Based on a book published and circulated privately by the award-winning Anasazi Foundation, which has helped thousands of people for twenty-five years

Too many people today have taken the wrong path. They walk alone, seeking peace and fulfillment in isolation. Countless well-meaning self-help books preach this gospel, as the name "self-help" implies. But this approach will take us only so far. Ultimately, it is in communion with our fellow beings and the natural world that we are made whole. We need to leave the path of Me and follow the path of We.

This poetic and evocative book, drawing on the personal experiences of Good Buffalo Eagle, presents the meditations of an ancient Anasazi tribesman who rejects his family and community and walks off into the desert. During his journey, he discovers the seven paths of the Anasazi way, each path teaching a lesson symbolized by an element of the natural world: light, wind, water, stone, plants, animals, and finally the unity of all beings with the Creator, the path of We. By walking these paths, he discovers the roots of his conflict and the way toward reconciliation.

For years, this book has been privately distributed by the Anasazi Foundation, an award-winning nonprofit organization whose work with troubled youth in a wilderness setting has been extraordinarily effective. But there is benefit here for all. The Seven Paths gives access to a source of wisdom and renewal familiar to native people but lost to the rest of us. As Good Buffalo Eagle writes in the foreword, this book "presents what might be described as a course in healing-seven elements among nature that combine to heal human hearts."

Founded in 1988 by renowned wilderness pioneers Larry D. Olsen and Ezekiel C. Sanchez (Good Buffalo Eagle), Anasazi Foundation gives young people an opportunity for growth through a primitive living experience and a philosophy that invites healing at the hands of nature. Anasazi's family-focused intervention programs inspired the international bestseller The Anatomy of Peace and were the subject of an episode of the Emmy-award-winning MTV series True Life. It is estimated that more than 40,000 people have participated in programs designed by Olsen and Sanchez.

Back to Top ↑

Meet the Author


Visit Author Page - Anasazi Foundation

In the Native American tradition, life is a “walking.” One’s walking is determined by the state of one’s heart toward all that is around him. Anasazi is a Navajo word commonly interpreted as “the Ancient Ones.” According to legends, the wise teachers taught that the Creator placed man on the earth in order for him to learn how to “walk forward”—in harmony with man and all creation.  

For years, ANASAZI Foundation—a nonprofit 501(c)(3) organization headquartered in Arizona—has served families by introducing them to a New Beginning and helping them to discover their Seed of Greatness and the wisdom of the lives led by these Ancient Ones.  

Founded by renowned wilderness pioneers Larry Olsen and Ezekiel Sanchez, ANASAZI gives young people an opportunity, through a primitive living experience and a philosophy that invites healing at the hands of nature, to effect a change of heart—a change in one’s whole way of walking in the world. ANASAZI’s wilderness experience is nonpunitive. To those at ANASAZI, the wilderness is not a harsh place to break youth down but rather a safe place—a place free from distractions, where one can learn, ponder, discover, and build.  

Through this experience and ANASAZI’s concurrent work with parents, ANASAZI prepares parents and children to turn their hearts to one another, begin anew, and walk in harmony in the wilderness of the world.  

ANASAZI Foundation, (800) 678-3445, www.anasazi.org

Back to Top ↑


Table of Contents

Foreword by Good Buffalo Eagle

Preface

Beginnings The Making of a Walking

The Age of "I"

Away from My People

My People, Again

Nature as Teacher

Forward and Backward Walking

1 The Path of Light

A Ray of Light

Light and Darkness

Illumination of the Heart

The Source of the Light

Messengers of the Light

2 The Path of Wind

A Voice on the Wind

The Breath of Life

The Connection of Nature

The Connection of Man

Messages on the Wind

3 The Path of Water

The Need for Water

Drought in the Soul

Moisture to the Soul

Water's Lessons

Water's Source

4 The Path of Stone

The Wisdom of Stone

The Foundation of Peace

To Be as a Stone

Forward and Backward Use of Stone

Stone's Question

5 The Path of Plants

The Secret of Plants

The Service of Plants

The Source of Beauty

Counterfeits

Hope for the Desert

6 The Path of Animals

A Badger and a Stone

The Language of Animals

Faces among the Animals

Honoring Creation

The Offering of Animals

7 The Path of "WE"

The Story of My People

My View of My People

Awakening to WE

The Lie in the "I"

The Creed of WE

Destinations Forward Walking

Lone Walking

The Step to a New Life

Together Walking

Words to a Friend

About the Art

Acknowledgments

About ANASAZI Foundation

Back to Top ↑

Excerpt

The Seven Paths

  1  

The Path of Light

Image

A Ray of Light

A few days into my journey, still kicking against nature,
I swung at what turned out to be poison oak.

I cursed my carelessness and
my anticipated discomfort and pain.

Truly all creation is against me, I murmured.

Image

Later that day, I tripped in a bone-dry creek bed,
smashing my knee against a rock.
I remember grimacing in pain toward an empty sky.

As I lay there, I recalled words my father had spoken to me
while on a hunt: “WE who lose our footing have lost our
way,” he had said. “Our walking is in darkness.”

Image

What did he mean by walking in darkness? I wondered, as
I picked myself up and limped on my way. And what did
darkness have to do with stumbling in daylight?

Image

Despite my anger toward my father, in that moment I had to
accept that I had seen my father, and the great ones among
our people, sure-footed and rooted upon the earth as any
tree or plant, yet as light as a seed upon the wind.

This memory awakened my life to light
and for a moment brightened a son’s hurting heart.

Light and Darkness

Young friend, each morning offers lessons in light.
For the morning light teaches the most basic of truths:

Light chases away darkness.

Image

We order our physical lives by this truth, for good reason.
Our own instruments of sight, our eyes,
mislead and are weak in the dark.

We need help from above
if we are to make progress in our journeys.

So we begin each day’s walk after the great light
illuminates the terrain around us.

In this, we are wise in the walking of our feet.

Image

But, young friend, are we as wise in the walking of the heart?

Do you and I allow light to
chase darkness from our souls as well?

This was the meaning of my father’s saying.
Darkness within clouds the world without.

Image

Perhaps I stumbled in the creek bed because
I was too troubled on the inside to see with clarity.

And maybe I failed to recognize the poison oak
because I had turned my heart from the light.

In hills, as well as in villages and cities, hazards
and predators find those who walk backward.

Image

My young friend, having seen your day
and the dangers that lurk in its shadows,
I repeat the words that first pointed me toward light:

WE who lose the light within have lost our way.”

I ask you:

Does your heart walk forward in the light?

Illumination of the Heart

My own answer to that question has been,
“Sometimes yes and sometimes no.”

But after many days of hating my life amid the hills,
I began to welcome the dawn—and the trees, valleys,
and streams that were illuminated by it.

I could feel my heart walking farther and my feet stepping
with more assurance upon the earth.

Just as the morning light sweeps away the night, the darkness
within me began to be chased away by a dawn in my soul.

Then and many times since, my body and my heart have
been illuminated alike—each of them saved by a sun.

Image

Young friend, have you felt what I am speaking of?

Have you felt light in your soul?

Have you felt warmth where before was coldness?

Have you discovered insight where
before you had been blind?

Image

As great as is the light above us,
greater by far is the light within.

Image

The outward light is but a reflection of the inner.

The Source of the Light

I know the source of this light.

During my days of solitude, I have come to know Him well.

Image

“Him?” you ask.

Yes, Him.

I speak of the Creator. He has walked with me often
in my journeys, and it has been by learning to walk
with Him that I have learned to walk forward.

Image

Are you surprised by my candor?

In a world that has killed the sacred,
mention of it can seem shocking, even foolhardy.

But how foolhardy it is to kill the sacred!

And how shocking to think that we could!

Image

For there is always a light that walks forward.

When I was very young, I played in that light;
I learned to play walking forward. I know this must be so,
for I loved those I played with.

For even in my darkest hour, when love was far from me,
he who is light walked near.

Image

How do I know?

Because of what I have already mentioned—
because of the dawns in my soul.

Darkness cannot illuminate itself any more than
night can call itself day.

Light means that the sun is near.

Image

The dawns I have felt in my soul testify that
I am known by the Giver of light.

To walk forward, I need only walk where he shows me.

Messengers of the Light

All creation shows us how to follow the Creator’s light.

Look around and learn.

Image

Notice how the hills receive the dawn.
They feel no attachment to darkness.
As quickly as the sun rises, the darkness from them flees.

You will witness the same response in the trees,
the valleys, and the streams.

Image

And notice as well that all nature flourishes in the light.

The hills and the trees reach to greet it.
The grasses in the valleys grow tall and green
under its influence. The stream shimmers and
multiplies the light to all that are around it.

Image

In the early days of my running, nature’s acceptance
of the light stood in stark contrast to my own. For I had
turned my back to the light—my thoughts and feelings
withering in bitterness, so centered on myself that I had
neither thought nor desire to reflect on others.

But the elements of nature were never offended
by the back that I turned. They still reached,
they still shimmered, they still grew.

By so doing, they kept inviting me to turn again to
the light—to join them in stretching forth my arms,
brightening my thoughts, and conversing again with others.

Image

In these and other ways, the hills, the trees, the valleys,
and the streams testify of the Creator and his walking.

If you listen, you will hear them do so,
for his voice can be heard in them.

It is a beckoning voice—
a voice that calls us to walk forward.

A voice that brightens both soil and soul.

A voice that invites us to join him.

Back to Top ↑

Endorsements

“There is much to learn from any person who has lived his life trying to heed the wisdom he has gathered from the lingering voices of his ancestors—especially in an age, like our own, when those voices have been spurned. Ezekiel Sanchez (Good Buffalo Eagle), cofounder of ANASAZI Foundation, is such a person. He has used the ancient, tested wisdom of his people to touch the souls of thousands of once- troubled young people and their families and show them the way to reunion and peace. Such a person also is his literary collaborator, Jim Ferrell. In The Seven Paths, they have distilled their unique and luminous insight. Reading this book receptively, you will likely catch yourself already forward walking in your heart and awakening to the light.”
—C. Terry Warner, PhD, founder, The Arbinger Institute

“This book is profound! The principle of ‘We' is the secret to every success on and off the field.”
—Steve Young, NFL Hall of Fame quarterback and ESPN commentator

“Through the story of the Seven Paths, my daughter realized how she, too, had walked backward, away from her family. This profound discovery saved my daughter's life, which in turn saved our entire family. It gave her a solid foundation to navigate through her very difficult teenage years...it gave our lost child new feet to find her way—her path to becoming a loving, successful young adult with truly a heart at peace.”
—Elaine Taylor, President, The Taylor Family Foundation

“Speaking with the wisdom of ancient ones, this guide to life's chal- lenging journey is brilliantly accessible and spiritually transforming.”
—Richard Ferre, MD, adolescent and adult psychiatrist

“The Seven Paths lays the groundwork for personal growth, insights, and strength required in long-term recovery.”
—Jon Memmott, retired judge

“Every page is filled with insight and wisdom. You will want to read it, share it, and read it again.”
—Dale Tingey, PhD, founder and Executive Director, American Indian Services

“The Seven Paths epitomizes the strength of one of my favorite words: TEAM—Together Everyone Achieves More.”
—Bart Starr, NFL Hall of Fame quarterback

“In the universal moments of feeling stuck or lost, the Seven Paths are simple and profound truths that provide not only solace but genuine ways to change your heart.”
—Courtney Merrill, LMFT, marriage and family therapist and educational consultant

“ANASAZI Foundation's Seven Paths illustrates an oft-forgotten truth that it is not our experiences that determine the quality of our lives but who we are morally when we pass through those experiences. To walk in the light instead of in darkness means we see our experiences truthfully and learn and grow. When we betray the light within us, we walk in darkness and we find our experiences burdensome. This book is an invitation to all to live truthfully and distinguish toxic from nourishing ways of being in the world.”
—Terrance D. Olson, PhD, Ernest Osborne award winner in Family Life Education

“The Seven Paths is truly a blessing. I recommend it to anyone in need of healing, wisdom, power, and goodness.”
—Stan Block, MD, author and founder, Mind-Body Bridging

“A little book with a big message! The Seven Paths reminds us of who we are, our relationship to our Creator, and how happiness with our families is within our grasp.”
—Danny Ainge, former professional basketball and baseball player and President of Basketball Operations, Boston Celtics

“It is a privilege to recommend The Seven Paths. ANASAZI is one of the best programs for helping young people and adults make major changes in their lives, and I am thrilled this book will make the phi- losophy and wisdom its program is based on accessible to a larger audience.”
—Ralph H. Earle, MDiv, PhD, founder and President, Psychological Counseling Services, Ltd.

Back to Top ↑