Brazos Minshew, a member of the Native American Journalist Association (NAJA)
The Native American Journalists Association serves and empowers Native journalists through programs and actions designed to enrich journalism and promote Native cultures.
“My personal journey began in 1961. President John F. Kennedy had just given his inaugural address stressing that each of us should give selflessly for the good of others. Peggy Jennings, our neighborhood Bible teacher had just taught me a Bible lesson on doing things for others without expecting anything in return. And, my mother had just injured her wrist.
“The Native tribe of my mother’s father are called Bodewadmi (English, “Potawatomi”), which means “the people of the fire.” We are a Nation of healers in the Council of Three Fires. The “fire” describes the energy of metabolism inside of us. Metabolic energy is like the fire that, when balanced, warms our home, cooks our food and lights the night. Fire out of control is inflammation. Inflammation in our organs and systems will harm us like an ember that smolders unseen until it ignites an inferno and burns down our home. Tribal ancestors gifted the generations with knowledge of plants that would balance the fire and promote the highest state of wellness.
“My mother’s injury was minor, but I was not mature enough to distinguish a minor “boo-boo” needing time and kisses from anything more serious. Still, I vigorously applied one of these traditional plant remedies to my mother’s wrist. In this special context, the momentum of Bodewadmi tribal history awakened the healer in my DNA like my Grandfather and his Father before him.
“In that instant I sealed my destiny as a Traditional healer.”
The Native American Journalist Association recognizes Native Americans as distinct peoples based on tradition and culture. In this spirit, NAJA educates and unifies its membership through journalism programs that promote diversity and defends challenges to free press, speech and expression. NAJA is committed to increasing the representation of Native journalists in mainstream media. NAJA encourages both mainstream and tribal media to attain the highest standards of professionalism, ethics and responsibility.
Samuel J. Brant, LLC is a Legacy corporation dedicated to supporting the healing traditions from cultures around the world. Samuel Brant was a Tribal Healer and Teacher of the Citizen Potawatomi Nation.