The Raven’s Gift: A Scientist, a Shaman, and Their Remarkable Journey Through the Siberian Wilderness
Jon Turk has kayaked around Cape Horn, traversed the Northwest Passage and paddled across the Pacific Rim. But, the strangest trip he ever took was the journey he made as a man of science into the realm of the spiritual. In 2000, in the remote Siberian village of Vyvenka, Jon Turk met an elderly woman named Moolynaut, a Koryak shaman, and learned about her voyages to the spirit world. A year later, Moolynaut entreated the spirit of a great, black raven to help mend his pelvis, which had been previously fractured in a mountaineering accident. When the healing was complete, Turk was able to walk without pain. Turk, a scientist, could find no rational explanation for the healing and the experience changed his life, irrevocably altering his view of the connectivity between the natural and spiritual worlds. Searching for the spirit raven, he traversed the frozen tundra where Moolynaut was born, camping with bands of reindeer herders, and recording stories of their lives and spirituality. Framed by high adventure across the vast and forbidding Siberian landscape, The Raven’s Gift is a life-altering vision of the ties between the natural and spiritual realms, informed by one man’s awakening and guided by the ancient spirit bird with wide black wings and the power to heal.