Synopses & Reviews
In the heart of Russia, old ways of perceiving the spirits of home and nature still prevail. Fairy stories, folk art, and calendar customs carry hints of the old gods and offer a now rare way of linking human life to the landscape. This is as true for city dwellers and villagers, for the Russian soul is open to the power of myth and the mysteries of the universe. This book explains how Russia's concept of soul ("dusha") and sensitivity to the landscape extends to archaeologists, scientists, and doctors in Russia, who retain an open-minded approach and a keen interest in psychic phenomena, along with folk traditions and faith healing. Author Cherry Gilchrist has traveled often to Russia and researched its traditional lore, gaining knowledge she interweaves into this book. She blends that first-hand knowledge with serious research to paint a lively picture of these remarkable magical traditions and their enduring power.
It's the first time any Westerner has understood the Russian soul, our love for the Earth and God's warmth.
Alexander Prior, international conductor and composer
and#145;Through an intricately woven pattern of research and personal experience, Cherry Gilchrist draws us into the magical landscape of Mother Russia. A fascinating, informative read.and#8217;
Virginia Rounding, Author of Catherine the Great: Love, Sex and Power
I highly recommend this marvellous book. The author reminds us of what too many have forgotten: that at the heart of human cultures is living nature, as manifest in local animals, places, and the land. Culture with soul arises out of an ensouled world. And what connects the two, as she not only describes but practises, is story. Some people, of course, have never entirely lost this vital connection, and she shows how their ways of life in Russia and Siberia are ripe for rediscovery. As we in the West face up to the gathering wreck of modernity, Cherry Gilchrist's book is one that shows the way forward.
Dr. Patrick Curry, Lecturer in Religious Studies at the University of Kent
Based on extensive personal experience and research, backed up by the existing academic studies of the subject, this book offers lucid and accessible insights into a traditional culture which is, astonishingly, still flourishing in the modern world. It is packed with information about surviving folk customs, indigenous religion and traditional cosmology.
Prudence Jones, co-author of A History of Pagan Europe