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White Eagle Woman Evokes Anger and Outrage from First Nations People
The Grandmother Drum Project is universally denounced as fraudulent by First Nations Groups
By Lisa Hill
First Nations groups are once again outraged that the controversial Rachel Holzwarth, aka Suraj Holzwarth aka Rachel Holzworth aka White Eagle Woman of the whirling Rainbow Foundation will be appearing in the Northeastern United States with her Grandmother Drum Project.
Keywords:White Eagle Woman is tentatively scheduled to be appearing on September 22, 2009, to speak to the members of the LI Reiki group at the Levittown Hall 203 Levittown Pkwy in Hicksville, New York. Holzworth will be speaking about her documentary film/drumming and singing session presented by Marjorie Harriz, RMT and Karin Tamborello,RMT. Holzwoth will also be appearing October 16, 2009 (7pm-10pm), at Wantagh Memorial Congregational Church 1845 Wantagh Avenue, Wantagh, NY 11793 and again on October 17, 2009 (10:30am-6:30pm), at Merrick Golf Course Clubhouse 2550 Clubhouse Road Merrick, NY 11566.
Holzworth has been universally denounced as a fraud throughout Indian Country and Holzworth’s “Prayerformances” have drawn several angry protests from First Nations groups across North America. The controversy surrounding her Grandmother Drum project has done something remarkable in Indian Country – to unite diverse Native peoples against a common enemy – those who shamelessly exploit their ceremonies and culture for profit.
The basic objection to Holworth’s “Prayerformances” by First Nations people is that she is misrepresenting herself as a Seneca Nation member by dressing in traditional Plains women’s regalia; she has been in illegal possession of protected eagle feathers; she is disrespecting the native style drum by putting human blood on it and carrying human ashes in it; she is misusing sacred herbs by using sage, cedar, tobacco and sweetgrass in a manner that is offensive and violates traditional protocol; she is misguiding people who have a sincere desire to learn about Indigenous spiritual beliefs, and she is making an exobitant profit by selling a distorted and twisted version of Theosophical and Anthosophical beliefs as if they were legitimate Indigenous beliefs.
RACISM MIXED WITH NEW AGE POP CULTURE
First Nation’s groups object strongly to Holzworth’s mixture of numerology, apocolyptical Christianity and Anthrosophy as well as her attribution of her knoweldge to an ascended master Metatron and various archangels. (Metatron (Hebrew מטטרון or מיטטרון), is the name of an angel in Judaism and some branches of Christianity and Islam. There are no references to him in the Jewish Tanakh (Old Testament). First Nation’s groups are enraged that Holzworth is selling a mixture of Christianity with New Age practices as authentic Native American spiritual practices.
First Nation’s people also object to Holzworth on the basis that her Anthophosical teachings based on the works of Rudolph Steiner and are racist. Holzwoth’s teachings that deal with indigenous people are taken almost verbatim from Steiner’s writings on race. Both categorize all of humanity into 4 races; red, white, yellow and black. Both describe the “red race” as “ancient” and destined to be replaced by the “white race”. Aspects of Steiner’s racist teachings are still found in the Waldorph schools today and these teachings in a modernized form and can be found throughout Holzworth’s teachings and the teachings of those she associates with.
Rudolf Steiner’s statements about the differences between various human races have long been labeled as racist by various groups. Steiner therorizes that :
“On one side we find the black race, which is earthly at most. If it moves to the West, it becomes extinct. We also have the yellow race, which is in the middle between earth and the cosmos. If it moves to the East, it becomes brown, attaches itself too much to the cosmos, and becomes extinct. The white race is the future, the race that is creating spirit.”
Rudolf Steiner, The Being of Man and His Future (Rudolf Steiner Press, 1981), pp. 118-119.
A common theme of Holzwoth’s talks is the need for the human race to “evolve” to a higher state of vibration and the belief that it is inevitable for the ancient “red race” to go extinct so that the more spiritually evolved “white race” can fulfill its destiny to replace the “red Indian of old.” Holzwoth has made no secret of her opinion of modern First Nations people as a degenerate race who have no spirituality because their karma is to live in poverty and alcoholism.
Steiner and Holzworth both find what they call “the red race” to be lacking. Steiner considered First Nations people to be connected with “the forces that have a lot to do with human extinction.” Both Steinier and Holzwoth describe contemporary First Nations people as “a degenerated human race” which was the reason why they had succumbed to such a degree. Her teachings are filled with the concept of the more deserving “White Race” evolving spiritually to a higher frequency take the place of the degenerate, corrupt, drunken “Red Race” who exists at a lower frequency than the “White Race” and whose karma is extinction.
Steiner stated that “It isn’t because of the whims of the Europeans that the Indian population has died out, but because of the Indian population had to acquire those forces that led it to die out.” Steiner Die Mission einzelner Volksseelen, s. 4:9.
The statements that Holzworth has made in her talks about the Whirling Rainbow prophesy and her public statements about drunken, deranged Native Americans who object to her teachings are virtually identical to Steiner’s views about race.
Why First Nations People Feel Their Drum has been so disrespected
Many first Nations members have been very outspoken about why Holzwoth’s seven foot drum is an affront to their Nations. The existence of the drum itself is considered sacreligious to most first nation’s people for several reasons. First, because it allegedly contains human remains. Holzworth claims to be carrying the ashes of ashes of a former Grandmother Drum project member, Amrahla North, inside her seven foot drum.
In nearly all First Nation’s cultures, the drum is given the respect afforded an elder. It is treated as if it were an honored person. By turning the drum into a receptacle for cremated human remains Holzwoth is disrespecting both the drum and the dead.
Adding the blood of a First Nation’s man without his consent is a further affront to their sensibilities. Most First Nation’s people agree that this act of sacrilege makes this drum something that needs to be destroyed ceremonially.
First Nations people are upset that the drum is being referred to as “Grandmother”. Most have explained that it is not their protocol to refer to a large drum as “Grandmother”, but it should be referred to as “Grandfather.” In most First Nation’s traditions, large drums are used only by men because we believe women are too powerful to use a large drum. Women traditionally use hand drums or stand around the outside of the drum. First Nations people insist that this is NOT a sexist practice, but a protocol that is willfully misunderstood by most spiritual feminists for political reasons.
It is a First Nation’s tradition to take a drum away from a person who has mistreated it. A drum can be taken away from treating it casually, for not following protocol faithfully or for singing special ceremonial songs outside of the ceremony that for which it was intended.
Ever since the spring of 2008, First Nations people have organized protests to expose Holzworth as a fraud and an exploiter of Indigenous religion.
Timeline for the protests:
MASSACHUSETTES: When Holzworth performed in Weymouth, Massachusetts on April 4, 2008, members of the Wampanoag tribe and their supporters protested the event.
Police charged Hartman Deetz, 31, of Mashpee and Dylan Lach, 22 of Sagamore with assault and battery on a police officer, trespassing, and disorderly conduct in connection with the saga that began at about 9:20 p.m.
Hartman Deetz, Dylan Lach were involved in a struggle with Officer Rick Fuller. Deetz was charged with attempting to commit a crime by trying to damage the drum. Nicole Lach, 21 of Bourne and Melanie Deetz, 29 of Mashpee were charged with trespassing and disorderly conduct for disrupting the ceremony and refusing to leave the school when Officer Patricia Critch ordered them to do so.
All of the individuals charged pleaded innocent in Quincy District Court on April 7, 2008. They were released on their personal recognizance with a promise to appear for a pre-trial hearing on June 6.
Holzworth lied to the officers and told them she smelled of alcohol and marijuana on the breath of the protesters. This was later found to be a fabrication on Holzwoth’s part.
A security guard pepper sprayed and injured Hartman Deetz, a Wampanoag tribal member, when he was attempting to exercise his first amendment rights to protest what he believed to be sacrilege. He was injured by a police officer, pepper-sprayed and arrested. In an act of conquest and sacrilege, Holworth put her hand in Hartman Deetz’s blood without his consent and rubbed his blood on a drum she knew he considered to be an offense to his people.
OHIO: In April of 2008, the president and co-founder of the Great Lakes Indian center shut down Holzworth’s public performances in all of Ohio.
MICHIGAN: On May 4, 2008, First Nation’s members of the Ojibwe tribe staged a protest at the Center of Light in Troy, Michigan. Craig Tabor of Department of Fisheries and Wildlife became involved when they received numerous requests to investigate Holzworth for for illegal possession of Golden Eagle and Hawk feathers. The fact that Fish and Wildlife were able to remove eagle feathers from her possession proves that she has no indigenous ancestry.
Detail of the protest have been posted on YouTube:
White Ego Woman
White Ego Woman 2
COLORADO: Holzworth appeared at the Gathering of One: Global Eden 2008 event in inYellowstone MTon June 17th – 22nd, 2008. Holzworth tried to sell “prayer bundles” allegedly to defray the costs of several Hopi Elders who are traveling to the event. No Hopi elders were invited or planned to attend the event. First Nation’s people that the Gathering purported to be about Native American spiritual beliefs, yet brought in well known Native American frauds to speak about New Age concepts such as the pole shift, channeled information from the Andromedas and conspiracy theories about aliens controlling the weather and leaving magnetic crop circles in corn fields.
A Tucson group, Do No Harm, threatened to protest what they called the numerous frauds appearing with Holzworth at the Gathering of One. They managed to convince the organizers of the Gathering of One that nearly all of the supposed Indigenous elders were really Non-Indians engaged in fraud. The one legitimate Indigenous leader who did attend the event, Don Alejandro Oxlaj, Grand Elder of the Mayan People, chastised the group’s sponsors for spreading the fabrications of Jose Aquelles Dreamspell calendar which have been denounced by legitimate Mayan elders and scholars.
He can be seen here on Google saying much of the same things that he said at the Gathering of One.
Mayan Elder Don Alejandro Speaks About the Dreamspell Calendar
HAWAII: June 21, 2009. First Nations people using the internet persuaded Bill Miller to cancel his performance at the LIVE H2O--Concert for the Living Water. Various First Nations people made negative comments about the promotional video and questioned how Hawaiian elders were tricked into appearing to support Holzworth.
Holzworth’s Many False Representations
As of today, no legitimate First Nations representative has acknowledged Holzworth’s “prayerformance” as representative of a ceremony in their culture.
The Seneca’s of New York have no record of her supposed ancestry under any of the aliases she has used. It is highly suspicious to First Nations people that while Holzwoth She claims to be Seneca, but she mixes Lakota sacred rites and the Dineh ceremonial use of corn pollen.
Holzworth claims her teaching are channeled from an entity named Metatron whom she communicated with in her sleep for 13 weeks. Indigenous people do not believe that spiritual knowledge is transmitted in this manner.
Holzworth has claimed she had permission from the Chickaloons of Alaska, the Hopi, Navajo, Shoshone as well as Pine Ridge elders to charge for her prayerformances. Various First Nations groups who tried to verify her claims found that this is not true.
Holzworth claimed that her drum was blessed by elders in Alaska, but was unable to produce the name of one legitimate elder who had blessed the drum. Eventually, she mentioned the name Gary Harrison, the Chief of the Chickaloons in Alaska as one of these elders, but he denied having blessed the drum.
Holzworth’s Strategy: Emotional Manipulation to Achieve Affinity Fraud
First Nations people charge that what Holzworth is doing amounts to affinity fraud. She insinuates herself in Feminist/Spiritual communities by making herself look like one of them. She uses all the right catch words and presents herself as a fellow spiritual seeker.
Holzworth strategy is to paint the united First Nation’s stand against her enterprise as merely an aberration. The protesters have been depicted as merely a few “bad Indians” whose poor social conditions have made them angry and irrational. Holzworth insists that there are “good Indians” out there who support her efforts. However, her prayformances are almost exclusively white and no legitimate First Nation’s spiritual elders have come out in support of her endeavors.
Whenever Holzworth has been confronted by the overwhelmingly white audience that is attracted to her teachings, she conveniently asserts that “we are all one people” .She has never answered the charges that she is fraudulently impersonating a Native American person or provided the protesters with information about her alleged Seneca ancestry.
First Nation’s Groups are planning small protests of Holzworth’s appearances and they are asking for supporters who live in the New York area, to please contact the following venues and urge them to cancel her appearances.
White Ego Woman is appearing September 22, 2009, at:
203 Levittown Pkwy
Hicksville, NY 11801
White Ego Woman is appearing on October 16, 2009 (7pm-10pm), at:
Wantagh Memorial Congregational Church
1845 Wantagh Avenue,
Wantagh, NY 11793
White Ego Woman is appearing on October 17, 2009 (10:30am-6:30pm), at:
Merrick Golf Course Clubhouse
2550 Clubhouse Road
Merrick, NY 11566
Groups fighting the Exploitation of Native American Spirituality
Do No Harm, a national organization, whose most active branch is in Tucson, Arizona.
A collection of essays is available at
Don’t Pay to Pray
Myspace blog: www.myspace.com/dontpaytopray
New Age Frauds Plastic Shamans Forum (There is an extensive thread on the activities of this individual)
YouTube activism can be found at
Iroqua of Bushkill, PA
Romero358’s YouTube Channel
Chuck Butzin from Mount Pleasant Michigan
mtig49’s YouTube Channel
Pictures of the protest were posted on Flickr
Iktome Returns Collective YouTube Group
Real NDNZ against Cultural Theft
BLOGS that analyze and document the protests:
Jay Fulton’s account of the Massachusetts protest
Lisa Hill is a Euruopean-American, a pagan and a spiritual Feminist who opposes cultural theft in all its forms. If you’d like to ask her a question about her research into First Nations Communities, you can email her at: