‘The road of a good life’: Champion for Azee’ recognized for life’s work
WHITE CONE, Ariz.
David Clark recalls his elders saying that during the creation time different herbs were put into the world for the Native people to use, including peyote.
“This peyote was created by the Holy People,” he said. “This is my medicine. It’s a spiritual connection from a person to the Holy People, to nature.
“It’s not a foreign religion,” said Clark. “It’s a Navajo traditional religion. We have a way of addressing the peyote. We have sacred names that we use.” Clark says each tribe has a name for peyote in their language.
“In Navajo, it’s Azee’,” he said. “We pray to one Holy Spirit, which is the same as God-almighty, the Creator.”
On June 22, Clark, a lifelong advocate for peyote as religious sacrament, and former president of the Native American Church of Navajoland, was honored with a Lifetime Achievement Award.