WALKING THE LAND, Sedona, Arizona: In Search of Bololokan’s Path: Sycamore Canyon by Marchiene

Walking the Land: In search of the planetary water snake, Bololokan: Sycamore Canyon by Marchiene Reinstra

Copyright Marchiene Reinstra 2010

All Rights Reserved


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DSC_0031 bololokan snake drum made by eileen nauman in june 2010  west fork oak creek canyon sedona az.jpg

This is Eileen’s drum she made. She painted Bololokan, the Yavapai myth “rainbow snake” that lives in the Verde Valley, according to their legends and knowledge. She is a water snake and brings water to places around Mother Earth. It is her job to move the rain so that the Earth remains verdant and green. And alive.


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Eileen Nauman (Ai Gvhdi Waya is here Eastern Cherokee name) is 1/8 Eastern Cherokee via her father’s side of the family. Her great-great grandmother was on the Trail of Tears and as a sixteen year old, escaped and ran into Kentucky, where she later married into the Gent family. We know only two things about her: that she came from a medicine family and was from the Wolf clan of her people. Her medicine was being a shaman. And this gene has gone down through our family. Eileen was the chosen child to be taught this ‘medicine’ (this means an inherited skill of healing) by her father. She trained with him from age 9 through 18. Later, she had other Native American teachers and in 1990 began training others for Soul Recovery and Extraction, the medicine of her great-great grandmother.

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Marchiene Reinstra is an interfaith minister. She has written many books and has been an advocate of women being equal to men in all organized religions. Coming from Dutch missionary parents, Marchiene grew up in India. She is cosmopolitan and has many natural psychic skills. She met Eileen in the mid-90’s and since then, they have become a psychic team in search of understanding the energy of the land where they live in the Verde Valley of Arizona. This includes Sedona, but the scope is much wider than that. Please see our blogs from 2009 as they worked to bring the chakra system of Sedona back online.


Eileen’s genetic knowing about the land comes through her Native American genetics. She simply sees Nature as symbolic and is able to interpret it so she that she understands the visible and invisible energy in an area and what it is doing. Further, she is clairvoyant and can see the spirits, the guardians of sacred places, vortexes and everything else associated with the land. Her belief is that if we understand the energy and beings where one lives, that you can live in a deep and positive harmony with them.

The land is fed by the human’s gratefulness and attention. And the land’s energy/spiritual beings, in turn, create a far more positive energy framework and environment for the human. They must work together for harmony. Otherwise, if one ignores the other, we are ignoring Mother Earth and all her relations. That is like ignoring your neighbors and pretending they aren’t there or exist.

This blog is dedicated to showing the fundamentals of Walking the Land in hopes that you will take the information and apply it to your own area. And if you will, then you will forge a positive and healing link as a result. And the energy of your area where you live will be amplified, lifted and online so that the positive applications of this teamwork will benefit all. Weather will return to what it used to be. There will be no more floods and droughts, as an example. Water can be cleaned up with prayer and attention to the spirit of it. And so much more. You will learn as we Walk the Land here in the Verde Valley.

TWO BLOGS: Eileen will post her blog on Walking the Land first and then the next day, will post Marchiene’s. Each writes a blog based upon her experience as they walk the land in search of the planetary water snake, known as Bololokan to the Yavapai Native Americans who live in the Verde Valley. There are many powerful planetary beings that work with Mother Earth. Humans can interface with them as well but it is always the planetary, regional or local spirit who decides that. You can’t work with one unless your heart is in the right place, you practice daily humility and understand that humans are a small part of the mighty woven energy that is here on our home, Mother Earth.

Their intent is to discover the natural energy geology of where Bololokan moves/slithers, through the landscape of their valley. In discovering Bololokan’s path, Eileen and Marchiene will then perform ceremony to reawaken this path. In doing that, the energy comes back online and it lifts and helps feed the area in a natural way as it used to be when the First People lived here in union with Mother Earth and all her relations. It will change the weather pattern of the area, which has been in a twenty-year drought. Bololokan is the WATER snake. There are three other planetary snakes for the other three elements: earth, fire and air. Bololokan utilizes the Verde Valley area as one of her many sipapu’s (emergence hole) to come up into our area. She has sipapu’s around the world and slithers inside Mother Earth in tunnels that connect them all. We’re fortunate to have her with us and we discovered her when we opened up the chakras of Sedona. She came to us and we had no idea she existed before that except in Yavapai legends who spoke of “Bololokan.” Once she contacted us at Rainbow Bridge, one of her sipapu’s, she has been with us ever since. This year in 2010, she asked us to discover her energy path throughout our valley and clean out those sacred points with human attention and ceremony. In doing that, her third dimensional energy in our valley will reawaken and bring harmony to it once more. We hope the drought will be broken and the rains that Bololokan brings, will once more, go back to its normal pattern. Join us on our journey and you can be a part of the discovery and education as well.

MARCHIENE’S BLOG for 12.15.2010

When Eileen picked me up this morning for our journey to Sycamore Canyon and the headwaters of the Verde River there,  it was a cool and cloudy morning.   The scent of possible rain was in the air, but Eileen said the forecasters were saying it would be midnight, if then, before the rain came our way, and it might not.  Nevertheless, we were prepared with rain proof jackets, and this time everything we needed;  drum and flute, sage and offerings; sketchbook and pen and colored pencils; water; cameras; kleenex, etc.   This time, neither of us forgot anything we needed, and that was a good sign we were ” getting in the groove.”

We wanted to get a hearty breakfast before starting our hike, because we knew it would be several miles, and take a lot of of energy. Over a delicious breakfast at Randall’s in Cottonwood, we started our drive out to Sycamore Canyon.   As we drove through town, we noticed a bevy of balloons rising up into the air before us—red, orange, blue, green, and white.   Eileen noticed that yellow was missing, which is a symbol of the solar plexus, which is more about personal power and the ego, and what we were going to do was for all our relations, and not about us as personalities.

Soon we were out of town and on a dirt road that had its share of rocks and ruts and bumps, but wound through beautiful country. We both noted the deep red color of the hills, a sure sign of feminine energy.  Over breakfast, we had talked about how the work we were doing  (I think of it as being an Earth Mage, a term Brooke Medicine Eagle uses in her fine books)was part of the great awakening of the Divine Feminine in human awareness and the life of the world in our time.  So many things point to that, as you can see in our accounts of our experiences.

The sky still looked like rain might be coming, and we thought it a great good omen that on the day we were going to the headwaters to continue our work of awakening the energy of Bololokon, the water snake, who brings rain,  we were seeing signs of rain coming already!  And we were focusing on water today…the Verde river and especially the head waters, which Eileen told me trump everything else in working with the land.  Water is the most important element, than fire, than earth, and finally air.

When we reached the trail head, we parked,  did our ceremony to ask permission to enter, and gave offerings and prayers to the directions.  With all our gear on us, we headed down the trail.  A sign at it’s head said “Parson’s Trail, #144.”  I chuckled, because parson is another word for minister, which I am, and a parson takes care of a sanctuary (among other things) and we were headed for “Parson’s springs”–the white man’s description of the sacred headwaters that were our destination.  The numbers 144 add up to 9, which is the number of birth (9 months of pregnancy for human women)  and also of perfection and compassion.  That seemed appropriate.   I remembered that the Hebrew word for compassion is “rehem” and it literally means “womb love” which is what I suspected we were going to experience during our sacred work on the land this day.
We passed a big black stone rock formation, a guardian of the area we were entering, and noted it was a volcanic vent.

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Here I am with the metal sign declaring: Parson’s Spring #144!. I’m an interfaith minister, so this was a synchronistic event. Parson’s Spring is the headwaters that create the Verde River. A minister was coming to Parson’s…..we both got a big laugh out of this.

I thought the formation looked a little like a large woman with a head dress seated looking out over the valley.   What do you think?

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Here is the volcanic vent that looked like a woman sitting there.

As we continued down the trail, we soon came near the Verde River which runs through Sycamore Canyon.  It was beautifully calm and reflective at this point, and felt inviting.

As we walked along further, we remarked that we could spend many days in this beautiful place, and still have lots to experience.  A few minutes later we came to a place where a huge old tree arched over the road, creating two differently shaped gateways—so obviously, it could not be missed that we were entering a very special place.   We stopped again to ground ourselves and ask permission to continue.  We both felt not only permission but invitation, and I got a strong image in my mind’s eye of Grand Mother Komwida Pukwia (see former blogs) who is the Creator Woman/Divinity of Yavapai myth,  standing at the headwaters towards which we were going, saying “Come, come my grand daughters, and light the sacred fire with me.”     As we continued down the trail, we pass a couple beautiful red and white large stone formations that seemed to me to be her signature or “fingerprints.”

I made a special point of activating all my senses, and being aware of the energy and what was all around me, 360 degrees, as well as above and below.

We took our time,  and kept a lookout for signs of the ancient myth of Komwida and her daughter.   We realized how important it was to know the creation myths and other foundational myths of the ancient people’s who lived in this land.  Without that knowledge, we would not know what to look for, or recognize the signs in nature and in topographical maps which resonated with those myths.  Eileen’s blog shows pictures of signs we both saw in the topo maps we consulted.

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Here I am making notes. You will forget many things…all small pieces of a larger puzzle you are seeing….and if you don’t write down what you see, what you feel, hear, smell or ‘know,’ then it will be lost when you write up your report after walking the land. Eileen and I, upon getting home, go right to work and write our report using our notes.

Here, on the walk,  we saw a huge hollow log that reminded us of the one used to convey Komwida Pukwia from the flood that destroyed the previous world to  the safety of high ground in a new world that she would help create.

DSC_0040 gram komwidas empty log she floated in according to yavapai myth a reflection sycamore canyon trail  en az.jpg
Here is a hollowed out log, the type that Grandmother Komwida would have floated in. These logs were everywhere in that 1.5 miles we walked in the canyon. It was being repeated over and over again.

We also passed a clearing on our left which we entered, and felt a very special energy there.    Once again,  I felt tears and that “deja vu” I had at West Fork, and said to Eileen, “I know I have been here before too.”  We stood in silence,  and both got the “hit” that this had been a place where grandmothers took their grand daughters for initiation into womanhood, and this place we stood was the Naming Circle where they were given their new names as young women by their grandmothers, told stories that explained the names,  and then led to the headwaters for ritual bathing or what we might call baptism.

DSC_0045 FB MR a circle and where she felt the grandmothers brought the granddaughters also a naming place sycamore canyon trail  en az.jpg
I found this circle by my heart opening. I started to cry. It was a past life memory coming back to me. I saw the grandmothers of the valley sitting here with their granddaughters. This circle is surrounded by thick brush and trees. There is no reason it should be here and also not covered with vegetation. Yet, there is a vortex here and that is your “clue.” When you see a circle out in the woods, or like this, be alert. There will be other clues to what it is. In this case, off to your left, out of camera range, is an eight-trunk Cedar tree….and that is a sign of a vortex….the many trunks sprouting of out one main trunk.

An interesting thing that happened as we walked the trail was that Eileen’s drum, which she had tied pretty securely to her back pack somehow slipped loose of the knots and fell to the ground.   I picked it up and tied it back to her backpack using a triple knot.  We remarked that what we felt we were doing in our work on the land was not only honoring it’s spirits and awakening its energies, but also untying the knots that had tied up those energies, and the knots of ignorance and separation that had blocked those energies during the time of the takeover of the area by white folk.

DSC_0026 FB grandmother cottonwood and arch of fallen limb reminds us of vultee arch next week sycamore canyon trail  en az.jpg
We came to the first springs down at the bottom of the trail. We were now in Sycamore. There is a beautiful pool next to this very old Grandmother Cottonwood. Eileen said that when she was down here 1.5 years ago, this old five hundred year old tree was whole. Now, a huge part of her limb has fallen and created an arch right across the trail that we are to go down to get to the headwaters. Not only that, but her limb along the trail that had fallen looked exactly like a snake crawling!

DSC_0038 MR with white rock one of gram komwida s calling cards a reflection sycamore canyon trail  en az.jpg
There were a number of huge white boulders down near the trail. Here I am approaching one to gift it and mentally communicate with it. In the Yavapai myths, Grandmother Komwida was also known as White Stone Woman. I feel that these are her ‘calling cards.’ If we didn’t know the myth and the connection, we’d have gone on down the trail and been oblivious to these rocks significance. Another reason to know the deeper story to the land you live on.

Finally we came to our destination–the headwaters.  Rain began to fall lightly the last few minutes of our walk, and when we stood at the edge of the pools that were the headwaters,  little tiny circles caused by raindrops were dancing through the water,  as if to remind us of the interconnectedness of everything.

The air was fragrant with rain-scent, and we could feel the sacred energy of this birthing place.   Eileen saged and prayed and I drummed as she did so, and was amazed that in spite of the humidity in the air, the drum rang so clearly and with such resonance.  Usually, drums go flat and just thud in this situation.

DSC_0070 FB MR head waters north side with artesian wells and its raining and bololokan drum WFEM86DEC.jpg
Here is the headwaters of the Verde River. Eileen had put her drum, Bololokan there on a tree to honor the energy of this area. It was a soft, gentle rain falling and neither of us thought her drum would work…but it did….beautifully! We are sure that Grandmother Komwida kept it dry and strong so that her voice could reverberate throughout the area.

That was pretty amazing.  Then Eileen took over the drumming and I did ceremony at the pools of the headwaters.  As I knelt there, I had a strong vision of a huge white dove hovering over me as I put the sacred waters on my crown, my brow, my hands and my heart, and then I saw Grandmother Komwida Pukwia, huge, standing above us towering up into the sky,  her arms held high, one arm holding an abalone shell with smoking sage in it, and the other a torch of spirit-fire.  She was smiling, and i felt taken up into her energy and presence in a wonderful way.

By this time,  it was beginning to rain a bit harder and more steadily, and Eileen said “It’s settling in for a good long rain.  We better leave as quickly as we can so we don’t have trouble driving up out of the canyon.”     I played a song of gratitude on my flute for our wonderful experience, and then we gathered our things and were on our way, resolving to finish our writing and drawing when we got back home.  We walked along at a fast pace, but even so were amazed to find ourselves at the end of the trail leading out in what seemed like a few minutes.  I looked at my watch and we looked at each other and laughed with amazement.

“They compressed time and space for us so we could get out before it got too wet,”  said Eileen. Grandmother said she would take care of us, and she did!”

As we drove out of the canyon, a  beautiful red tailed hawk flew right across our path very close to us.  What a beautiful sign that we had done what we set out to do!  And to our right, a misty veil of rain wrapped Mingus mountain and the other mountains so that they were barely visible.      Bololokon was at work already, bringing much needed rain to our whole area.   Another sure sign that we were on the right track in what we were doing.

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As Eileen drove us down the twelve mile long dirt road we could see the rain spreading toward Mingus and Cottonwood that sat at the base of her slopes. Our hearts, intent and working with Grandmother Komwida to bring the spiritual fire from Mingus to the headwaters had worked!

Our awesome adventure ended with a delicious lunch in Cottonwood, for we were both hungry after all the energy we had expended.   We compared notes as we ate, marveling at all the signs and synchronicities, and then headed back home,  with light and grateful hearts.

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Eileen took this photo from www.undergroundweather.com. It proves without a doubt that when the rain started on 12.16 a little before noon, that our ceremony has opened up a dormant energy. The weather forecast 12 hours earlier said a front would “zoom through” and very little rain was expected out of it. And that the front wouldn’t arrive until midnight of 12.16!! It arrived twelve hours earlier at noon! And, this rain continued until 3:00 pm on 12.17!! If this isn’t proof that humans inter acting with the Earth and all her relations, nothing is. We’ve been on the trail of simply helping our area. It is the first rain in three months. And all of Arizona has been in a twenty year drought. And Eileen said we’re in La Ninya which means a dry winter and no rain. And none, according to the best meteorology heads in the USA, could guess what would happen. Their forecast was 100% in error. Our work WITH the beings who help keep Mother Earth alive and well, changed the ENTIRE forecast. From Flagstaff, fifty miles north of us and throughout all the area you see the green and yellow, it got RAIN. LOTS of rain! Cottonwood sits to the right or east of Prescott, although its not listed in this radar report. When you work WITH all our relations, the dynamics is swift and changes. And so it did. It started a gentle, feminine rain 1/8 of mile from the headwaters where we intended to honor, gift and awaken the dormant energy. And now, we have, once more, awakened Bololokan’s energy from Mingus to Sycamore Canyon. The proof is there, right in front of our eyes in big, bold ways and events. We can hardly wait to see what awaits us at Vultee Arch next week! Blessings.