Found! the Spiritual Way!

Thomas Jack Rudolph
Professor Dr. Jim Schrantz
ENGL 1302-59010
June 11, 2012
Found! The Spiritual Way!
Interpretation and analysis of author Leslie Marmon Silko’s short story, “The Man To Send Rain Clouds”, could have been difficult. But a great grandmother within our family being of full blooded Cherokee decent, educated and passed on to us many ancient Native North American Indian stories of proud rituals and spiritual traditions. These acts of traditions have been practiced and passed down to many generations of my family. In this story, there are many instances of traditional spiritual and ritual acts that have symbolic significance in helping the audience interpret Teofilo’s journey of life in this short story. Normally, interpreting these acts would be very difficult, but with the knowledge and experience obtained from this family member, the reader can simplify these meanings along this path, and give ourselves a better understanding of their symbolic importance to the story. From the feather attached to Teofilo’s flowing hair, the paint with its specific colors, and the location and order that they are applied, the audience will interpret these simple traditional acts to help the reader understand these important symbolic meanings. These symbols will help the audience to understand Teofilo’s journey from his current life through his death and onto his rebirth of life in the spiritual world.
Feathers have many meanings in the Indian culture and are especially significant in the spiritual realm. Feathers are from birds that fly and soar high into the sky, and clouds from that high altitude have a great expansive view of everything. So, when Leon tied a small gray feather in the old man’s (Silko page 403), Teofilo’s, long flowing white hair symbolizes his free flowing flight. To be able to fly through the wind and ascend upward into the skies and clouds, with gods, to join other wise and free celestial spirits, represents a full spirit flying freely into the...