Author Topic: 7 Directions Movement Meditation, White Feather, Susun Weed, Wise Woman Univ  (Read 24779 times)

Offline debbieredbear

  • Global Moderator
  • *****
  • Posts: 1463
  • I love YaBB 1G - SP1!
So, the frauds are worrried about looking bad??


Teachings of the Seneca Wolf Clan

In the opinion of the Wolf Clan Teaching Lodge Board of Directors,

“The Seven Directions Movement Meditation”
Is not part of the Seneca or Iroquois Tradition
Is not an accurate reflection of the teachings of the Wolf Clan Teaching Lodge, Seneca Indian Historical Society, Grandmother Twylah Hurd Nitsch, Blue Flower, or Moses Shongo
Has not been sanctioned by the Wolf Clan Teaching Lodge, Seneca Indian Historical Society or Grandmother Twylah
Was published without prior permission from Robert Nitsch, the Wolf Clan Teaching Lodge of the Seneca Indian Historical Society or its Board of Directors
Is a modified version of ‘The Seven Points of Balancing and Empowerment Meditation’ (Dance of the Directions) as brought forward by Dhyani Ywahoo of the Sunray Meditation Society in 1984 and has nothing what-so-ever to do with the Wolf Clan Teaching Lodge of the Seneca Indian Historical Society or Seneca Iroquois Teachings, Tradition or Beliefs.

[Changed title and moved to Research]
« Last Edit: August 22, 2010, 01:04:34 pm by educatedindian »

Offline educatedindian

  • Administrator
  • *****
  • Posts: 4756
It's a nice irony of chickens coming home to roost. Nitsche or her cohorts spend decades peddling Nuage to twinkies and claiming it to be Seneca, then get upset when getting ripped off and lied about themselves. Nitsche lived in Florida and hadn't lived among the Seneca for many years, and hadn't done anything well regarded by them since her earliest book in the early 70s.

(This site says she passed on. Couldn't find other sites confiming it besides Nuage ones.      But since these Nuagers show no sign of going away, we can't really move the threads about Nitsch to Archives or mark them No Longer a Matter of Concern.)

But their denunciation of WF, Weed, and the "Wise Woman U" still hold up. It just doesn't make what Nitsche and co did any more legit.

WF's bio at the above link and her homepage.

I am White Feather (o' ah dah gah gen), messenger of Peace,  I was inititiated into the Wolf Clan Teaching Lodge of the Seneca Indian Historical Society by my elder and mentor Yehwehnode-2-Wolves, Twylah Nitsch in 1985.  Honored as a Peace Elder in 1990. I am certified to teach directly by Grandmother Twylah and instructed by her to spread the wisdom wheel teachings to as many people who are eager to learn. We refined and defined the Seven Directions Movement Meditation together. I am the author of the Seven Directions Movement Meditation book and DVD.  A holistic nurse for over 30 years,  dancer, Buddhist practitioner, herbalist and founder of Catskill Mountain Herbals in 1985.  I have been on the teaching team at the Wise Woman Center over 20 years. I reside in the Catskill Mountains with my family.

Basically the 7 Movements look like a knockoff of Buddhist meditation and exercises. Not surprising it'd look like Diane Fisher/Ywahoo's fraud, but I don't see any sign of her involvement.

Weed's bio is amusing. She admits to no training, just a lot of "teaching"!

Susun S. Weed has no official diplomas of any kind; she left high school in her junior year to pursue studies in mathematics and artificial intelligence at UCLA and she left college in her junior year to pursue life....

In addition to her writing, Ms Weed trains apprentices, oversees the work of more than 300 correspondence course students, coordinates the activities of the Wise Woman Center, and is a High Priestess of Dianic Wicca, a member of the Sisterhood of the Shields, and a Peace Elder.

Susun Weed is a contributor to the Routledge International Encyclopedia of Women's Studies, peer- reviewed journals, and popular magazines, including a regular column in Sagewoman.

Her worldwide teaching schedule encompasses herbal medicine, ethnobotany, pharmacognosy, psychology of healing, ecoherbalism, nutrition, and women's health issues and her venues include medical schools, hospital wellness centers, breast cancer centers, midwifery schools, naturopathic colleges, and shamanic training centers, as well as many conferences....

Susun Weed's Curriculum Vitae
Ms Weed has received the Twentieth Century Award for Achievement, is included in Who's Who of Intellectuals, was recognized as an Outstanding Person of the 20th Century, and was nominated as International Woman of the Year.


All of those "awards" are semi-scams, not quite the kind you pay for, but close. The company sends you a notice saying they want to include you in their book and hopes you buy the book. Pretty much anyone with a degree or in any kind of business gets offered those.

Further down in that link is her claim about the Wolf Clan and a pretty amusing disclaimer, an attempt to weasel out of any harm her teachings might cause...

Susun is an initiated member of the Wolf Clan and the Sisterhood of the Shields; she is a Peace Elder. Her adopted Native American grandmothers are Twylah Nitsch and Keywaydinoquay. She is the founder of the Wise Woman Center and Ash Tree Publishing and the voice of the Wise Woman Tradition.

Disclaimer: This information is shared with the understanding that you accept responsibility for your own health and well-being. The results of any treatment can not always be anticipated and never guaranteed. Consult your inner guidance, knowledgeable friends, and trained healers in addition to the writings here.


Keywaydinoquay Pakawakuk Peschel was an Anishnaabe professor who did many studies on herbal medicine. It's kind of a strange claim, saying she was Weed's adopted grandmother. She passed on 11 years ago, but seemingly Weed did not know that.

The "Wise Woman U" has about two dozen less than impressive "wise women". A couple cooks, a masseuse, a couple writing instructors, various people saying they are artists, and even a cheesemaker. There are two Reiki types, a midwife, and two healers among them.

For the most part they appear well intentioned, and things such as teaching people to eat healthier are not bad ideas at all. The grandiose claims are a bit much. Cooking healthy makes you a "wise woman"? Cheesemaking? Really? But if it weren't for Weed and WF's involvement, I doubt we'd pay them any notice.

Still haven't found WF's legal name.

Offline debbieredbear

  • Global Moderator
  • *****
  • Posts: 1463
  • I love YaBB 1G - SP1!
Isn't Sisterhood of the Shields" Lynn Andrewes bunch?

Offline Defend the Sacred

  • Global Moderator
  • *****
  • Posts: 3289
Isn't Sisterhood of the Shields" Lynn Andrewes bunch?

IIRC, in her books that were published in the mid-1980s (I haven't seen any of the later ones) Andrews claimed the "Sisterhood of the Shields" was a secret society of elder women, consisting of representatives from different indigenous cultures from various parts of the world. I gather she used this as a running theme through her fictitious books, claiming that the group put her in touch with women from different cultures. (Problem is, all her info from these "elders" was bogus, so... fraud.)

Twylah Nitsch and Susun Weed were involved in the Medicine Wheel Gatherings (Vincent LaDuke / "Sun Bear"'s thing) at the same time. In 1984, Nitsch was recommending Andrews' book (I think she only had the one out at the time). In at least one of the books Andrews thanks Nitsch and implies that one of her characters may have been based on Nitsch (or at least that's the way some people read it).

Amy Lee also started a group with the same or similar name not long after that.

Andrews' claims of supernatural powers for these women were rather extreme (IIRC, we had teleportation and similar activities happening in the stories). I don't see how they could have fooled people that a group of ordinary women were these characters out of fantasy. But, well, we've seen people who want to be fooled fork over their money for far less. As discussed in the Amy Lee thread, every woman I know of who has claimed to be part of this "sisterhood" is white. Ironic for a group that Andrews initially claimed was indigenous, with her being the speshul white person who they made an exception for.

Offline debbieredbear

  • Global Moderator
  • *****
  • Posts: 1463
  • I love YaBB 1G - SP1!
There are some people who are so desperate to have a "GURU" that they will believe anything. I have seen it too many times. One friend was taught a "real Indian moon ceremony". It was from a book by a woman from England who never met any real Indians. She says in the book that her friend "channeled it". It is a guided meditation. I heard it one time and OMG!! I almost burst out laughing! I mean "Imagine the moon is full and a g o l d e n drop of elixer falls on your crown chakra..." (my reaction was OMG the moon is peeing on me!) Friend has been told multiple times that "ceremony" came from a book, is not Native, that Natives ceremonies are not guided meditation with holey new age music. But she still believes. Because she wants to have a "Real Native teacher." This is an intelligent woman who has had this desire since she was a yound woman and she read Lynn Andrewes and Brooke Edwards. I have met many like her. They fall for people like the above.

Offline Defend the Sacred

  • Global Moderator
  • *****
  • Posts: 3289
Still haven't found WF's legal name.

According to Google Books, she also uses the name White Feather Curtiss

I seem to recall hearing of her in the late eighties, and IIRC she was going by "__________ White Feather". I can't recall what her first name was then.

Offline educatedindian

  • Administrator
  • *****
  • Posts: 4756
Janet Kent
January 29 at 6:08 AM ·
- - B E W A R E --

Susun Weed is not a safe teacher or mentor. Yet another survivor's tale has emerged, this one the most harrowing yet. For decades there were rumors of verbal abuse, physical threats and gaslighting with apprentices regularly escaping in the night. A few years ago, the abuse escalated to physical violence.

The most recent testimonial details food deprivation, non-consensual drugging, bank account tampering and standard cult mind control techniques. These resulted in hospitalization once the victim escaped.

Susun Weed should not have access to students. If you host her at your conferences, your herb shops, promote her work or participate in her upcoming Comfrey conference, you are legitimizing an abuser and very possibly contributing to the further victimization of apprentices.

While the herbal community should have withdrawn support from Susun decades ago, and could have prevented much harm in doing so, it is time to act decisively.

No more chances.
She is not sorry.

Susun Weed - Wise Woman Center
Category: Health Care Education
Susun Weed - Wise Woman Center Susan Weed Wise Woman Center Justine Smythe Michael J. Dattorre Susun Weed Green Goddess Ash Tree Publishing Down There Drugged and abused me and other women.

Susun Weed and her adult daughter Justine Smythe and consort Michael J. Dattorre are running a dangerous operation at The Laughing Rock Farm (AKA Wise Woman Center) in upstate New York.

My personal experience is one that caused me great physical and mental harm. My hope is to convince the persons reading this to not meet her in person or attend any private or live in classes.  I offer resources to help you get to safety and the help you will need in the future at the end of this letter.

The Green Goddess Apprenticeship - They are offering 2 week in person workshops for aspiring shamanic practitioners and herbalists for $2500.

2 years later, I am healed enough to try and put my story out there in hopes to discourage others from making the same mistakes.

In short order, I paid $2500 to be an apprentice with Susun Weed for 2 weeks in upstate New York. I was told I would learn about herbs, shamanism, tai chi, yoga, organic meal prep and gardening. What I got in return was Complex PTSD, Night Terrors, Mild Cognitive Disfunction, Homelessness and Suicidal ideation.

I escaped with my life from her farm in Saugerties New York in 2020. I was found by a jogger and taken to the ER where I learned I had been drugged. I had lost 10lbs in the 6 days that I was on her farm. I could not put together complete sentences at the ER in New York from the drugs and abuse, threats.

The police had a hard time understanding me as I could not communicate normally. On top of the drugs, I was shell shocked and suffering from severe anxiety and PTSD. I am sure I appeared to be a mentally disturbed person, because I was.

The ER doctor said that the symptoms I was sharing were similar to someone who was drugged. He ran tests and could not find out what type of drugs I was given.  He did document in my medical records that I was indeed drugged. The doctor hooked me up to an IV to help get the drugs out of my system. After a few hours, I could finally communicate with the law enforcement that were called to the hospital. I then shared my story as best as I could.

I spent the next 2 weeks in a hotel in hiding. I worked with the Human Trafficking Hotline and with Mobile Mental Health unit for food, therapy, and other services. After returning to my home state, I had to move out of my home and into a new place that Susun Weed and her team of bullies could not find me. I lived in different places for 4 months, while getting extensive therapy and medical treatment.

I was terrified of being in public for many months after my experience with The Green Goddess Apprenticeship program at Susun Weeds farm. I am classified as a human trafficking victim by the state of New York as a result. Working with Ulster County Crime Victims Unit for medical care.

A little back story…

Susun Weed was my hero. I studied her videos, blog talk radio podcasts, online workshops and her books for many years. I had a deep respect and love for the work she shared so freely with me and thousands of herbalist students around the world.

I saved my money for years to come up with the $2500 it would take to attend a live, in person workshop with my hero Susun Weed. Being a single mother, I rarely had the help, money or time to do anything like this for myself. I finally had the free time to pursue my passion to become a clinical herbalist in 2020.

After paying the full amount, and setting out on the journey across country, I never thought that I would be walking into a nightmare situation with no phone, car or way of knowing how to get to safety.

The night I arrived at her Laughing Rock Farm, my Uber driver begged me not to stay. She said something was off. I was a little worried too, but thought, "Oh it is late at night and looks spooky here. It will be better in the day time. Also thought, if the people at the Wise Woman Center were as crazy as this place looked, I could just call a cab and leave." I was so very, very, wrong.

That night, I did not get to meet my hero, but was instead greeted with a very nervous and anxious young woman who looked disheveled and scared.

This odd person seemed to be overly concerned with doing everything just right. It was very stressful to be around her, but I pushed my concerns aside and followed her lead as she was the welcome person for my 2 weeklong apprenticeship. Surely, seeing Susun Weed and clearing up things would be the wisest thing to do in this situation.

She (the assistant) showed me my room and bathroom. All very disgusting. Something you would see in a crack house on tv. I was told I wouldn’t be able to flush the toilets or drink from the water. I was very concerned and wanted to leave at that point, but could not get cell signal at the nettles patch hut where we were located. I told myself, just go to sleep wake up in the morning when you have energy and ask to speak with management. (Famous last words)

I was very exhausted and just wanted to get to bed so I could get up in the morning, and with daylight, find a way back to the city if need be. I had spent the better part of 24 hours getting to Saugerties (Woodstock). Flights, layovers, long cab rides....I was beyond exhausted.

The young woman gave me the "lay of the land" trying to help me better acclimate to the environment. I felt as though we were in a prison movie and she was helping me to plan my escape. She explained that I would get to meet Susun Weed in the morning.

I was hoping that this young woman was just high strung and perhaps needed to eat and rest. I would be able to meet someone tomorrow and make sense of this whole thing, I was sure. In my mind, was thinking "Was this a test? Why is this place so disgusting? Is this part of our studies?”

*In Shamanism there is this thing “Dark night of the soul” that supposedly wakes the shaman into her own powers. I was wondering if they were putting on an act to “scare” me as part of this Shaman course.

In the kitchen (the only clean room in this dilapidated house/hut)

The assistant offered me toast with peanut butter. She shared that Susun Weed and her had made it in a class, the day before. She also offered me Comfrey infusion.  I was very hungry and tired and took the food and drink.

In my head I was thinking, how cool is this, I am drinking Comfrey infusion made at the Wise Woman Center. SO very cool! While still very concerned with the living conditions and the behavior of this assistant.

After eating the food and drinking the infusion....I was ready to fall asleep. I went into "my" room, with no blankets...just a dirty bed with a tiny, crocheted throw and pillow. I laid my clean clothes from my suitcase on the bed...then fell right asleep.

The next morning when I awoke, I was fed again by this woman, Katie. She warned me that I would not be able to eat when I wanted or needed. That I would be working hard long days and nights with little food. She wanted to know if she could get something for me at the grocery store. I laughed at her words. "I paid over $2k for this?" I wanted to meet Susun Weed right away and see if this was actually the truth or this helper person was pulling a fast one on me.

At that point, I felt a little out of it, mentally. Just thought I was still exhausted from the long trip.

I was then prepped for the day by this young woman. She was still acting weird and warning me to not to do this or not to do that... lots of rules that made no sense to me. She had a look on her face and mannerisms of someone who was terrified of their significant other. I didn't want to be judgy, everyone has their own mental health concerns...maybe that was why she was here to empower herself, like me? I kept making up scenarios for why this odd thing was in place or why that scary thing happened. Maybe the assistant was on drugs? Who was I to judge?

All I could think of was...."Where was the list of classes to choose from? Where was my organic healthy breakfast? When was yoga and when can I meet Susun Weed or at least someone more official than a young, stoned hippy woman?" In the daylight, the bathrooms were absolutely disgusting! There were lots of feces in the toilet and piss. The young lady told me that we were not allowed to flush the toilet, even with the feces!

I turned to get into the shower, only to gasp at what I saw. Blood, feces, rust, rotting something? You can see photos I took on The Wise Woman’s Yelp page all of the walls and shower area. I was shocked but didn’t run for the door. I was already not myself at this point. I felt lightheaded and things were already looking weird.

Little did I know, but I had been drugged with some type of psychedelic. Things were very hazy and slow at that point. I was very impressionable, more than I have ever been in my life.

Was this the shamanic part of the class? Where would I have to live in filthy conditions and work day and night learning about herbs to prove my worth as an herbalist? The marketing materials from The Wise Woman Center said that I would be studying and learning about herbs. It said I would work closely with Susun Weed, long hard days and nights learning about the Shaman way or the Wise Woman way.

My understanding of The Wise Woman way was all about building up a person, empowering them, nourishing them…never using heroic means of healing. This was all a façade or a false sense of who Susun Weed and The Wise Woman way is in real life. Katie, the assistant, finally shared that it was time to meet Susun Weed. I was scared, excited, curious, and confused.  We walked out the front door of the shack we were in. Unlocked as we were not allowed to lock it at night when we slept.

We walked through the tall plants/weeds, turned right on a street and walked to a nice small house. We had to walk to the back yard porch area. I was told to wait on the back porch while Katie went inside to get Susun Weed. While inside with Susun Weed, I could hear Susun screaming at the top of her lungs at Katie. Horrible language and threats. She was enraged that she had brought me to her house.

This screaming and threating event went on for 10 minutes or so. Katie came back outside and with tears streaming grabbed my hand and led me to another house down the trail. I asked the her, what happened? Was that Susun Weed screaming? Where are we going? Are you ok?

In my mind, I was thinking "That girl deserved it. She must of done something terrible. Maybe this girl was tricking me."  *Yes I know that is a messed up thing to think...but I was drugged at that point and very confused. We then walked through Susun Weeds 200+ acre farm to the main workhouse to sit in circle and wait for her grand arrival. Susun Weed had 3 houses on the farm in Saugerties New York.

After a walk through a forested area, we ended up at another larger home. Susun Weeds consort, Micky, (Michael J. Dattorre) was waiting at the circle with more infusion drinks. We were told to drink them for nourishment as it will be a very long and hard day of work. I was starving at that point and thankful to have something warm to drink.

I am still thinking, in my mind at this point... wow, these people are crazy. I am going to meet the great Susun Weed and then dash out of here. Surely, I would be able to get my $2000 back from PayPal. Sheesh, this place is insane! A part of me was screaming to get out of there. I wish I had listened.

I spent the next 5 days or so, drugged out of my mind, terrified, exhausted and very hungry.

Susun Weed was arrested as a result of the trauma she inflicted upon me during my 5 day stay at her compound on Fish Springs road in Saugerties New York.

I have not shared all of the horrible details in this letter, as it is very difficult to do so. I have shared enough information to help others who feel called to work with Susun Weed. Please know this, she is powerful, rich and well connected. You will not win. You will tuck your tail between your legs and run for your life. She wants you to be terrified of her. She appears sweet, strong and loving on social media, but is a real monster of a person in real life. 

Later I would learn from the local District Attorneys office, that there are many other women who escaped Susun Weeds abuses. Also that the language used on her and websites make it 100% impossible to sue her or get a refund. When you click that Buy Now button on any of her herbalist websites, you are agreeing to allow her and her partners to do illegal things to you. You will not get a refund, even if the police show up and arrest them.

or any other of her hundreds of websites where you can buy books or courses with her. She and her helpers assisted in torturing me. They stood by and allowed the abuse. Justine even took videos of me. I am not sure what they used the videos for. I experienced the following during the 5 days stay at The Wise Woman Center.

1. I was drugged without my permission or knowledge. This kept me in a trance like state where I was open to suggestion. They had convinced me that they could read my mind and I believed them.

2. I was starved for days. Lost 10lbs in 5 days. I was told that I could eat anything I wanted out of the filthy refrigerator at her old main house on the front porch. It consisted of jars labeled "Ego Scum" and infusions. Sometimes there would be good food in there. Sometimes, rarely we would have dinner that her boyfriend Mike would cook.  Most of the time we did not have anything to eat.

3. I was threatened with bodily harm most days. I would try to ask questions about herbs or ask why she was so mad at me. I would ask questions about when was the next class? *I never got a tai chi, yoga or plant class. I spent most of my time doing manual labor.

4. I was forced to do manual labor on her farm. Moving rocks, clearing weeds, raking...

5. I was screamed at most of the day. The only thing I can compare it to, was what you see on TV during basic training for military.

6. She tried very hard to convince me that I had dementia. She worked very hard to confuse me with threats and changing the rules. I would then be punished for not obeying the rule that she would change without warning. I would be punished by not having dinner because she would tell me "Dinner is at this location at a certain time." I would have to write that down on a piece of paper so I would remember. I was very hungry and confused. I was so drugged and exhausted that I would forget that I wrote a reminder note and placed it in my pocket. I would then miss dinner time and go to bed hungry again.

7. She would charge me and the other woman money if we did something incorrectly. We would then have to do more manual labor to work off that debt. I have since learned that this is human trafficking and illegal. She would tell us to do something a certain way (scream at us) then she would say we did it wrong and punish us.

8. Ulster County Victims Unit team helped me to get a certification from the state of New York to help cover my medical bills. I had to see a Neurologist for the brain damage. Counseling bills as well. The state of New York identified this as a human trafficking crime but the DA did not choose to charge Susun Weed with human trafficking. They chose to charge her for harassment and threating bodily harm and death instead.

9. I have lost over $30k as a result so far. I had to stay in hiding for several months per the request of Victim of Crimes unit in Saugerties New York and The Human Trafficking Hotline, both of which helped me to file the police report.

10. I have had night terrors, severe PTSD, migraines, depression and memory problems as a result of Susun Weed drugging and abusing me.

11. I do not remember every day that I was at her farm. The memories I do have are confusing and terrifying.

12. During my stay at the Wise Woman Center, someone logged into my bank account and added a new user. Thankfully the bank was able to remove the user before they could steal my money. Susun had me talking about my life savings and how much money I had. Remember, I was drugged and didn’t remember everything that happened there. I really feel convinced she wanted me to give them my life savings and live there on the farm working for free, for the rest of my life.

Please keep in mind that before attending this 2 week workshop, I was a very strong person. Intelligent and resourceful. I was tricked and hurt non the less.

Sad side note, I met Susun Weeds granddaughter. I used to think how lucky this little girl is to have such a knowledgeable and caring grandmother. I am sad to say that this young women looks very troubled in real life. I feel for her and hope she finds a way to get away from her mother Justine and her grandmother Susun Weed. I can’t even imagine the trauma she has experienced.

I have had to move to a new state, change my name and leave the life behind that I loved.

Susun Weed, who is battling cancer and has been silent over the last year… is still teaching in person classes. The last video she shared last week showed her with her goats and one of her apprentice students. Her student looked terrified and scared. I often wonder how many women are still under her spell/drugs and are now living on that farm as a slave?

The Nettles Patch, where I stayed/slept, had 20 or so shoes of different sizes at the front door. Jackets, scarves and belongings to other people….people that were not with me and Katie. Where were they? Did they run away too? I hope so.

I can't believe that she is allowed to harm so many people. So many influencers and businesses support her and her work. I would like to think they are innocent and not aware of the abuses. I called a few of them after this event and tried to share my story. I was turned down by all of them so far. I have been harassed by her and her team since the event 2 years ago.

She is still allowed to teach in person classes. The Saugerties police department were terrible to work with. They were very reluctant to help at all. I had to call three times to get them to allow me to file a police report. Even with documentation from the hospital and from the Human Trafficking Hotline. They finally agreed to take a police report and investigate them.

I have since learned of hundreds of complaints and reports of abuse from other victims from around the world....

Offline educatedindian

  • Administrator
  • *****
  • Posts: 4756
Ulster County Herbalist Arrested For Threatening Her Apprentice, Police Say
 Christina Coulter

 A 74-year-old Ulster County herbalist who taught women to identify plants and initiated them as "Green Goddesses" and was arrested for choking a woman for incorrectly storing lettuce in 2018 allegedly threatened her apprentice with death for asking too many questions, said police.

According to the Saugerties Police Department, Susun S. Weed of Saugerties repeatedly threatened her victim, who was a student in her two-week herbal medicine course, called a "Green Goddess Workshop," on several occasions between Saturday, Sept. 12 and Thursday, Sept. 17. She used several threatening phrases, according to police, including "I'm going to kill you" and "If you ask more questions I'm going to (expletive deleted) flatten you," which led the victim to fear for her safety.

She was charged with the misdemeanor of second-degree harassment.

The course, which costs 75 dollars per night, includes lessons in making medicinal remedies, talking stick ceremonies, a visit to a moon lodge and guidance in "connecting with your green ally."

On July 2, 2018, Weed turned herself in to police after her alleged victim reported that Weed had told her she was "choking the lettuce" when she didn't leave enough air in the bag before resealing it, then choked her. At that time, she was charged with the misdemeanor of criminal obstruction of breathing and blood circulation.

Weed was released after the most recent incident on an appearance ticket for the town of Saugerties court later in October.

Margaret Howard, LCSW
August 10, 2018 ·
Renowned herbalist Susun Weed was arrested in July for allegedly strangling (not fatally) one of her apprentices. Then, it turns out people have been talking for years about the physical and emotional abuse she dishes out to the women who come to study with her, and this isn't the first assault charge against her, reportedly....

I will say about Susun Weed, that though her Wise Woman Herbal was my first intro to plant medicine (back in the ‘80s), and very helpful and in some ways set a certain direction of my interests in life, when this year I started listening to her podcast I was appalled at much of what she said, and how she responded to the women who were calling in, and in that more recent context this strangling thing is actually not entirely shocking. Ugh.

Pretty disappointing, though.

Last year I started an online discussion about Susun Weed in a women’s herbalist Facebook forum. It was actually about her (absurd) insistence that you must boil apple cider vinegar before making medicine with it (never!). But the discussion evolved into broader questions of Susun’s mental health and many women shared their horror stories of being verbally berated by her. A well known herbalist chimed in and shamed all of us for saying bad things about such a revered herbal elder. My jaw dropped to see her, not denying that these stories were true, but trying to sweep them under the rug because of Susun’s status. I pointed out that if Susun were a man we’d all be screaming about her behavior from the rooftops.

For folks to whom this is new- there’ve been stories circulating for years in the herbal community about her abusive behavior. I stopped listening to her radio show years ago because the verbal abuse she heaps on callers was so awful. No humility. No kindness. No empathy. I agreed to be interviewed on said show last spring out of curiosity, and a desire to broaden my audience. I was prepared to face Baba Yaga (her words, not mine), and I did. And it was weird.

I regret saying yes to the interview, but that’s beside the point. I’m sharing this because Susun was recently arrested for choking an apprentice. I’ve been in touch with another woman who was also choked by Susun years ago but never spoke out. Susun defended the recent choking on her radio show (Blog Talk Radio), but she just sounds like a victim blamer and someone who can’t look at herself.
A close associate of Susun’s has explained that Susun acts this way because she’s autistic, which is so insulting to autistic people that it boggles the mind. Other big name autistic herbalists don’t have hundreds of people with stories of being abused by them. This is not autistic behavior. This is someone with, again, no humility, no kindness, and no empathy. Someone who has written incredible books and therefore been revered and elevated her whole life. Someone who hasn’t been called out on a large scale until now. Con’t in comments 👇🏼

She was mentally and nearly physically abusive to me (a man had to hold her back) 20 years ago. The incident still haunts me and I shudder when I see her picture. I'm online unable to understand how she can be revered by anyone. The page on her site about why she yells is unbelievable. If you do what she says you won't get screamed at??? Talk about justifying abuse. It should be used against her in court.

Please do NOT study with Susun weed
After apprenticing with her for a few days, I have to say please do NOT go and study with this extremely abusive person. No matter what you say or do you will be abused. As someone who has worked on themselves all through their 20s I thought I would be ready for this. You think her blog talk radio is bad? Try that times 100. Her out of date feminism which is transphobic and her patriarchal practices of power and abuse are trash. “She will get what she deserves” do not give this person you money, support, time or energy. Period point blank. My body was so shut down and I felt like a child trapped with an abusive parent. I don’t care how many herbal infusions you drink or how much time you spend in nature, talking to people as she does, causes so much cellular harm. She is phony and fragile tyrant. She screamed at me because she said I made her feel invisible. She is unstable and so unwell. Bad vibes. No fairies in her gardens.

Lately the herbalism community (which I am a part of in my double life) has been reeling from the exposure of prominent teacher Susun Weed for abusing (physically, verbally and emotionally) her students. Colleagues who have been close to her have been aware of the issue for many years, and the problem has been allowed to perpetuate. In great part, this happened because of spiritual bypassing. The essay Why Is Susun so Angry on her blog, reads like a transcript from the Kavanaugh hearings. Susun isn’t angry or abusive, she’s simply fierce, and in order to benefit from her wisdom, you better learn to suck it up. This is gaslighting - a way of denying and belittling the experience of another that thrusts them into self-doubt - and it’s a favorite tactic of people who abuse power....

Offline PariG

  • Posts: 1
Thank you for posting about her. Just wanted to give you a bit more info.

Previous legal names, Susan Swede (married to Southworth W. Swede) and maiden name Susan Shaft. Daughter who helps with her business Justine Smythe (nee Swede).
Susun dropped out of UCLA at 19 (mathematics and AI) after starting at 16-17, to become the High Priestess of "The Church of the Mysterious Elation" in 1968 NYC where she and her husband literally dosed people with LSD but also trafficked it. Police found MILLIONS of dollars worth of drugs when they raided their "church" in 1968!
From what I can tell she received no consequences then and seems like she never has.  She also has a teepee on her property and one 1990 report I read was all over the place in terms of other people's cultures-that was just cringy.
And the page about apprenticing with her which includes "shamanic" work, is down right terrifying. Many have verified that you have to sign contracts (some content of which sounds very unlikely to hold up in court).

Thank you again for the work you do. I just hope that anyone else who is thinking of taking her in person courses or interning with her will find this information before they too are harmed. She has caused real harm to many.

Offline RedRightHand

  • Posts: 177
Police found MILLIONS of dollars worth of drugs when they raided their "church" in 1968!

From what I can tell she received no consequences then and seems like she never has. 

She also has a teepee on her property and one 1990 report I read was all over the place in terms of other people's cultures-that was just cringy.

Bolding added. One thing is very clear... when harmful people, who disrupt and derail activist and Native communities are busted for crimes, but never do any time, Pay Attention.

There is always a reason. It's not just white privilege.

Every activist camp and retreat has had hippies or pretendians, or even actual Natives, turn up who have had their sentences for drug busts or sex crimes put on hold in exchange for disrupting or informing on our communities. Someone running a retreat center, who has had thousands of people coming through there, and who travels to newage events, influencing many people, yet is harming so many....

Can also confirm on the tipi on the land and the massive appropriation. She bought the mailing lists of many leftist magazines and sent out her "Wise Woman Healing Center" (or whatever it's called) catalogues in spam mailings for many years. Every culture you can think of was there to be bought by white people.

Offline Defend the Sacred

  • Global Moderator
  • *****
  • Posts: 3289
Long article on Susun Weed's abuse of her "shamanic" apprentices and students:

April 7, 2022

The Herbalism Community Is at War With Itself Over Abuse Allegations

Famed herbalist and teacher Susun Weed says anger is part of her teaching method. Some of her former apprentices say it went too far.

As mentioned elsewhere, I crossed paths with Weed in the mid-1980s. She was a hardcore appropriator, but to the best of my knowledge, she hadn't yet started in with the obvious psychosis and violent abuse of her students. Or, I hadn't seen or heard tell of it.

Then a friend went to her place a few years later, right around the time Weed started showing extreme, intense signs of paranoid schizophrenia - Susun screeching that everyone hated her, was out to get her, and then lashing out at people violently.  Weed was also giving some very awful, racist and harmful ceremonial advice. Weed is now claiming/blaming autism for her abusive and incoherent behavior. And Indigenous cultures. Obviously, none of this is even vaguely accurate - neither in terms of psychiatric diagnoses nor blaming Natives for her acting out. Her ideas of "Indigenous Cultures" are fraud books by Castaneda. She does a lot of blame-shifting and DARVO.

Some of her ridiculous claims from the Vice article:
Weed says that her apprenticeships involve carefully-staged steps which are, she says, “consistent throughout the world in every Indigenous culture that I've been in, this is the way you become a shaman.”  (Weed is white. She says she has been an initiated witch since 1976, and claims to be an "initiated member" of the Seneca Nation’s Wolf Clan, initiated by an elder named Twylah Hurd Nitsch. Weed does not claim to be Native American or an enrolled member of any tribe. A press officer with the Seneca Nation wasn’t immediately familiar with Nitsch’s name or any formalized way that a non-Seneca person could be “initiated” into a clan. Weed says that Hurd Nitsch, whom she calls “Grandmother,” faced pushback from initiating non-Native people. “Further, Grandmother made me a “Peace Elder,” she told me. “As a Peace Elder, I was accepted at many Native gatherings and fully accepted as a member of the Wolf clan.”)

Her claims are b.s., of course. The "Native gatherings" were not. She means the "Medicine Wheel" fraud-fests run by Vincent LaDuke , events with Twylah Nitsch , and similar white, nuage events with pretendians and the occasional, token sellout/exploiter.

Even among her critics, none of these white herbalists have a word to say about the endemic appropriation going on, neither Weed's, nor their own. They only started to care when white people got hurt. And when it brought more scrutiny down on them.
« Last Edit: August 26, 2022, 03:09:49 am by Defend the Sacred »

Offline Sparks

  • Posts: 1423
Susun Weed is very active on social media, for those who want to see her "wisdom" in context:  [72 K followers. Ouch …]  [4,259 Following — 10.1K Followers]