When I was introduced to Motanki dolls in the context of auto-therapy and creativity I was first and foremost enamored with their simple beauty and rich tradition of their origins. I loved the fact that making them was a ceremonial and ritual undertaking, and that fabrics and yarns used were carrying symbolic meanings for the maker. Created without sewing, with no facial expressions, infused with herbs and flowers, these dolls spoke to me in a language I could relate to: a language of storytelling, archetypes, and beauty.
How I founded a deeper meaning of Motanki Dolls
It wasn’t until a close friend of mine got really sick, that I understood their much deeper potential. Aldona, an amazing shaman and medicine woman who spent many decades helping countless people on their path to healing and happiness was in a dire need of help herself.
I have reached to her from afar – separated by thousands of miles; all I could do was to use my own psychic abilities and the tools I had available on hand: intuition, distance healing and art therapy. I wasn’t sure what to heal, though, as her diagnosis was all over the place, and her body hurt in entirety. Shamans and healers, doctors and naturopaths could not help her. She went through every possible door seeking answers, meditated for 10 hours a day, drank healing potions, talked to classical medicine authorities, reached everywhere, yet, her body was turning against her making every cell, every atom an enemy set to destroy her.
I decided to make a doll within a shamanic context, accessing the spirit world, as I often do for healing and insights. I hoped to discover the source of her problem, and either solve it or at least give her some feedback so she could start working toward recovery.
The process left me bewildered, revealing much more than it was previously available to both of us.
At first, the doll’s head didn’t want to connect with the rest of her body – a simple part of the doll making turned into arduous work. Indeed, Aldona confirmed she felt like her head (and her mind) were separated from the rest, spinning in all directions. I also could not form the hands and the entire body seemed deformed and uneven, and my friend truly felt exactly that. This was a shock and a deep sadness was followed by an unstoppable resolve to help my friend.
It took some time…
The healing process took several weeks, during which the conversations with the doll deepened. At one point I had to almost entirely take her apart and rebuild her, a moment when my friend finally started to feel better – the first time in years. The heart of the doll was going through transformations, as well as the colors of her hair and clothing. She would tell me of special herbs and power animals that can help with healing. Sometimes she needed to just lay in golden fabrics soaking the energy of the sun, smudge, and crystal waters, other times she needed to change her headscarf from jungly, representing my friend’s close relationship with Amazonian Ayahuasca, to yellow and blue fabrics symbolizing the sun and the moon and the cycles of life. The doll wished to be bundle up, like a little child in need of loving comfort. At first, it was a dark soft fabric of protection, then, as my friend started to come back to life, the doll got wrapped up with beautiful colorful spring fabrics dotted with flowers and butterflies. I also used a bearskin as a cape for the doll, to invoke the bear’s medicine.
I used hands-on healing, infused the doll with crystal and flower waters, gave her a medicinal bag, and included all the pieces of fabrics that were used during the healing, even if eventually the doll didn’t want to wear them anymore, like when the color of her hair changed from red (when Aldona’s mind was on fire), to white and blue – as a symbol of transformation, maturation, and calmness.
After many weeks the doll was finished. It was difficult to part with her, but that part of healing is done.
My friend has a long process of recovery ahead of her, but she is feeling better and getting stronger, her bloodwork looks amazing. I can’t claim the process of doll making did it, I have no proof other than our conversations and the inner guidance that seemed so accurate. The chances are that distance healing and the natural lifestyle have brought on positive changes in my friend’s health, but I am willing to bet that in the world of quantum healing, where we can interact with each other through our morphogenetic fields, everything is possible.