I’ve lost my Shaman – and a good friend. Muralist Fred Huberlein left us Monday morning. Who will show me the way of knowledge now?
A student and advocate of Yaqui, Anasazi, and other indigenous cultures and theologies, Fred’s deity was not a long bearded, flowing white robed figure that looks like a big monkey, but a Great Spirit, whose aura prevails over the universe and gives us the opportunity to thrive, but guarantees nothing.
I made friends with Fred at the Glenwood Hot Springs Pool. One day, I was kicking around the political football with a conservative adversary in the therapy pool, as I’m prone to do, when Fred came over and gave me a mild admonishment.
“This place is sacred,” Fred said, “The ancient ones came here to free their minds of all worldly thoughts. You really shouldn’t discuss such matters here.”
Since then, I have sheathed my political sword at the pool and saved it for letters to the editor.
To Fred’s soulful and spiritual wife Theresa I say he’s not really gone. As long as the building walls throughout the West adorned by his beautiful murals stand and pupils like me remember his teachings, Fred will live on.
Fred Malo Jr.