#27 Ending One’s Life by Wishing to Die
     (Franc Johnson Newcomb, 1915-1940)

A Navaho believes that he can end his own life by wishing that he may die. Several times I have had Navaho girls or young men tell me that a grand-father or a grand-mother was going to die in a short time. When I asked if the grand-parent was ill, the usual response was, ‘No, he is the same as usual, but he wants to die and will live only a little while now.’ The old person seldom disappointed the expectations of his relatives.

[#27] Navajo: “Ending One’s Life by Wishing to Die,” from Franc Johnson Newcomb, Navajo Omens and Taboos. Santa Fe, Arizona: Rydal Press, 1940.

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