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Old 05-27-2009, 09:54 AM
 
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Originally Posted by ptsum View Post
It's going to be a long post, but here goes.

First off you need to do what is called a Smudge. And for that you need certain ingredients, you need Sage, Cedar, Tobacco,and Sweet Grass, now with these ingredients a Holy Person, Spirit Person, Medicine Person or Elder, conducts the smudging of each person involved in the ceremony, by taking a container (either a turtle shell or an abalone seashell) that has the blended ingredients of sage, cedar, tobacco, and Sweet Grass. Then light the mixture so that it starts to burn, then lightly blow the flame out so it will just smoke. They usually have a fan that is of a left wing(Heart-Side) of a Eagle, Hawk or Pheasant or whatever winged one they used for a "Prayer Fan", to "Fan" the smoke toward an individual to purify them (inside and out).

The coming-of-age ceremony is also called the rite of passage ceremony.
If compared to other cultures, we would have many similar beliefs and ways of conducting these. There is "Four Cycles" of life in every Human Being.. Infant, Youth, Adult and Elder.

When a young boy comes of age, around 12 or 13 years of age, a very special ceremony within the Nation or tribe is conducted.

First and foremost, the young boy was taken aside with the Elder men.

The young adult man, would be taken aside by the Father, Grandfathers, Uncles, and Elder men. Also, if possible, the Main Medicine man/Holy man of the Nation or Tribe. The young adult is told of his new responsibilities and what is expected of him as a young Adult male among his people and peers.

He would be instructed in the ways of being a provider and protector of his immediate family and of all his people. The Elder men would pledge to teach him of the "Ways" of his Ancestors and Fathers that walk before him. Then, he would be taken through to this first sweat lodge ceremony, and presented to the people. Given a "New Name" by which all would know him as and call him by from that day forward.

The Holy Man/Medicine Man, would work with the young Adult man throughout his entire life, instructing and giving "Spiritual" advice as how to stay on the Red-Road for his sake, his family and his people.

The Young Adult Man, would be given presence at this ceremony to show love and support on his new journey in the "Second Cycle of Life".

This is the Traditional Cherokee (Tsalagi) Rite of Passage.
Thank you for sharing this. I think one of the most destructive losses we have endured in modern society is a loss of ritual and rites of passage from elders to youth.

Part of it is the awakening scientific awareness, making most educated people critical of simply adopting the mythological customs of their culture as fact, be they stories about the life of Christ or Zeus or the Spirit of the East.

I can only hope that as we continue to evolve scientifically, we will come full circle and recognize the vast spiritual wisdom held by Native American cultures through their mythologies and awaken again our desire for ritual within our own cultures (meaning, not simply borrowing the customs of the Cherokee or Ojibwa or others).
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Old 07-29-2010, 02:35 PM
 
Location: FROM Dixie, but IN SoCal
3,491 posts, read 5,206,742 times
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Originally Posted by Bluefly View Post
I can only hope that as we continue to evolve scientifically, we will come full circle and recognize the vast spiritual wisdom held by Native American cultures through their mythologies and awaken again our desire for ritual within our own cultures (meaning, not simply borrowing the customs of the Cherokee or Ojibwa or others).
To this I would add that we should not limit ourselves to "Native American cultures". There are many other cultures throughout the world that have kept and guarded the wisdom of the ages. One of my friends is from Australia, and most would probably call him an "Aboriginee". To one who will truly listen, my friend has a LOT to say.

PS: The Objibwe and the Chippewa (both are Western European names), when talking among themselves, frequently refer to themselves and their people as the Anishinabe. In modern-day parlance, and among friends, this is sometimes shortened to Shinnob. (However, I strongly caution against calling them that unless you are known to them and accepted as a friend.)

Chi pisala chumi ("Until I see you again"),

-- Nighteyes

Last edited by Nighteyes; 07-29-2010 at 02:52 PM..
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