Categories
Most Popular

Buffalo Medicine

14915138_10103003938944255_2170893487713545450_n

There is so much happening…

The Standing Rock Sioux have taken back ceded land that is theirs under the Fort Laramie Treaty of 1851, which was signed by eight tribes and the U.S. government.

Ceded land is land that was given over as apart of an agreement. The eight tribes, Cheyenne, Sioux, Arapaho, Crow, Assiniboine, Mandan, Hidatsa, and Arikara nations, agreed in 1851 to live in peace on the land which was known as Native territory.

Since then peace has come and gone, and today water protectors are standing once again in peace for our earth.

After researching this more…I found a few interesting pieces of history.  There were at least 2 treaties in Fort Laramie.

The second was in 1868, The Treaty of Fort Laramie (also called the Sioux Treaty of 1868).  This was an agreement between the United States and the Oglala, Miniconjou, and Brulé bands of Lakota people, Yanktonai Dakota, and Arapaho Nation signed on April 29, 1868 at Fort Laramie in the Wyoming Territory, guaranteeing the Lakota ownership of the Black Hills, and further land and hunting rights in South Dakota, Wyoming, and Montana. The Powder River Country was to be henceforth closed to all whites. The treaty ended Red Cloud’s War.

The treaty of 1868 was written because of the many europeans who were traveling through Sioux land, utilizing the native’s resources without compensation.

Such a parallel with what is happening there now. The oil companies coming through to utilize resources… however the Sioux no longer want compensation… they just want what is rightfully their domain.

This treaty includes an article intended to “ensure the civilization” of the Lakota, financial incentives for them to farm land and become competitive, and stipulations that minors should be provided with an “English education” at a “mission building.” To this end the U.S. government included in the treaty that white teachers, blacksmiths, a farmer, a miller, a carpenter, an engineer and a government agent should take up residence within the reservation.

ARTICLE VII.
In order to insure the civilization of the Indians entering into this treaty, the necessity of education is admitted, especially of such of them as are or may be settled on said agricultural reservations, and they, therefore, pledge themselves to compel their children, male and female, between the ages of six and sixteen years, to attend school, and it is hereby made the duty of the agent for said Indians to see that this stipulation is strictly complied with; and the United States agrees that for every thirty children between said ages, who can be induced or compelled to attend school, a house shall be provided, and a teacher competent to teach the elementary branches of an English education shall be furnished, who will reside among said Indians and faithfully discharge his or her duties as a teacher. The provisions of this article to continue for not less than twenty years.

In the late 19th century, the federal government shifted from mission schools on reservations to establishing Indian boarding schools; the first was the Carlisle Indian Industrial School in Pennsylvania. The website for the US Army War College says that students were recruited directly from the western reservations of the Sioux, Cheyenne, Comanche, Kiowa, and Arapaho.

I had no idea there was an Indian boarding school here. I live very close to Carlisle, and the Appalachian trail runs right past the boarding school.  Except it is not a boarding school any longer… it is the Army War College.  Carlisle Barracks were used for training since the late 1700’s. I think this would make a fantastic day trip.

Its fascinating to me that I am so close to this place and have never been, and not only ties directly back to what’s happening at Standing Rock but it is also directly connected to the childhood my mother had. She was sent to attend St. Joseph’s Boarding School at the age of 6. So much of this is hitting home.

And I set off to write this blog about the buffalo medicine! I shared all of this history in connection with the present day.  On October 27th, 2016 police and military stood face to face with peaceful prayer warriors who are protecting not only theirs, but each of our domains.  Resources are in jeopardy, it is time to come back to center and find a way that is in harmony with the earth.

During this standoff,  water protectors were hurt and some even jailed, thrown in kennels and given numbers. Horses were laid to rest, and sacred land was desecrated. Water protectors from all over witnessed the arrival of the buffalo, as they ran up over the hills where the pipeline is being built.

The Buffalo/Bison’s medicine includes manifestation, protection, earth, creativity, abundance, knowledge, generosity, hospitality, sharing work, courage, strength, challenge, survival, giving for the greater good, formulating beneficial plans.

They show us how to walk a sacred path, honouring every walk of life. Buffalo will assist you in establishing a deep connection with Mother Earth and Father Sky and will ask that you pray/meditate/focus on harmony and peace amongst all beings. Buffalo will bestow you with strength of character.

Buffalo teaches us that true prosperity comes when we are grateful for what we have and when we live in harmony and love with every body and being contained within the universe. You will live like buffalo when you know that abundance is present and when ALL relations are honoured and known as sacred, when you express gratitude for all parts, all aspects of creation. This is also the Ojibwe way, each road shines light on the others.

The story of the White Buffalo Calf Woman originates from the Lakota people, she taught them that all things are interconnected and that it is not necessary to struggle to have abundance. The one thing that is necessary, however, is to be connected with Spirit…

e98767_049056a833fe4176a4aa223f97c06c8c-mv2And this is where I am now… Spirit.

A friend of mine shared with me the prophecy of Black Elk…(after I painted this picture of a black elk).

Black Elk saw the earth becoming sick. The animals, the winged ones, and the four-legged ones grew frightened. All living things became gaunt and poor. The air and the waters dirtied and smelled foul. Below, Black Elk saw a blue man living in and empowering the sickness. The powers of the four directions, represented by four horses, charged the blue man, but were beaten back. The Grandfathers called upon Black Elk. His bow changed into a spear, and he swooped down on the blue man, destroying him.  When the blue man fell, all life came back upon the earth; all things became fresh and healthy again.

So the buffalo came over the hills, sharing their message, two days ago I received a sacred buffalo medicine pouch, and yesterday I was told to paint a buffalo.

The medicine is in knowing that we are all connected… the answer is in harmony… the middle way.

<3 Gizaagin

Categories
Existence Most Popular

The Ojibwe Creation Story

My giwaa directed me to read the Mishomis Book written about the history and teachings of our people, the Ojibwe.
e98767_b7c56fe1f914474180150676a1d29b20-mv2-1
This book is fantastic! Edward Benton-Banai wrote this book so that in sharing these teachings, together we can begin our journey to rediscover a way of life that is centered on the respect for all living things.
I love how he puts this journey as one to find the center of ourselves, so that we can know the peace that comes from living in harmony with the energy of the Universe.
“…with the teachings of yesterday we can better prepare ourselves for the uncertainties of tomorrow.”
The first chapter is about the Ojibwe Creation Story, how man was created on this earth. Ojibwe stories were usually handed down by word of mouth from generation to generation, and sometimes recorded on scrolls made from wee’gwas (birchbark).
“When Ah-ki’ (the earth) was young, it was said that the Earth had a family.  Nee-ba-gee’-sis (the Moon) is called Grandmother, and Gee’-sis (the Sun) is called Grandfather.  The Creator of this family is called Gi’-tchie Man-i-to’ (Great Mystery or Creator).”
As in many cultures, the Earth is said to be a woman because from her come all living things.
Water is her life blood, flowing through her, nourishing and purifying her, and with her all living things.
The Creator gave the Four Sacred Directions to the Earth, North, South, East and West, each with physical and spiritual powers. He then sent the birds to carry the seeds of life to all of the Four Directions to spread life across the Earth. On earth he placed the swimming creatures of the water, gave life to the plant and insect world, placed the crawling things and four-leggeds on the land. All of these parts of life lived in harmony with each other.
Gitchie Manito then took the four parts of Mother Earth and blew into them using a Sacred Shell…the Megis Shell. From the union of the Four Sacred Elements and his breath, man was created, and lowered to the Earth as the last form of life to be placed on Earth.  From this Original Man came the A-nish-i-na’-be people.
In the Ojibwe language if you break down the work Anishinabe it translates to “people from whence lowered.” Another definition refers to “the good humans,” meaning those who are on the right road or path given to them by the Creator. The Ojibwe historian, linguist, and author Basil Johnston wrote that its literal translation is “Beings Made Out of Nothing” or “Spontaneous Beings,” since the Anishinabe were created by divine breath.
The Original man was created in the image of Gitchi Manito. He was a natural man, apart of Mother Earth, living in brotherhood with all that was around him.
All tribes came from this Original Man.  The Ojibwe are a tribe because of the way we speak,  believing that we are nee-kon’-nis-ug’ (brothers) with all tribes, separated only by our tongue or language. No one way is better than another.
There are many roads to the High Place. The teachings of one tribe will shed light on those of another.
This knowledge runs through my veins, and is one of the reasons why I am going to North Dakota. To know my native language, teachings and ceremonies so that I will be able to pass this sacred way of living on to my children and all that I encounter along my path.
<3 Migwetch
Categories
Existence Most Popular

My Journey to Sacred Stone

Boozhoo! (hello)

friends, family and colleagues,

Some of you may know me from painting parties, workshops and craft shows. Others know me as a friend and an educator. What you may not know is that I am a member of the Turtle Mountain Band of Chippewa from Belcourt, North Dakota.

Born into a family mixed with American and native culture, much of my native history was not known, and could not be passed down. My mother was born and raised on the Turtle Mountain reservation, and grew up at St. Joseph’s, a Native American boarding school.

When I was age 11, my Ojibwa name was given to me by a medicine woman elder of our tribe, I am raining in the dawn woman. In my tribe, I am a water blesser, and speaker to the four corners. Throughout my life, I have developed a deep reverence for the sacredness of Native American culture and for our earth. As a teacher, Native American and as an American, every day I learn more about my place in life. This reflects in both my personal and spiritual life.

Spiritually, in the past 2 years I have realized how deep the ways of my people flow through my veins.  My mother was the first person to tell me of my Native American heritage, but she wasn’t able to share much. Every day I uncover a deeper connection to this land, deeper than just being an American. Learning that the Ojibwe are Anishinabe, which means original people, initiated my thoughts about what other history there is to learn about my Ojibwe culture, as well as all of the stories and history passed down to me from American culture. The difference between the two was eye-opening.

One story that was passed down was the story of creation. It’s fitting that both cultures have passed down the story of creation by word of mouth.  The Anishinabe’s ancestors shared the story of the original man with Edward Benton-Banai of the Lac Court Orielles Band of Ojibwe. He shared this history in the Mishomis book, which my giwaa (the one who names) suggested I read so that we can discuss our history more in depth.

In Ojibwe culture, as well as with most creation stories, the Original Man was the last life form created, and was lowered to earth. All tribes came from this Original Man. The Ojibwe believe no one way is better than another, and that we need to support each other by respecting and honoring the “many roads” of all tribes.

For the past two years I have felt as though I have been called to go and revisit y native heritage. Last year a trip back to Turtle Mountain reservation, and to visit the historical site, International Peace Gardens, was tentatively planned but the timing was off.

With everything happening around us, now is the time to respect and honor the many ways of all tribes, which we can see through example of what’s happening in Cannon Ball North Dakota. The Standing Rock Sioux have created Sacred Stone Camp, which is about 2 hours south of my reservation, where people from all over the world have gathered in protest and protection of sacred native lands and our water. As fellow Americans, native or otherwise, we have a powerful thing in common…we all live, drink and eat from the earth, and the earths life blood is water.

I am called take a trip to Sacred Stone Camp and I would like to ask for your support. During this trip I will be visiting Turtle Mountain reservation to speak with my giwaa to learn the traditions and ways of the Ojibwe people, as well as take part in this once in a lifetime opportunity to be a firsthand account to such a historical moment.

Just like our ancestors passed down stories by word of mouth, I would like to be one who assists you in passing on this historical moment to your loved ones. My blog is up and running, and I will continue to share so that you can take this journey with me. In addition, all sales from my first solo art showing at Mending Roots Wellness center in Camp Hill, Pa, will go towards this journey.

The winter is coming, and the cold air is already upon the people in North Dakota. The water protectors at Sacred Stone Camp are in need of supplies to keep safe and warm.

Things I will be taking with me are their top needs: gift cards for lowes or menards (there is no home depot nearby), tents, sleeping bags for subzero temperatures (inc. Military style), and lighters. They have an Amazon wish list if you wish to purchase other supplies.

The trip will begin the evening of November 20th, 2016 and I will return on November 27th, 2016.The drive is about 3,300 miles total and will take 24 hours, Pennsylvania to North Dakota.

Please consider contributing.

Your monetary support is welcome and needed to make this trip possible.

To contribute, as well as follow the journey go to:                    http://rainedawn.wixsite.com/journeytosacred

Please Share this with your friends.

 

Miigwetch (thank you)

Gizaagin (with love)

Raine Dawn Valentine
Raining in the Dawn woman
Turtle Mountain Chippewa

Please email me if you have questions

raine.dawn@gmail.com

 

Categories
Most Popular Wine and Painting Party

Synchronicity

There are Signs everywhere

I love when the universe speaks clearly and sends signs of affirmation.

<3

Categories
Existence Most Popular

Strength in the Circle

Strength in the Circle, Follow my Journey

I am heading to North Dakota November 20th,  please donate  if your heart feels led to. I will be using the donations with the car rental and gas traveling from Maryland to North Dakota and back.  Along with monetary donations, I will be taking other donations to help aid the people through the winter.

<3

 

Categories
Most Popular

Water Drum Making

Last weekend I went to a drum making workshop for my birthday with my friend Holly.  When we got there we were graciously welcomed into beautiful energy. There were two ladies that attended my dreamcatcher workshop who were there, Nancy and Carol. They are a complete pleasure to be around, so I was thrilled to see them! I made eight new friends, and had the most perfect experience.

Nina and Thomas own Thunder Drum Company and are teaching drum and rattle making workshops in a deep and reverent way. They invited us into their home, and genuinely shared their heart and knowledge with the group.  Their energy is sweet, gentle and strong. I could feel their knowledge being passed through the stories of their many experiences.

Thomas led the drum making by sharing stories of how he received his name, The one who works with thunder, what energies the elk hide and the maple rim represent, and a song of gratitude to lead us on our way to creating our own sacred drums. He reminded us that the drum has spirit, the vibration of the drum is the heartbeat, and so we are in act of ceremony while we create.  All energy we have will be infused into the drum once it is complete.

I took this time to infuse love and light for all, all of the energies were in perfect flow and aligned. The Elk hide is considered to bring strength and stamina to the owner of the drum. Elks are know as messengers, and Elk medicine can help strengthen and enhance communication skills. The Elk is apart of The Ojibwe Hoof Clan who are responsible for looking after the social aspects of the community including ceremonies and celebrations. The maple symbolises the balance the male and female in you and relationships.

Before even attending the workshop, at least a few months previous to the workshop, I had sent energy out to make my own drum.  Before the workshop started, I felt led to think about water, my whole being has been resonating with water for the past 6 months. Leading my first drum circle at Firefly Hollow Wellness center, I decided to focus on a water intent for the circle. To send positive energy, love and light out for eachother and our earth. I knew that this drum would be infused with water energy, and with Thomas being one who works with thunder and myself being raining in the dawn woman, this drum was going to be powerful water energy.

When choosing my rim for my drum, I was drawn to the one on the bottom, holding up the rest. img_3952

When choosing my hide, I closed my eyes to feel which one was calling me…and it was the one that Thomas had previously mentioned when he said “there’s a special hide in there, I’m curious to see who gets it.” We all knew each hide was special in and of itself, and special just for being the one that was chosen.

The act of lacing the drum was fun hard work. I enjoy putting my energy into a tough task, especially when the outcome is something which will benefit myself and others. Drums are truly healing, especially infused with love.

Now that its been a few days, my drum is almost completely dry…and the sound is fantastic. Deep, and resonating… it vibrates into my soul like white water rapids.

I am truly grateful for Thomas and Nina, and all of those I made drums with last weekend. It was the best thing to put my birthday energy into, miigwetch.

gizaagin

<3 Raine Dawn

Categories
Existence Most Popular

Light

I have off of work today!  Its wonderful being able to have an extra day with my family to take time for me. Today is the Hebrew Holiday Yom Kippur. So I thought, well if I am able to have a day off because of a belief a group of people have, I’d like to know more about where all the energy of the day is going, or why its a day to observe.

Having spent time looking into the Kabbalah and how it fits into the idea of energy. I work with energies a lot, I am constantly around different people’s energy and the energy of millions of technologies. I know the earth has an energy field and that all things have energy that vibrates. So I look at each philosophy and I look inward to find the common thread of each, since they all work with energy of some sort.

I love what I found out, through researching, about today…

Yom Kippur designates the completion of the creation process of the soul. It then becomes capable of receiving the Creator’s Light. On that day we reach a spiritual degree where the vessel can receive the entire Light of the Creator, meaning at this stage it is ready, but still empty.

The days between Yom Kippur and Sukkot are days of detachment from the previous situation. The Surrounding Light begins to gradually enter the soul on Sukkot. It is called “Surrounding Light” until the holiday of Sukkot, because it remains outside the soul. But once inside it is regarded as “Inner Light.”

It also says that during Yom Kippur one fasts from things in order to keep their vessel empty and prepared to receive the light.

I resonate with that.

Now I have a deeper connection to my day off today, its not just a day off of work. It’s a day that marks a moment where my vessel has prepared itself to be filled with beautiful light from the creator. What a beautiful thing to meditate on today while I am with my family. Beautiful light filling myself, my family, my friends, and all my relations. For the whole world to be filled with the Inner Light.

Namaste
<3Gizaagin<3

Raine Dawn

Categories
Existence Most Popular

Taking a Journey…

In November I will be taking a trip to North Dakota to visit Turtle Mountain and the Sacred Stone Camp, Please follow my journey 

turtle-mountain-flag