Crochet And My Native American Totems

Sometimes when I am contemplating the medicines to be learned by my own Native American Totems, I will work on a craft that will help me reflect on what I am supposed to learn. Recently, the craft of choice was crochet. I really had a difficult time finding a crochet pattern that I thought represented even a somewhat Native American theme. I have been crocheting for several decades now; so, I designed my own crochet pattern for an afghan to have in our home.

I decided to create a pattern that honored the Medicine Wheel by using colors found in the wheel and by separating them with a complimentary color that represents Father Sky where the winds of direction blow.

You might be thinking what does crocheting an afghan have to do with totems, Bev? Well, remember that a totem is the spirit of an animal, mineral, plant, or living part of Mother Earth that works with us to give us medicine or a lesson about life. It is not enough to come to realize that a totem or spirit is working with you. Once you realize that you have lessons to learn and areas to work on in your life, you need to work with the spirit and reflect on what it is you can work on to be a better person.

One of my totems is telling me to take it easy or relax more and not work so hard. One of the ways for me to relax is to crochet. It is very therapeutic for me, personally. I enjoy creating something from nothing and while crocheting I usually ponder some of those thoughts that are crowding my sub-conscious.  After I designed the pattern for the Medicine Wheel Ripple Afghan and started to work the design with the yarn, I found myself meditating on the directions of the Medicine Wheel and what we learn or the medicine we receive from each. It was a way for me to clarify and comprehend some paths that I need to walk on.

Crocheting may not be your cup of tea and that is OK. What I am suggesting to you is to recognize a totem that is walking with you right now and then think of an activity that you can do that will allow you to meditate on the medicine it is trying to give you. I think you will find that you will be more at ease with your inner being if you do.

~Mitakuye Oyasin~ We are all related

Sacred Medicine Wheel Of Feminine Wisdom

Let us talk today of the Sacred Medicine Wheel of Feminine Wisdom. The Thirteen Original Clan Mothers who came to earth in the human form to teach us balance in our lives as we grow in womens spirituality gave us this special medicine wheel.

Today I will give you the basics of this wheel and every once in a while I will tell you about the talents, gifts, and abilities of the feminine principles taught by these spirit mothers.

Imagine the face of a clock.  There is a Clan Mother who is responsible for one moon in the lunar cycle of every year. Imagine the clock face at one o’clock representing the first moon cycle of the year and travel around the face of this clock in a clockwise manner. The thirteenth moon cycle is at the center of the imaginary clock.

  • The moon of January or the First Moon Cycle has Talks With Relations as the Mother who teaches us.  She is associated with the color orange.
  • The Second Moon Cycle or the February Moon is led by Wisdom Keeper. Her color association is gray.
  • The March Moon or the Third Moon Cycle comes from the Clan Mother called Weighs The Truth and her color is brown.
  • The moon of April or the Fourth Moon Cycle is taught by Looks Far Woman. This Mother has all pastel colors as her favored palette.
  • The Fifth Moon Cycle or the moon of May is led by Listening Woman whose color is black.
  • The color of red is associated with Storyteller who teaches us June’s Moon or the Sixth Moon Cycle of the year.
  • Our moon in July or the Seventh Moon Cycle gives lessons from Love’s All Things. Yellow is associated with this Clan Mother.
  • The August Moon or the Eighth Moon Cycle is taught by the Mother known as She Who Heals with the color blue.
  • Setting Sun Woman with the color green teaches during September’s Moon or the Ninth Moon Cycle.
  • The Moon of October or the Tenth Moon Cycle of the year brings us lessons from Weaves The Web with the color pink.
  • The Eleventh Moon Cycle in November is led by the Mother called Walks Tall Woman. Her color is white.
  • The Moon in December or the Twelfth Moon Cycle gives us lessons from Gives Praise. This Clan Mother’s color is purple.
  • Blue Moon of Transformation is the Thirteenth Moon Cycle located at the center of the Medicine Wheel that resembles our imagined clock face. Becomes Her Vision is the Mother of this moon cycle. Her color is crystal.

In future posts, I will explain the teachings of each one of the Thirteen Original Clan Mothers and the moons they are in charge of.

~Mitakuye Oyasin~ We are all related

Totems of the Four Winds

The Four Winds or Directions have a spirit and power lessons for us to learn from.  Each Wind or Direction is associated with a season or a changing in the rhythms and tides of Mother Earth.  There is  an animal totem and a color that represents  each of the directions that the Four Winds travel across Father Sky.

In the case of the Directions or Four Winds of the Medicine Wheel the Chief animal totem is actually called a Spirit Keeper because the totem of the Directions is a power totem, if you will.  These  Spirit Keepers are Beings responsible for teaching us about the power of the direction of the wind they represent.  When we are born we are given one of these Spirit Keepers by the Great Spirit.  These power totems from the Four Winds  are much  like a Guardian Angel, if you will.  They are given to us to guide us, teach us, and protect us.  We can think of them as the Team Leader over the team of  the Spirit Helpers (our birth totems) that watch over us and give us the medicine lessons during our lives.

Although we have one Direction and Spirit Keeper who particularly watch over us, we can always learn much from each of the Four Winds.  The next series of posts will explain what we can learn from each Direction of the Four Winds and the Spirit Keeper who is the Chief of that direction. We will learn about the winds of North, East, South, and West along with the Spirit Keepers Waboose (White Buffalo), Wabun (Eagle), Shawnodese (Coyote), and Mudjekeewis (Grizzly Bear).

~Mitakuye Oyasin~ We are all related