"What could be greater than to be Wakan-Tanka's mind, eyes, ears, nose, mouth, arms, hands, legs, and feet here on Earth?"
--Fools Crow, LAKOTA
In order for the Creator to do His work on this earth,
He needs the human being to do it.
How He guides us is through our eyes, ears, hands, nose, mouth, arms legs and feet.
We are instruments of the Creator.
We are His keepers of the Earth.
We are the keepers of our brothers.
We are to teach His children.
We are to respect the things He has made.
We are to take care of ourselves and treat our bodies and our minds with respect.
We are to do respectful things.
We are to walk the Sacred Path.
We should have good thoughts.
We should do only things that we think the Creator would have us do.
What an honor to be a human being.
What an honor that He would talk to us and guide us to perform His wonders.
Oh Great Spirit, let me appreciate the role you have given me.
Let my senses be sharp to hear Your voice.
Keep my mind clean so I can do the things You would have me do.
"That spiritual power I wear is much more beautiful and much greater. We call it wisdom, knowledge, power and gift, or love. There are these four parts to that spiritual power. So I wear those. When you wear that power it will beautify your mind and spirit. You become beautiful. Everything that Tunkashila creates is beautiful." ~ Wallace Black Elk, LAKOTA
When I was young, I asked my grandfather, "What should I pray for?" He thought for a long time and then he said, "Pray only for wisdom and for the knowledge of love." This makes a lot of sense. No matter what happens I ask the Creator to show me the lessons I should be learning. I pray for Him to help me learn the lessons. By doing this everyday we become beautiful human beings. Great Spirit, grant me Your wisdom. ~ White Bison
"We grieve more because we have been disconnected from our earth, our first Mother, our spiritual Mother." ~ Larry P. Aitken, CHIPPEWA ~ "Where does all life come from? The Earth. Where does everything return to? The Earth. Where do values come from? The Earth. Many people are lost because they don't know the importance of connection to the Earth. They connect to money, to relationships, to success, to goals. When we are disconnected from the Earth, we have feelings of being sad or lost. When we are connected to the Earth, we feel warm and secure. ~ Great Spirit, help me to stay connected to the Mother Earth. " ~ Wisdom of White Bison
"We hold on to our otuhan, our give-aways, because they help us to remain Indians."
--Lame Deer, LAKOTA ~
"Our traditional communities and villages function on interdependence. Share the deer and give freely of what you have to another. Another way to express this principle is, it's better to give than to receive. To share what you have eliminates complexity. The Elders say, live a simple life. One of the principles in the Unseen World is, the more you give, the more you get. You can become a channel for abundance for your family, tribe, or community. A giving person sets up a flow or replacement. Whatever you share will be returned to you in an amount equal or greater. The Indian way is for everyone to give to another, thus the community wins." ~
"Great Spirit, today, teach me the principle of giving. Let me be Your channel of abundance" ~ White Bison
"No individual or group can block another individual's path or change it against what fits his nature and his purpose. It might be done for a time, but in the end it won't work out." ~Rolling Thunder, CHEROKEE
"Every person is born for a purpose. We may know our purpose very early in our lives, or it may take us some time. Very often we need to experience many things before our purpose is clear to us. Sometimes we pick our goals to please others. Sometimes others pick our goals to make themselves happy. Often this makes us unhappy. We need to pray to the Creator and ask Him what our purpose is. When we live outside our purpose, our path is full of obstacles. When we live inside our purpose, our path is smooth. When we are aligned to our purpose, we are happy and content." ~ "
Great Spirit, whisper to me, in terms I can understand, what You would have me do and I will do it." ~ White Bison ~ Wisdom from the Elders
"And there are Four Corners of the Earth that we talk about, the Four Colors of people, and the Four Winds. You see the winds - they are spirits." ~ Grandfather William Commanda, ALGONQUIN
The Elders teach us about the four directions. If we learn about direction, we also learn about attention, about focus, and about power. Each direction has spiritual power. In the morning, go outside, face the east and get still; then, listen to your thoughts. After you have done this for a while, turn and face the west. Get quiet once again and listen to your thoughts. Did your thinking change when you changed direction? ~ White Bison
"Great Spirit, teach me the power of the four directions."
"In the life of the Indian there was only one inevitable duty, the duty of prayer, the daily recognition of the Unseen and Eternal. His daily devotions were more necessary to him than daily food." ~ Charles A. Eastman (Ohiyesa), SANTEE SIOUX
The most important habit one can develop is the daily act of prayer. Prayer is our eyes, our ears, our feelings, our success, our guidance, our life, our duty, our goal. There really is only prayer and meditation. We can only help others through prayer. We can only help ourselves through prayer. You can never become an Elder unless you pray. You can never stay an Elder unless you pray. You never get wisdom unless you pray. You never understand unless you pray. ~ White Bison
Great Spirit, today, teach me to pray
"Everybody should pray together, cheer along, root along. That brings the circle together. Everything is together." ~ Wallace Black Elk, LAKOTA
Life on the Earth can sometimes be very complicated. Sometimes we think we are alone in our problems. Sometime we even withdraw. Then the problems become even more difficult. We need to watch out for one another, to care for one another, to pray together, to encourage one another; and we need to support one another. Behaving in this manner will bring the circle together. ~ White Bison
Great Spirit, today, let me support my brothers and sisters.
"Everything really is equal. The Creator doesn't look at me any better than He looks at the trees. We're all the same." ~ Janice Sundown Hattet, SENECA
Sometimes humans think we are the center of the Universe. Sometimes we think we are above or better than other people or things. The Great Spirit made a set of Laws and Principles by which all things should live. Everybody and everything lives by the same Laws. We are all made of atoms just like the trees. The life force in the middle of the atom is the life force of the Great Mystery. It is the same for everything. We are all equal in the eyes of the Creator. ~ White Bision
"Great Spirit, today, I will respect your handiwork."
"The old people came literally to love the soil and they sat or reclined on the ground with a feeling of being close to a mothering power...The soil was soothing, strengthening, cleansing and healing..." ~ Luther Standing Bear, OGLALA SIOUX
Have you ever noticed the relationship between children and the soil? Watch how... happily they are touching the dirt. The children play in it and eat it. If you are stressed, go to a spot on the Earth, sit down, put your fingers in the dirt, dig in it. Wash your hands in the soil. When you touch it, notice what it does to your hands. Our bodies love to touch the Earth. Sometimes we get too busy and forget these simple things. Maybe you'll even want to plant a garden or flowers. These things are mentally healthy. ~ White Bison
"Great Spirit, today, let me touch the Earth so the Earth can touch me
"It is a paradox in the contemporary world that in our desire for peace we must willingly give ourselves to struggle." ~ Linda Hogan, CHICKASAW ~
The Grandfathers have taught us about sacrifice. We have been taught to pray for the people in a pitiful way. Struggle and conflict is neither good nor bad, it just is. Everything that grows experiences conflict. When the deer is born it is through conflict. When the seed first grows, it is through conflict. Conflict precedes clarity. Everything has the seasons of growth. Recognize - acknowledge - forgive and change. All of these things are done through conflict.
Great Spirit, give me the courage today to see that struggle and conflict are here to teach me lessons that are a gift from you.
"That spiritual power I wear is much more beautiful and
much greater. We call it wisdom, knowledge, power and gift, or love. There are
these four parts to that spiritual power. So I wear those. When you wear that
power it will beautify your mind and spirit. You become beautiful. Everything
that Tunkashila creates is beautiful."~ Wallace Black Elk, LAKOTA
When I was young, I asked my grandfather, "What should I pray
for?" He thought for a long time and then he said, "Pray only for wisdom and for
the knowledge of love." This makes a lot of sense. No matter what happens I ask
the Creator to show me the lessons I should be learning. I pray for Him to help
me learn the lessons. By doing this everyday we become beautiful human beings.
Great Spirit, grant me Your wisdom
"The teachings are for all, not just for Indians...The
white people never wanted to learn before.They thought we were savages.Now
they have a different understanding, and they do want to learn.We are all
children of God.The tradition is open to anyone who wants to learn."~ Don Jose Matusuwa, HUICHOL
In the summer of 1994, a white buffalo calf was born. This means that now is the time for all races to come together. The Elders say that at this time a voice from within will speak to everyone. It will say now is the
time to forgive, now is the time to come together. Are we willing to do this?
Are we willing to quit judging other people? The Elders say, He will be talking through people of all races and gender. We need to open our hearts and welcome our brothers and sisters.
Great Spirit, let my ears be open as I walk the path You have chosen for me
"The concept that we are all related is one of the basic philosophies of D/Lakota religion."
--Dr. A.C. Ross (Ehanamani), LAKOTA
The Medicine Wheel teaches the four directions of the races, Red people, Yellow people, Black people and White people. These four directions are symbolic of all races. Everything in the circle is connected and related. All races are brothers and sisters. If we are related to each other, then it is important to love one another as brother and sister, aunt and uncle, Fathers and Mothers, Grandfathers and Grandmothers. We need to care for each other and especially respect each other. We need to honor one another's differences whether that difference is the color of our skin or our opinions. We should respect differences.
My Creator, let me feel the connectedness to all things. Let me know the lessons I need to learn today. Above all, let me feel my connectedness to You
"The old people say, `Learn from your mistakes'. So I try to accept everything for what it is and to make the best of each situation one day at a time." --Dr. A.C. Ross (Ehanamani), LAKOTA
The Creator did not design us to beat ourselves up when we make mistakes. Mistakes are our friends. It is from mistakes that we learn. The more mistakes we learn from, the faster we gain wisdom. The faster we gain wisdom, the more we love. The more we love, the fewer our mistakes. Therefore, mistakes help us to learn love. God is love. Mistakes are sacred and help us learn about God's will for ourselves.
Great Spirit, help me, today, to learn from my mistakes
"The Old Ones have always said that no matter who despises or ignores you, no matter who keeps you from entering their circles, it is right to pray for them because they are like us, too."
--Larry P. Aitken, CHIPPEWA
You don't know how an apple tastes until you taste it. You don't know what a fish tastes like until you eat it. You don't know how it is to be a woman unless you are one. You don't know what it means to have a baby until you have one. So it is with the natural laws. An example: the natural law of forgiveness says, if you hate someone, pray for the person to be blessed with happiness, joy and all the blessings of the Great Spirit. You will not know about this law unless you do it. The natural law says love others as you love yourself. If you hate yourself or feel guilt in some area of yourself, you will tend to judge and condemn your neighbor. You cannot give away what you don't have. You teach your children by your example, not by your words. The natural laws are written in our hearts.
Great Spirit, teach me how to look into my heart.
But each of us must find out for himself or herself what their gift is, so that they can use it in their life."
--Jimmy Jackson, OJIBWAY
The old people say, everyone has a song to sing. This song is the reason we are on this earth. When we are doing what we came on this earth to do, we know true happiness. How will we know our song? Pray. Ask the Great Mystery, "What is it you want me to do during my stay on earth?" Ask. He will tell you. He will even help you develop yourself to accomplish His mission.
Great Spirit, help me find my song and let me sing it.
"Every thing or living being that exists in this world, be it trees, flowers, birds, grasses, rocks, soil of the earth, or human beings, has its unique manner of existence --its essence, its spirit that makes it what it is. That is what is meant by connectedness."
--Larry P. Aitken, CHIPPEWA
Scientists are finally realizing what the Elders have taught for thousands of years-every- thing is connected.
Because everything is interconnected, whatever you do to any one thing, you do to everything.
If you poison any part of the earth, the poison eventually affects everything else.
If you poison the plants, the birds will eat the plants, which poisons the birds.
The birds are eaten by humans which poisons the humans.
The humans will have babies who could be deformed because the plants were poisoned.
We must learn to live in harmony with the earth.
We must learn to think good things.
Every good thought is felt by everything, which causes everything to be happy.
Creator, let my thoughts only be good thoughts
".the spirit still has something for us to discover-an herb, a sprig, a flower-a very small flower, maybe you can spend a long time in its contemplation, thinking about it."
--Lame Deer, LAKOTA
The world today is about hurry up! get there faster! Work harder, produce more, hurry up, eat quickly, be on time, don't get stressed- headaches, conflict, drink to calm down, go to training on stress management, time management-STOP! STOP! STOP! STOP! STOP! STOP! STOP! Go spend 5 minutes with a flower or a plant. Look at it-think about it-look at its beauty, smell it, close your eyes and smell it again. Touch it; touch with your eyes closed. Listen to it; listen to it with your eyed closed. Slow your mind down. Think about the little things. Now close your eyes and pray.
Great Spirit, this feeling of calmness that I have, let me have it all day long.
"It can be 100 degrees in the shade one afternoon and suddenly there comes a storm with hailstones as big as golf balls, the prairie is all white and your teeth chatter. That's good-a reminder that you are just a small particle of nature, not so powerful as you think."
--Lame Deer, LAKOTA
No event, no relationship, no joy, no sadness, no situation ever stays the same. Every setback is only temporary. Even setbacks change. Why? Because the Great Spirit designed the world to be constantly changing. We are not the center of the universe, we are but a small part. The whole is constantly changing, and we as humans are constantly participating in the change. We have two choices, to resist change or participate in the change. Every change can be resisted, and every change can be made in cooperation. What will I choose today, resistance or cooperation?
Great Spirit, teach me to make cooperative change
".because if you believe in something, and believe in it long enough, it will come into being."
--Rolling Thunder, CHEROKEE
We are created by the Great One to accomplish His will through our mental pictures or visions. Our thoughts are three dimensional: words, pictures and feelings. We create the vision by thinking the words and we create feeling for the vision by feeling enthusiasm, desire, commitment and other strong beliefs. Once we create the vision, we move toward and become like that which we think about. All visions are tested by our self talk; for example, "This isn't going to happen, where is the money coming from anyway?" When this happens, we need to let go of the test and focus on belief in the vision. Why? Because God said if we believe it long enough, He will guarantee it!!!
Great One, let my beliefs be strong today. Help me to have faith in my visions.
"Come forward and join hands with us in this great work for the Creator."
--Traditional Circle of Elders, NORTHERN CHEYENNE
The Elders have spent years learning to pray and communicate with the Great Spirit. Their job is to pass this knowledge onto the young people. The Elders have told us we are now in a great time of healing. The Creator is guiding them to help the young people figure this out. We must get involved and participate. We should pray and see what it is the Great Spirit wants us to do. We need to sacrifice our time to help the people and to be of maximum use to the Creator. Every person is needed to accomplish this great healing.
Creator, whisper what You want me to do.
"That spiritual power I wear is much more beautiful and much greater. We call it wisdom, knowledge, power and gift or love. There are these four parts to that spiritual power. So I wear those. When you wear that power it will beautify your mind and spirit. You become beautiful. Everything that Tunkashila creates is beautiful."
--Wallace Black Elk, LAKOTA
When I was young, I asked my grandfather, "What should I pray for?" He thought for a long time and then he said, "Pray only for wisdom and for the knowledge of love." This makes a lot of sense. No matter what happens I ask the Creator to show me the lessons I should be learning. I pray for Him to help me learn the lessons. By doing this everyday we become beautiful human beings.
Great Spirit, grant me Your wisdom.