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Posts Tagged ‘Medicine Wheels’

Significance of Big Horn Medicine Wheel

Native Indigenous Medicine Wheels are based in the peoples understanding of their respective cosmologies; their understanding of their universe, the creation of the earth, and humanity’s role in that creation.We tend to like Medicine Wheels icons because they are colorful but we often fail to realize that these smaller, ornamental wheels are based upon larger constructs built in nature hundreds of years  to thousands of years ago.  These constructswere used to mark the movement of planets, stars and other astronomical constructs.   Native Indigenous people had a deep understanding of the astronomical occurrences  in North America.  These astronomical occurrences were used to govern the movement of peoples to seasonal camping habitats and the timing of  certain rituals. 

Big Horn Medicine Wheel-Wyoming

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The Power of Four Directions: Medicine Wheels

Below are several examples of medicine wheel icons from the Lakota tradition.

Notice that the colors are in different directions on the wheel.  Is there a correct placement of the colors on the wheel  and what do they mean?  Is there such a things as “ The right  or wrong Medicine Wheel?”  One internet author wrote:

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Power of Four Directions: The Medicine Wheel

The medicine wheel is a European termed used to describe Native American beliefs that life moves in a series of cycles.  The small icons we see are the symbolic representation of the cardinal directions upon a circle.  Each direction represents a series of lessons represented by specific animals, medicines, stellar and planetary alignments and colors. 

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