As we move pass the height of the summer solstice, we are welcoming our sisters and brothers who come for the Sundance. A ritual that is steeped in Native American belief, used to heal the People, the Earth and to ask for guidance from our dearly departed ancestors.
The sacrifices made and the prayers said are not for the light hearted. You cannot just get up one day and decide that day is for you to Sundance, you must prepare, you must be in a good place to make the circle strong, you must be guided through the process by an acknowledged leader.
We appreciate the relatives who come and do this for all of us. We do what we can to help continue that good feeling from an event that is part of your most inter-personal spiritual beliefs. We support the family by carrying botanicals that are harvested the right way such as sage, a sacred herb that is critical to the ceremony. The cloth that is necessary for prayers, sweet grass to attract the good spirits and even gifts that anyone would be glad to give or receive. We have music albums available with the words in Lakota.
There was a time when this particular part of the Plains Indians life was outlawed. It was deemed a satanic ritual or a not sanctioned part of Christian beliefs. Even though it was outlawed, the People still continued to dance and sacrifice, they would not be deterred by the fears of ignorance. Then one day, an act of Congress made it okay to once again practice the historical ways of the People. 1978, the Religious Freedom Act was passed by Congress. This act preserved the rights of indigenous people and their religious beliefs. With or without the permission of the federal government, the People will dance until there is a healing.
Thank you to the Sundancers and their families for the prayers.