The Seventh Fire

Neesh-wa-swi ish-ko-day-kawn’ The People of the Seventh Fire More than 1,000 years ago my people, the Anishinabeg, lived along the shores of the Atlantic Ocean. There were so many and they were so powerful that it is said that one could stand at the top of the highest mountain, look in all directions, and not see to the ends of the nation. They traveled the waterways by canoe and in winter they traveled with dog sled. Their life was full of abundance and beauty. The Anishinabeg developed their natural heritage of wisdom and power through dreams and the way of the circle. They followed the path of the spirit, walking in balance, in harmony with all beings. They communicated with the animals and fish that provided them with food. Trees and plants told them of their medicines. They knew the magic and mystery of the spirals. Using this knowledge, […] Read More

Building a Sweat Lodge

Building a sweat lodge is not particularly difficult, but careful consideration should be given to various details. Choosing a Location and Sitting the Lodge A quiet and secluded area is the obvious setting for a sweat lodge. Privacy is essential, yet the area must also be accessible. Once you have found the site, you must then choose where you wish to place the lodge itself. There is no hard, fast rule that the doorway of a sweat lodge must face a particular location. The lodge doorways at the base of Spirit Mountain in the Black Hills face west. Most Sioux and Ojibwa sweat lodges face east or west, but you must consider the terrain, location, and setting of the entire lodge area when selecting your lodge opening. In the interest of fire safety, you may have to select your fireplace area first. This will determine the direction of the […] Read More

Herbalogy and the Native American Indians

Arnica (Catawba) – the roots are used for treating aches and pains (especially in the back and in joints). Healed injuries such as broken bones, sprains, and bruises. You do NOT want to ingest this herb. It is to be applied to the skin. Aspen (Cree) – the bark was boiled into a tea and used as a cough medicine. Boneset – this tea was used by many tribes and for various healing practices. The Iroquois – for colds and to reduce fever. The Menominees also used it to reduce fever and the Alabama Indians gave it to people to cure stomach ailments. Catnip (Mohegans) – the leaves were boiled into a tea and given to infants to relieve an infant with colic. Dandelion – This plant has been used to cure many ailments for thousands of years – and is still used today. The Ojibwas drank a tea […] Read More