DRUMMING FOR WORLD PEACE
Medicine Wheel Teachings - the Four Directions. Excerpt fro Chapter 9
PATHWAY OF PEACE - JOURNEY TO THE NEW EARTH, By Rev. Caroline Dawley
Native Americans teach in terms of the circle and use the natural cycles found in nature creating patterns for change. When you begin to work with the medicine wheel, you place yourself in the center where you embrace the fact that we are all interconnected. The Medicine Wheel is a tool that helps us see our being in relation to the rest of creation.
Together there are 7 directions; the above the below the within, east, south, west and north. We begin in the East, the place of all beginnings. In our cycle of life we travel many times to the place of the east. Spirit keeper of the EAST is the Golden Eagle. This is the direction of Spring, the place of vision and new birth, new beginnings. Eagle helps us lift our mind up to see the whole picture from a higher perspective. We plant seeds that will manifest our intentions for the year. This is the place of the rising of the Sun at each new dawn; the place where we bring our Prayers for a bright new future.
The South direction is the time of summer, the place of rapid growth and the circle of plants, and the element Fire. As youth, we learn to purify our hearts through brotherhood and sisterhood, it is the place if the heart and our emotional development. We learn Trust and loyalty as we have faith in Creator and form lasting relationships. The gatekeeper of the South direction is the wolf. The ability to express our feelings openly is the most important gift of the South.
The West direction on the Medicine Wheel is the place of fall, the mature adult , and the place of prayer, meditation and introspection. Bear is the Gate keeper who teaches us how to go inside ourselves to find life's answers. This is the place of the element Water. In the West we receive the gift of Spiritual insight through personal strength and experience.
The North direction is the place of winter, of the elders, it is the place of the dawning of true wisdom. The position of the North may be likened to climbing the sacred mountain and it may take a long time to reach the top. It is like attaining our spiritual gradation as we have come full circle. Looking to the East we remember the seeds planted, in the south we see the growth and passion of youth. To the West we see how difficult the path, yet with spiritual help we let go of emotional blocks, and anything that prevents us from attaining our goal to reach the top of the Mt. The final lesson is the gift of balance and we learn the Wisdom of the interconnectedness of all human beings that brings Justice.