Native American Sweat Analysis

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“Native American Sweat” I arrived at the location just as it was getting dark. I wore shorts and was bare-chested like most of the men that were there. The women that attended wore long skirts and t-shirts. The sweat lodge was built directly on the earth with no floor but the dirt the earth has given us. Constructed of thin wood that had been bent in an arch, the lodge was an oval shape approximately 15 feet by 7 feet in diameter. These sticks were then covered with blankets and tarps leaving just one small flap at the opening facing the fire. From the inside of the lodge can be seen a large circle on the center of the ceiling symbolizing the medicine wheel, and four directions North - Waboose (Buffalo), South - Shawnodese (Coyote), East…show more content…
When everyone was inside the lodge, the medicine man said a prayer to Creator, and instructed everyone to also pray. He explained how the sweat is a part of healing so that when it is completed; you never have to be the person you were before. He also said that if anyone got uncomfortable and needed to go out for air to just say, “To my relations” and he would open the door without judgment. We were instructed to not judge one another, because even though we all may be different, we are all also very much alike and all there to heal. He then announced that our brother would sing a song to the four directions. Another man was busy at work moving fiery hot stones that glowed red with heat into the lodge. He then too came into the enclosure. A song was sung in a language that I didn’t recognize, but suspect to be a native tongue. The leader then offered tobacco to the four directions, and sprinkled herbs on the rocks. We were instructed to pray, and not be scared because fear will stop us on our healing journey. He said to inhale the sweet “medicine” as it wafts toward you, and blow it out to the center of the structure (the circle on the ceiling). One by one, we each invited the medicine wheel animal totems the Buffalo, Coyote, Golden Eagle, and the Grizzly Bear to communicate with us. He then poured water over the rocks eliminating the small bit of light that had remained. Suddenly there was a rush of heat in my face, nose, and lungs, and I froze up with fear. I thought for sure I wouldn’t be able to endure this for very long, but I reminded myself of the instructions I had received, and

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