Know Thyself…

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“Make it thy business to know thyself, which is the most difficult lesson in the world.  Yet from this lesson, thou will learn to avoid the frog’s foolish ambition of swelling to rival the bigness of the ox.”  ~ Miguel de Cervantes

Twenty Count Tuesday – Sacred Humans

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These Powers of the Four Directions are dancing with the Four Elements carrying the Song into the South of the Center of the circle where we Humans are sitting, playing our instruments and doing our Dance of Life Song. Sometimes our instruments, our bodies, are out of tune and out Song, our Music, becomes disharmonious.

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Children of Grandmother Earth, The Human World

circle_1280Each of the worlds have a wheel of their own.  Each of the directions dance with the Human World in different ways.

In the South are the red humans.  These are the peoples who are most closely aligned with the heart, the fluidity of emotions. They teach us the way of one-heartedness, having a heart connection to all forms of Life in a beauty way. It is to these sisters and brothers that we owe these Sweet Medicine SunDance teachings.

In the West are the black humans. These brothers and sisters teach us about physical mastery and power, the body’s agility, rhythm, strength, and endurance.

In the North are the white humans, the people of the mind, of modern technology who have greatly advanced the evolution of civilization. However, they have significantly forgotten to do so in balance and harmony.

In the East are the yellow humans. These sisters and brothers teach us about the spirit.

In the Center are the Métis rainbow humans. These are all those who realize that no matter what color the skin, no matter what race or cultural heritage, we all have red blood, black pupils in our eyes, white bones, and yellow marrow in our bones. They teach us the ways of the Five Huaquas: health, happiness, humor, hope, and harmony. These are the gifts of being truly human. In order for us as humans to achieve these qualities of human-ness

We must:

  • GIVE WITH TENDERNESS – having as our intent to gather together in our heart space
  • HOLD & TRANSFORM WITH INTIMACY – by caring for one another in our physical bodies
  • RECEIVE WITH CARING – by teaching one another within respect and honor
  • DETERMINE WITH PASSION AND LUST – by sharing with one another our fire, our inspiration
  • CATALYZE WITH OPEN HEART-TO-HEART COMMUNICATION – by being intimate with one another

Remember we said wherever you have four, you also have five. So with the four Worlds is the fifth World: In the center of all Worlds is the World of Spirit, the catalyzer of all energy.

All forms of life have “spirit” (manitou): they have life force energy, which we call the catalyst, pulsing through their form.

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Children of Grandmother Earth

In the totality of Grandmother Earth there are four categories or Worldsas we call them. They correspond to the four directions. In our tradition, we often speak of these worlds as “children” or “people.” Though different in nature from humans, we relate to them with equal respect and honor.  As varying forms of life, we are all children of Grandmother Earth, all manifestations of the creation of all substance form. Each of the Worlds carries and manifests energy within its own unique expression.

apple-tree_1280The Plant World sits in the south and are the Givers of Energy.  the Plants as the givers of energy. What it means for the plants to be givers is that their gift, their essence of being-ness as a plant is to give. They give nourishment, shelter, beauty, inspiration and most importantly through the photosynthesis, the oxygen we breath, our breath of life. Plants teach unconditional giving. You don’t find a plant trying to decide who it will give air to today according to its likes or dislikes.  Through its being-ness, it simply gives.

coal_1280In the West is the Mineral World, who are the Holders of energy. The saying goes, that “within one grain of sand lies the entire Universe.” It is from the Mineral World that plants are born, so we might say that what is “held” is the potential for life. The Mineral World teaches us that substance is primarily a container, a vessel for spirit. The Mineral World is thus like our physical body.

meerkat_1280Sitting in the North are the Animals as the receivers of energy.  Their gift is teaching us how to receive. Knowing how animals are receivers is probably most easily understood by those of you who have pets. You will recall the times when you were sick or just “blue” and your pet came to curl up beside you and “made you feel better.” Animals will take on the energy of their human companion. Often people will say the pet looks like or acts like their caretaker.

The fourth World consists of Humans as the determiners of energy. Among all the creatures, it is only the humans who were created with free will, an agency of choice and self-determination. It is also only the humans who have the genitalia for experiencing full body orgasm at will. These two features distinguish us from the other Worlds. We determine our own reality and with this comes authority, responsibility, and power. It is our choice whether we exercise these in beauty and re-creation or in pain and destruction.

Remember we said wherever you have four, you also have five. So with the four Worlds is the fifth World: In the center of all Worlds is the World of Spirit, the catalyzer of all energy.  All forms of life have “spirit” (manitou): they have life force energy, which we call the catalyst, pulsing through their form.
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The Walk of Beauty

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Join us as we explore how the Wheels and Keys work and how the world in which we live is structured. We have a rich birthright in our relationship with the varying forms of life, the worlds of Grandmother Earth. This birthright is explained and opportunities are offered for us to accept the gifts that are rightfully ours.

We invite you to care for these Teachings, to share your growing knowledge with others and to teach one another the Walk of Beauty you have integrated. As you do so, you will experience the healing ways of these Wheels and Keys. Aspects of yourself will be clarified and your life experiences validated.

The Hoops of Evolution – part 3

“The world is in a constant conspiracy against the brave. It’s the age-old struggle: the roar of the crowd on the one side, and the voice of your conscience on the other.”  General Douglas MacArthur

In Native traditions, Hoop Dancers move to a drum beat, while keeping several hoops in motion all over their body – all at the same time. It’s an amazing sight: even though the hoops look separate, the dancer is connected to each one. As his heartbeat synchronizes with the drum, he picks up one hoop at a time. Each hoop he adds demands more focus, more awareness, and more skill. The hoops have to become a part of him, individually and collectively. If he loses control of one, the dance can probably continue. But if he loses more than one, the dance stops.

The Four Sacred Hoops are a lot like the Hoop Dance: as long as they are whole, we can keep evolving and growing as a species.

Many Mystery Schools (if not all!) speak about the importance of collective evolution – that humans, as individuals and groups, are meant to evolve and grow. This path uses the term “Sacred Hoops” to refer to this process of evolutionary excellence. These hoops bind us together and make it possible for us to grow – individually and collectively, like the hoops in a Hoop Dance – and are the key to peace and freedom for everyone.

The Sacred Hoops also talk about how we are programmed to respond to Life and each other, and so teach us about where in life we “jump through hoops to learn about ourselves and how we relate to Creation.

Because of this, these Hoops contain everything that humanity is, has been, and will be in its evolution, and thus they affect our genetic encoding (the triple helix of our DNA, RNA and ETA­ – our Evolutionary Transformative Agent, which we’ll get into in later teachings), that which makes us human and, at the same time, unique as individuals. Science has recently shown this to be true: our genetic encoding is altered and affected not only by our environment, but by our choices within that environment as well.

The Sacred Hoops represent the future of our species.

Tune in next week to learn more about the Hoops and what happens when we walk within them.

Learn more about the Sacred Hoops continue next week! If you don’t want to wait, feel free to check out the Course of Study, where they were originally published.

Questions? Thoughts? Comment below!

The Hoops of Evolution – Introduction

Thank you for choosing to study this set of teachings – here you will find inspiration, knowledge and experiences that will bring you deeper understanding: not only of your own life experience, but of life itself.

Plenty of people joke about couch potatoes, but deep down, if you think about it, you know it’s no laughing matter. If you are here, reading this, then on some level you’re fighting to wake up from the dream of this day and age – fighting to get out of the maze that has surrounded us since the day we were born, that keeps us lost and disconnected from our Selves, from Life and from the people around us. Far too many of us have bought into this story we are told – that we are separate – and look to distract and anesthetize ourselves from the pain. It is too, too easy to keep our attention trapped by WHAT DOESN’T MATTER because we think it makes us hurt less.

It doesn’t.

If you’re here reading this, there is something inside of you that knows something needs to change – not just for you, but for our whole species. We are in the midst of a spiritual famine, and most of us don’t even know that we’re starving.

The teachings of the Sacred Hoops continue next week! If you don’t want to wait to learn more, feel free to check out the Course of Study, where they were originally published.

As always, please Like and Share!

Opening the Gates to the Human World, Part 6

Opening the gates to the human worldNote: December 21, 2012 was the final day in one of the Long Counts in the Mayan Calendar.  There were rumors that the end of that long count would also be the “end of the world”.  Within the Sweet Medicine SunDance Path, this date represents the opportunity to enter a new world: the human world.  This is the final part in a 6-part series, written by Janneke Koole, on the opening of the gates to the human world. In Part 6, we look back at the prophecy and forward to how we can work with it.


Remember, we began with the questions about the end of the Mayan Long Count – the “end of the world”:

“Wonderful,”  you say, “I see lots of excitement and anticipation but don’t have a clue what this really means. What does this have to do with me and what’s in it for me?”

Some say this is the day that the world will end; some say nothing will happen. No one really knows what is happening nor what it exactly all means.

But what we do know is that we are here and this is what is happening NOW. We are gathered together to share with one another and to pray together so that we can learn how to care, heal, and love one another in a more powerful way than ever before. We are here to carry an ancient lineage forward into our metis world.

We stand at what our Elders call the Opening of the Gates to the Human World – a turning point for us as individuals and in our larger world.

It is our choices, our daily choices moving us toward either the dark or the light, that will either put another obstacle in front of the Gates or push/pull the Gates open. Either we step forward and inspire others to do the same, or we step backwards and block the very path for those who walk with us or after us. There is no standing still!

Now, take a breath and let’s ask that question again: What’s this got to do with me? What’s in it for me?

For an overview of the Four Worlds and human aspects teachings, see the Red Lodge Year One page.

In the Sweet Medicine SunDance Path teachings, there are four Worlds of Grandmother Earth: Minerals, Plants, Animals, and Humans.  Humans hold the quality of Determining – that is, we as humans have choice, free will; the ability to determine for ourselves as individuals how we will move forward in our lives.  We exercise this power of choice in everything from our smallest moment-to-moment decisions to our biggest life choices:  what to have for breakfast, which shoes we’ll wear today,  which of our talents we will invest in and develop, whether we will have a life partner and who it will be, whether we will walk a spiritual path and what it will be.

Choice is a central part of humanness, and as we move into the Human World, our choices take on more power and significance.  Your choices take on more power and significance.

Now is the time to take this in, and to bring your full self, with all your potential and beauty, into play.  What do you bring into the Human World that is yours? What is unique about your way of caring, healing, loving? What can you do to foster your individual human contribution to this world?

Make a time for yourself to reflect honestly and clearly on your gifts, your individuality, your beauty.  From that, write down at least three things that you now know are yours to do or become, your part in Opening the Gate to the Human World.

Investing in yourself, in your growth, in your movement towards the light, is investing in Opeing the Gates to the Human World. How will you do this?


See Part 1 for background and overview

See Part 2 to learn about the Dark Horse and the Light or Gold Horse

See Part 3 to read about the Southeast and South directions

See Part 4 for the Southwest and Northwest directions

See Part 5  for the North and Northeast

Opening the Gates to the Human World, Part 5

Opening the gates to the human worldNote: December 21, 2012 was the final day in one of the Long Counts in the Mayan Calendar.  There were rumors that the end of that long count would also be the “end of the world”.  Within the Sweet Medicine SunDance Path, this date represents the opportunity to enter a new world: the human world.  This is the fifth in a series, written by Janneke Koole, on the opening of the gates to the human world. In Part 5, we look at the North and Northeast directions related to this prophecy.


NORTH – THE WHITE HORSE

This is the place of our philosophies and belief systems, the place we educate ourselves and make a statement, take a stand and develop our stance in relation to general knowledge.

Unfortunately, the brilliance of our technological development is tarnished with greed and the power of profit-making has led us to ignore and sometimes downright violate the Children’s Fire. When we are alienated from the Children’s Fire, we make decisions that destroy for no good reason (other than our evil-minded greed). Corporate greed has destroyed many a small community, taken prices for everyday necessities to excessive heights, and lain to waste much fertile land.

What can we do to make a difference? “It is only through ignorance that men surrender their freedom.” Education is the key! Let’s get the Wheels and Keys into the schools, the communities, and into business. Let’s be bold and daring to speak the unspeakable. Let’s dedicate our efforts, energies, good minds, and full intent to find right solutions to our problems.

NORTHEAST – THE GREEN HORSE

This is the place of our prioritization and energy design and is a direct call to be full determiners in the Human World. What are your priorities, really? And are your decisions lining up with those priorities? If so, your everyday choices should reflect that. Each season, and certainly this one, is a good time to re-evaluate whether your choreography and design is working or whether you are driven by stress. Remember that stress opens the door wide all those internal voices we call pretenders – no good fellows of the dark!

Our Elders say that the dark here is fueling the Dark Horse so strongly that it is five lengths ahead of the Light. We can recognize this to be so when we are daring enough to take in the ugly reality of child slavery and human trafficking, domestic violence, and the precarious condition of global economy.

The good news here is that there is a definite increase in the numbers of people “waking up” to the horror of this evil insanity. More and more people are seeking alternatives, the ancient shamanic knowledge, and the schools of magick and mystery.

What can we do to make a difference? Examine our priorities and practice our Warrior Techniques of Discipline to develop a sincere spiritual diligence. Deepen your connection to Spirit and Nature and fuel your Hope. Be the determiner, the driver of your own vehicle, the spirit in charge of your body. Pledge allegiance to the pursuit of liberty/freedom – both internally and externally. Know that there is a Greater Picture, a Divine Plan, Great Spirit’s Design, and align your free will with the will of Wahkan Tanka.


Click for the conclusion in Part 6

See Part 1 for background and overview

See Part 2 to learn about the Dark Horse and the Light or Gold Horse 

See Part 3 to read about the Southeast and South directions

See Part 4 for the Southwest and Northwest directions

Opening the Gates to the Human World, Part 4

Opening the gates to the human worldNote: December 21, 2012 was the final day in one of the Long Counts in the Mayan Calendar.  There were rumors that the end of that long count would also be the “end of the world”.  Within the Sweet Medicine SunDance Path, this date represents the opportunity to enter a new world: the human world.  This is the fourth in a series, written by Janneke Koole, on the opening of the gates to the human world. In Part 4, we look at the Southwest and Northwest directions related to this prophecy.


SOUTHWEST – THE BLUE HORSE

This is the place of the dream, space and distance, and our process of experience. It is where we come to heal and restore ourselves back to the before. What we dream, becomes our future. For those who know how, dreaming extends all the way out into life on other planets. When a people no longer dream, they lose their will and so can be controlled to do the will of another.

The appalling levels of mediocrity and complacency in our society is fodder for the dark horse. It breeds despair and hopelessness and this leaves the door wide open for being gullible to false hopes. When the people surrender their freedom, the government takes over and begins to interfere inside even the most private and sacred spaces.

What can we do to make a difference? Stay awake, aware, and alert – even in your sleeping dream-time. Speak for the sanctity of home, hearth and heart. Promote the rights of the people to pursue their dream. Educate those in your circle of influence to pay attention to the decisions being made in your local community. And be willing to heal one another – fight for those alternative treatments that have the ability to cure without abandoning the gifts and technology of the traditional medical professionals. Explore Life in all aspects!

NORTHWEST – THE GREY HORSE

This is the place of rules and laws and so the home of government and politics. Perhaps one of the most striking contrasts are held in this direction. Consider Sacred Law, the honoring of the Children’s Fire, and the Cycles of Law as they are protected within the time-honored structures of the Council and Circle of Law. Now consider our corruption of our governmental process and the control by the wealthy and elite few bent on the creation of a new world order (not in the light). Consider also how principles, values, morals and ethics have drifted away from Sacred Law. And, before we dip into despair, consider also the quickly expanding numbers of people who have validated that their karma book is closed and their dharma book is open.

What can we do to make a difference? Study, participate, and implement the Council of Law, beginning in the lowest levels of local government. Practice neutral perception and clear communication. Create a productive, procreative lifestyle in dharma. Study Sacred Law – probe, examine, question boldly until you can discern what is sacred and how you can make a difference to promote the Light.


In Part 5, we look at the North and Northeast directions of the prophecies.  Click here for Part 5

See Part 1 for background and overview

See Part 2 to learn about the Dark Horse and the Light or Gold Horse

See Part 3 to read about the Southeast and South directions