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HOW TO MAKE A
by Renee Bledsoe
The Medicine Wheel is a map of the
spiritual universe. It is both a physical and a philosophical
communication and navigational device which connects the above and the
below. By establishing the coordinates on the wheel through the
universality of the sacred directions, the context is established to
properly interpret spiritual messages and synchronicities, which can
reveal a great deal of "hidden" information. The alchemical process
begins, in consciousness.
The wheel is a model and a blueprint
for wholeness. It holds the power to bring into our conscious existence
deep knowledge of the Self and therefore reveals the nature of the
forces of the Universe, so that we can better command ourselves and
navigate our lives. It teaches us to see with second sight, hear through
deep listening, speak with truth, feel with creation, touch with joy and
relish taste by biting into life.
The wheel is the keeper of
the portal of all that is. It is all things and yet it is nothing. It
doesn't exist in space and time! Yet, it is a masterful creator and healer. In a sense it is
an archetype of all creation, from a microcosmic, as well as a
macrocosmic perspective. It can be used for healing, as well as
enlightenment and creativity. It helps us to make sense of our existence
through our connection to all things and helps us regain a profound
awareness of what we already know. It phases in and out of
manifestation as quickly as we can step in and out of a circle, yet we
can ignite its power within our own psyche and carry it with us always.
It's power is made most evident by the positive results that it
produces in our lives.
The best way to experience the power
of the Medicine Wheel is to take a journey on the wheel. After all, no
two people have the same experience of life and no two journey's are the
same. Yet, this is precisely what empowers the Medicine Wheel journey.
When the diverse energies that are brought forth by a group of people
journeying together is co-mingled, powerful healing, enlightenment,
consciousness, transformation and massive openings of
creativity ensues. The wheel is the mechanism that releases these
energies and allows the members of a group to heal each other by healing
their own self!
Each Medicine Wheel has an intention set
by the person or persons that lay the wheel. It is a place where
addiction, abuse, obsession and compulsive activities may be studied as
lessons. It is also, not only a place for healing, but a place for
creation and enlightenment. All things are welcome in a Medicine Wheel or Sacred Circle,
with the understanding that they are lessons and actions to be studied
and learned from and ultimately integrated in peace.
The Medicine Wheel opens us up to
higher levels of consciousness and can help us develop, refine and
master intuition, gut instinct and common sense. The wheel helps us
utilize archetypal, animal, elemental and other creator forces. These
forces can be extremely potent agents for change when used with
conscious intent and good will. The Medicine Wheel can help us create
and bring into reality a new dream, a new way of being in the world.
Where to Setup A Wheel
When building a Medicine Wheel or Sacred Circle you are preparing a
place you can go for spiritual strength, information and discipline. A
Wheel can be constructed inside a room or outside in nature. The place
you choose can be plain dirt or grass or near natural water sources such
as a pond, lake, river or ocean. A personal wheel is typically 4 feet in
diameter, a family wheel is 8 feet in diameter, a community wheel is 16
feet in diameter. The area above the wheel or circle should be clear and
open to the sky with no tree branches or limbs covering it. The circle
should have an open and clear path to the Stars. If the wheel is being
constructed in a man-made structure, it is important to sanctify and
space. You can smudge the space using sage/sweetgrass.
Preparing The Sacred Space
When you create your wheel or circle, you need to collect rocks that
have a special meaning to you. They all must be clean and free of
negative energy, you may want to smudge them first. No anger or
negativity is to be connected to the place or the rocks chosen to build
the wheel. The ground should be clean and raked. The grass should be
healthy. If indoors, it is advisable to use space clearing practices to
clear negative energies from the room. In addition to removing negative
energies you will want to call in positive energy to support you. See
below for prayers and rituals for this purpose.
Building The Wheel
Place thirty six stones or crystals utilizing the Addiction Alchemy
diagram. This model has been especially created with the intention for
Recovery work. The four largest stones are
placed at the four cardinal directions. Begin by placing the stone in the
North, the place of physical birth, where life on earth begins. Then
move to the East, to animate the circle with air, the carrier of Spirit,
then place the next stone in the South, where we ignite the fire within,
and the West, where we go to dream our creations, then place the Center
stone, which is the place of convergence within us unifying and
integrating Self and Spirit. In the center of the circle you can
place a rock or candle or even create a beautiful altar.
You may then place the remaining
stones to create the spokes and complete the concentric rings around the
outer edge and inner circle according to the diagram below.
Now, having said that, it is my
intuition and guidance that there is truly no "wrong" way to set up the wheel,
so long as the 4 sacred directions and the center (which implies the
above and below) are honored.
My studies have revealed that every indigenous culture has a version of
the medicine wheel, which is pretty miraculous when you think about
that. However, while they all connect up fairly consistently with the
directions, North, East, South, West, Center, Above, Below...the
other correspondences, such as animal totems, etc, can often be different.
I personally have traveled the
wheel using a variety of differing techniques. They ALL have worked! It is my
belief that this is so, because it truly does not matter in which order
you deal with yourself and your life, but that you deal with it in a
holistic manner and touch on ALL aspects at least once in the journey.
It is also my philosophy that how you travel the wheel, what you
gravitate towards in your quest for healing is exactly what you need
from a higher order perspective. And that is part of the healing power
of this wheel; the mystery of the whole process is a study in the art of
For a simple medicine wheel you only need either a set of 5 stones.
They can be beautiful crystals, tumbled rocks or river rocks. I enjoy ones
I have find on the ground that have
"spoken" to me, as well as crystals that carry spiritual
energies that compliment the intention of each node on the wheel. Simply arrange them like you would a compass and place
one stone in the center. You may also substitute the center stone for a
Setting Sacred Space
Once the physical wheel has been built, it is time to set sacred space.
This is done by any number of rituals or practices which could
correspond to the energies that you connect to. If you are versed in
Qabalistic ritual, you may wish to create a magick circle and call in
the WatchTowers. If you are more connected to Shamanism, the Apache
Prayer or any words spoken from your heart calling to the seven
directions would be appropriate. In this case you would face each
direction and shake your rattle three times in each direction as you
invoke the elements, ancestors and guardians at each quadrant. Or if you
do not have a rattle, rest assured that your fervent and sincere prayer
will be heard. As each participant enters
the circle each would individually give thanks for all our relations,
simply by saying the phrase, "All my relations", as they enter through
When you are about to close your
ceremony or ritual, it is important to do so in reverence and give
thanks to all those who have come to support you. Simply standing and
speaking your gratitude to all participants would suffice as you step
outside of the circle, right foot first. Some close circles, hands in
prayer position and bowing to the center of the circle sending thoughts
of gratitude as they say "Namaste" or "Thank you" and step out of the circle.
The guidelines above are not hard and
fast rules, although there are some components you would never want to
leave out. Intention and gratitude are the main elements that are vital. It is my
personal opinion that there is value in "doing things by the book"
simply because they are time tested and respected. There may come a time
through a collection of your own personal experiences and deep
connectedness when you may be guided to do some things in new ways.
It is important to trust your intuition, but you also got to learn the rules before you can "break" them. <smile>
Invoking the Seven Directions
Pattern On The Trestleboard
Create Your Own Invoking Prayer