THE MEDICINE WHEEL

Traditionally, a Medicine Wheel is a circle of stones that are aligned to the four cardinal directions and divided into four quadrants.

This ancient symbol represents life, cycles of time, the Earth, and the Universe.
It's a place to come to create, to meditate, to pray, to deepen your inner being, to mark a change in your life and to seek guidance.

Each direction or quadrant of the Medicine Wheel holds attributes to assist in your journey around the Wheel.

The Four Directions

In the East sits the Eagle. Eagle walks the Mental path and brings Illumination, Clarity & Wisdom.

In the South sits the Coyote. Coyote walks the Emotional path and brings Growth, Trust & Love.

In the West sits the Bear. Bear walks the Spiritual path & brings Introspection, Strength & Experience.

In the North sits the Buffalo. Buffalo walks the Physical path and brings Cleansing, Renewal & Purity.

The Spirit animals each govern their own position within the year

Scroll down to find the current time of year and allow that Spirit animal to support you with it's own particular medicine.


January to March

Jan to Mar, the moon is in the NORTH and the Spirit Keeper is: BUFFALO

The Buffalo walks the Physical path and brings Cleansing, Renewal & Purity.

"Please Buffalo, Spirit Keeper of the North, guide me on my Journey to Renewal."

Buffalo Medicine

Let the spirit of the Buffalo into your life.  It will cleanse and renew you.  Spend just a few minutes out of your busy day to connect with it's energy by playing the video above.

As you listen and watch, here are a few things that can be focused on to bring greater abundance and joy into your life:

  • New financial opportunities
  • Health changing for the better
  • Success and recognition after hard work
  • Career changes: new job, promotion, recognition
  • Graduations and achievement

Buffalo energy carries so much power and energy that can bring such positive things into our lives!  Yet we must take action on our own behalf.  

If we want a better job, then perhaps more schooling or training is in order.  A better relationship, maybe we need to examine what we feel we deserve and even whom we associate with!  

Doing the same old things is only going to bring you more of the same old things!  Following Buffalo's example, its time to start exploring some new ground, pushing away the old routine and seeing what you can now create.

April to June

Apr to June, the moon is in the EAST and the Spirit Keeper is: EAGLE

The Eagle walks the Mental path and brings Illumination, Clarity & Wisdom.

"Please Eagle, Spirit Keeper of the East, guide me on my Journey to Illumination."

Eagle Medicine

Strength, Courage, Prestige, Spirit, Wisdom, Loyalty, Balance, Meditation, Healing, Faith, Connection with Higher Power, Freedom, Awareness, Perspective, Insight

Loyalty, Balance

Do you feel cast about on turbulent winds, are you shouldering too much responsibility? Stop and take some time with your significant other, loved ones, or even coworkers and make sure that everyone is doing their part. This may be a good opportunity for you to renegotiate and balance your obligations.

Healing, Faith

Are you or a loved one ill, do you feel lost or alone? Look to the sky above and know that the Eagle carries your prayer for recovery (emotional or physical) to the heavens. Stay strong and courageous and trust that the message of your intent will take wing.

Meditation, Perspective

Have your life purpose or goals become clouded, do you feel bound to the earth and unable to see over the horizon? Eagle can see life from every angle. This clarity means we should regard both positive and negative events as experiences that can serve a higher purpose and help to develop the Self. The perspective that the Eagle spirit brings allows us to see through situations and see the true meaning beneath.

Spirit, Connection

Do you feel disconnected from your spiritual self, do you feel as if a higher power or guide is trying to speak to you? Eagle imparts the courage to strive for greater heights of spirituality.  The power of the eagle, requires trust in the Divine and only by examining Eagle‚Äôs strength of soul can a person acquire the meaning and connection of the Eagle.

Freedom

Do you feel stifled and suppressed, do you feel a call or itch to be unburdened and free? As with the Eagle, all people must be free to choose their own paths and to respect the freedom of others. Remember that inside of you is a unique and independent spirit, allow yourself to be guided.  Reclaim this strength and shrug off the everyday burdens that keep you from flying free.

July to September

July to Sept, the moon is in the SOUTH and the Spirit Keeper is: COYOTE

The Coyote walks the Emotional path and brings Growth, Trust & Love.

"Please Coyote, Spirit Keeper of the South, guide me on my Journey to Growth."

Coyote Medicine 

Coyote often talks either backwards or in riddles.  Coyote is about waking people from their slumber; shocking them, if necessary, to get them to open their eyes.  Coyote Medicine is about stopping people from acting out of habit.  All too often we follow tradition to the point where it loses meaning and significance.  According to Coyote nothing is sacred and all things are sacred; all teachings are inherently wrong and inherently right.

Most people miss the message with Coyote. They either think he is being foolish or disrespectful.  He is neither, he is just trying to get you take an honest look at your own actions.

The Medicine that Coyote carries is that of a mirror, which is not always an easy pill to swallow. In this mirror we see Truth; it may wear disguises and make us laugh but is the Truth at its very heart.

Coyote can teach us how to balance work and play, and to have more fun in our lives.  This helps us to manifest things more quickly because we are vibrating more closely to the true nature of ourselves and the Universe. 

We can go through the process with a feeling of joy, ease and excitement, knowing that when Coyote appears, we can re-create our lives in ways that we might never have dreamed if we are willing to lighten up, let go and follow our inner guidance.

Think of something you'd like to release - how does it feel when you think of just letting it go? If you feel a sense of relief despite the fear, then you know you're going in the right direction.

Fear is our 'old way' of responding to change because we don't yet see the bigger picture.  We will though, as soon as Coyote has managed to trick us into going for what we really want! 

October to December

Oct to Dec, the moon is in the WEST and the Spirit Keeper is: BEAR

The Bear walks the Spiritual path and brings Introspection, Strength & Experience."

"Please Bear, Spirit Keeper of the West, guide me on my Journey to Inner Strength."

Bear Medicine

Bear is about reconnecting through introspection, intuition and dreams. Bear is a powerful animal with a large body and forceful limbs, capable of standing on her hind legs to show her power. You are reminded of your own power of self-sufficiency; in that, you have the necessary resources to help yourself and stand on your own two feet.

Bear is associated with dreaming because of their long deep sleep. When Bear sleeps, she is connecting with Great Spirit; so must YOU connect during your deep sleep.

Bear's message is about seeking your wisdom through human hibernation, which is meditation, introspection and dreams. This is where you will receive your direction.  Bear is not one to make snap decisions, nor one to ramrod or force into any position. Bear takes in all available information, takes it into her quiet place, studies that information carefully, gives it careful thought for a while, and then reaches her own informed decisions based on the facts at hand. 

Bear is the one who says, "I have to think about this. I'll be in touch later." To accomplish the goals and dreams that we carry, the art of introspection is necessary. 

HOW TO MAKE A MEDICINE WHEEL

You will need:

  • Medicine Wheel Mix (sweetgrass, tobacco, sage & cedar)
  • Shell--Used as an offering/Smudging bowl
  • Turkey Feather--For fanning smoke while smudging
  • Stones--Each stone represents a quadrant

Optional

  • Candles--Yellow, Red, Black & White - each color represents a cardinal direction
  • Candle holder--Place in center or in particular quadrant of the Wheel-to represent yourself

There are many ceremonies and ways to constructing a Medicine Wheel. This is an introduction to the most basic concept.

DIRECTIONS

North, Spirit Keeper: Buffalo, Color: White, Plant: Sweetgrass, Season: Winter, Stone: White Quartz, Element: Earth

East, Spirit Keeper: Eagle, Color: Red/Gold, Plant: Tobacco, Season: Spring, Stone: Gold Calcite, Element: Air

South, Spirit Keeper: Coyote, Color: Green/Yellow, Plant: Sage, Season: Summer, Stone: Rose Quartz, Element: Water

West, Spirit Keeper: Bear, Color: Black/Blue, Plant: Cedar, Season: Autumn, Stone: Obsidian/Apache Tears, Element: Fire


YOUR JOURNEY


SMUDGING

Begin by smudging yourself and any gemstones while focusing on this journey around the wheel.

Using Medicine Wheel Mix (You can also use Sage or Sweetgrass), put a pinch in shell & ignite, with feather, direct smoke to yourself, your tools and the Environment in & around your wheel. 

Use as an offering to give thanks to the four directions, Mother Earth and Father Sky

CREATING YOUR WHEEL

Place each stone in the appropriate direction (see diagram on left).

If using, place the candle holder with the colour candle that calls out to you in the center of the wheel or at a particular direction.

Add other items to any direction or to the center, as feels appropriate.

This is YOUR Wheel so create with your Heart.


OPENING YOUR WHEEL

Add another pinch of the Medicine Wheel mix to your shell (lit or unlit).

Starting in the East, offer the mix by raising the shell to the Eastern quadrant.

Call in the attributes of that quadrant.

EAST - PLEASE EAGLE, Spirit Keeper of the East guide me on my Journey to Illumination...Continue around the Wheel, moving clockwise, offering to each quadrant:

SOUTH - PLEASE COYOTE, Spirit Keeper of the South guide me on my Journey to Growth;

WEST - PLEASE BEAR, Spirit Keeper of the West guide me on my Journey to Inner Strength;

NORTH - PLEASE BUFFALO, Spirit Keeper of the North guide me on my Journey to Renewal.

Offer mix to the Great Spirit by lifting the shell above to FATHER SKY and then by touching the shell below to MOTHER EARTH.  Ask for their guidance.  Feel their essence.


SITTING WITH YOUR WHEEL


  1. Sit in the center of your Wheel
  2. Take 3 deep breaths, breathing from your belly - allow yourself to feel Mother Earth below and Father Sky above you. 
  3. Open to this Circle of safety and love you have Created. 
  4. State the guidance you seek and begin to pray, to meditate, to give thanks, to cry, to chant, to laugh, to celebrate - do what feels best.


This is YOUR Wheel - come with an open Heart and be still enough to listen to the guidance given.
When your Journey is complete it is time to close your Wheel.

CLOSING YOUR WHEEL


Start in the East, move counter clockwise(East, North, West, South) offering the Medicine wheel Mix to each direction, thanking that quadrant for its guidance, then thank Father Sky and Mother Earth.

Take a moment to honour your own spirit too!

To disassemble your Wheel, smudge the gemstones and all other items you have brought to the Wheel, Place them in a pouch or bundle them up in a cloth for use another time.

If your Wheel was constructed outdoors, you may choose to leave it and allow the elements to continue to hold your message.

Your Journey around the Wheel has ended-Take a moment to reflect on the experience. This might be a good time to write in your journal.  May your Journey be useful and Abundant. Ah-Ho (it is so).


AND SO THE DANCE BEGINS ...



Like most earth-based ceremonies and tools, the Medicine Wheel appears to be simple. After all, it is merely a structure of thirty-six stones. Yet there are untold levels of meaning to this simple circle and energetic lines within the circle.

To understand the Medicine Wheel dance you must first know that your Medicine Wheel is similar to the 20,000 Medicine Wheels that existed on this continent before the European people immigrated here.

These Medicine Wheels served many purposes for the Native people of the Americas. They were the ceremonial centers of culture, astronomical laboratories, and places people would come to mark the times and changes in their own lives, as well as the life of the Earth.

They were places to pray, meditate, contemplate, strengthen your connection with Nature, and to come to a higher degree of understanding of yourself and your relationship with all the creation.

Medicine Wheels were usually placed on areas where the energy of the Earth could be strongly felt, and their use in ceremony made this energy get even stronger. Consequently, Medicine Wheel areas became what people now call vortexes: Places of intense Earth energy and healing.

The new areas where Medicine Wheels have been built (including yours) are serving the same function.


Many Blessings.