..The Intuitive Times
Spirituality Articles


The Medicine Wheel

by Lisa M. Durling

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Like my Aboriginal ancestors, I have been guided to my journey as a Shaman by my Animal Spirits, Elders, Medicine Men, and events that challenged every explanation I had for life. I have studied with Medicine Men, and Elders who live silently and preserve the traditional knowledge of our ancestors but who may not be known by people of the New Age, or contemporary Shamans. These are the people who gave me my name ‘Whispering Wind'. When my son ‘Grey Cloud' was born, I felt inspired to provide him with the most traditional and authentic life I could possibly give him. Living the life of a Shaman has given us peace and gratitude for all creation.

Shamanism is the world's oldest healing tradition and is found in all cultures. Shamans are healers, seers, visionaries and guides of the soul. They are in communication with the animal spirits and employ the wisdom of the Great Spirit.

Shamans are able to leave their physical bodies to visit the spirit world. They are teachers, students, parent and child. Shamans who understand and honor all elements, cosmic and physical forces, apply their knowledge to their daily lives.

In Shamanism, we believe that all illnesses have a spiritual foundation with four main factors contributing to the imbalance: 1. Soul Loss , 2. Spiritual Intrusion, 3. Stealing the Soul , 4. Imbalances among Animal Guides

The four directions of the Medicine Wheel represent a particular power and perception. None of the directions are more significant to the other or viewed singularly. It is believed that we must explore all of the directions to learn how we must live in harmony with all things natural.

The four cardinal points of the circle transcend to the compass directions, North, South, East and West.

Table Defining The Medicine Wheel

Mental, North,White,Buffalo,Strength,Fire
Emotional, South,Red,Mouse,Innocence,Air
Physical,West,Black,Bear ,Rain,Water
Spiritual, East,Yellow,Eagle,Dawn Sky of Enlightenment, Earth

The Old Ones used the Medicine Wheel to determine many things in life. Besides its spiritual components, it provides many valuable insights. Traditionally, it is believed that healing is possible, no matter what trauma has been experienced. Each person that is treated is an expert on his or her own life story. We do not disregard the importance of sharing or "storytelling". A person story will tell us many things that will be important to their recovery. We must listen.

Things to consider when searching for an authentic traditional healer

- In traditional medicine, there is no tolerance for hypocrites.
- Healers always gives choices, and never take choice away
- Healers listen to your story.
- Healers are your teachers as well as your student.
- Healers respect and will not compromise tradition.

Lisa is a Shaman in the Halifax area who operates the Whispering Wind Institute

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