The Red Road symbol in the Medicine Wheel diagram is a straight line starting in the east, ending in the west.
Like myself, many folks arrive to ceremony as spiritual seekers, driven by our yearning spirit that's starving and desperate for actual spiritual connection.
The first time I arrive to ceremony I'm put 'on the Hill.' I find that understanding spiritual events unfolds gracefully over a couple of years. For example answers:
Are Complete. Simple. Truthful.
Are more than I could ever dream-up or hope for
What's perfectly impossible happens in an instant
What appears simple is profound
The more I learn, the less I know
My Red Road Journey
We each come to the Red Road in our own way. Sometimes Creator brings our feet to where our heart and soul needs to be. After years of active searching then giving up, that’s what happened to me.
Here's my super-duper short Red Road story.
Over many years I joined different religious denominations. I didn’t know exactly what I searched for. I felt that my body cells would respond somehow. Then, I gave up and put in time as a workaholic.
During this time in my life an acquaintance asked me to speak to his Social Work class at UBC campus about my job and experience with First Nations issues. After my presentation we chatted and he said, "I pour for a Sweat Ceremony. Would you like to come?"
Of course I readily agree and ask, "When is it?"
He says, "This Saturday afternoon. Here's our phone number. Call my wife after supper. She'll give you more info."
She answers my call with a welcoming smile in her voice. After preliminaries she says, "Don't worry about a Sweat dress. Just bring a pouch of tobacco." I go right to the smoke shop and buy it!
Saturday morning arrives.
I drive to their home an hour early to help with 'get ready' chores, and choose to stay afterwards to help with clean up.
His wife is more than a pretty face. She's good hearted, knowledgeable, strong-spirited, and skilled to make emotional connection. In our time together, her political acuity and understanding about international and national Native American issues impresses me. After many such discussions I invite her to be my Office Assistant and she agrees.
Then, I was in a car accident. Immobilized! That's what it takes for me to hear the constant loud voice inside my head. It frightens me! I've never been still long enough to hear it before!
One morning, I tell her about it. As I'm telling her, I remember the spiritual promise I'd made.
Seven years ago a friend and I drove to Mt. Hood in Washington State, USA to witness a Sun Dance ceremony. Neither of us knows anything about ceremony...Still, it's a strong pull...
The first morning, at four o'clock, choirs of different birds sing so loud that they wake me. I tumble out of my tent to see the start of ceremony! I park my camp chair under a huge cedar tree, facing ceremony.
Immediately on hearing the singers at the big drum, I feel the music enter my heart. I watch the entry line-up of dancers, hypnotized!
I distinctly remember saying out loud to myself, "This is what I need! This is what I've searched for all these years! This is what I want to find out about!" My spirit and heart respond to the pull of the Red Road. The days are filled with magic. All too soon, it's over.
Back at home I go right back to my frantic workaholic lifestyle.
I share my memory with my friend and Office Assistant. I tell her about my spiritual promise.
She says, "This is the real reason you wanted me to work with you!"
"What do you mean?" I ask.
She says, "My uncle hosts the only Eagle, Ghost Sun Dance! You'll have to hurry up and get better so you can come!"
After three months I'm mobile again. I quit my job. I sign my apartment to my brother. I pack up my truck.
In a half-nutshell that’s how ceremony arrived to my life! More importantly that's how my Life transformed...