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Thursday, May 23, 2013

Moontime and Ceremony

Moontime and Ceremony

Moontime refers to the time a woman bleeds during her menstrual cycle.
Through this cycle, women feel the effects of the moon, like we see the Earth affected by the ocean tides. There is some controversy and confusion about menstruating women and their participation in Native Ceremonies, such as the sweatlodge. Bleeding women sacrifice and give to the people during their moontimes, and through childbirth. The sweat ceremony was created for men to have a way to sacrifice and give for the people since they do not bleed monthly, or give birth. The Creator does not ask so much that women need to double their effort to be close to Spirit.

Much knowledge of women's traditions has been lost due to the genocide of Native peoples and the outlawing of their ceremonies. Before patriarchy, bleeding women were respected for their ability to nourish life and many still view this bleeding time as the first ceremony to connect with Spirit. Patriarchal society continues to view women's bleeding as a curse: dirty, and something to be ashamed of. These histories of oppression of Native Peoples and of Women leave us vulnerable to feelings of exclusion, anger, or hurt when ceremonies do not include mooning women in the same way as others.

Native Women used to routinely withdraw from their regular duties of childcare and food preparation to a moonlodge during their bleeding in order to rest and recieve dream guidance from the creator for their people. Some view this time of separation as a vision quest, a time to step away from daily tasks to focus on one's relationship with Spirit. The people honored and respected these bleeding women and their sacred role by covering the work otherwise done by them, and even cooking for them and protecting them...

Many of us are seeking to understand traditional viewpoints by praying about and learning their intent. Since many of us come from different cultures, we also seek to learn about native cultures and how to show respect for these traditions. We need new ways to balance the traditions with an understanding of ourselves as women, old and young: people with unique energies, gifts, and sensitivities, proud of ourselves and our place in the community. This is a time of rediscovery for women, and of ceremonies that will build upon our feminine and spiritual heritages, which will benefit all life.
Mooning women can join the sweat ceremony by being present during the sweat, at the fire or some other comfortable place. Important is to stay and join the group for the feast at the end of the Sweat Ceremony. May we together continue the search within, with elders, and with other women to dream and pray for understanding in order to honor all gifts given.
Author: Ellen Faruna



Suzanne said...


Anonymous said...

ty for bringing higher learning to sisters everywhere... many many blessings <3 xx

Anonymous said...

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