AMERICAN SYMBOLS, PRACTICES AND CUSTOMS
Bear Claws - are symbols that represent healing. The people who acquire these usually have to work hard for them. They also represent a medicine person as a helper in the healing process.
Cedar - is a medicine used for protection.
Drum - The drumbeat is described as the heartbeat of the people. The drum itself is regarded as a sacred object to be treated with respect.
Elders - are people recognized in a community as an 'elder'. These people are recognized as having experience in life and tend to be the more matured people who are held in high regard.
Fasting or Vision Quest - is a ceremony in which a person would forego certain necessities in life, such as food, in search for answers to one's questions. The answers may appear to the person in a dream.
Feathers - usually eagle feathers represent strength and courage and tend to be highly respected by those who understand the significance of this bird. To acquire a feather, people need to work hard for them.
Four Directions Teachings - are NA teachings that represent traditional values, beliefs and ways of life.
Initiation - is a ceremony in which people respond to a calling and are recognized in a form of 'rite of passage'.
Medicine Bundles - include various articles that assist in the healing process.
Medicine Wheel - is a way of presenting concepts about traditional teachings.
Metis Sash - symbolizes togetherness, looking after each other, maintaining a nation and caring for one another.
Pow-Wows - are primarily a form of entertainment, whereby people dance to the sound of a drum beat. For some people, pow-wows have a spiritual significance.
Shake - Tent -is a ceremony in which people with questions of all sorts can receive answers.
Sweat Lodge - is a place where people can participate in cleansing or healing ceremonies where water is poured on hot rocks to produce steam.
Sweetgrass - is a medicine used for purification and represents kindness.
Talking, Sharing or Healing Circles - are ceremonial gatherings where people come together for the purpose of talking, sharing or healing.
The Midewiwin (The Original Way) - is a spiritual way of life in which Mide people aspire to live according to the original teachings.
Tobacco - is a medicine used to communicate to the Spirit World. The smoke represents one's visible thoughts.