Living Treaties as kihci-asotamâtowin – Week 1

3

We opened this week with an ice breaker. Sheena had all of us sit in a circle and share who we think we are and where we are from. The plot twist of it was that each individual has to reiterate what the previous person(s) stated about themselves first. This required careful listening. But it also required vulnerability because it was the first day and we are already getting personal. Also, it took courage to have to speak aloud and remember what everyone else said.

We ended the week with the blanket exercise, which also required vulnerability and courage. I am specifically referring to the talking circle at the end, as well as the final handshake of showing reciprocity. I have never experienced any of these practices before. The smudging ceremony before the blanket exercise was also brand new to me.

As a Christian, I want to love everyone, regardless of differences in beliefs or cultural traditions. But, I also want to use wisdom and discernment to know what I should and should not get involved in. But what I know is, is that smudging is a scared ceremony. And after experiencing everything that day, I realized that if I want to know the purpose behind each practice, I am capable of finding that out, and not taking other peoples words for it. I believe wisdom requires one to do their own research and not always accept what others tell you.

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