The Native American view holds that all things – humans, animals, plants, rocks, the wind, clouds and stars – are all interrelated. Separation is an illusion. In the Medicine Wheel, the powers of the Four Directions (south, west, north, east) are incorporated with the cycles of the earth’s seasons and each of its elements. In creating your own medicine wheel, it is important to understand that your directions will be fitted by the cycles that relate and resonate best with you based on your geography and spiritual direction. All medicine wheels are tools for understanding our own humanity and where we fit into the greater scheme of the universe.
One of the most ancient interpretations of the medicine wheel comes from the Mayan culture’s interpretation of the cosmos and our oneness with nature and interrelation to that of the universe. It is called The Star Maiden Circle.
Star Maiden Circle
The Star Maiden’s Circle Is the center or Key Driver Wheel for all of the Sweet Medicine Sundance teachings. It describes the qualities and powers of the eight directions and, just as with the Four Direction Wheel, the characteristics of each position are carried over to all other teaching wheels. Furthermore, the Star Maiden’s Circle provides a key to understand the choreography of our energy in the Life Dance. It is a very powerful tool for gaining Insight into our psyche – our actions, reactions, desires, beliefs, goals, etc.
Each position on the circle has both a dark mirror and a light mirror.
For example, in the south – the place of mythology and entertainment – the dark mirror is mythologies or core beliefs about life which keep us closed down, in pain and at the effect of circumstances rather than free and in power. The light mirror, on the other hand, Is mythologies which inspire us to move through life in balance and power.
As we heal and balance the dark mirrors by opening the symbols and shift all of our mythologies, symbols, daydreams, rules and laws, philosophies, designs of energy, fantasies and concepts of self into the light mirror, then we move from being at the effect and stuck in the Shideh (lower self) to coming into the full power of our Hokkshideh (higher self). Thus, in many ways, the Star Maiden’s Circle is a bridge to the Higher Self.
The “Drama” of pain is Blaming others. The “Drama” of Pleasure is accepting responsibility for your own circle of self -I.
The Seven Arrows of the Dark teach us how we get off balance and out of harmony when we get stuck in the shideh’s perception of self. The Dark Arrows show us what happens when we define ourselves by the reflections outside of Self and lose sight of the strength and power within. The Dark Arrows keep us in our karma circle.
The Seven Arrows of the Light teach us the ways to be in harmony and balance within the Self. These Arrows show us how true understanding and empowering of Self comes from a focusing on the reflections within the Self: They show us how to cK^nge our karma into dharma.
The Circle of Foxes:
the Dark Dance
The circle of Foxes is the first movement in the Star Maiden Circle. This is where we begin as children and where we end up “perpetually chasing our own tails” in karmic cycles until we awaken to the process of individuation. Adults are often found to be caught in the dark dance, or “Fox Trot” as I call it, repeating patterns of certain behaviors and thought processes supported by conscious and unconscious belief systems. These patterns prevent them from learning and outgrowing core beliefs around values that limit their potential.
- (S) Mythologies of wounded child, codependence & fear of change
- (SW) Closed, conditioned experience of life
- (W) Victim, can’t do what I want
- (NW) Rule/laws=guilt, blame & shame
- (NE) Limiting/restricted choices
- (E) Illusions
- (SE) Self-Concept based on 7 Dark Arrows
The Dance of the Coyote:
The Light Dance
Coyote, being the “trickster” archetype, disrupts the courses of habit and upsets expectations, reveals the shadows, and illuminates ideas through observation and questioning. When one is ready for change, they begin the Dance of the Coyote and become aware of their own complexes and limiting patterns by creating a bridge of perception from each of the directions. Once the changes have been made, they move on to the Walk of the Wolf.
- (S) Choosing myth; learn that pleasure NW, N, NE
- (SW) Open symbols in all life experiences N, NE, E
- (W) dream realization/actualization NE, S, SE
- (NW) Rules/laws without shaming, guilt, blame E, SE, S
- (N) No philosophy/belief system SE, S, SW
- (NE) Choosing freely, inner guidance S, SW, W
- (E) imagination; creative inspiration SW, W, NW
- (SE) Self love & concept ——-> 7 light arrows W, NW, N
The Light Mirror Dance:
Walk of the Wolf
The Dance of the Coyote can bridge from one direction to another and zig-zag across the circle (or medicine wheel), whereas the Walk of the Wolf moves to one point and sees its relationship to the point on the opposite side of the circle. This is the embodiment of a wise man or wise woman who can see, understand, appreciate, honor and accept all sides of polarity in the 7 Sacred Natural Laws.
Illuminated Path (Walk of the Wolf) Directions:
- (S) Individuality
- (SW) fem/masc; nature & balance;yin/yang
- (W) dream living causes no harm
- (NW) God is love
- (N) organizing principle of Four Directions
- (NE) All are Trusted Keepers & Sacred Image of Great Spirit
- (E) Never use your magic to dishonor self; other
- (SE) Living absent of critical judgment or shame upon others