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Indigenous Sacred Medicines
The Sacred Medicines were given to Indigenous People by the Creator. Tobacco was given first and the other three followed: sage, cedar, and sweetgrass. These medicines are used as a way to communicate with the Creator.
Yes. But as with all subjects, there are a wide variety of varying opinions on the matter. At Tribal Trade Co., we follow both what was taught to us by our Elders and what makes most common sense. See MORE reasons why buying sacred medicines can sometimes be frowned upon.
Traditionally, the sale of traditional Indigenous goods like sacred medicines in exchange for cash was frowned upon because cash as currency was introduced by the settlers.
Today, cash is an important resource for everyone, and many Indigenous business owners have been able to turn their love of sharing the Indigenous culture with their friends, family, and customers into a source of livelihood.
The key to choosing indigenous sacred medicines is learning about them. Each sacred medicine has a distinct purpose or benefit which will help you decide which one best suits your needs.
It is important to understand their spiritual and cultural significance, pay homage to the land on which they grow, and be knowledgeable and respectful of the indigenous peoples who hold these plants so sacred.
Sacred Medicine Sage
Sage is most commonly used for smudging and is believed to be a potent cleanser for homes, sacred items, and even our physical bodies.
The type of sage traditionally revered as sacred to indigenous peoples is white sage, which grows naturally in wide, dry areas, especially in the Southwestern United States. It is often most sacred to the peoples native to that region.
Like the other sacred herbs, sage can be used in smudging medicine. It is frequently used in sweat lodges and can be used to ward off negative energy surrounding sacred objects.
Yes. With patience, sage can be grown and harvested in your own garden or you can harvest it in the wild.
Sacred Medicine Tobacco
Tobacco was the first sacred medicine given to us by the Creator and is often thought of as the most powerful sacred medicine.
Tobacco is used to open the door to communicate with the spirit world. This is because tobacco is believed to travel ahead as a messenger so that our words can be received in a kind and respectful way.
Sacred tobacco continues to be grown across North America and is harvested and sold for ceremonial purposes.
Traditional tobacco can be purchased at indigenous owned shops across North America. It is grown in small batches and distributed for use in ceremonial burning and smudging ceremonies.
Sacred Medicine Sweetgrass
Sweetgrass is directly related to Mother Earth and serves as a way of connecting with Her.
Sweetgrass can be used in a healing circle for a calming effect or in smudging as a way to promote peace, kindness, and purification.
Two types of sweetgrass thrive in North America: a warm-season grass that flourishes in coastal dunes from North Carolina to Texas and a variety of sweetgrass that you can find in cooler climates with shady, grassy meadows or canyons in many western states.
Yes. Methods of harvesting depend on the cultural traditions of those who are harvesting. Sweetgrass is traditionally harvested in the summer during the growing season, which helps maintain the growth of the crops.
Yes. It is best to purchase sweetgrass from a reliable indigenous source.
Sweetgrass can be found at indigenous owned stores and shops that sell ceremonial products and sacred medicines for smudging. It is usually sold in small, braided bundles and can be burned for its vanilla-like scent or for use in sacred rituals.
Sacred Medicine Cedar
Cedar is the third Sacred Medicine and occupies the Northern door of the Medicine Wheel and is connected to safety and protection..
Cedar is typically used for smudging, in sweat lodges, as healing medicines in baths, or turned into cedar tea.
Cedar grows across North America, but the variety depends on location.
Because the cedar tree is so spiritual and revered, a prayer is often paid to the tree before harvesting. Without treating the tree properly, its healing benefits might not work on the user.