I have spent quite a bit of my time in the last 25 years participating, apprenticing, reading, studying, and listening to teaches from First Nation groups. Most of the hands on work I have done have been in the realm of medicine (man/woman) or shamanism. Though I am not an expert as it is a lifetime journey, I would like to share some thoughts on the idea of physical pain, pain in the body, joints that have been brought on by more than diet, injury or disease.
I am constantly educating myself in the holistic approaches looking deep into folklore, oral traditions in the last 5 years to find answers and connections to what may cause the underlining condition of pain. As I dive deeper into what information I can find on such topics and when I can directly ask questions that sometimes do get answers it all leads me into great contemplation on the matters of health, wellness from an indigenous perspective and the stories regarding it.
Today I would like to just write about one idea. Their story/s or folklore if you will. This story is very old and literally goes back to when the peoples of the earth respected all beings and lived in balance. This story comes from the beginning when we humans stop living in balance with all living things and began to kill mostly animals taking far more than was needed. The animal kingdom made contracts with the people that they would allow humans to kill them for food, however this needed to be done in a sacred way, a blessed way, a right way to the animals and that the humans never took the animals lives for more than what was needed.
Though I have seen the sacred slaughter preformed and since I have only bare witness once, I have a sense that each tribe has a way of doing the sacred act and ceremony. I have attempted to find information on the internet to support the sacred slaughter so that anyone reading this might gather a better understanding but in the first nation communities most everything that has to do with ceremony is still not discussed openly, which I can agree that it is better that way. An average person could not understand the levels, depths, history, development required to fully get the totality of ceremony. The days, weeks spent in prayer before and after are challenging to the white mind that lives, breath, eats and lives fast and furiously. I am speaking of years of experience firsthand of what I have endured to understand such a small piece of it all. It for me has all been worth it but I have met many others who have felt this path was too difficult for them. I bless them in their search to find the right path, the right way for themselves.
The story is found, I am finding it in many oral traditions of why humans get sick and specifically one particular disease, dis-ease, illness and that is Rheumatism. I am posting what wiki has to say on the matter. Information for the reader. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rheumatism
The story talks about the contract with the people of the earth being broken by the people hunting and killing the animals, taking far more than they needed and I suspect possible selling or acquiring some kind of gain as well. The animal that was particularly upset was the Deer in most of the stories however the Bear Nation went with the deer nation as support to the Creator and Counsels to vent their grievances with the humans not holding their end in the bargain. In the end it was the Deer that set a curse basically across humanity since the humans would not listen and continued to take more than they needed while the disrespect of the animals became the norm. The disease that was set upon man by the animal nations for taking more than they needed, this disease is specifically mentioned by the Cherokee and other First Nation tribes as Rheumatism.
The animals had to create a disease to put upon the humans that would stop them, keep them from walking, hunting, shooting the animals.
I have been working in the alternative medical end for 30 years for income. Before that I healed bugs, animals and whatever else came my way. In humans the number one complaint it pain, chronic pain, pain of the physical structure whether it came by family history, nutritional fetal issues, injury/s, disease, poisoning, job related as the list goes on I think it matter not the story of how but maybe why?
About three quarters of my practice, study and treatments are for pain, chronic pain, it is 75 percent of the reasons why people inevitably come to see me. They usually take a long walk through western medicine that offers them no remedy and has left them usually damaged, broken and pretty much destroyed. I am the last ditch effort people will try. Luckily I am good at what I do; the spirits guide me in the right directions for the people however it only works if I am in balance. Which takes a huge amount of work and effort on my part balance with the earth and all livings things is not easy. Like most there are days I would like to full check out, hide and ignore it all. Balance is a constant, minute by minute, daily check in of my inner world, which comes with being able to accept, surrender, as for help when I need it.
In the medicine/s of first nation people, the stories the humans are here to be helpers. We are the “Helpers” to this whole world, plant nations, water nation, air nation, animal nations, winged nations and each other. We are nothing more than helpers, but we have gotten so far away from helping anything or anyone. Helping ourselves to everything, taking and living in a unsustainable way seems to be the programming we are sold.
So I would like to offer a link to the past for those in chronic pain and those helping people in chronic pain. Maybe pain in the body structure “no” matter how it becomes or is acquired to be considered a symptom, a sign of taking too much? Consuming more than one need/s?
Maybe the possible cure would be to give, to start giving, helping wherever and whenever your road connected you with those in need of help? Instead of driving past or ignoring contaminated lots, homeless people, Not taking your family or friends in when they need help yet again. Maybe the soil, land around your house needs you to help it, to grow something in it? To stop applying chemicals that poison the microbial beings, birds, because we are too lazy or lack of respect to actually help the land, weeds, plants, bugs in natural helping way.
I know that is sounds simple, even ridiculous to some, but there has to be a starting place to the chronic pain and maybe that the animals were tired of being taken advantage of by us might hold some water? In the end people feel better, heal and are happier when they are giving, I have witness spontaneous healing in people who become passionate about helping in some way.
I have seen in myself having far less pain when I am giving, when I am helping openly and not with holding.
Being a helper giving more means you are open to finding the best possible place that you can do the best helping. Living sustainably means you use and need less, taking less and no matter what reason you come up with is a great place to be and with everyone helping we could turn this planet around in no time!