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#1 organic~sab

Posted 26 November 2012 - 07:15 AM

Not sure which section to post this question but this seemed the most appropriate since my friend is having a home birth. She gave us flags for her Blessingway that she is going to hang up in her living room when she gives birth. We are supposed to paint something on them. I have no idea! What sort of things do you paint on a Blessingway flag?

#2 tribemama

Posted 26 November 2012 - 07:23 AM

anything positive tht you want. Rainbows, leaves, trees, swirls, curves, pregnant belly shapes, colours, gosh, its completely up to you. Have fun with it

#3 Zmuma

Posted 26 November 2012 - 07:28 AM

I am going to my second blessingway tomorrow night. The mum has requested we bring a bead to make a necklace for her to wear during labour.

Maybe draw something calming like waves, flowers  or something representing strength. Does she have a favourite colour.  I think she will just be thankful you took the time to make something that is important to her.

I'm not very artistic so would probably write a short inspirational message.

#4 Froger

Posted 26 November 2012 - 09:03 AM

I don't belong in this section, but I saw this in recent topics.

I'm not sure if your friend is a Navajo woman or not. But if she is not, then someone at some stage is going to tell her the following, what I am about to say. And probably far better she hear it from a stranger on the internet before the "Blessingway" than from someone close to her, or someone terribly upset by it, after it has all been done.

Navajo women have repeatedly called for an end to non-Navajo women calling these ceremonies "Blessingways" and using bastardised forms of their sacred rituals. They find it offensive, and they have also explained that the spiritual consequences of non Navojo women using such ceremonies may be dire. They have asked that such a ceremony, conducted by non Navajo women, at the very least be called something else, like a "Baby Blessing" or a "Mother Blessing".

Even if someone doesn't believe that anything bad can happen by stealing sacred rituals from another culture, isn't it at least good manners to refrain from stealing one of the last relics of someone's culture, when considering their land and most other things they own have been stolen already? Haven't they had enough stolen?

Just something your friend might like to consider before the ceremony. She is going to hear such an opinion at some stage unless she lives in a vacuum. It is well known how Navajo women feel about this, and easily found out if one cares enough to do a bit of basic research before conducting such a ceremony.

#5 amistad

Posted 26 November 2012 - 06:29 PM

Please don't listen to SarahM72, no-one is stealing anything! No culture 'owns' spirituality.
Blessingway is just a name, to honour that which inspired it.  A traditional, Navajo Blessingway is what inspired many women in the west to celebrate birth and motherhood, many women who have felt a need deep in their soul to celebrate this amazing time in our lives in a fun, loving, spiritual way. The navajo Blessingway has helped bring that light and love to so many.
And there are no 'dire' consequences. Don't believe in that, don't let silly fears get in the way. Thousands of women around the world have had Blessingways and all are fine.

We live on a planet of many cultures, many people, majority of whom want love and peace, sharing our spirituality, not keeping it hidden will greatly help achieve this.

#6 suline

Posted 27 November 2012 - 10:37 AM

I had no idea that the Navajo used English words to refer to their sacred rituals. As far as I was aware the Navajo/Dine don't use the word "blessingway." They use the word "Hózhójí." Blessingway is not even a direct translation.

Now, would the Dineh people be as offended by it if someone attempted an authentic "blessingway" and used that term? What *exactly* is offensive?... the term being used to describe a ritual that is significantly different than their own? Or the use of the term in total ignorance of its origin? Or is it just that non-Dineh dare use their (translated) word? It really feels like you're coming from the latter point, and I don't think that in any way forwards cultural tolerance or preservation of native cultures.

BTW the flags are a Tibet tradition not Dine. I think it is wonderful that women can be honoured and thought about/prayed for/blessed/loved/cared for before they undertake the journey to becoming a mother, rather than the traditional baby shower gift grab with silly games.

#7 deejie

Posted 27 November 2012 - 10:52 AM

QUOTE (suline @ 27/11/2012, 11:37 AM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
I think it is wonderful that women can be honoured and thought about/prayed for/blessed/loved/cared for before they undertake the journey to becoming a mother, rather than the traditional baby shower gift grab with silly games.


OP, I would paint something you feel represents strength, something positive, or something calming. You can write short messages on flags too. One of the favourites I have seen was a picture of a big pregnant tummy with the words "You are love and love is everything". I thought it was just beautiful.

edit- spelling

Edited by deejie, 27 November 2012 - 10:52 AM.

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