Vi Waln: Clear your minds before coming to sacred ceremonies

The following is the opinion of Vi Waln, Lakota Country Times Columnist. For more news and opinion, subscribe to the Lakota Country Times today. All content © Lakota Country Times.

Vi Waln

Sicangu Scribe
By Vi Waln
LCT Columnist

We can usually tell what a person is thinking about by what they talk about. This makes me wonder about the people who use an assortment of four letter words as a regular part of their vocabulary.

Thought and speech creates our personal reality. Our thoughts are energy which often manifests verbally. What we think and talk about determines our reality. Each action you take in your life begins as a thought. You talk about your thoughts or ideas which you want to act on and they do become your reality.

What kind of reality are you manifesting when every other word out of your mouth is a cuss word? People who cuss regularly carry a whole lot of negative energy. These people usually have small children or grandchildren who also use swear words more often than not. It would be interesting to look deep into their minds and hearts to see what effect the constant swearing really has on them.

Recently, a person stated they were glad they could think whatever they wanted. True, we still live in a free will zone. We have the freedom to think whatever we want. But the freedom to think whatever we want isn’t always a good thing. We have to take personal responsibility for what we think about. Your thoughts can be bad medicine.

There are a lot of people in denial about their own negative thinking. Many people refuse to believe their thoughts are bad medicine. Worse yet, many people refuse to admit to themselves that their thoughts are negative. Most people don’t even stop to examine what they are thinking. They are controlled by their undisciplined thoughts.

I’ve written about monitoring your thoughts before. The process of monitoring what you are thinking, along with analyzing the true nature of your thoughts, is a practice which takes a lot of discipline. It requires you to put aside your ego. Overcoming your ego is a prerequisite for you to be honest with yourself.

Many of us go through our lives justifying our own inappropriate behavior to ourselves and others. We rationalize in our minds about how our inappropriate behavior is acceptable. We tend to push away those inner thoughts which might lead us to examining our own personal flaws. Many of us also believe the energy of our thinking has no effect on others.

I believe the energy of my thoughts has an enormous effect on my environment, as well as the people around me. Have you ever heard someone tell you not to think any bad thoughts? There is good reason to refrain from negative thinking. Impure thoughts do affect your personal space as well as your immediate circle and the environment.

We are in the midst of our summer ceremonies in Lakota country. Many of us have attended at least one sun dance or we are planning to attend one before the summer is over. If there ever was a place and time to hold good thoughts, it is at a ceremony. Consequently, I’m sure the spirits who help with ceremony can see very clearly the dark energy carried by humans who actively engage in negative thinking, or who cuss all the time.

I learned we should not judge the people who come to the sun dance because they are usually in need of help. Yet, there are some people who do not make any effort to clear their minds and hearts. They will show up at ceremony with all their negative thoughts, behavior and speech fully intact. They make no effort to put aside their human flaws, even if for just four days.

Worse yet, some of these people are actually helping around the circle, totally unaware of how powerful their negative thinking actually is. Being ignorant is really no excuse, especially if you are a Lakota person attending or helping with one of your own ceremonies.

I realize we are all only human. Still, you can hurt people with your undisciplined thoughts. A ceremony should not really be considered a social event. A sun dance is a most sacred ceremony of the Lakota. There is a reason for the purification done before the dance starts. The sacred energy created through ceremony is very powerful.

Add your bad or vindictive thoughts, along with your cuss words, to this special energy and you only serve to diminish the sacredness of the ceremony. Remember, prayers offered in ceremony are usually uttered on behalf of our Lakota children.

Clear your mind before you arrive at ceremony. Look inside your heart and admit to yourself what is really lurking there. Forgive the people you don’t like and sincerely offer a prayer for their good health. Put some real effort into getting over your crab-in-a-bucket mentality. If you are Lakota, it is your responsibility to offer prayers with a clear mind and a pure heart.

If you are unable to clear your mind and your heart to attend ceremony, the people are probably better off if you just stayed away.

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