"The Medicine Wheel is a magic circle that encompasses all of the world. As you journey around it, you will find wonders both within and without. With tenacity you will even discover the wonder of knowing about yourself: who you are, what you know and what you can do in this lifetime.
The Native people knew about this magic circle. They respected it and used it often in their everyday lives so they would always remember all of the things that they had learned. When they built their homes, most often these were circles, whether they were tipis, wigwams or hogans. When they went to purify their bodies and their minds, they did so in the circle of the sweat bath, a cleansing lodge which represented the womb of the human mother from whom they came, and the womb of the Earth Mother, who sustained them throughout their lives. When they came together in council, they sat in a circle, so that everyone was included, as an equal, with an equal voice.
When they made music, they made it upon a round drum. They danced in a circle. The beat of the drum represented the beat of their hearts and the beat of the Earth Mother. They raised their arms and legs toward the heavens, and then placed them upon the earth, creating a circle that extended from the earth to the sky and back to the earth, with their bodies as the transmitters.
They saw life as a circle, from birth to death to rebirth. They knew how to acknowledge and celebrate the circles of their own lives so that they were able to flow and change with the changing energies at came with different ages. They knew that they, like the seasons, passed through several phases as the circle of life and time passed around them. They knew that to fall out of this circle was to fall out of rhythm with life and to cease to grow.
The circle was so important to them, so essential to life continuing in the ways that it should, that they immortalized this figure in their ceremonies and structures. The mounds of the mound-building culture were round. The calendars of the Aztecs were round, and the medicine wheels of stone were round. In everything they reminded themselves that the earth and everything on her were part of the magic circle of life."
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