When I’ve seen Native American medicine wheels (a cross within a circle), the colors I have seen associated with it were yellow, black, red, and white. I always wondered why the colors were not the primary colors and ‘something thrown in’. To be honest, it wasn’t “pretty” in my mind, but I think I get it now.
I understand the significance of the number four. There are four directions, four elements, four seasons, etc. When thinking about that number, I feel that four represents solidity, strength, and stability, like the four legs on a chair. Three is better than two, less wobbly, but nothing offers protection and confidence like four. I also thought of another word to describe it, and that was ‘courage’. The stability of four lets us push the outer edges of the envelope. Having a solid foundation allows us to branch out to new and different things. If it doesn’t go well, you already have a place, a home, to head back to. You haven’t lost a thing.
In regards to the four colors, in an article I was reading, Lee Brown, a Native American, was talking about the 4 races of man, and their significance in Hopi belief. He mentioned that the colors stood for the directions, elements, and the races of man. He said that the different races were related to the four elements: The black race is the guardian of water; the yellow race is the guardian of air; the red race is the guardian of earth; and the white race is the guardian of fire. He mentioned that the ‘fire’ race had to initiate the coming together of all races, as was our nature. He said that was why we were the race to bring machines and internal combustion engines, etc. The author also noted Dr. Charles Drew, an early 20th century Negro medical scientist, as a pioneer in the uses of blood plasma for patients needing transfusions, and that this did not surprise him at all.* We all have something to give to the whole.
A quote from a different websites states:
A Medicine Wheel is a physical manifestation of Spiritual energy. An outward expression of an internal dialogue. A mirror in which we can better SEE what is going on within us. It is a wheel of protection and enables us, and allows us, to gather surrounding energies into a focal point and to commune with Spirit, Self and Nature (ALL elemental forces)........Creation!
It helps us with our "Vision," to see exactly where we are and in which areas we need to develop in order to realize and become our potentials. That we are all connected to one another, and by showing us the intricacies of the interwoven threads of life, what our part in it all is. It helps us understand that without our part in the tapestry the "Bigger Picture" is not as it should be. We add colour, dimension and life to each other, to all of life. No matter what colour, race or creed we are, we need each of us to create a beautiful existence and expression of the Whole. - Tree-Song
The medicine wheel represents us, individually, as well as the whole human race, at our very best. It reminds us to remain centered and focused on what is important. It shows us that together we can accomplish anything that is worthwhile. But without any one element, we may not be able to get the stability that we need to work from. It was mentioned in Lee Brown’s article that when this world is over, and we step over into the new world, we will all work together to survive and succeed, that we are all needed for this work.
The eighth prophecy mentioned by Frank Waters is below:
"This is the Eight Sign: You will see many youth, who wear their hair long like my people, come and join the tribal nations, to learn their ways and wisdom."
The guardians of the fire have dominated the world, and the philosophies within that way of life, and this has created imbalance. Our society rushes ever head long toward more, more, more, and still it is not enough. The Hopi say that when the prophecies have come to pass, then they will need to slow down, not speed up. Then it is time to return to the old ways.
I am starting to hear a call to ‘return’ myself. I have no desire to work for a corporation. I want to get some property out in the country, to plant a garden and learn how to become self sufficient. I want things to slow down. It is rushing by way too fast, and it is sometimes hard to catch our breath at this pace. We don’t have time to appreciate all the blessings that we have received. We don’t even have time to connect spiritually with God.
I don’t want to be dependent on this society. The philosophies that are currently prevalent do not have my best interest at heart. We are encouraged to look at ourselves and see only our “lack”. It doesn’t matter how many ‘things’ we own, it doesn’t matter how many addictions we try to feed, it will never be enough. None of these ‘things’ will sustain our souls, and our souls are the only part of us that remains forever
I hope I make it there.