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        . The Healing Medicine of the Bear

                                                    Bears are considered the Embodiment of Spiritual Power
                                                    and Physical Strength. Rarely seen, bears seemingly live as spirits,
                                                    without a body, visible to the eye only as foot prints in the sand,
                                                    traces of passing left behind by great mythical beings from the
                                                    Land of Spirits. Bears constant in their conviction have walked
                                                    the same paths generation after generation, wearing deep furrows
                                                    into solid stone. Bears were thought to die each fall, to be reborn
                                                    each spring,verifying in life, their Spiritual Power over death.

                                                    Proof, that Bears were given the Power of Resurrection
                                                    through Rebirth.Stories such as these are told to
                                                    Native children living in the Northern Hemisphere the world over,
                                                    to teach them the Word of the Creator God and where to find it in
                                                    nature, to ensure that Native Youth enter adulthood,
                                                                         as whole and mature beings.

                                                    Walking into a den in winter, Bears fall into a great sleep,
                                                    entering into the Spirit World for spiritual re-alignment.
                                                    Emerging in Spring, as changed and balanced beings, Bears awaken
                                                    from their long journey in the spirit world, having become greater
                                                    in spirit and lesser in body. The shedding of fat symbolises the
                                                    shedding of worldly goods which human beings have to
                                                    shed to be reborn.Jubilant in their return, rejuvenated by
                                                    their physical and spiritual rebirth, they emerge from the womb
                                                    of our Mother, the Earth, through the exits of their dens.

                                                   Leaping and bounding like children bonding with their Mother,
                                                   the bears knead the Earth to awaken, needing Her to renew
                                                   all things , so Her children might be fed. Refreshed and invigorated
                                                   from a long and restful winter, they honour Her with sounds
                                                   of  joy and dances of renewal. Thankful for the gift of life,
                                                   they stand erect, with outstretched arms, a sign of
                                                   allegiance honouring their Father, the Sun, thanking Him for
                                                   His warmth and the gifts of love that He provides for all living
                                                   things. Thus begins, the annual rites of renewal, that all life might
                                                                    be awakened and all things renewed.

                                                      May the Sun brighten your days and warm your heart
                                                   and the Moon light your way and soothe your nightly dreams.
                                                 Let the waters refresh you and wash your fears away and most
                                                     of all let Mother Earth nourish your body and free your soul.

Author Unknown