Creating A Medicine Wheel
Creating an altar is wonderful way to get in touch with the forces and energies of the medicine wheel. Make it somewhere in your home or outside, in the natural environment where it won’t be disturbed, at nature. Take your time to find the place that is right for you. Then start with a small table space with a wooden or stone surface. Making an altar is a sacred process but one of which is a personal process and so you can’t go wrong.
Preparing The Sacred Space
Once you have found the place where you want to create your medicine wheel, start first with the cleaning of the surface with Sage or Palo Santo holy-wood. Palo Santo is enjoyed by many for its energetically cleansing and healing properties. You can find it in metaphysical shops or natural food stores. You can also use a solution of water and sea salt, which is a powerful cleaner as well. This energetically cleansing act is called smudging.
Collect Your Special Objects
Then collect together some special objects you want to place on your altar. These can be small candles, feathers, precious stones or other objects or materials that have a special meaning for you. Smudge them first to clean them and free them from old energy. It is important to take time for this ritual of cleansing the sacred space and the objects chosen in order to create this new start, free of the influences of old energies.
Connect To The Four Wind Directions
Now begins the most beautiful and most extraordinary part of creating your medicine wheel as we connect the four wind directions. Most people do this by moving around the wheel of the four wind directions and stop at each of the four places. At each place, ask if the power of that place will reveal itself to you. Observe if there is a color, a feeling or a word that comes to mind when you come into contact with the wind directions. This will make it easier for you to reconnect with this wind direction at other moments when you re-visit your medicine wheel.
Start first in the ‘East’ and focus on feeling the energy here. This is where the energy of creation lies, the place of a new beginning, the place of hope and also of focus.
Then, move to the ‘South’ and again, concentrate on this place and try to connect with this energy. The South represents the time for action, the place of growth, where plans can be explored and developed.
The next step is to make contact with the ‘West’. Here we find the moment to release, to let go and to look back on what has been accomplished.
Then, as last, move to the ‘North’ to connect with the power of silence. Here lies the power of meditation, of contact with your ancestors and is a place for the soul to rest.
You may have many different associations with each wind direction, some maybe recognizable than others. But, they are your associations and they are always right.
Building The Wheel
Start with five objects, one for the center and four for the wind directions. You will need to position your wheel so that North is drawn and pointing directly north. If in doubt, use a compass to help you. Then you imagine yourself a circle, determine the center and then mark the wind directions with equal size. The first object that you will place on your wheel is a special object that symbolizes you. Place this in the center of the wheel where is the dwelling place of the Great Spirit. We next place the remaining four objects on the wind directions. Start first in the ‘East’, then move to the ‘South’, then the ‘West’ and as last the ‘North’. Close your eyes and become aware of the energy as you place your objects. Take time to connect with the essential energies of nature. Once you have placed your special objects, you will have your medicine wheel in its purest form. Your medicine wheel is a powerful way to bring balance and harmony into your life. It is a little gift to yourself. Light some candles and burn some incense, it will draw in positive energies and invite benevolent spirits. Relax and take a moment to breathe in the essential features of the medicine wheel and forces that evokes.
Working With The Wheel
You have now read all about creating your medicine wheel, and about the wind directions, so now is the time to go and create! It is important to practice the connection with the wind directions so that you develop sensitivity for when they want to communicate something to you.
Take your time, enjoy the process, and know that there are many aspects and many lessons to be learned through each individual spoke of your wheel. Time and patience will help in this process.
Stay tuned: next week I will explain to you how you can use the medicine wheel to answer any questions and wishes you might have in your life!
I’m Yvon de Groot and I live with my family and animals in a small village near Amsterdam. I love painting, writing and reading. And also quite like walking with my dogs in the woods. I have suffered from depression, and experienced burnouts, but have always been trying to find new ways to heal. My life changed when I was touched by shamanism, and I work with its strength and insights ever since. Transferring my knowledge as a teacher and spiritual-coach gives me much pleasure and satisfaction. My contacts with animals, and the gift that I can give them through healings pick up my life energy.