The Four Worlds International Institute

Elder's Meditation of the Day, April 1
"People think other things are more important than prayer, but they are mistaken."
--Thomas Yellowtail, CROW
An Elder once said the most important thing you can do in the course of a day is to pray. If we get up late or oversleep, which is more important? Rush to work without praying or pray first and then go to work? The Elders say it's more important to pray. If we get angry, should we act on our anger or should we pray first? The Elders say it's more important to pray first. If, during the day, we face indecision, what should we do? PRAY. If, during the day, we become irritated or we experience fear, what should we do first? PRAY. The Warrior who prays first will lead a different life from those who pray last.

Great Spirit, teach me to pray first!



The meditations are copyright of Coyhis Publishing and can also be found in the book,
Meditations with Native American Elders: The Four Seasons.

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Elder's Meditation of the Day, April 2
"With children we always have to think about seven generations to come but yet unborn."
--Janice Sundown Hattet, SENECA
What we do today will effect the children seven generations form now. How we treat the Mother Earth will affect the children yet to be born. If we poison the water today, our children's children will be affected by the decision we made. Our children are the gateway to the future. Let us conscientiously think about the children and the seven generations to come.

My Creator, I thank you for my ancestors, seven generations ago.

Elder's Meditation of the Day, April 3
"We know that in all creation, only the human family has strayed from the Sacred Way."
--OJIBWA Prayer
How have we gotten so far off track? What has happened to us? What is happening to our family? How did it happen so quickly? Every individual needs to answer these questions for themselves. What do we need to do to start living the Sacred Way again? Pray! Today I will start praying. I pray the Creator will lead all Native People to a great healing. I pray we'll be free from alcohol and drugs. I pray we will return to the culture, to spirituality and to unity.

My Mother, help us to heal ourselves. Make us strong again.

Elder's Meditation of the Day, April 4
"You can pray for whatever you want, but it is always best to pray for others, not for yourself."
--John Fire Lame Deer, LAKOTA
When you are selfish and you pray, you are requesting things to flow only to you. When you are selfless, you are praying for things to flow to others. The old ones say this is the highest form of prayer. Praying this way is according to the Natural Laws.

Great Spirit, today, let my thoughts be about others.

Elder's Meditation of the Day, April 5
"As we plunge ahead to build empires and race for supremacy we should stop and listen to [the female] song of life. For without the female there is no life."
--Oren R. Lyons, Spokesman, Traditional Circle of Elders
Women are created with the ability to produce life. Women have a special tie to the Earth Mother. They have something in common. They are the source of life. The Earth Mother gives songs to the Woman to sing. These songs are about life, about beauty, about children, about love, about family, about strength, about caring, about nurturing, about forgiveness, about God. The World needs to pay attention and listen to Her. She knows.

Great Spirit, let me listen to Her songs.

Elder's Meditation of the Day, April 6
"Everybody should pray together, cheer along, root along. That brings the circle together. Everything is together."
--Wallace Black Elk, LAKOTA
Life on the Earth can sometimes be very complicated. Sometimes we think we are alone in our problems. Sometime we even withdraw. Then the problems become even more difficult. We need to watch out for one another, to care for one another, to pray together, to encourage one another; and we need to support one another. Behaving in this manner will bring the circle together.

Great Spirit, today, let me support my brothers and sisters.

Elder's Meditation of the Day, April 7
"Women. They have the power of generations. Women have the power to have children and not to have children."
--Cecilia Mitchell, MOHAWK
The Woman is not only the key to life; she is also the key to future generations. An Elder once joked that the Woman only needs the man for one night. We need to look at and respect the power of the Woman. She is special and we need to treat her that way.

Great Spirit, today, let me show the greatest respect to our Women.

Elder's Meditation of the Day, April 8
"The very dust under your feet responds more lovingly to our footsteps than to yours, because it is the ashes of our ancestors, and our bare feet are conscious of the sympathetic touch, for the soil is rich with the life of our kindred."
--Chief Seattle, SUQUAMISH
If you respect something, it will respect you back. If your ancestors respected something, the future generations will be respected back. The Indian ancestors always showed great respect for the Earth. That's why the Earth is so respectful to Indians today. Every Indian naturally feels connectedness to the Earth. We know the Earth holds our ancestors. If we continue to respect Mother Earth, our children will benefit and so will our grand- children. Today, we should think about and pray for our Mother Earth.

Grandmother, let me have strong feelings for our Earth today.

Elder's Meditation of the Day, April 9
"Everything really is equal. The Creator doesn't look at me any better than He looks at the trees. We're all the same."
--Janice Sundown Hattet, SENECA
Sometimes humans think we are the center of the Universe. Sometimes we think we are above or better than other people or things. The Great Spirit made a set of Laws and Principles by which all things should live. Everybody and everything lives by the same Laws. We are all made of atoms just like the trees. The life force in the middle of the atom is the life force of the Great Mystery. It is the same for everything. We are all equal in the eyes of the Creator.

Great Spirit, today, I will respect your handiwork.

Elder's Meditation of the Day, April 10
"Together we can end the Holocaust against the environment."
--Haida Gwaii, Traditional Circle of Elders
We are all familiar with the Holocaust against the people. When this happens we feel bad and we vow never to let it happen again. We need to seriously examine what human beings are doing to the Earth and the environment. Many species are extinct and many more will become extinct during the next 10 years. We are methodically eliminating life that will never return again. Today, we should take time to pray real hard so we wake up before it is too late.

Great Spirit, today, I pray for us to awaken to what we are doing.

Elder's Meditation of the Day, April 11
"Spiritual matters are difficult to explain because you must live with them in order to fully understand them."
--Thomas Yellowtail, CROW
To know something we must become one with it. We cannot know what a flower smells like until we actually smell it. Close your eyes and experience the fragrance. The Elders say there are two worlds, the Seen World and the Unseen World. To experience the Seen World we need to physically pick the flower and smell it. To experience the Unseen World we need to know about principles, laws and values; and no matter what our mind or our physical senses tell us, we must decide and act on these principles. If someone does wrong to us, we must pray for that person or persons to have peace, happiness and joy in their life. We must not get even or retaliate in any way. Only by doing this can we understand spiritual matters.

Great Spirit, give me your power whenever my weakness shows so I can live by spiritual decisions.

Elder's Meditation of the Day, April 12
"Dissimilar things were fitted together to make something beautiful and whole."
--Nippawanock, ARAPAHOE
Sometimes we look at something close up and it appears to be ugly; but then we drop back and look at it as a whole and it is beautiful. If we look at an insect close up, it may be ugly, but if we drop back and look at the whole insect it becomes beautiful. We can drop back even more and observe what its role and purpose is, and the insect becomes even more beautiful and whole. How are we looking at ourselves? Are we focused on something ugly about ourselves, or are we dropping back and looking at ourselves as a whole? We all have purpose, and we are all beautiful.

Grandfather, today, let me see the beauty of the whole.

Elder's Meditation of the Day, April 13
"Once you make a friend, a friend never leaves you, even to death. So a friend is really hard to find."
--Wallace Black Elk, LAKOTA
Once, an Elder told me he made a decision to be my friend. He said this friendship wasn't based on my behavior or how I acted; he said the friendship was based on his decision. He decided to be my friend. This friendship has happened like he said. Even if I don't see him for a long time, or if I get mad at him, he has never changed his decision. This is true friendship.

Great Spirit, I'm glad you are this kind of Friend.

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