I want to tell you a story about my journey into the world of prayer sticks. I had been aware for a long time of the Native American tradition of winding leather around a stick when praying and planting them in the ground to hold prayers. They were used with the intention of the spring not running dry in the summer in the desert, or at the planting of a new crop so that the harvest would be plentiful.
Several years ago, I was in a gallery in Asheville, NC and saw some magnificent tubes wrapped in beautiful cords, hanging on the wall. The sight of them triggered an immediate response of amazement. I said to Michael, my husband, “Those look like prayer sticks!”. We immediately went to a yarn store and began buying many different kinds of yarn. I decided we could decorate our home with prayer sticks. That never came to pass, but what did happen was truly amazing.
Several weeks after we returned home from Asheville, a friend of mine was being ordained as an interfaith minister. The ordination was in New York and I wasn’t able to go. I decided I would make a prayer stick for her as she was being ordained. So, for the two hours, during her ordination, I prayed for her as I was gluing and winding beautiful yarns onto a piece of bamboo. The intention of the prayer was for her sacred ministry.
When she returned home, I gave her the prayer stick. She thought it was beautiful and said she could feel the energy of my prayers. A few weeks later, she called me and said she had something to share about the prayer stick. She said, “I had the prayer stick on my dresser, but now I sleep with it, because I wanted to rest in the energy.”
The next week, I made one for a friend of mine who was dying. I made the prayer stick with the intention that she would pass from this life comfortable and surrounded by her loved ones. She died with the prayer stick in the bed.
These experiences made me profoundly aware of the power of our intentions. We can imbue an inanimate object with sacred energy.
If you would like to learn this creative, sacred, meditative practice, I will be offering a program titled, A Day of Spirituality, on May 19. Prayer stick making will be a part of this day of spiritual nourishment. Just go to the calendar page to register.
Many blessings to all of you!