“You have dishonored yourselves by forcing this boy to have sex with you. In my life, it is called rape and in some cases is dealt with by the punishment of death.”
The Transformations within the Sweat
“Darren, you and Liam must understand if you feel you must leave to feel free to do so at any time. Before you get up, for convenience we will use an English phrase which you say before you leave. ‘Exit please’ will work this time, does everyone understand?” Jared asked. They all nodded their heads.
Jared continued. “If anyone feels ill or needs help, please speak out immediately and we will do anything we can to help. The sanctity of human life is first over continuing the sweat ceremony.”
Jared looked at every one at a time before continuing. “The order in which we will enter the lodge is Liam, Tyler, Troy, Darren, Josh and then me. I will smudge each one of you before you go to the entrance. At the entrance before we go in, each of us must bow as a sign of respect for the Creator and Mother Earth. Then move inside in a clockwise ring around the rock pit inside and can sit down you find your spot.
“Although there is much tradition surrounding the sweat lodge, there are also differences in the ceremony. We have 2 new brothers here tonight so I ask for patience from us all and the Creator while they learn the ways we use here” said Jared.
“This the last call for a drink of water or taking a piss before we go in! Liam, Darren, I would suggest the two of you guzzle a bottle of water before you go in. We can’t take the bottle in with us” finished Jared.
The men all grabbed a bottle of water and drank it down, and then Troy and Liam ran over to piss into the bushes. Jared walked to the alter in front of the sweat lodge, spreading the contents of his smudging bundle out for use.
“Ready?” asked Jared of everyone.
“Ready!” they all replied. Jared motioned them forward. None of the men were wearing their loin cloths and it was obvious the excitement of the ceremony was causing all of them to be in a semi-hard condition. It looked sexy having them standing in front of Jared in a line, every one of them with their dick extended and at 45 degrees.
Jared lit the bundle and smudged each one of them as they approached and as they were completed, he nodded to them and they went to the lodge, bowed and went in. Jared smudged himself and then snubbed the bundle out and placed it in the bowl. He bowed before entering and took his place. He had brought the pipe with him, placing it on his leg. He opened one of the birch bark bundles containing tobacco which he packed into the pipe with expertise. He lit the pipe and puffed on it. He then chanted out loud for a moment and stopped, handing the pipe to Liam.
“The tobacco is sacred. Liam, you may have to light it again but take a couple of puffs into you and then say out loud a prayer or tell us why you are here this evening” explained Jared.
Liam took the pipe, his hands shaking. He lit a match, put the pipe in his mouth and puffed on it a couple of times. Holding the pipe in both hands, he suddenly raised it up towards the roof of the lodge.
Jared noted this with interest and thought to himself “Liam’s memories are coming closer and closer to the surface.”
Liam then spoke “Creator, I am new to this. You have already healed me and I am learning to be your servant. I wish to learn the knowledge and your ways to serve you better. I am here with Jared, the first person who I have truly loved and four other men who I am learning to love as brothers. I ask for your blessings to be placed upon them in their lives” Liam finished. He then handed the pipe and matches to Tyler.
Tyler smoked the pipe and then did the same as Liam had done with raising it towards the roof and back down. “Creator, I am here with my brother’s new and old, and my true love Troy. I am your servant but I ask you grant me the vision to become a better man while doing your work, doing my job, loving my brothers, loving Troy and loving myself.’ He handed the pipe to Troy.
After smoking the pipe, Troy spoke. “Creator, I too ask for granting me the wisdom to be a better man in my daily life and how to serve you better. I wish to thank you for your gift of love to mankind which I can share with my brothers, my boyfriend Tyler, as well as those who I come into contact with doing your work.” He handed the pipe to Darren.
Darren’s hands were shaking so much he couldn’t light the pipe. Both Josh and Troy leaned in to help him by steadying his hands and touching his shoulder to reassure him. Darren settled down and smoked it. “Creator, I must be honest with you. I am very new to this and feel very nervous to make a mistake to get you mad at me. You saved my life and I thank you for that. What I thank you for even more is the way you saved my boyfriend Josh’s life when he hit his head. I am praying I am good enough to do your work.” Darren breathed out a sigh and relaxed. He handed the pipe to Josh.
Josh smoked it and then said “Creator, I thank you for your blessings on our family sitting here under you this evening. I know every one of them; including me have been blessed with your interventions so we may continue life. You have spared me twice and I pledge to you once again to be your servant. I ask you to bless our family and allow us a group to act as a conduit for your knowledge and gifts in your service.” Josh handed the pipe back to Jared who smoked the last of the tobacco and then placed the pipe in front of him on a special holder. The pipe was in position next to a talking stick which may be used later on.
Jared looked at each man individually and nodded his head. He turned to Liam and said “come with me, and I’ll show you how to get the rocks.”
They both crawled out and went to the fire. Jared showed him how to use the shovel to get a rock and carry it to the lodge and to place it in the ring.
“If you drop one, move it to the side of the fire and get another one. We need about 5 each time we sweat.” Jared watched him retrieve and place the rest of the rocks in the lodge. He indicated to Liam where to put the shovel and to throw a couple more pieces of wood onto the fire. They both returned to the lodge. Jared pulled the flaps closed.
Jared lifted the talking stick and shook the rice inside. “This is a talking stick and we may use it tonight during our sweat. Whoever has it in their hand speaks, and no one else does unless you are feeling ill or need to leave.”
The inside of the lodge glowed from the red hot stones. Jared reached and pulled the ladle out of the bucket full, pouring it on the rock representing the west, repeating the procedure for the rocks representing the north, east and south. He poured 2 more ladles full on the rock in the centre representing the grandfather. The lodge filled with steam rapidly and completely.
Jared spoke aloud, but could barely see the others in the lodge. “I will chant prayers. The first round of the four we will complete is for the west. Each session of sweating represents each of the four directions and focuses on the different spiritual qualities brought by each.”
As if Liam was in a trance, he spoke out “The west or season of fall is represented by the colour black. We are to look into ourselves deeply for the things we need to change as the sun is setting. There are two totems for the west; the beaver which works as a team to achieve their goals and the snake which sheds its skin to remind us we must do the same as we change to new ways.”
Although the men we getting used to Liam and his almost prophetic information, it continued to surprise them when he spoke to share his knowledge. Jared just smiled and nodded at Liam.
Jared began to chant and pray. The men in the lodge felt the wet heat of the steam and the dry heat from the rocks, and were sweating profusely. It felt good to them as the sweat poured down their bodies and into the ground. Jared poured more water on the rocks and the steam returned, filling the lodge like it had the first time. He continued to chant and pray.
Suddenly, the lodge shook violently. The sides and top of the lodge were moving back and forth in no particular pattern. Suddenly, the men all had a vision of a wolf jumping through the lodge wall and sitting in front of Darren. Darren was actually startled and started to move backwards from his spot being unable to comprehend the line between reality and his vision. Josh and Troy felt him jump and gently put their hands on each of his knees in reassurance. Darren settled down quickly. Jared poured more water on the rocks to increase the steam.
The entire group heard the scream of a bald eagle from somewhere above the lodge. It screamed a couple more times and it swooped right through the lodge wall, landing on Liam’s shoulder. Liam screamed out in shock and moved toward Jared for protection. Jared’s hands touched Liam’s knee providing reassurance.
Jared began to chant again and as the chant was beginning to become familiar to the men, they joined in with him.
Jared stopped the chant. He raised his hands up into the air, palms up and said “Creator, you honour us by sending spirit guides for the men of our family who had yet received them. You brought a powerful guide to both of them, and it is my honour to introduce them to their guides.”
“Darren, your guide is the wolf because of your intelligence and your ability to act upon your instincts in a variety of situations and it explains why you are good as a firefighter. You are not afraid to act or express on those instincts in the service of your brothers, your family, your community or the Creator. Troy, Tyler and Josh also have wolf spirit guides and there is strength in a pack, especially when you lack trust in yourself. In a pack, you all stand together and help a weaker member during this period of self-doubt. You have a powerful totem Darren.”
The steam was dissipating enough to see Darren’s face. There were tears sliding down his face as his eyes were locked onto the eyes of the wolf in front of him. The wolf leaned forward and licked Darren’s face with his long wet tongue. The wolf stood and jumped through the wall between Josh and Darren, causing them to reflexively move out of the way.
Jared then spoke to Liam. “You have been chosen by the eagle, also a very powerful totem in different ways than the wolf. This totem will assist you as you learn your role to work in both the spiritual realm and our world. Your clear vision of life and objectives complements your abilities to be successful in whatever you try to do. Your abilities complement those of the bear, the healer. Our relationship will allow those two totems to work together, blending our strengths and become stronger together.”
The eagle turned his head and screamed at Liam. He then dug his talons into Liam’s right shoulder. Liam jumped and automatically reached for his shoulder. By the time his hand grabbed his shoulder, the eagle had jumped over to Jared’s shoulder. Once again he dug his talons into Jared’s shoulder except Jared didn’t move. The eagle screamed and flew out through the wall.
Jared chanted a new prayer for a moment, and then said to everyone “the first round has ended. We may go outside and jump into the lake to rinse the sweat off and drink some water.”
He opened the door and led everyone outside. The six men ran for the lake and they dove in. The chatter between them was very animated, talking about their vision. They were so full of energy in the water. It was then Liam noticed red marks like a minor skin abrasion from the eagle’s talon on his right shoulder.
“Jared, look at my shoulder. I saw his talons pierce both of our shoulders but there are no injuries other than a slight redness” stated Liam.
Jared looked at Liam’s shoulder and his own while the rest of the guys gathered around them. “You felt the pain of the eagle as it bonded with you, and then I felt it when it bonded with me.”
“It was a vision, not real. But I know what I felt” stated Liam.
“Liam, you have a very strong totem. It marked your right shoulder and my left shoulder in our visions. Have you ever noticed how we stand together; it’s always with your right side and my left side together. He approves of us and marked us so no one else will get between us. He has marked his people to show all who our guide is. We will see the scars from his marks only when we are in the spiritual world.”
Darren spoke up “I know when that wolf licked my face it felt as real as if it had been done by a regular dog. I felt the wetness and roughness of his tongue as he dragged it up my face.”
“Wow” said Josh.
Josh spoke up “How long were we in there? It didn’t seem to be very long.”
“Looking at the position of the sun, the width of the clouds, the shadows from the trees, the frequency and pitch of the waves on the lake as well as my watch hanging on the tree outside the lodge, 45 minutes” Jared replied.
The boys all started laughing when Darren said “Dammit! You had me going until you said watch.”
Jared then spoke “Get some water into you guys; we will be doing the second round in a few minutes.”
They all drank 2 bottles of water each and then looked at Jared for direction. Jared motioned for them to resume their ceremony.
The second round was completed and it had an emphasis on courage, endurance and honesty calling upon the north power. The third round calling upon the power of the east for wisdom was completed as well.
After the guys consumed more water after the third round, Jared called them together. “This is the final round of the ceremony. I will be honest with you and after the unexpected visitors in the first round, I am not sure what to expect in this round. Remember where you are and we are family, here to support each other.” Jared held his hand out and every one placed their hand on top.
The men were all in position and the last set of hot rocks were glowing in front of them. Jared started to pour water on them and they sizzled loudly in response. Jared started to chant and the rest joined in.
Jared spoke “this is the round for the south. The power of the south is in spiritualism and healing. We need use all the qualities we have gained from the west, the north and the east for us to grow as a person and to mature in the way we see and deal with things. This leads into the healing of the heart and spirit.”
Jared poured more water onto the rocks and started chanting. The men joined in, repeating the verses over and over. Jared poured more water onto the rocks. The heat in the lodge was the highest it had been so far. No one could see each other this time through the steam but they could hear the chanting. Soon, Jared was chanting alone. The steam had dissipated enough now to see each of the men in the lodge as they were staring into the rocks. Jared also looked into the rocks and concentrated to increase the strength of his spiritual vision. Immediately he saw Liam talking with his parents. Tyler was talking with his grandparents while Troy was talking with his dad. Darren was talking with a man about the same age but possibly a little younger and dressed in combat fatigues. Jared then sensed it was his brother. He made a note to himself to talk with Darren about this.
Jared poured more water onto the rocks and the steam rose once again. In his mind, Jared heard the conversations going on in the lodge and how they were coming to an end. Jared could feel the physiological and emotional relief in every one of the other men in the lodge as they released their deepest fears and secrets which had been bottled up and pushed down inside each one of them. The feeling of purity in their heart and spirit was filling the lodge. Finally, all the conversations had finished.
Jared was going to end the session but he was forced by an invisible hand to reach out, adding more water on the rocks. The lodge shook violently he could see the others looking around the inside. Suddenly, Jared’s grandfather was standing in front of him.
“Grandfather, you honour me by your presence.”
“Jared, I am at home in meditation and smudging when I had a vision of your ceremony. I have entered my vision to visit with you. Jared, you have learned well son and I need to tell you the Great Buffalo came to me with a message for you” Grandfather said.
Jared looked quickly around the lodge and realized everyone was seeing the vision as well and they were all staring at him.
“I thank you Grandfather for your praise but my actions were the result of your teaching, and you did that well” replied Jared.
“Jared, the great buffalo has bestowed a great honour upon you. He is allowing you to be called Sacred Medicine Man of the people. With that responsibility and honour, you will receive more gifts from him to use on his behalf. They’ll be given to you as the needs arise and when they can be used” Grandfather said.
“I am humbled by these gifts, but I do not believe myself worthy of the honour” stated Jared.
Grandfather turned and asked all of the men present “Is he worthy?”
All of the men replied “yes” in a chant.
“It’s settled Jared. The Creator has spoken as have your friends” said Grandfather.
Jared had tears in eyes looking at the vision of his grandfather in front of him. Everyone in the lodge could feel the love flowing between Jared and his Grandfather.
His Grandfather spoke “Jared. Come home soon for a visit, and bring the new boyfriend. I want to meet the man who has the ancient knowledge and who you have exchanged hearts with. Jared, you and Liam will become very powerful together as you grow with your knowledge. I also wish you would bring the men of your tribe or family as you call them to me for a visit. It is time they did their spiritual quest on our sacred lands with their spirit guides. We can feast and sweat together after as family.”