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Cherokee Page 

 

osiyo tohitsu kohi iga

Hello and how are you today

ayv gvlieliga tsilugi

I welcome you here

detsadaladihesdi

Raise one another up and don't tear each other down

doyugadv

Be as close to the creator as you can

 

 

eaglemndala

As the Cherokee occupy a prominent place in North America, their name appears in many different forms and different spellings:
TsaLaGi, TsaRaGi, Achalaque, Chalakee, Chalaque, Chalaquies, Charakeys, Charikees, Charokees, Cheelake, Cheerake, Cheerakee, Cheeraque's, Cheeroke, Che-la-ke, Chelakees, Chelaques, Chelekee, Chellokee, Cheloculgee, Chelokees, Cheokees, Cheraguees, Cherakees, Cherakis, Cheraquees, Cheraquis, Cherickees, Cherickee, CHEROKEE, Cherookees, Cheroquees, Cherrackees, Cherrokees, Cherrykees, Chirakues, Chirokys, Chorakis, Chreokees, Shanaki, Shan-nack, Shannaki, Shayage, Sulloggoes, Tcalke, Tcerokiec, Tchatekes, Tsalakies, Tsallakee, Tsa-lo'-kee, Tschiroksesen, Tsulahki, Tzerrickey, Tzulukis, Zolucans, Zulocans, Talligeu, Talligewi, Alligewi, Alleg, Allegans, Allegwi, Alleghans, Alleghanys, Alleghens, Allegwi, Alli, Allighewis, Talagans, Talega, Tallagewy, Tallegwi, Talligwee, Tallike, Kituhwagi, Cuttawa, Gatohua, Gattochwa, Katowa, Ketawaugas, Kittuwa, Kuttoowauw, Oyatageronon, Ojadagochroene, Ondadeonwas, Oyadackuchraono, Oyadageono, Oyadagoono, Oyaudah, Uwatayorono, Uyada, Weyaudah, Wataiyoronon, Rickahockans, Rickohockans, Rechahecrians, Manteran, Entarironnon, Ochietarironnon, Tkwetaheuhane


Rest yourself awhile and learn about the Cherokee

 

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A Prayer

Great Creator

Allow Mother sun to always shine down upon us

Allow Brother moon to always return for the ceremony

Allow gentle winds to always brush across our faces

Help us honor all that is part of where we are

galilahi adanvdo ganagati moc gif

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Beginning of Mother Earth
In another time, the Cherokee Spirit People were in the sky vault. It was getting crowded in the sky-vault, and the Great One decided it was time for spirit beings to become physical beings and spread out of the sky vault. There was a Great Council meeting of all the spirit beings to decide on the plan. The Great One said, "Those of you who choose to be a part of the creation of Mother Earth will also have to protect her. The Cherokee Spirit People have been chosen to be keepers of the secrets and keepers of Mother Earth and all living things that go over into the physical world. They will be given the power Medicine of choice to do this. Other human spirits of tribes will also follow, and they will be given the power Medicine of choice to be keepers as well."
Earth at that time was like a large island floating in a sea and held in place by four Cords of Life. The Great One said, "These 'Cords of Life' will hold Mother Earth suspended as long as everything is held in sacred balance. These spirit beings will include the four-legged ones, the two-legged ones, the many-legged ones, the no-legged ones, and the winged ones. Everything and everyone will live in harmony, interdependent on one another for sustained life and regeneration of life."
It was the first task of the Animal Clan to go down to learn what they could about this new Earth. The little Water Beetle of the Beavers' grandchild went first, fluttering around, but it could not find a place to land. Soon it dropped into the water many times, coming up with muddy feet, and that mud became islands. The Bird Clan said it wanted to go because they could fly for long distances to search for a place to land. The Great Buzzard flew down, but he was so large that he tired quickly, and his large wings kept striking the water and churning up mud that made mountains and valleys until he returned home in the sky vault.
By this time, Earth was dry where the Animal Clan and the Bird Clan stirred the mud from the water as the Sun tracked across. The Fish Clan said they wanted to go down into the water and just stay there, but some wanted to be able to walk on land. What we now call the Crawfish did crawl up on the red clay and he was baked in the hot sun, so that we today call him the Red Crawfish. On the seventh day, some of the Animal Clan, who were hiding in the mud because of the hot sun, came up to take a look. The first of these was the worm, and he was burned so badly that we call him the Red Worm. It was still hot, and they called for the Great One to help.
The Great One came down on the seventh day, hearing the prayers, and brought many beautiful plants and trees to provide the air for the Cherokee to breathe into their lungs and become physical beings. Of course, they were not used to breathing, so they had to rest that first day, but they would work for six days and learn to rest at night when the Sun would rest. The Great one was very proud of the spirit beings for the good work they had done. He asked the Thunder Beings to strike a tree so the fragile physical beings would have heat from the Sacred Fire. From that time on, all the animals, insect, bird, tree, plant, and human clans would give ceremony around the fire and dance for the Sun to celebrate and honor the gift of life on a now-living Mother Earth.
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Diseases and Medicine
There was a time when two leggeds could converse with the animals and the plants. The two leggeds no longer honored that which they took from the animals. The injustices and suffering of the animals caused them to have a great council. During this council they devised diseases with which to plague the two leggeds. The plants overheard this council meeting and came to the rescue of the two leggeds by providing themselves as medicines.
Remember this and remember this well! There is a purpose for every living thing on Mother Earth, and all things are alive. We should live in harmony as we are all related ... "My calumet is not a carved piece of wood, it is a part of a tree, that is sustained by Mother Earth, and flourishes under Mother Sun."


The Way of the Circle

 


Origins of Game and Corn
The first man and woman were Kanati and Selu. Selu is also known as the Corn mother. They had one son, whose brother was born from the blood of the animals that Kanati killed while providing food for his family. Kanati daily rolled a great stone from in front of a cave which contained animals, such as turkey, bear, and deer. Once an animal came out Kanati would shoot it and then roll the great stone back in place. Selu would provide corn for the meals by producing it from her body. The two boys killed Selu and drug her body across the ground, from which corn began growing. The two boys rolled the great stone from in front of the cave and let all of the animals out at once. Kanati and Selu now live in the west, and the two boys live further in the west. The two boys can be heard as thunder when the storms come from the west.

Seven represents the number of cardinal directions, east, north, south, and west, in addition to the center, above, and below. Seven is representative of the number of original tribal clans. An eighth clan was formed after Columbus came.


Cardinal Numbers (1-10)

Ordinal Numbers (First - Tenth)


Dancing Boys and the Origin of the Seven Stars
The legend known as "the dancing boys and the origin of the seven stars" is retold here as it was told by West Long.
There was once seven boys who used to spend all their time dancing. They did nothing but dance around in a circle with their drum. Their parents tried to induce them to stop but they did not obey. They kept on dancing. One time their parents decided to do something about it. They went to force them to stop. As they got near the dancing place they saw the boys rising in the air. And so they rose into the sky dancing, and they are there now. The smallest star is said by some to be the drum, but others think this star is only the smallest of boys.


Eight Clans
There were seven clans before Columbus (BC) and eight clans after Columbus (AC). Feathers of different colors were worn to designate to which clan the person belonged.

 

 

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