The night sky is full of magic. Indigenous people across the world have their own varied star lore stories of Star Spirits and how the Stars came to be. Most indigenous cultures say that their people came from the Stars and when they die, they travel back to the stars on the Path of Souls. These Stars and constellations of Star patterns are Cygnus, Orion, Pleiades, Great Bear, Vega, Lyra, Andromeda and Sirius.
We come from the Stars: Cygnus, Great Bear, Vega, Lyra, Pleiades, Orion, Sirius, Andromeda galaxy.
Have you ever gone out at night, looked up at the stars and seen what looked like a bridge of light stretched across the sky? When you see a bridge of Stars arching overhead, what you are really seeing is the outer rim of our galaxy, much like the outer edge of a disk seen from its side. Galaxies are big constellations of Stars. While other Stars are very big, constellations can have as many as 400 billion Stars, maybe more. To say the least, that is incredible!
Our Milky Way
This is the Milky Way is the galaxy that we live in, where our Sun and Planets live. The Milky way is shaped like a giant pinwheel, spiral galaxy. There are over 100 billion Stars in the Milky Way galaxy. It is over 1000,000 light years away. The Cherokees call it the “river in the Sky,” with a turtle swimming along the river’s bottom stirring up the sand. The Sioux and Pawnee called it the “ghost trail” the path where the spirits of those that die walk from the Earth into the Sky. The ancient, indigenous Egyptians said it was a heavenly River Nile. The Greeks and Romans called it a “river of milk.” The Milky Way connects our Earth to our Sky. The closest, major galaxy to our Milky Way galaxy is the Andromeda galaxy.
How to find the Polaris, Little Bear & Great Bear in the Sky
The most famous of all single Stars is Polaris, also called the North Star. It is important for finding your way when travelling across planet Earth. Some indigenous people have called Polaris by the name, “the-star-which-does-not-walk-around.” Polaris is a stationary star closest to the celestial North Pole. The Earth’s north pole points to Polaris. The Skidi Pawnee people called Polaris the Chief Star who watched over all other stars.
Polaris never moves! It stands still in the northern hemisphere. Its energy can stabilize any situation in our lives. There are times in all our lives when we feel like things are out of control. Things may seem a bit chaotic around us. Polaris brings calmness and stability. It helps us find our way when we feel lost.
How to find Sirius: The 3 belt stars point downwards to Sirius
Star Gazing Ceremony
1. Go outside on a clear night and find the North Star. Smudge yourself and your space to release any negative energy so that you can be clear and bright as a star yourself. Look towards the north for the Big Dipper and Little Dipper. Polaris is the last star on the handle of the Little Dipper which is not very bright. Introduce yourself to Polaris by calling out its name. Tell Polaris that you wish its help to become a stronger, more courageous, and dependable human being. Tell it that if you are stronger, you know that you will be better at everything you do.
Drawing the Star Nation down to you
2. Imagine seeing yourself holding a bag. Inside the bag is an object (ball, crystal, rock, book, plant, etc.) that represents all the qualities you are asking Polaris to give to you. Visualize Polaris reaching into the bag and taking out the object that contains all these powers. The object is a symbol for all the star powers that you are seeking from Polaris. Alternatively, you could make your own physical star bundle that holds the power of the stars that will impart strength, courage and stability to you. You can do a “drawing down” of the power from the stars now that you have met the Spirit of Polaris.
3. Give thanks to Polaris for it being there and for its life force and power, as well as for the guidance it gives to all navigators. Breathe in deeply as you imagine a stream of Starlight coming from Polaris filling up your body, enlivening you and enriching you with its power. Now repeat this process six more times. Imagine yourself and your life growing stable and calm. Feel yourself strengthened and clear. Feel your body filling with Starlight. Ask Polaris to make you steadier, more reliable, stronger and dependable.
Pattern of Star movement around the stationary star Polaris in the celestial Sky
4. Give thanks to Polaris for sharing its power with you. Give the star an offering of your choice, perhaps a small piece of crystal, a hair from your head, a coin, or something else of your choosing. Before you go inside, honor the entire Star Nation by giving them thanks for being there and for being your friends. Finally, perform a grounding exercise to keep you rooted in Mother Earth. You can dance, stomp your feet or do some deep, low chants.
It is quite wonderful when you establish a relationship with a specific Star or the whole Star Nation. You can apply this Ceremony similarly to the Sun, Mother Earth or Moon.
This article is excerpted from the many Star Teachings from the late Page Bryant, a teacher of the Bear Tribe Medicine Society for many years. You can find a list of her books on my site:
Legend of the Great Bear
The Micmac Indians of Nova Scotia and the Iroquois Indians along the St. Lawrence seaway share one story about the Big Bear. In this story, the quadrangle of the dipper represents a bear that is pursued by seven hunters; the three closest hunters are the handle of the dipper. As autumn approaches, the four farthest hunters dip below the horizon and abandon the hunt, leaving the closest three hunters to chase the bear. The hunters are all named after birds. The closest hunter to the bear is named Robin, the second closest is Chickadee, and the third is Moose Bird. Chickadee is carrying the pot in which the bear will be cooked.
The second star in the handle is actually two stars [the famous double star system] called Mizar and Alcor which represent Chickadee and the pot. In autumn, as the bear attempts to stand up on two legs, Robin wounds the bear with an arrow. The wounded bear sprays blood on Robin, who shakes himself and in the process colors the leaves of the forest red; some blood stains Robin and he is henceforth called Robin Redbreast. The bear is eaten, and the skeleton remains traveling through the sky on its back during winter. During the following spring a new bear leaves the den and the eternal hunt resumes once more.