Series7_Map1

This continuation of the Medicine (Prayer) Stick page is meant to serve mostly educational and interpretive purposes.

The pictures on this page were taken from the original Medicine (Prayer) Stick.

I recently uncovered a similar item on sale at a flea market in the northeastern part of the United States.  The dealer who had his item for sale had a piece made of very similar wood, with the root burl, but no carvings. I asked him what part of the US he purchased this from and he said somewhere in New England along the St. Lawrence Seaway routes that he travels, perhaps as far north as Maine. He was also in possession of a traditional Iroquois War club, carved into the traditional round bulbous end piece.

Both of these items he and I figured were probably for the late 1800s, early 1900s, and were possibly sold as tourist items at one of the old county fairs or Indian shows.

The photos on this page were taken discretely from the original piece illustrated by the fine line drawings from the other page.  It is hard to believe that those drawings were made one morning on a Saturday about twenty years ago. (How time flies!)

These photos are taken for serious inquisitors trying to understand the philosophy and discipline behind the use for these objects.  To retain some of the proper honor or respect to this ceremonial item, the entire object isn’t photographer and a special filter has been applied.

These photos provide any anthropologists out there a little more insight into the making of this object, and hopefully its underlying philosophy.  On another page, the fine line drawings are positioned next to the object as it was held while producing these drawings.

Comparing the photographs with the drawings demonstrates how drawings, due to their slightly different rendering of the object, can be used to effectively express the meaning of this object philosophically, as its user might interpret it or see into its uses and “powers”.  The drawing depicts it is such a way that is normally not seen by the naked eye or through pictures of the object itself.   This also demonstrates the value of the human impressions brought about by the appearances of this ceremonial object.  There is a certain meaning that we assign the appearance of these things, its symbolism as a unique rendering of someone’s innermost health and religious philosophy.  This makes the prayer stick more than just a uniquely shaped piece of wood, with superficial ideology and a simple philosophy attached to its meaning and use.

Such interpretations are made in order to convert this object into something of good use.  Despite its war-club like appearances, based mostly on its burly, knotty and very pointy surface at its upper end, this humanizing process is essential to making the best use of it as a ceremonial object.  For this reason, I am providing these images for review by people interested in this tradition-based philosophy for this object, and its potential uses.  This same reasoning can be used to produce your own objects, should you so choose.  Which is another reason I have posted this page followed by Part 3 in a few weeks.

This page displays different views of the object in parts, not as a whole, with some renderings of these photos taken for later comparison with the fine line drawings I made.   These comparisons will be displayed on the next of in this series: A Medicine or Prayer Stick, Part 3.

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Series16

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Series2

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Series3

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Series4

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Series5

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Series7_Map1

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Series7_Map2

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Series7_Map3

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Series7_Map4

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Series7_Map5

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Series7_Map6

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Series8

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Series9

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Series10

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Series11

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Series12

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Series13

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Series14

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Series15

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Series16

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Series6_symbols

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Series17_shaft`

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Series17_shaft2

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Series17_shaft3

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