Medicine Wheel Native American Teachings Explained?

The Medicine Wheel Native American Teachings is of a circle, a symbol, which is filled with many of the teachings and wisdom past down from generation to generation in the First Nations culture.

These teachings, protocols, and wisdom vary from tribe to tribe, elder to elder, person to person. So come along with us and let’s explore just some of the teachings of the medicine wheel.

Jeff Ward, From Membertou, First Nation teaches us some lessons about the Medicine Wheel.

Medicine Wheel Native American

The Medicine Wheel depending on who taught you or where you come from can be stones that are in a circle, around a fire, around a sweat lodge or the inside of a hand drum is a medicine wheel but much of the teachings are still the same

Why is Everything in Four?

Medicine Wheel Native American

The number 4 is very sacred in the First Nations Peoples culture. The number could be found 4 time in everything all around us whether its the life cycle, the seasons, or the four directions everything is in 4 so thats why in a-lot of ceremonies elders will actually pray in four parts or four directions because of the protocols or beliefs that has been passed down onto them, so with that let us explore a little more deeper in this ancient knowledge.


Why the colors?

Medicine Wheel Native American

Medicine Wheel Native American

Depending on your tribe the medicine wheel may look very different as you can see from the photos above. The Sioux people have mainly used the medicine wheel with the color black and the Cree or Ojibway use the color blue.

The colors are believed to come from the colors that make up that direction they are in. East would be yellow because that is where the sun rises, south would be red to represent the red lands or earth from that direction.

west would be blue or yellow depending upon the tribe which one is from to represent the setting of the sun for that is where is sets and the sky becomes blue or black, finally we have the north which represents the white snow that is covering the land to the north.

These colors can also be literally the people of the earth. The color white representing the white people, the color yellow representing the asian people, the color red to represent the First Nations People, And the color black to represent the black people.

The Seasons of the Year.

Medicine Wheel Native American

The 4 seasons (spring, summer, fall, and winter) are also represented in the medicine wheel’s colors. Yellow represents spring. Red represents summer Black represents fall, White symbolizes the winter season.


The Life Cycle.

One of the many medicine wheel teachings talks about the cycle of life from when you were a baby to a little child to a young adult to an elder when you pass over.

Like the sun rising from the east to mark the beginning of the day, the infants are placed onto the east or yellow side. Following the direction, the sun travels every day (Clockwise) the next would be the youth, then the young adults and parents, followed by the grandparents and elders then return back to the spirit world at the end of the cycle.

The elements of the Medicine Wheel

The number again pop us up but this time in the elements which are Air, Fire,Earth, Water.


The Plants of the Medicine Wheel

The 4 main plants or medicines used by First Nation People are Cedar, Tobacco, Sweetgrass, and Sage. All four are very sacred amongst First Nations tribes all over North America and are used for various purposes such as prayer and offerings.

The Medicine Wheel within you.

Right now you’re made of four different areas emotional spiritual mental and physical. You cannot exist if you take one of those areas is taken away, also if you’re not happy right now it’s because one of those areas is not getting attention.

Physically if you not taking care of your body you will not be able to enjoy life is you are unhealthy. Emotionally if maybe you’re not sharing your emotions in a good and healthy way then you will not be happy even if you are in shape.

Mentally they say if you don’t use it you’re gonna lose it that’s why a lot of elders doing crossword puzzles and games, So its good for people to continue to do education and continue to read as it keeps them sharp.

Most importantly spiritually no matter what faith you follow, you need faith. So if you take care of and maintain all four are you’ll have balance in your life and balance leads to happiness.

That’s what the Medicine Wheel Native American teachings are all about is to help guide and Find Balance in all aspects of life.

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[…] existed in harmony. The plants, the animals, and the elements of the Four Directions (all existence) all knew that if the two leggeds were to survive, they would need […]

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