Places With Traces of The Mahatma
July 29, 2013 – 12:55 am | No Comment
  Mahatma Gandhi, the man who has been hailed as the greatest leader of all times and the man who taught the mankind how peace can prevail in this world by using non violent methods. To follow a few years of Gandhi’s life one has visit a few places in Gujarat where we can follow and identify the footsteps of Mahatma Gandhi. A visit to Porbander and you will be in the historical city which  [...]

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Exploring the Aborigines Spirit

Posted on June 1, 2010 | FestivalsNo Comment

Festivals are celebrated throughout the world, by different varieties of castes, tribes, cultures, and sex. The main reason as to why festivals are celebrated can be attributed to many factors, but the foremost one is fear in God. Apart from this, celebrating festivals can be attributed to also taking a week or a day leave from the strenuous schedule of work and being with family and friends, or just adding a day onto our culture diary!

The Aboriginals in Canada has a number of festivals that they celebrate. Some of them still exist, while others have swept away with time.

The Morning Dance

The Morning Dance takes place every Spring by the Ojibwa, Southern Ontario. It can also be called as Wabeno. The Aboriginals fast and cleanse themselves before an elder male member plays the drum and the leads the dance in a clearing around a selected tree. They dance around the place from dawn to noon. As each dancer goes around the tree, the drummer signals the dancer to touch the trunk of the tree and give thanks for providing them with shelter and the means to cook food. A huge feast of fish and meat is served around midday.

Morning Dance

The Sun Dance

This is a summer festival of the aborigines that take place in the Great Plains. This festival lasts over a period of eight to sixteen days. The circle is an important symbol for the aborigines and they acknowledge and respect the sun as the “giver of life”. They dance around a “central cottonwood pole” or the “tree of the universe”. The dancers embed sharp wooden hooks deep into their chest and connect the skewers to the leather thongs, that trail from the top to the bottom of the cottonwood pole. As they dance, they pull back on the thong and tear their flesh. They believe that if they sacrifice themselves to the Creator, they and their following generation will be blessed.

Sun dance aboriginal

The Potlatch Ceremony

This festival takes place in the NorthWest Pacific Coast nations. The aborigines usually celebrate this festival to feast, distribute wealth, share songs, and dances. The host organizes this feast to celebrate an important event like a marriage, or naming of an heir etc. Songs and dances are performed in honour of the Creator or the “Great Spirit”.

The Shaking Tent

This ritual is performed by the aborigines from the subarctic to the Great Lake region. It represents the supernatural world of the aborigines and their belief to the close relationship with the living. The ceremony is always celebrated at night and poles are dug deep into the soil and made to form circles to allow the spirit in.

These are some of the interesting festivals celebrated by the aborigines across Canada. The movie Australia (though based upon aborigines in another continent) is a classic example of the beliefs and the traditions of the aborigines. One must visit these places to know about them and the fact that some of them still prevail in the developed world!

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