There is a fundamental truth that all people are entitled to inalienable rights as children of the Creator. Some of those rights include the freedom of thought, religion, speech, education, and methods of healing. In Native American Tradition, as long as our rights do not stop others from enjoying their same rights, we were free to follow the life path of choice.
The intelligence that was bestowed upon us has given us the ability to take charge of our own lives, treat others with respect, defend our rights, live a peaceful life, and to insure the blessings of our Native American culture, traditions, teachings, and so forth for ourselves and our children.
Our rights allow everyone a great variety in which to express ourselves, our culture, and our religion. We desire to not only preserve the Spiritual Ceremonies and Traditional Practices of the Native Americans, but to also preserve the Spiritual Ceremonies and Traditional Practices of all Indigenous Peoples. We understand the Creator communicates with all peoples of the world and people can use this knowledge for their own enlightenment. By joining with our brother and sisters throughout the world, healing of the people and planet can occur.
Because we are a Living Church with the ability to encompass the entire world with our membership, we are open to all Ceremonies and Traditional Practices that “First, Do Good”. Below are just a few bona fide Ceremonies from our Sacred Writings, Stories, Traditions, and so forth. If you desire a Ceremony to be reviewed and placed in our archives as a bona fide practice of the New Haven Native American Church, please send us an explanation of the Ceremony for us to review.
Our Ceremonies first manifest themselves from the promptings of the Great Spirit. We have found regular practice of the Ceremonies enhance the participant's ability to Walk in Faith, Gratitude, Humility, Charity, Respect, Honor, Forgiveness, and to assist in living with respect for all our relations. This respect leads to a responsible and peaceful existence on this planet.
Here are a few bona fide Native American Rituals or Ceremonies to assist in learning more:
Blessing Way (Birth) Ceremony – Honors the passing into a new existence of all earthly beings.
Bundle Ceremony – Reminds us that we are all relations and that the Medicine Wheel is incorporated into all areas of our life.
Cry for a Vision – Assists one in establishing a direct connection to the Creator.
Ghost Dance (Circle Dance or Spirit Dance) – A celebration of all relations living in peace and gratitude.
Green Corn – A celebration of forgiveness and new beginnings. With regard to the Seminole’s Green Corn Dance, Danny Billie says, "It defines who we are and what we are as traditional Indian people. It is the heart and soul of the traditional Seminole way of life.”
Holy Anointing – Throughout history, Medicine People have been aware of the effects of the prayers of faith and the essences of healing herbs. Being anointed by holy and healing oils can have a powerful beneficial effect on the body, mind and spirit.
Laying on of Hands – Often used in conjunction with the Holy Anointing Ceremony. This Ceremony is for the transfer of energies or prayer to assist in healing the body, mind, and spirit.
Making Relations (Spiritual Adoption) – Mostly a way for the President of the Native American Church to bring in new members, but this Ceremony can also be used personally as a way for individuals to establish a family unit to care for and nurture one another.
Marriage Blanket – Honors the public with an open commitment of two or more people to serve the human family unit for life and eternity.
Passing On of the Spirit – Honors the passing of any earthly being into the next realm of Existence.
Peyote (Looks Within) – Three important purposes for this ceremony are 1) to rediscover one’s innate goodness; 2) to assist in the forgiveness process for oneself and others; and 3) to reside in truth (good health in all areas -- Spiritually, Emotionally/Mentally and Physically).
Potlatch – The gift-giving or re-distribution of wealth. It is a great honor to serve humanity by distributing one’s excess resources.
Prayer Pipe (Chanunpa) – Three important purposes for this ceremony are 1) to remind the participants to honor and respect the power of prayer; 2) to assist in unity and respect of male and female differences; and 3) to activate the Law of Synergy to assist all participants in achieving their heartfelt desires.
Public Adoption Ceremony – Honors the Spiritually Adopted Member into the Family/Community.
Sacrament (Communion) Ceremony – This Ceremony is in remembrance of the sacrifice of the Lamb of God and to walk the life path he taught.
Sacred Breath – Two important purposes for this ceremony are 1) to welcome the Great Spirit into every cell of one’s body; and 2) to assist the participant in experiencing unconditional love.
Sacred Giveaway – Normally a more private practice between two parties, this ceremony is similar to the Potlatch. Sharing gifts and services between peoples is considered an honor.
Santo Daime – A Spiritual Work with the Daime Sacrament combined with prayers, singing, concentration.
Sun Dance – This Ceremony offers oneself as sacrifice to lead a life of service.
Sweat Lodge – Abundant with symbolism, this sacrifice is to assist the participants to honor themselves and respect "All Relations".
Vision Quest (Hanblecheyapi) – Enables human beings to re-remember and understand the mission that they had previously committed to achieve before their spirit assumed its earthly body and to introduce them to or discover their spirit guides or inspirations.
Welcoming of the New Baby – Welcomes the new child into the Family/Community.