Everything Included

David Lemon
[from newsletter 11]

For me, ceremony is all about prayer. The structure of the ceremony, and the sacrifices many ceremonies include, help me focus my prayer. They remind me why I'm here, and point me toward a good way to pray. It seems to me that the point of ceremony is to remove distractions, clearing a path for Spirit. I know that Creator is always near, but when I sit in ceremony, I'm more likely to pay attention and pray from my heart.

Different ceremonies seem to speak to different things in me, and I suspect there is a right ceremony for any person at any time. I've seen many kinds of ceremony, and felt moved by many of them. But only Red Road ceremony has involved so much of me, working with my body and emotions, mind and spirit. Red Road ceremony also includes community; I share my prayer with "all my relations," and their prayer is part of me. When ceremony includes everything, it works on everything. With my whole world as a foundation, I can be open to something much greater, to feel for the Creator's direction.

Ceremony gives me a good way to pray, and includes so much, because of where it comes from. Every ceremony began as an inspiration, a point of contact between people and the Creator. Each elder who touches a ceremony adds his or her own experience, so the form I receive embodies both the original inspiration and many generations of wisdom. This is why I see ceremony as an amazing gift.

—A Ho, David Lemon

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