How Do Dream Catchers Work?
The dream catcher is a great gift for people who love spiritual and mystic decorations, or even a great treat for yourself to add personality to your home decoration! Dream catchers are beautiful decorations for the bedroom and can come in a variation of colours and sizes, but their spiritual symbolism is something that adds great value to the lives of people who have them.
The dream catchers come from the Native American culture, and are something that have been part of the culture for generations. The circular frame relates to the Native American fascination with the hoop, a valued symbol of strength and unity in this culture. It is believed the dream catcher originated from the Ojibwa Chippewa tribe who used to tie strands of sinew string around a bent wooden frame that was fashioned into a small circular or tear drop shape. These weaved patterns mirrored the webbings used for their snowshoes.
The Native Americans strongly believe that our starry night skies are filled with good and bad dreams that can enter our subconscious while we sleep. Hanging a dream catcher above your head will catch the bad dreams, in its web, while you sleep. The bad dreams do not know how to untangle themselves and are therefore vanquished in the first light of day. Whilst the pure and good dreams will pass through the intricate weaving and pass down the soft feathers to influence the dreamer below it. Natives believe that the dream catcher blesses the ‘sleeping ones’ with pleasant dreams that are visions that help them throughout their life. It is believed that when you have had a good night’s sleep you have remembered when the spirits have spoken with you.
The legend goes, according to the Lakota story, that Iktomi (a spider) came and spoke to an old Lakota spiritual leader in a vision while he was on a high mountain. Iktomi, the searcher of wisdom, spoke to the leader in a sacred language, while he bestowed his knowledge onto the leader. He picked up the elder’s willow hoop that had feathers, horsehair and beads on it. Iktomi began to spin a web as he told the elder about the cycles of life- starting our lives as infants, the progression through childhood to adulthood and completing the cycle with old age, where we must once again be taken care of as if we are infants. Iktomi warned the leader about the good and bad forces which determine our paths.
Once Iktomi had finished his web he presented the elder with the result, a perfectly circular web with a hole in its centre. He told the elder to help the people who believed in the Great Spirit to attain their goals, to find great ideas, dreams and vision by using this gift.
Dream catchers were given to babies, hung above cradles to promote good dreams for the new born, and larger ones were hung in the lodges to promote good dreams for everyone that slept there.