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Old 09-23-2008, 02:07 PM   #41
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Quote:
Originally Posted by skybird5 View Post
It sounds like an interesting sociological experiment...lets sprinkle some ashes and tell everyone about it in a round about way and see what happens!!

Two things: 1. It's just a pow wow and 2. It's just ashes!! Ashes from a dead body are an inanimate object which have no power until someone wants to put that fear out there, because they don't know what else to think or do with the information. I can completely understand WHY someone may have done this, probably because the person who died LOVED to dance or sing or both and wanted part of their cremains to be placed in the area that they LOVED. True, it may not be the usual thing that Native Americans would do with a dead body, because we carry our thoughts of those who have passed on in our hearts and minds and in the dances and songs and not generally in "objects" as such, but it's not a completely unheard of practice to sprinkle ashes somewhere.

And I say the It's Just a Pow Wow with the utmost respect for traditions, but it's really just an intertribal gathering of singing and dancing, where the true spirit of family and friends and tradition can be felt, so where better to WANT to have some ashes sprinkled?
It's not like there aren't other DEAD things in the arena anyway, what with all the feathers from DEAD birds, the leather from DEAD deer, elk, cow, the bones and teeth and shells of other once living animals, who are we to discount them as any less important than that of a human?
I say it's over and done with, for all we know, it could happen at every pow wow and no one would even know any better...next time you're dancing an you see those cigarette ashes, better think twice, LOL!!


Although-The whole situation does beg the question...what next? An ashes sprinkling song???? An Ashes pick up song???? A separate arbor section just for anyone who wants to bring ashes of their loved ones as a sort of tribute area? A special and giveaway of the persons ashes in little pouches? The possiblities are endless.
Before everyone has a cow and fires up the witch hunt torches...

I think there is truth to some of what Skybird is saying. Some of us know that at certain pws, some "traditions" are questionable in their origin. (I DON"T want to get specific) As as powwow has evolved and continues to evolve among our many different tribes, some of these "traditions" vary and evolve also...... So this brings us all back to the topic of which tribe is doing it in the "right" way..... And we all know it isn't Navajos

And as I said before, Navajos have strong taboos on death, so I don't think we would approve of ashes being sprinkled the arena.
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Old 09-23-2008, 02:09 PM   #42
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Josiah View Post
I have a Theory...
How many watched the Olympics this year???
Well when I first read of this "incident" the first thing I thought of was Misty May-Treanor....
After she won the gold medal in Volleyball, she sprinkled some ashes of her dead mother on the sand! Apparently she also did this in 2004 after they won that gold medal...

Ok
This is pure speculation, but I can sure picture someone sitting at home and watching that!
Also I can picture they had read in the local papers a Powwow was to be held in their local area
Hmmmm
They think, what would be a cool thing than to sprinkle the ashes of my loved one in such a place
Sure sounds like a monkey see monkey do...

Just a Theory....
WOW! I'm surprised China let her bring her mother's ashes into thier country.... And very interesting speculation.... I definetly can see this happening...
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Old 09-23-2008, 02:26 PM   #43
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I think people would be surprised about how many times they may have danced in arenas where a loved ones ashes have been spread. I've heard of this being done before, but it was done when no one was around and not during pow-wow time. It was done with prayers and tears.

Once it rains, all should be washed away....
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Old 09-23-2008, 03:07 PM   #44
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I also saw Misty May sprinkle her mom's ashes in China AND she did that at Athens too. Why wouldn't the country let her bring them in, they aren't DRUGS or anything illegal.

Maybe some people are a bit confused about what constitutes "ashes", it's actually pulvarized bone fragments that are left after the body is cremated. It's not really ashes at all. And a very small amount can be placed in any type of container or locket or vial and transported without any one else's knowledge. Heck, some dancer could be wearing parts of their relative in a locket around their neck and other participants would never know it.
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Old 09-23-2008, 03:20 PM   #45
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Quote:
Originally Posted by skybird5 View Post
I also saw Misty May sprinkle her mom's ashes in China AND she did that at Athens too. Why wouldn't the country let her bring them in, they aren't DRUGS or anything illegal.

Maybe some people are a bit confused about what constitutes "ashes", it's actually pulvarized bone fragments that are left after the body is cremated. It's not really ashes at all. And a very small amount can be placed in any type of container or locket or vial and transported without any one else's knowledge. Heck, some dancer could be wearing parts of their relative in a locket around their neck and other participants would never know it.

I was just thinking China was so strict about who goes in and out, that maybe they might not like someone bring in ashes... I know what cremated remains are.....
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Old 09-23-2008, 03:50 PM   #46
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You used the word "just and "respect" in the same sentence. The words "just a powwow or ashes" minimize or discounts the event and then you say "utmost respect" and expect me to believe your ideas. You speak of death of objects like you have little respect for it. Are you really that desensitized? Yes, sprinkling of ashes has been done many times in many places everyday and sometimes at powwow grounds. The difference is CHOICE. If this observance took place while I was at dinner break and I was told after the fact, yes, I'm troubled by it! In this particular situation, we are told the committee and staff had little control over what one person planned on doing and I am saddened for all involved.
I am intrigued by your question "what next" hummmm I hope it doesn't go that far.
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Old 09-23-2008, 03:59 PM   #47
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Now the lady who started this thread simply asked for opinions and what other's thought.

I don't agree with Skybird5 in may ways, but they are giving their opinion here.

It is not a minimal thing really, it is over and done with and was taking care of in a good way as soon as anyone found out about it.

But it was very disrespectful to all participants of the powwow due to the fact that it was an intertribal and there were many different Tribes there and many of them do have beliefs of not "Dancing on the dead" as it had been said to me and other's have beliefs of staying away from that as well. So it is not minimal really and I don't think that we should take it that way. But it is over with and was taken care of. And no one associated with the pow wow or involved in any copacity knew about it until after the fact and that was very disrespectful to all involved.

So to discuss it and find out what other's would do or how they would feel is a good thing, to debate and judge is not going to help any of us out, really. Just my opinion here on this one too.

Um the comment about someone wearing the ashes of a relative in the circle really is mute here because they didn't put the urn there with the ashes, they dumped the ashes out on the ground in the center of the arena. And what a person wears on or with their regalia is totally their business and if it's in a lockit--then it's sealed and not likely to blow on anyone. That's covered again by the statement on the other page "If you don't know about it would it bother you?"

Last edited by timmy tiger; 09-23-2008 at 04:03 PM..
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Old 09-23-2008, 05:00 PM   #48
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"If you don't know about it would it bother you?"
Yes it probably would, and probably a lot of people when they start having dreams about this person, or wonder why they are getting sick.
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Old 09-23-2008, 06:17 PM   #49
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Originally Posted by Kakeeya View Post
Yes it probably would, and probably a lot of people when they start having dreams about this person, or wonder why they are getting sick.
I have to agree with you on this one. I had to get "cleaned off" when I got home because Saturday night I had some vicious, vivid dreams about death and body parts. It was terrible. At the time, I didn't think it bothered me that much but it did.
I also hold certain beliefs that although dead, there is still a spirit associated with "remains"......be those of a body or ashes or bone fragments. Those spirits need time to get where they are going. In our tribe, there is certain protocal to make sure this happens. I think, if it didn't feel right, it probably wasn't. I did what I had to for me and my family in the way I know how.
Call me "superstitious", "dramatic", or whatever you want but it wasn't something that I could just shrug off like, "oh, just ashes."
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Old 09-23-2008, 06:42 PM   #50
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kiyaanii mom View Post
Coming from a tribe that has strong taboos on being around the dead (and I would assume their ashes), I'm sure this would definitely bother the people attending a powwow if it happen in this area....

It was very rude and disrespectful to the host, for the person who did this to not make this request before taking action!!! And I feel that would be the constant response no matter where this happen.

Powwow is not a tradition of our tribe, although many of our people have adopted it's ways.

I have to agree. If someone from my mom's tribe were there, this would have a drastic impact on their spiritual well being, as probably with a few other tribes.
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Old 09-23-2008, 06:47 PM   #51
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This has provoked some good thoughts eh?

Mine are this:
1. Total disrespect. It's probably good no one knows who did this 'cause they would've gotten a serious what for then the real discussions would have started.
2. Where was the AD? I'm sorry but even at the dinner break the AD or somebody should be around. I know that sometimes the committee asks the AD to do way too many things, but preventing this kind of thing is one of the primary responsibilities.
3. I would at least consider moving the arena and kinda marking off that spot for a year or two.
4. As for dealing with multiple traditions (which should be a forum in and of itself) things like this you kinda have to go with how many people in your area have serious taboos about this- if it is most folks then don't do it, if it is one or two you might want to talk it out some more and see why they have an objection. In this case maybe closing down the arena might have been in order, or maybe they handled it right on- just depends.
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Old 09-23-2008, 07:28 PM   #52
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I wouldn't go dance on someone's grave............and sure wouldn't want to dance on someone's ashes.
It's just not right.
Besides that........you'd carry those ashes home on your moc's.....your leggings.......you clothes.
I just don't think that's right.
There should be respect for those that have gone on........and for those still here.

Last edited by NancyJo; 09-23-2008 at 07:30 PM.. Reason: adding a thought
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Old 09-23-2008, 09:21 PM   #53
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ndneyez View Post
I have to agree with you on this one. I had to get "cleaned off" when I got home because Saturday night I had some vicious, vivid dreams about death and body parts. It was terrible. At the time, I didn't think it bothered me that much but it did.
I also hold certain beliefs that although dead, there is still a spirit associated with "remains"......be those of a body or ashes or bone fragments. Those spirits need time to get where they are going. In our tribe, there is certain protocal to make sure this happens. I think, if it didn't feel right, it probably wasn't. I did what I had to for me and my family in the way I know how.
Call me "superstitious", "dramatic", or whatever you want but it wasn't something that I could just shrug off like, "oh, just ashes."
I totally agree with u on this one... and I say the same thing as far as u say.. call me superstitious or whatever.. I've seen some stuff in that circle that is pretty tough to explain and bringing something like this into the circle can and does make people sick and spiritually unbalanced and I go back to my last statement as far as adding my prayers to those involved and am thankful that it was taken care of as best as possible..
db
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Old 09-23-2008, 09:36 PM   #54
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Quote:
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Yes it probably would, and probably a lot of people when they start having dreams about this person, or wonder why they are getting sick.
Well, now that was a quote from someone else from a previous page here.

Now you said "Probably", well I can tell you for sure that I would have effects from it for a fact. I didn't know about the ashes until after the pow wow sat night and long before I ever found out about them I told someone that I was feeling funny and I didn't know why. It was the weirdst thing for me. And that wasn't the first time it happened to me (no I've never been anywhere where someone did anything like that before--it was different, but similar)--again I hadn't been told--yet and I knew something was not right. So I can say first hand that it would effect me for sure, but that doesn't mean that it would everyone, many yes, but not everyone. And the one person who said "Choice" is right, no one was asked or given the choice until after it was done. And even though I had effects before I ever knew about it, I still say that they did the best that they could and I don't hold any grudges against anyone there.

I did not have dreams, but I did have effects and spoke of not feeling right long before I found out about what had actually happen.
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Old 09-24-2008, 12:18 PM   #55
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I was there and I didn't know anything about it until I saw this thread, because I left Saturday night and did not return on Sunday.

These are the remains of a human being and I believe strongly that people should be treated with respect after death, as in life.

I hope I didn't step on him.

Last edited by neling4; 09-24-2008 at 12:30 PM..
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Old 09-24-2008, 12:20 PM   #56
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Neling I know that you did not step on him that's for sure 'cause you stayed to the outside of the arena the whole time that we danced, so that is not a worry there.
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Old 09-24-2008, 01:00 PM   #57
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What a creepy situation! I have a lot of repsect for death, it's obvious to me that the person who did this doesn't. They might've been "honoring" the request of the person who passed, but you can't just go around forcing others to be a part of it, i think it was a selfish act. It just makes me wonder what kind of person would do that? Most of us, as you've read, have beliefs or ways about handling these things and then all of a sudden someone wonders into a powwow and leaves someones remains there??? WTF?!??! Where I come from, we don't even burn bodies, imagine how we would've had to deal with that!
I just don't understand people and the reasons they do the things they do....

This reminds me of the first DC powwow they had on the National mall back in 2002, it was HOT! like hotter than 10 hells hot!! and people were having a hard time....unfortunately, this guy that came all the way from the northwest had a heart attack and died right there in the dance circle....it was scary! We did what we needed to do (my family) and the powwow committee decided to just block off that area where he fell and continued on with the powwow. Then we hear another person got taken away in the ambulance & passed away....there were a lot of weird things happening and it was blamed on the heat/temperature.
SHOOT...I even passed out right after contest, standing in line to get judged. It was crazy!!
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Old 09-24-2008, 01:30 PM   #58
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Now you said "Probably", well I can tell you for sure that I would have effects from it for a fact.
Okay so I said "probably" yeah I said that and I said that because some people would get bothered and some people wouldn't, not everyone will have dreams or get sick or have strong reactions from being around human remains, ashes. Some people think of it as just ashes, and thats all a persons remains are to them, just ashes. I'm not one of those people.

I also am aware that the person that did this horrible thing at the powwow didn't consult with anyone and did it on their own, but after the committee found out then there should have been blessings for everyone up the ying yang as someone said. I'm not going to post on this anymore and am going to let it go. Arguing about people's remains is not something that I care to be a part of, just trying to let my opinion be out there.

Last edited by Kakeeya; 09-24-2008 at 03:29 PM.. Reason: said too much on this subject
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Old 09-24-2008, 01:32 PM   #59
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okay i am 99% sure i i know where this powwow is.

I've been there a few times and honestly never felt right there. Always creepy vibes goin on but maybe thats just me.

Im seriously not feeling well just reading this. I've always been taught certain things about death and handling death. Shoot, we have certain "protocol" for the deceased persons things and belongings after they pass on. Everything has a piece of that persons spirit especially their ashes. Cmon now that is the person!!!

I stopped going to this powwow for my own reasons after last year.
And in my own opinion here im not too confident on the "ceremonies" that went on to take care of this deceased person.
but maybe they know how the 'mohicans' did it?? *hint hint*

sure you want your loved one to be put to rest somewhere they loved to be but cmon have a little respect for others and find a better way to do this.
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Old 09-24-2008, 01:40 PM   #60
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Honestly here, I'm not arguing with anyone, just stating my opinions here as well.

There were many ceramony's going on and being taken care of.

And if you don't feel comfortable, then sure don't go, there is no problem with that at all.

But to blame a whole event for one persons dis-respect is where I do have a problem with and I'm still not arguing, just stating the way that I see it as well.
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