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Old 11-13-2003, 09:00 AM   #1
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Arrow Jibz Vent...

Does anyone actually go through the proper channels anymore to be a Jingle dancer???:Yell Or do girls just one day decide that they are going to make themselves a dress and start dancing?

This irriatates me on a next level, because this dress originate's from my tribe. I am OJIBWE and I still don't have the right to wear that dress. I have to go thru a year of fasting and obstaining from wordly temptations before I could really consider myself worthy of dancing this style.

Perhaps this has been brought up in another forum or thread, but I believe this isssue belongs in this thread.

What do you all think?
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Old 11-13-2003, 09:21 AM   #2
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Well Jibby you already answered your own question pretty well, do what needs to be done, stick with the traditions that were handed down to you. Shortcuts are not worth it, so be true to your teachings and do the steps. If I were in your shoes that would be my approach! But the big question is,,, are you able to step aside from all those temptations!!!!!
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Old 11-13-2003, 09:35 AM   #3
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Thumbs up I whole heartedly agree with this!

Jibby, I totally agree with you. There's definitely a lot to consider.
I did some checking into this when I saw a jingle dress article written by Mariea Pine. Thanks to the good people at Noc Bay, I was able to get in contact with Mariea and got info not included because she saw that I wanted to do things the right way. I've also sought help from other sources.

I too wonder about how many people realize what a big undertaking it is to have the right to wear a jingle dress. Do they consider that you have to lead a clean lifestyle? How many jingle dress dancers realize that you can't carry out the responsibilities you undertake if you are intoxicated, high, or are doing something else to harm your body? That's just plain disrespect! I use to drink very little alcohol, but have made the decision to stay away from it (except the wine at church) because I never want to ever impair my ability to be in my right mind. I also do not smoke, and have never used drugs.

It's not about looking cool, sounding cool, or winning contests! There are a lot of responsibilities that go along with this dress. It is not to be taken lightly!
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Old 11-13-2003, 10:36 AM   #4
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Jingle Dress Has Spiritual Significance by Mariea Pine

Courtesy of Win Awenen Nisitotung

(reprinted in Twin Light Trail American Indian Review & First Nations Review No. 10 http://www.users.globalnet.co.uk/~tlt2auro/iss10.html )

Many years ago, a young Ojibiwa girl deep in the North Country became very sick. Her family to her to several medicine people and healers but no one could seem to help her.

During this time, a dream came to her. A dream of a dress that was constructed of broadcloth and tin cones. Cones which produced especially beautiful sound when worn and danced with. Teachings of the dress that would bring healing to her and her people. This dream brought the gift of the jingle dress to the Anishinabe people.

What sets the jingle dance and dress apart from the other styles of dance is that it has a spiritual and medicinal significance to it. In the dream, instructions were given to wear the dress to bring healing; this healing was to be spread among the people.

There are teachings to be learned prior to wearing the dress. Teachings involve the physical, spiritual, emotional, and mental balance needed to walk a good road. Today, that could be interpreted as living a clean lifestyle, free of drugs and alcohol or anything else that would hamper a healthy lifestyle.

A woman or girl becomes a jingle dress dancer through dreams of fasts. Once they have a dress, it is their responsibility to have certain ceremonies performed for the dress.

An Initiation ceremony takes place at the time of the person's first dance in the dress. There are different types of drum songs that also go along with the jingle dress.

Construction of the dress requires 365 cones, one for every day of the year. Cones are made by wrapping a piece of thin metal around a cedar stick. Traditionally, the lip of a snuff can lid would be cut off and the remaining meal wrapped into cones and attached to a dress made of broadcloth. Today, other metals and materials may be used.

A person may approach Jingle Dress Dancers with Samah (tobacco) and ask them to keep in mind a sick person while they perform the Jingle dance. When they begin to dance, the sound of the tin cones call in the healing power. To the beat of the drum, the dancers wave their fan to fan away sickness.

It is truly a great honour and responsibility to wear a Jingle dress; it should not be taken or worn just for the beauty of it.

Jibby, I hope this will be of some help.

Last edited by Suzizila; 11-13-2003 at 10:40 AM..
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Old 11-13-2003, 11:22 AM   #5
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Begining of Quote

Direct from the "Pow-wow '03" 9th Annual Great Lakes Pow-wow Guide


Page 36
Jingle Dance Restored Health To Community
by Joe Lilies

The year was 1974. The place, the White Earth Ojibway reservation on northern Minnesota. The Ojibway people were having a fall celebration to pay honor to the completion of the wild rice harvest.
The Ojibway people of the Great Lakes have always had a special relationship with wild rice. This was "the food that grows on water" that they were in search of when they began their great migration from the East. They found this food growing in the shallow natural lakes scattered around the Great Lakes region. It was here that most of their people stopped their westward movement and settled down.
A powwow was commencing on the grounds of the old government school. The usual fancy dancers and traditional dancers were there, but most people were watching as a dancer that no one had seen for a long time. This dancer was a woman wearing a Jingle Dress. On her dress were hundreds of tiny tin cones attached in geometric patterns. When she danced the cones made a sound that was unlike the bells worn by some of the other dancers. The dancer kept one hand on her waist. In this hand she carried a small purse beaded in a pattern of the flowers and leaves of the woodlands. In her other hand the dancer carried a white wing feather fan.
As she danced, a strange thing began to happen in the sky over the dance arena. At first it was a small red light that seemed to hover in the sky. This light was joined by many colors, sometimes in the shape of shimmering curtains, other times in streamers that shot across the sky. These were the Northern Lights. The Ojibway say that when these spirits come to dance in the sky, the Bear Power is at its greatest strenght.
When the people saw these things they remembered the origin of the Jingle Dress. This dress is not just a dance outfit. It is a ceremonial form of dress that was used by a society of women that was closely linked to the health of Indian People. This society can be traced to one woman. Her story is one that resides deep in the hearts of the Ojibway.
This story recounts a time when the people were very sick. They were dying before they could live out their normal lives. A young woman from these people was taken in her sleep one night up into the sky, into the Spirit World. Here, her grandfathers told her that she must return to her village and dance for her people. By her dancing, the people would be made well again.
As this young woman was being lowered back down to Earth, rain began to fall. As the rain hit her dress, tiny silver cones were formed. These cones lay in patterns from her shoulders to her feet. The shimmering, silver light given off by these cones reminded the woman of how things appeared in the Spirit World. Their sound reminded her of the sounds she expierienced above the Earth. This was the original sound of the Universe.
This young woman returned to her village and called all the people together. She began to dance. As she danced and as the people watched her, they began to feel better. They began to be cured of their diseaeses. The people became whole once more. Before long a society was formed to carry on the teachings that the young woman brought back from the Spirit World. In this society, the Jingle Dress Dancers would dance in special ceremonies to ensure the well-being of their people.
The people at White Earth that night were witness to a sign. The Northern Lights that blessed the arena were telling the people to always remember the medicine origin of the Jingle Dress.
Today, as the popularity of the Jingle Dress spreads along the Pow-wow Trail, it is important to realize that we dance today to remember the teachings of the past.

End of quote
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It is the year of the bear, I am sharpening my claws and will no longer tollerate harrassment.

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Old 11-13-2003, 11:57 AM   #6
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Thumbs up

Thanks Tibiki Kinew! I only knew of the one article that I had. It's a good thing there are more articles. Too many ladies are just jumping right in with out learning about the jingle dress and the responsibilities that come with it. I think that too many people are getting a dress made, or putting an "Ebay" set of dance clothing together without knowing what is expected of them. :( There are these ladies who recently joined a drum I sing with. They are interested in dancing jingle. I let them know that you don't just decide to dance jingle; there is a lot to learn about the dress and what is required of the ladies who wear it. People need to learn about dance styles and do things the right way instead of just jumping right in.
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Old 11-13-2003, 12:02 PM   #7
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That is why I always say never

"assume"

assume= azz outta u & me


we all have a lot to learn, we can never stop learning and if we just jump in with a hairbrained Idea or notion to do something we could be Insulting the ones that Deserve respect. That is why I read all the time.
So thanks from the heart Suzizila for your reply that is so true.
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It is the year of the bear, I am sharpening my claws and will no longer tollerate harrassment.

Born in Winnipeg raised in the Pikwakanagan, Deutschland was never home! Army brat that had no choice in a parents duties to home and country. I Too Serve our flag and work for the uniform.
Stand behind our troops or stand IN FRONT of them.
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Old 11-13-2003, 12:18 PM   #8
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Jibby if you came out here to AZ you would most likely be disgusted, it's all about the $$$$$$ and the prestige of who has the dress with the most detail and the rhinestone beadwork. And to see a jingle dress initiation in AZ :rofl2: . too crazy.
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Old 11-13-2003, 12:39 PM   #9
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On a side note Jibby - you may get to meet Joe Liles (the one that wrote the story that Tibi posted) this weekend. He sings with Southern Sun.
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Old 11-13-2003, 02:44 PM   #10
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Jibby,
I hope that you take this in the spirit it is given. Not a confrontive one but one that would like to bring up a couple of questions that I have.

One is, and it has been brought up numerous times and is still being beaten, if we go back to the strict standard of only those who are given the "right" to dance a specific dance are allowed to do so, and all others would not be allowed, then there will be alot of people on the outside of the circle looking in. And why stop there, let's say all those who were not given the songs in the traditional way, cannot sing them. And oh yeah, can't forget the drum. Well, hell, what about the whole powwwow thing altogether. And anyone who contests is out. Only dancing for the love of the dance is allowed, and then the right to dance is given to those only who have earned the right. Sounds like a lonely arena to me.

Now what I think we can do is, be an example. Speak about our past and traditions when we can in a proper manner, carrying ourselves in the rich native past, present and for darn sure future. Teaching our children, grand children, neices, nephews, cousins, community how we must carry ourselves if we wish for our ways to live on and not become an assmilated, powerless, mix of some generic traditionless potion that is being served out there now.

The way I see it we are going to change nothing back. Things have progressed to far. Some things good, some bad. But to stand on a soapbox declairing ojib outrage is not the way. We have to take an active role and be there for our community. Volunteer, start something on our own instead of waiting for others. Or allowing some religious or gov leaders to do it for us.
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Old 11-13-2003, 03:28 PM   #11
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well wut ya say is true jibby...with me i just didnt become a jingle dancer overnight...i had to wait until my dream dress came to me and my colors...then had to go ahead and ask my elder from my nation if its okay for me to dance jingle...i had to learn the responsibilitites..yay im not perfect yay i did slide once i used to do tha party thang and i quit that and focused on leading a good lifestyle...but when i was in party stage i didnt dance at that time i quit adn got back into dancing jingle...but i was told i should live a humble lifestyle and dont accept money when ya dance...yay i compete but im just there to dance adn have fun but i dont accept the money when i do win.....but when i do win it rarely happens..but anyhow i had to fast and get my dress blessed..it took me long while before i could go out there and dance jingle... and i just think that yay the meanin is gettin lost because of change in tradition in powwows...i dont believe that ya have to be ojib./nish. to dance jingle..i mean if ya were meant to dance jingle then ya are ya know?the only thing is to set an example to those generations beyond us cuz they look up to us...how are we as jingle dancers setting a good example to new to be jingle dancers by upholding tradish. if we dont take it seriously all the time? what we do eventually effects them..i dont believe ya can go out there and just dance jingle...theres steps ya gotta take to become a jingle dancer...well i gotta jam..laterz yall-becca
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Old 11-13-2003, 05:36 PM   #12
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Re: Jibz Vent...

Quote:
Originally posted by Jibby
Does anyone actually go through the proper channels anymore to be a Jingle dancer???:Yell Or do girls just one day decide that they are going to make themselves a dress and start dancing?

This irriatates me on a next level, because this dress originate's from my tribe. I am OJIBWE and I still don't have the right to wear that dress. I have to go thru a year of fasting and obstaining from wordly temptations before I could really consider myself worthy of dancing this style.

Perhaps this has been brought up in another forum or thread, but I believe this isssue belongs in this thread.

What do you all think?
Jibby,
Here in the Northwest, theres a lot of jingle dress dancers that seem really wild and they are always passing each other in the side steps, making full circles etc. Seems like theres little respect for the old style jingle dance and the judges around here don't know the difference anyway. I doubt that there are many girls and women that have gone through the ceremony and that is shameful. I am not Aniishinabe or even a jingle dancer, but my sister friend from Wikwemikong is and she has taught me a lot about this medicine dress and it's dance. I hope as more people are "adopting" this style of dancing that they will at least learn what it truly means to be a jingle dancer. You are to be commended for following your traditional beliefs and I am proud of you. :Angel2
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Old 11-13-2003, 06:22 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally posted by peachy keen


Now what I think we can do is, be an example. Speak about our past and traditions when we can in a proper manner, carrying ourselves in the rich native past, present and for darn sure future. Teaching our children, grand children, neices, nephews, cousins, community how we must carry ourselves if we wish for our ways to live on and not become an assmilated, powerless, mix of some generic traditionless potion that is being served out there now.

Don't you think this advice you gave is similar to what Jibby is talking about? I come from Ojib country where people take care of their dresses in a traditional sense and where it's perfectly fine to wear a "plain" old dress without having to worry if your dress is flashy enough to catch the judges's eye. Don't get me wrong there are contemporary dancers where I come from but ohmigosh, they don't even compare to the wild dancing that I see out west, where I currrently reside. So in a sense, I do believe you are talking about the same thing Jibby is.

What's wrong with wanting to do things the right way than just having someone make you a new flashy innovative dress and goin out there to get on everyone's wish list? Don't you think doing what is right, will instill values into a person, that will make them a better person? Furthermore don't you think that what Jibby is talking about, will make a person appreciate their dress more than just using it as a tool to make money? I see girls out here that to me, they just appear to dance for the recognition. So much so they seem to have a arrogant flair about themselves like, "Im a better dancer than you." I think if they did take the time like what Jibby is doing, then maybe they wouldn't have their noses up in the air.
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Old 11-13-2003, 08:37 PM   #14
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Personally, it's not just the dance or the dress or the teachings but a solid column of them all. You can't have one without the other..... but what I believe in is walking your talk when you don't have that heavy dress on. I don't drink, do drugs, or whore around.....but it's not just because I'm a jingle dress dancer.... it's because I respect myself enough not to do that. There's a long line of young girls that look up to us and we need to carry ourselves in a decent and dignified manner. No.....not walk on water.....but walk with respect.


I agree with Jibby, Peachy, and Rezebel. It took me over a year to get my stuff together as a jingle dancer.... and getting ready for my giveaway (in rememberance), it's taken me a year and I'm still not ready. I have never looked down my nose at another dancer..... superficiality isn't supposed to be one of our reasons for dancing.
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Old 11-13-2003, 08:49 PM   #15
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Just a question .. is this about non ojib's dancing jingle and not following the tradition right... or jingle dancers in general not doing this right in the old way? :Thinking
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Old 11-13-2003, 10:20 PM   #16
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I was born into a traditional family, a powwow family. There are a few variations of stories of old passed down via oral tradition on the origin of our jingle dress. All in all, it is a healing dress. Traditionally, the dress was given to the Ojibway Nation through the thunderbird beings with instructions. This was passed to the people through a dream. Thus, when we wear the dress, we too, wear it pending a dream. There are other instructions as well. (And not to be worn during that time of the month.)
I go to powwows where there are 150+ registered jingle dress dancers ranging from very young to very old. Last year I had the opportunity to meet and shake the hand of a gramma who was 109 years old a former jingle dress dancer.
The sound of the dresses altogether is incredibly powerful. One can barely hear the singers singing when all 150 dancers are out there.
I get a bit miffed too when I see our sacred dresses being turned into somewhat of a show piece. It ends up being nothing more than just a categorized pretty dress - stripped of its sacredness and meaningful healing purposes.. But, what can we do about that my fellow Anishnabe Ikwes?? In all reality those "token" dresses have no TRUE meaning. They will never really feel the power the dress holds when things are done the right way. As long as we do what we are taught by our Mom's and Grammas, we will always and forever be the true wearers of our Jingle Dress.
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Old 11-14-2003, 11:31 AM   #17
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See, my issue is not that non-Nish are dancing Jingle. It's that some non-Nish and Nish alike are NOT going about it the right way.

When I see a girl bootie boucing and butterfyling to a smoke dance remix in a Jingle dress, it makes me sick. When I see girls spinning and kicking high while dancing, it makes me sick. When I see girls who just decide to make a dress and wear it, it makes me sick.

There are soooo many women out there who tested themselves for a year and passed. These women are worthy of wearing the dress. I do not think that one can truly understand healing and compassion until they have suffered themselves.

Girls are forgetting the true purpose of this dress and instead choose to abuse it for monetary or social gain. That is just plain wrong. And so what if the arena would be empty? I would much rather see a group of Jingle dancers out there for the right reasons than a bunch of diesrespectin' kwes.
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Old 11-14-2003, 11:38 AM   #18
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Quote:
Originally posted by ojibwaysweetie
In all reality those "token" dresses have no TRUE meaning. They will never really feel the power the dress holds when things are done the right way.
I agree with that. Is it token because the wearer hasn't followed the true ways, because she isn't Anishnabe, or a mix of both? True wearers of the jingle dress... does that truly pertain to Ojibs or all that went through the proper chanels to wear the dress or both? And once that mark has been passed (doing all that needs to be done) where do you draw the line between blatant disrespect (those who haven't bothered to find out and don't really care as long as they're seen and place) versus those that are just plain ignorant of the teachings? Inquiring minds. :p

I only had one cup of coffee.....I swear.
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Old 11-14-2003, 11:44 AM   #19
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I am reallly torn about this thread. I am feeling like I am very privileged to hear these ladies speak about something so important to them, yet, this way of getting this information (the internet) seems kind of...non-tradishy?? lol But I am in awe of all of the things that go along with the respect they have for the dress.
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Old 11-14-2003, 11:49 AM   #20
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Quote:
Originally posted by Jibby
When I see a girl bootie boucing and butterfyling to a smoke dance remix in a Jingle dress
wow. :JawDrop you're kidding right?
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