A Sweat Lodge or Purification Lodge is a Native American Ceremony involving the four elements used to cleanse the four bodies: physical, mental, emotional and spiritual. We spend time in silence making prayer ties after which we gather at the sacred fire before entering a Turtle Lodge which represents the Womb of Mother Earth. The Lodge is a dome shaped structure covered with blankets with two doors. Stones are placed in the fire and brought into a pit at the center of the lodge where water is poured over to create steam while we sing Native American medicine songs. We gather in circle around the fire to smoke the Chanupa (Sacred Pipe) followed by the completion of the ceremony with the Ceremonial Meal.
How long does it last? What time do we start or finish? How hot does it get? The standard response is "Make your experience…once you have experienced something, then you will know"… Every experience is unique to the individual and the moment, so asking others can colour our experience with expectation and block or interfere with our own experience.
Does Tim use plant medicine? Tim follows his traditions and does not make use of any plant medicine in the ceremony. All participants are encouraged to be free from drugs or alcohol for at least 48 hours in preparation for the Ceremony.
How many Sweats should I do? "The more you give, the more you receive" Participants are welcome for any duration of time. Some of our community may join for two weekends and work the week in-between. However, the more space you can give yourself to be here the deeper you will go.... …once here many people extend their stay as they can’t bear to leave! Time in a field of community focused on remembering Unconditional Love is a balm for the world weary soul.
To live in communion with Nature, to learn the art of gratitude, remembering all that Mother Earth gives us on a daily basis. The deepening and understanding of personal responsibility and accountability for our thoughts and actions so they may be aligned in an expression of love in action.
"Once you have experienced something, then you will know…every experience is unique to the individual."
The Purification Lodge is a Solar Masculine Ceremony and a Woman’s Moontime is a Lunar Feminine Purification Ceremony.
Women in their Moon are encouraged to stay in camp and deeply respect their own space and learning in their own purification which is considered the most powerful. We avoid going near the Sweat Lodge or Ceremony and are assisted and held by our sisters in community as they care for us, bring food and tea, wash our dishes and allow us space to be and to go “in”. As western women we have generations of “stuff” to heal and to come home to the beauty and power of our hearts and the magic of our cycles. Much comes up for us in this format that can be digested and healed and whilst it can be difficult, it can be so worth it! Traditionally speaking, pre-menopausal women never entered the lodge as it seemed they did not need to because they did their purification ceremonies every month. They went off to a separate Teepee and were allowed time off from all the responsibilities of tribal life. They cared for each other and had valuable time to reflect and digest their experiences of the past three weeks since last they mooned. They could clear themselves and access their own healing and wisdom for their own benefit and that of the tribe.
Do's & Dont's
There are a few simple rules and etiquette for the Ceremony as it follows an age old tradition.
The Altar is “Wanka" (sacred) and so are the items on it. Please refrain from touching anything. The Fire is “Wanka”. We show our respect for the fire element by not throwing anything into it. There is an imaginary line between the Fire, Altar and lodge. We avoid crossing this lifeline that symbolises the umbilical cord from the fire to the lodge. No photographs of Tim, the Sweat Lodge, the Fire or the Altar in respect of the ceremony and his tradition.