Recently, I’ve begun to tap into my own creative spirit and have been channeling it through making dream catchers out of recycled and repurposed materials.
It’s been such a joy!
Because of this crafty undertaking, I’ve accumulated a number of dream catchers, so I decided recently to open an Etsy shop to sell them! I’ve called my shop: dream a little dream co.
Being who I am and doing what I’m doing, making sure I am knowledgeable in and aware of the history and cultural significance of what I’m making has been of utmost importance to me. I took to researching dream catcher history to be able to offer my respect and sensitivity to its origins, as well as offer that education to my customers and friends. I want to be sure their history and intention is communicated and honored since culturally, they don’t belong to me or my own culture.
But I have to say, what I learned was more significant than I could ever imagine, and makes complete sense to me now why God would spark this creative note in me to make these!
So, according to my research, dream catchers can be traced back to a specific native nation’s legend. The Ojibwe tell a story of a Spider Woman who watched over their tribe as they slept each night, and she helped to bring Grandfather Sun back to them each morning.
Contrary to our culture – and my own phobias – spiders are seen as good fortune in their culture, and revered as a sign of protection, instead of feared and squished.
The Spider Woman was especially protective of young children. But as their tribe grew and their territory expanded, she found it difficult to keep watch over everyone each night, so the mothers, sisters, and grandmothers wove dream catchers to catch the good dreams and release them back down to the little dreamers, and trap the bad dreams in the web to perish when Grandfather Sun rises again.
As I was thinking about this…
And I love that the protector of dreams is a woman.
And this makes complete sense because of the generally, typically nurturing, maternal energy and nature of woman.
It got me thinking about how this connects with the beliefs about the moon, the cool yin to the sun’s warm yang, is considered feminine energy, and how our bodies are designed to need sleep under the moon at night.
And then it all came together, like all of these connections come together and my mind was blown. It’s still blown.
What a divine and amazing praise of Gods own feminine power and reliability in the the night, when our bodies naturally do (or at least want to) find their rest, putting our physical beings at their most vulnerable, would be in the hours of the feminine. Or, on the flip side of that, that the nurturing, trustworthy energy of the feminine moon would be the thing to watch over us as we sleep, guarding and protecting us in our most vulnerable.
To be able to rest before another person requires great trust (or great exhaustion) because you’re literally so physically vulnerable. And who do we trust first in our lives, need first in our lives, and lean into so heavily first in our lives – dating back to our infancy – but our mothers?
It all comes back to this idea (for me at least) that femininity is tender and life-giving, but it is safe and trustworthy because it is ultimately a powerfully protective energy.
Masculine energy is warm, it’s the sun under which we produce and achieve and move and work and all that. It has its goodness, and the opposite obviously doesn’t take away from any of that, because it certainly IS good. God’s masculine is so good, but to borrow a phrase from a dear friend: it’s already so well spoken for. It needs no real defending or explaining.
And it’s just so cool. The whole lot of it. The whole of God, his and herself.