Eagle Feathers and their meaning to the Lakota Warriors
Each time the warrior earned a feather, he would either wear it (but he only wore a couple into battle) or put it on a pole used for special occasions. Once he had collected enough feathers, they were then made into a headdress. Because each feather had a special meaning, binding them together in a headdress made that Indian headdress even more special. Only the men, closest friends of the warrior, were involved in making the headdress. The Indian chiefs also “earned” each of their feathers. The most prized of all feathers to receive for an Indian headdress was the Golden Eagle feather. Because the Indians saw the eagle as a messenger of God, this feather could only be earned through hardship, loyalty, and strength
As a youth of fifteen, Medicine Crow went on his first war party. In the next nineteen years, he led a vigorous and often dangerous life of a Plains Indian warrior. For twelve of those years he was a war chief noted for his agility in hand-to-hand combat, courage, and dependability in bringing his men back home not only safely but victorious. Crow Indian
Low Dog, Xunka Kuciyedan, Oglala Sioux Chief (b.1846) This powerful and respected warrior became a war chief at age 14. In 1876 he joined Sitting Bull’s hostiles on the Little Bighorn and led his band against Custer and the 7th Cavalry.
Jamaican Christmas ::
The John Canoe or Jonkonnu has a very long tradition as a folk festival, incorporating both African and European forms. The ‘Jonkonnu’ Festival is secular in nature and its performance at Christmas time is merely historical. It was conceived as a festive opportunity afforded the slave class by the planter class, as Christmas was one of the few periods when the slaves were relieved of their duties. Hence, Christmas formed an appropriate season for festivities as all normal business activity on the island was halted by official decree and all males were called up for military service, augmenting the population in the larger towns. Therefore, ample opportunity was given to the slaves to show off their talents to the spectators who had also been given time off from work.
Traditional Jonkonnu most often includes as core participants, the cow head, the horsehead, the devil, the different categories of warriors and Indians, as well as a character known as Pitchy-Patchy.
The more popular characters are quite worthy of further mention as their presence in the festival evoked an admixture of fear and excitement in onlookers.
“To fly higher than the eagle, to run faster than the deer, to swim as freely as the fish, to have the cunning of the coyote and the sleekness of the lion ― this is to possess the spirit that sings in the wind and cries in the fire, the spirit that shall never leave my home.”