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STRONG SUN MOON
The Strong Sun Moon (June 21 to July 22)
is the first moon of Shawnodese, Spirit Keeper of the
South position on the Native American Medicine Wheel, and occurs at the time of the summer solstice. The
stone honoring this position is placed one-quarter of the
way between the southern and western stones of the
Medicine Wheel. The mineral totem for the Strong Sun Moon
is carnelian agate, the plant is the wild rose, and the
animal is the flicker. The color is pink, and the
elemental influence is from the Frog clan.
From the carnelian, people experiencing
this position can learn about their strong heart
connection; from the rose, about their ability both to
heal and to inspire; and from the flicker, about their
desire for self-expression. The Strong Sun Moon teaches
about the importance of the emotions and the need for a
strong home base. People experiencing the energy of this
position are intuitive and wild in some aspects of being,
but conservative and home loving in others. The Strong
Sun Moon will educate you about the law of relationship
and about family, mothering, and nurturing. While working
with the flicker you must guard against wallowing in all
your emotions and about fearing to take a stand.
is the animal totem associated with the Strong Sun Moon.
Flickers are woodpeckers. There are two kinds in the
United States: the yellow-shafted flicker, found east of
the Great Plains, and the red-shafted flicker, found west
of the Great Plains. Both types can be found in a variety
of places: woods, farms, and even suburbs. Flickers are
drummers. They play their song on dead limbs, tin roofs,
and wooden houses, sometimes to extract insects and
sometimes for the sheer joy of playing. During mating,
flickers present an especially magnificent display of
their musical talents.
Flickers dig a gourd-shaped hole in a tree trunk for
their nest. Often other birds use it later. Like most
birds, flickers are good and caring parents. They nurture
their young until it is time to allow them to fly on
The flicker is a special bird to many Native people.
Some legends say he has red wings because he went too
close to a fire set by the Earthquake Spirit to try to
put it out. The flames from this fire colored his wings
and tail red. Native people particularly value flickers
because they drum so well. Red flicker feathers are
associated with blood and are often presented to war
spirits. Red feathers on prayer sticks are considered war
offerings, against either human or spiritual enemies.
Members of some medicine societies wore flicker feathers
in their hair to identify their affiliation.
Working with flicker can teach you about
communicating, music, joy, nurturing, courage,
protection, tenacity, and your connection with the
Wild Rose is the plant associated with the Strong Sun
Moon. Besides its beauty, the wild rose has many other
gifts. The fruits of the rose, called rose hips, are high
in vitamin C and bioflavinoids. Either eating them or
using them in tea helps cure sore throats, colds, and
flu. Rose hip tea has been used to treat blood or liver
problems. Rose petal tea is a mild astringent and tonic.
Rose water has been used as an eye lotion and to relieve
the discomfort of hay fever. The wild rose can refresh
your spirit and aid with problems that require a gentle,
cooling effect. It can also help lift your spirit and
open your heart.
Agate is the mineral
associated with the Strong Sun Moon. Carnelian is a gift
of the heart that represents love. It is good for
sustaining a healthy heart and opening emotional centers.
It is said you can suspend a carnelian on a string or
thong and use it pendulum-style over a wound to ease
bleeding and start the healing process. Carnelian has
been known to aid in emergency healing.
Carrying a carnelian will help keep your heart healthy
and open, while giving you protection from any who might
try to read your mind. It will also promote feelings of
peace within and around you.