Medicine Bundles

Medicine bundles were the focus of most Aboriginal Plains rituals. A bundle might be a few feathers wrapped in skin or a multitude of objects such as animal skins, roots, or stone pipes inside a rawhide bag. Every article had significance and called for a special song whenever its owner exposed it to light. Songs and a sacred myth belonged to the bundle itself. Fixed rules of inheritance governed the sale of a particular bundle. Formal transfer was a solemn ceremony and the new owner had to learn the significance of all objects in the bundle, details of visions to which they owed their origins, and songs that established their validity. Feasts were given for bundles by both owners and non-owners. See also Aboriginal People: Religion.