Sweat Lodge Ceremony

The Sweat Lodge- Inipi, is a low profile hut, typically dome-shaped. The construction is being made of elastic long twigs (hazel, willow), on the top goes the blankets and tilt. In the middle of the sweat lodge is the whole for stones, which are being warmed till red colour in a sacred fire outside of the hut.

Traditionally the structure is simple, constructed of saplings covered with blankets and sometimes animal skins. Originally, it was only used by some of the Indigenous peoples of the Americas, notably the Plains Indians. But with the rise of pan-Indianism, numerous nations that did not originally have the sweat lodge ceremony have adopted it. In all cases, the sweat is intended as a religious ceremony – it is for prayer and healing. In Mesoamerica the ceremony is called Temazcal meaning the house of heat. The difference is that, the Temazcal has usually a permanent structure, not like the sweat lodges known in the North.

The aim of the ceremony I make is a deep purification and work with intentions and healing. After preparing the construction, and the fire place, we gather in a circle, where we tell our intentions I am explaining the rules and after we go to light the fire. We gather around it with dancing, singing and playing on instruments. After the stones are red (about 1-2 hours) I am incensing everyone with white salvia and Palo Santo and let people enter the sweat. The fire masters are bringing first portion of stones. The doors close and the first round of the ceremony starts. After every round the fire masters are bringing new stones inside. It is also the time to drink the water or to go outside for a moment.

The ceremony is divided in 4 rounds. First one is devoted to Air, West and birth. Second is devoted to the Fire, South and ripening. The third one to the Water, West, aging and dying and the Fourth to the Earth, North, wisdom and rebirth. Therefore it is also a journey through all this kingdoms (directions and elements) and to the stages of life. It is very important to me that we can connect to these periods of our lifetime, to heal, to bring back the energy, to feel, to pray and tell the wishes.

I am making periodically the ceremonies, mostly on the full moons, solstices and equinoxes. My teachers were: David Thomson, Keith Chief Moon, Wojciech Jóźwiak, Valerie Salez and Maestro Manuel Ruffino. I am very grateful that they brought this practice to my life, and that I can pass it on to help the others.

If you would like me to make the Sweat Lodge Ceremony, please do not hesitate to contact me.