The first Muse reminds me of when About To Be Adult asks her teacher why she is not given a medicine painting to reflect upon equal to that of her brother, whose name was Young Eagle Learning To Fly.


Are you ready?
About to be Adult

Yes… I have asked the question,  haven’t I? 

Then show me the seed of corn I planted in your garden
(About To Be Adult thinks about the question all day and when night comes upon her she goes to the dream room where her teacher is sleeping. )
About to be Adult

It is everything I have learned

But what is that?

Show it to me.

She ponders the question all her second day,  and when night comes upon her again, she again goes to where her teacher is sleeping

About to be Adult

It is here and not here.   

I can see it and cannot see it

You have only shown me yourself
The third day she thinks and thinks again concerning the painting, but this time as she thinks she also weeds in her mother’s garden

She waits until dark and goes to see the teacher again
About to be Adult

I am transformed from what i was just like the corn

I can see the transformation… 

… but where is the seed?   

(The fourth day, as she reflects upon the painting she notices for the first time her teacher is sitting in her mother’s garden.   

Curious,  she goes into the garden. She wishes to ask a question, but the closer she comes to her teacher, the farther away the teacher seems to be.)

On the afternoon of the fourth day, About To Be Adult approaches her teacher, who is sitting in the shade of a cottonwood tree, and places her hand into her teacher’s hand.
About to be Adult

You, my mother, my teacher, are the seed you wished to show me. 

You taught me to be exactly like you

I am that seed, even though you were born from me
And it is true, no matter how I try to teach you to be yourself, 

I always teach you to be me. 

The only image I have is of myself.
About To Be Adult

I have the teaching of the garden
And that teaching will show me my own path. 

I look within the story, 

and I see the water of the sacred lake within my heart, 

and I also see the image that is a reflection of me.
Mother (smiling) 

Then you are of a different clan.  
And you have learned to teach yourself.

Sweet Medicine

This as I have said, is the first Muse. 
However, we should by now be reminded that to complete one circle is to begin another, because everything has its twin. 
While we are within the mind everything is possible, and nothing is impossible.  Simple, is it not? 
What I am saying has the magic of learning, if you will listen to your own thoughts. 
Humans resist learning because we are afraid of not knowing. 

When we are children we structure the world to learn, and now we are upon the trail of discovering how to untie those roots. 

The human being is the earthly symbol of the sacred tree in animal form. 

This tree is called the Tree Of The Shaman And Shamaness, or the Animal Tree.

The Animal Tree represents human growth and learning. 

There is as much tree above the ground as there is below. 

The tree we see above the ground is called the Sun Lodge Tree

It represents the half of the mind we understand as being awake. 

The tree below the ground, which we know as the roots, is called the Moon Lodge Tree

This represents the half of the mind we experience when we are dreaming, our sleep dreams and also our daydreams.
Estchimah listens raptly
Sweet Medicine

Sun Lodge Tree is our conscious mind, 

Moon Lodge Tree is our subconscious mind, shadow mind.
The Medicine People tell us we are the principal person in each of these two lodges. However, one of us is male and the other is female. These twins are one principal person but have two minds.
The chiefs tell us:

In the beginning, 

we are seedlings, 

we are completely dependent upon the roots of the sacred tree. 

All of our power comes from the roots. 

The roots are the eyes, ears, voice, and mind of the young seedling. 
When the tree is adult this is reversed

the roots are completely dependent upon that part of the tree within the sunlight.
That portion of the tree that is below ground remembers all.

Its memory goes beyond itself,

its roots go into the total of the earth.

That portion of the tree that is above ground remembers only those things it needs to grow.

If the roots do not nourish and provide for the tree above ground, the tree will die. 

If the tree above the ground does not nourish and provide for its roots, the tree will die.

mischievous smile

A shaman named Buffalo Teachers tells me that the Sacred Tree Above The Ground has to have a model, an image, to learn. 

Buffalo Teachers

the Tree Below The Ground always transforms every model or image into the power of the earth. 

Medicine Woman

The paradox of this unravels my braids. 

I am still confused when Buffalo Teachers takes me to the camp of a shamaness named Medicine Tree Below the Ground. 

She invited Buffalo Teachers and Buffalo Teachers invited me.

I remember the day. Buffalo Teachers and I ride up to the lodge the shamaness prepares for our meeting.

It is a place in the northern part of the country where four rivers come together. 

The names of the four rivers are 

Everyday Singing River

Sun Dance River

Painting Signs River

Changed River

These four rivers flow together to become what is known among the nations as the Medicine Wheel River.

Buffalo Teachers and I jump down from our horses and make ourselves comfortable in front of the lodge. 

I am sitting beside Buffalo Teachers, suddenly I realize that I am naked. 

I had prepared the clothes my grandmother had made for me for the occasion, but in my taking my sweat bath, I had forgotten to dress.

shamaness (comes from the lodge)

You have lovely braids

Won’t you be more comfortable with a robe?

It can become very cold here during the night, the meeting will last until morning.

Old Woman (comes from the lodge) 

I will give her clothes.  

She is my granddaughter.
Shaking, I carefully rise to my feet to receive the clothes my grandmother holds out to me. 
I am shaking with fear and emotion because I know that I am receiving the clothes from the dead. I try to speak to greet my grandmother, but I cannot utter a word.

Medicine Tree Below Ground (putting robe into my hands) 

And here is a bright new robe of the sun

By morning your body will change your grandmother’s clothes into a living painting.

The shamaness then disappears into her lodge with my grandmother