Some of this article contains excerpts from a 2002 article I edited for Daniel Giamario. The original article is located on the Shamanic Astrology Website HERE.
In the book Return of the Bird Tribes by Ken Carey White Buffalo Calf Woman reminds us:
…Creation requires a gathering together and focusing of your power within a circle of commitment – like a seed, an egg, a womb or a marriage. If you would create and not destroy, you must remember always the Sacred Hoop. Consider wisely the ways in which you would use your power and then around those ways draw the sacred circle of commitment. In the warm atmosphere of that circle, the power of love builds and builds like a storm above the wet summer prairie until suddenly the circle can hold no more and explodes in the conception of the new…
The Sacred Hoop of stars is a configuration of stars recognized by the Lakota Sioux in an As Above, So Below connection to the Native American concept of the Sacred Hoop. These stars include, Sirius, Rigel, the Pleiades, Capella, Castor, Pollux and Procyon.
A Personal Experience with The Sacred Hoop
Back in the Spring of 2000…
I was given an opportunity to participate with the 100 Eagle Feather Sacred Hoop of Nations walk across the United States. This Hoop walk included an intention to reverse the trail of tears. The journey began in Los Angeles and ended in Washington DC with much of the walk taking place on the actual “Trail of Tears”. The intention of this three month Hoop walk across the United States was to further healing, hope, and unity through energizing our ability to forgive the unforgivable. More about this story
I traveled with the Hoop for only part of day, one night and the next day (April 10 and 11, 2000) as it moved across Arizona to the Capitol in Phoenix. The hours I spent with Hoop felt like it reached beyond my ordinary reality, beyond the scope of time and place. I had the feeling I was walking between many worlds as I witnessed multiple races of people joining together to join their intention with the larger intent to mend the Sacred Hoop, also known as the circle of life, by recognizing that we are all ONE people and everyone is equally important and deserves to be treated as such.
It was a powerful experience that gained additional meaning as we were learning more about the Sacred Hoop of Stars in the sky that many Native American tribes recognized as the ‘As Above’ expression of the ‘So Below’ understanding of the Sacred Hoop of Life.
Daniel Giamario on The Sacred Hoop of Stars
The Sacred Hoop of Stars is similar to the configuration astronomers sometimes call the ‘winter hexagon’. The Sacred Hoop of Stars as identified by many Native American tribes including the Lakota includes the Pleiades. The winter hexagon leaves out the Pleiades and uses Aldebaran to form the asterism. The stars of the Sacred Hoop include Pollux, Castor, Capella, the Pleiades, Rigel, Sirius, and Procyon forming the outer circle of the Hoop. (See image at end of article) Inside the Hoop is the constellation of Orion and the asterism known as the Hyades where Aldebaran is located.
The Ecliptic (plane of the solar system) and the Milky Way (plane of the galaxy) cross through and intersect near the middle of this circle of stars, actually forming a cross within a circle. The place of the intersection is located between the feet of the Twins and the horns of the Bull. At this current time the exact placement of the summer solstice (0 degree Cancer) falls on this intersection also known as the Galactic Cross. The Galactic Cross in this area of the sky is located at what Shamanic Astrology refers to as the Galactic Edge, a.k.a. galactic anti-center (opposite galactic center) or the area of the sky that is looking out into deep space beyond our galaxy.
The Lakota Sioux and other Plains Indians considered it to be extremely auspicious when the Moon and Planets moved through the Sacred Hoop. Numerous myths and oral histories from Native American to Egyptian to Northern-European to Babylonian have referred to this intersection of the Milky way with the ecliptic (the path the planets follow) or plane of our Solar System as the place where souls enter into incarnation.
This was sometimes known as the “gate of Cancer’ or the ‘silver gate’. (Note that the opposite point of the sky, between the Scorpion and the Archer in the direction of the galactic center, known as the ‘gate of Capricorn’ or the golden gate’ was seen as an exit point, where souls leave upon death.) The soul was seen to be flowing down the Milky Way – entering this dimension between the Bull and Twins and exiting between the Scorpion and the Archer.
Inside the Hoop we also have the constellation most popularly known in the western world as Orion. The Mayans perceived the sword of Orion as a sacred fire of creation inside a fire pit. Amazingly, modern astronomers have discovered that this region of space is actually churning out new stars! As a last example, there is an Alaskan shamanic tradition that perceived the great equilateral triangle in the Hoop formed by Sirius, Procyon, and Betelgeuse, as ‘heaven’s gate’, another version of an entry point or entrance into incarnation.
So we see how this area of the sky has been linked with beginnings and origins by many cultures over time. In fact, the equinox based calendars were sourced 6500 years ago at a time when the Spring Equinox was located on the Galactic Cross or the intersection point of the plane of the galaxy with the plane of our solar system inside the Sacred Hoop. And the Egyptian “first time’ mythos was connected to these configurations inside the Hoop, when the Winter Solstice was located there 13000 years ago.