What is a Dream Catcher? It’s Purpose & Origin

While wondering in market have you ever saw a dream catcher? It is round in shape with feathers hanging down of it. The very name Dream catcher is compelling to attract people. Right! But have you ever tried to know what it is?
Or why it is called Dream catcher? or from where did this stuff suddenly popped up in the market?

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Origin

The Dream catchers today is said to be associated with Native American cult. Dream catcher originates its origin from the Ojibwa Chippewa clan in particular. The Ojibwian people called Dream catcher “Asabikeshiinh” which mean a “spider”.

We see variety of Dream catcher in the market place different in shape, size and style which usually content feathers, small wooden hoop covered in a net or web and some crystal like beads attached to it.

But the real traditional Dream catchers are handmade and crafted only from natural materials

It is also said that a tribe called Lakota own the genes of Dream catchers. Ethnographers believe that the Dream catcher might have passed from Ojibwa clan to Lakota clan through intermarriages or trades.

The Tale Behind Dream catcher:

The history and the origin of the dream catcher exist among several American clans but mainly from the Ojibwa and Lakota nation. As the actual meaning of Dream catcher is associated with spider. Due to it’s such resemblances has a story behind it.

According to the Ojibwa story, a mystical and maternal “spider woman” served as a spiritual protector for the clan, especially for young children, kids and babies. As the Ojibwa people continued to grow and spread out across the land. The spider women found it difficult to protect and watch them all as they migrated farther and farther away.

This is why she created the first dream catcher. Following her example, mothers and grandmothers of the clan would recreate the Dream catchers as a means of mystical protecting tool for their children and families from afar.

What does the Dream catchers do?

Ojibwa Dream catchers was usually used to shield napping people from their horrendous dreams and terrible dreams generally youths, local American acknowledge that the air of night is stacked up with dreams both good and bad and when the this object is hung over the bed where the morning sunlight can hit it, this pull in and gets all sort of dreams and contemplations into it’s web.The good dreams pass through and gently slides down through the  feathers and comfort the sleeper below.With this object bad dreams get caught in the net and get destroyed, burned up in the light of the day.

Why Dream catchers are made up of webs, feathers & beads?

The shape of the Dream catchers is circle because it represents the circle of life and how the force like sun and moon travel each and everyday across the sky.

The web in the Dream catcher is to catch the bad  dream during night and dispose them when the day comes.

As for the good dreams, the feathers act as a soft, pillow like ladder that allows the good dreams to gently reach the sleeping person peacefully.

And the crystal like beads, which is used in the Dream catcher is used for decoration but according to American Indians, the beads symbolize the spider – the web weaver itself. It is also said that the good dreams which could not pass through turns into solid crystal or get stored into it. Making the crystal charms of goodness.

Reality of Today’s Dream catcher:

The dream catchers which are available to us today are not real. They are prolific. Finding real authentic piece of it is not easy. The real Dream catchers are small is size and the feathers and beads are all natural and sacred. Many Dream catchers for sale today are much more American today then Native Americans. Often they are over sized and made up of cheap plastic material.

Now a days it is consider to be the symbol of unity and identification of the Native Americans. Other Native Americans have seen Dream catcher as an symbol of cultural appropriation, over commercialized and offensively misappropriate and misused by non- natives.

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