Rachel Carrier


Born:  19 June 1798  -  Died:  18 March 1847
Married: Joseph Jacob Brown



According to Indians of the eastern woodlands, The Dreamcatcher ( pictured on left ) catches all dreams, both good and bad, and protect the dreamer from nightmares.  The beads on the dreamcatcher web guide the good dreams through the web through the center hole so that they may gently drift off the feather into the life of the dream, and be dreamed agian, in an identical or similar form, on another night.  The bad dreams, not knowing the way, become tangled in the web and perish at the light of the early morning sun.


In past centuries, the Iroquois indians of the Great Lakes considered dreams to be a guide to their lives, to dictate their choices in regard to fishing, hunting, war, dancing, marriage and other significant life events.  The Iroquois especially listened carefully to dreams their people had prior to war and hunting - a war party would even turn back if one of its members dreamed of failure immediately before or during the hunt.

In The Shaman's Doorway, Stephen Larsen quotes the French missionary Ragueneau's Jesuit Relations, (and material by Ragueneau originally appearing in the American Anthropogist, April 1958) who carefully documented the Iroquois approach to dreams :

" The Iroquois believe that our souls have other desires, which are, as it were, inborn and concealed.  These, they say, come from the depths of the soul, not through any knowledge .... They have no divinity but the dream.  They submit themselves to it and follow its order with the utmost exactness.  Whatever they see themselves doing in dreams they believe they are absolutely obligated to execute at the earliest possible moment.  Iroquois would think themselves quilty of a great crime if they failed to obey a single dream."



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