Customs and Traditions

Christian blessing to the 4 directions

I want to incorporate sage into our ceremony. Cleansing the negative energy surrounding both of our lives is something I think would be more meaningful than a unity ceremony.  In searching for examples I found the blessing to the 4 directions and i love the concept. I don't want to do exactly that but i want to touch on the basic idea that each direction represents. I'm not sure how to incorporate that into a traditional Christian wedding while staying respectful to both native American culture and Christian beliefs. Anyone familiar with this stuff? Any ideas?
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Re: Christian blessing to the 4 directions

  • Jen4948Jen4948 Houston
    10000 Comments Fifth Anniversary 500 Love Its 25 Answers
    member
    Is your officiant a Christian clergyperson? If so, you might ask him or her about how to incorporate anything outside the traditional ceremony into your specific ceremony.
  • There’s nothing about this that fits into a traditional Christian wedding. 
    InLoveInQueensCMGragain
  • MobKazMobKaz Chicago suburbs
    5000 Comments Seventh Anniversary 500 Love Its 5 Answers
    member
    Often at receptions a blessing will be offered prior to serving dinner.  Perhaps this blessing might be more easily/readily incorporated at the reception.
  • mandi12 said:
    I want to incorporate sage into our ceremony. Cleansing the negative energy surrounding both of our lives is something I think would be more meaningful than a unity ceremony.  In searching for examples I found the blessing to the 4 directions and i love the concept. I don't want to do exactly that but i want to touch on the basic idea that each direction represents. I'm not sure how to incorporate that into a traditional Christian wedding while staying respectful to both native American culture and Christian beliefs. Anyone familiar with this stuff? Any ideas?
    I would ask whomever is doing your ceremony if they can work it into the script.
  • ahoyweddingahoywedding
    500 Love Its 500 Comments First Answer First Anniversary
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    edited December 4
    A traditional Christian wedding officiant isn't going to do anything that hints at another religion. Plus, unless you or your FI are Native American or Pagan, including elements from those cultures is cultural appropriation. 

    ETA: clarification
    charlotte989875InLoveInQueens
  • Are you or your future spouse Native American or pagan? If not, I think you need to leave this out so that you are not appropriating something culturally significant to groups you are not part of.
    Yup, I agree. This is cultural appropriation and not okay. Design your ceremony that reflects your beliefs, whatever they are, but don't use someone else's beliefs because you love the concept. 
    STARMOON44ahoywedding
  • Also, please know that your wedding ceremony is already a unity ceremony. There is no need to add anything else that signifies unity if you are just looking for that because you think you have to have it. 
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    OliveOilsMomInLoveInQueens
  • Are you or your future spouse Native American or pagan? If not, I think you need to leave this out so that you are not appropriating something culturally significant to groups you are not part of.
    This. And no actual Christian clergy is going to let you do this because it's a nod to other religions. 
    My friend and her partner are both Christian ministers and I would not be remotely surprised if they included something like this at their wedding, to celebrate their heritage. They've found great ways to combine their faith with their culture.
    STARMOON44
  • Also, please know that your wedding ceremony is already a unity ceremony. There is no need to add anything else that signifies unity if you are just looking for that because you think you have to have it. 
    image
  • Are you or your future spouse Native American or pagan? If not, I think you need to leave this out so that you are not appropriating something culturally significant to groups you are not part of.
    This. And no actual Christian clergy is going to let you do this because it's a nod to other religions. 
    My friend and her partner are both Christian ministers and I would not be remotely surprised if they included something like this at their wedding, to celebrate their heritage. They've found great ways to combine their faith with their culture.
    The bolded is the difference. OP never said if either she or her FI are Native America. If so, then it would be lovely to include. If not, it's cultural appropriation. Most Christian minsters *not of Native American heritage* will not agree to incorporate this, which is why we all suggested she start with asking them.
    STARMOON44OliveOilsMomcharlotte989875
  • Are you or your future spouse Native American or pagan? If not, I think you need to leave this out so that you are not appropriating something culturally significant to groups you are not part of.
    This. And no actual Christian clergy is going to let you do this because it's a nod to other religions. 
    My friend and her partner are both Christian ministers and I would not be remotely surprised if they included something like this at their wedding, to celebrate their heritage. They've found great ways to combine their faith with their culture.
    It would surprise me very much if the Christian denomination for which your friends practice would endorse this decision. It's one thing to affiliated with an actual church/Christian denomination and another thing to personally consider yourself a Christian and to be ordained or otherwise "practice".
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  • Unless you or your FI are Native American or pagan:

    If I went to this wedding and saw this integrated into an otherwise Christian ceremony, I'd probably walk out, tbh. It would be like a Wiccan coven using a crucifix to represent the god next to a chalice for the goddess on an altar: not only does it not fit, but it's incredibly disrespectful to borrow a portion of a religion without respect for what it signifies.

    In this case, blessing the 4 directions tends to signify that the gods/divinity are everywhere, in a pantheistic, nature-centered religion. It also acknowledges the divinity of nature, as opposed to the divinity of a god which is removed from it. This is diametrically opposed to Christianity as I learned it.

    I know paganism isn't as heterogeneous as Christianity, and there's a place for blending religions, but I don't think this is it.
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