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Vision Quest

Ate wiohpeyataFather, to the West

nawwajin yelo.I am standing.

Waayanka yo!Behold me!

Ite Otateya nawajin yeloThe wind blowing in my face.

I am standing.

Vision Quest Song (Lakota Ceremonial Songs, 1983)

Introduction

The term "Vision Quest" describes a psychological metaphor based upon or inspired by the spiritual practice among Native American Indians. As a psychological metaphor the "vision quest" has been used by some clinicians to illustrate the journey of understanding one's dreams and experiences in terms of archetypical symbols related to self understanding and individuation (see Temagami Vision Quest Program, http://www.langskib.com/outdoor-programs-for-adults). However, as the indigenous, American Indian practice, "vision quest" is what the traditional Lakota call the Hanbleceya or "crying for a vision" ceremony (see B. Elk in J. E. Brown, 1953; Lame Deer, J. (Fire), 1972; Lame Deer, A. (Fire), 1992). Elsewhere, this