Tag Archives: featured

Sundance in Aotearoa

In Aotearoa / New Zealand, the journey of the Sundance ceremony began with a visit from Patrick Hendrickson (aka Chief White Cloud or Patrick Aynewausch in the summer of 1999/2000..  Although people from Aotearoa had attended the Sundance held in Hornby Island in 1999 , this was the first opportunity for a wider group of people to meet Patrick Hendrickson and participate in Inipi purification lodges.

During this first visit, Patrick Hendrickson spent time traveling Aotearoa and speaking with Tangata Whenua and others about his journey and vision.  The first Sundance was run by Patrick Hendrickson in the summer of  2001/2002

View the clip below to learn more about the purpose & meaning that brought this ceremony to Aotearoa.. (image Patrick Aynewausch )

Patrick Aynewausch

Vision Quest

When a person has a calling or is interested in participating in a SunDance as a SunDancer they must Quest before.

Questing involves sitting by yourself for four days, calling to Creation, Great Spirit for your vision or asking for a solution and guidance to a problem or question. A Quester is fasting with no food or water during these four days.

They sit in a circle of 405 prayer ties on a continuance string 100 Yellow, 100 Black, 100 Red, 100 White and 5 Purple. These should be done and prepared before your arrival.

On the 1st Day of Vision Quest, we do Inip Ceremony one round before taking you to your Vision Quest site. In your circle of prayer ties, you may have only what you can carry. Which pretty much means something to sleep in, your pipe or tobacco for praying, your prayer ties, sunblock, tarp, survival blanket and insect repellent.

The suggestion made to arrive early is so you can choose and clear your Vision Quest Site, prepare and slow down.

Vision Quest DATES will be added nearer to Dance commencement, please ensure your email address is added to receive notifications.

The Drum

The “Drum” is the heartbeat for the Sundance ceremony.

We believe “The Drum” is about Unity, Focus, Support, Joy and Mystery.

  • Unity in that we all choose to act together – providing a clear, strong and singular heartbeat for dancers
  • Focus in that we pay attention to each other, the energy and our role within the Sundance ceremony
  • Support in that we choose to give to those who are dancing (through the drumming and singing) so that they are nourished, strengthened and held safely during the dance
  • Joy in that we are an expression of the “Earths” (Papatuanuku, Gaia, Mother Earth…) heartbeat
  • Mystery

More background to the ‘Drum’ in relation to our Sundance, can be found by clicking here.

Sundance Protocols

The Sundance is a sacred ceremony from the White Buffalo Calf Pipe tradition of the Lakota people. Our Founding Dance Chief in Aotearoa/New Zealand, the late Chief Whitecloud (Patrick Hendrickson). Sundance is a ceremony where people come together to heal and bring renewal to the people and the land. It is a prayer for life. As it is a sacred ceremony belonging to the Indigenous people of North America and Canada therefore active respect needs to given to things around the “Dance”.

Protocols to respect the ceremony can be found here.

Patrick Hendrickson (WhiteCloud)

Whitecloud was a native from North America; and a member of the Anishnabe tribe. He lived much of his life on a reserve (White Earth Reserve) where he learned from a diverse perspective of a native growing up in a changing world for the native people. His guidance and experience in a ceremonial life, as well as a strong instruction of the native philosophy of land and life helped him stay within his culture and survive. This would be of great help to him in later years.
Whitecloud is a Sundancer and Pipe Carrier; he is a practitioner of many healing ceremonies taught to him by his elders and colleagues over a 50-year span. Whitecloud also facilitated Sundances in Canada and New Zealand (Aotearoa) along with all the related ceremonies, Purification Lodges, Vision Quest, and one to one sessions.

Patrick Hendrickson (WhiteCloud): Bio