The Origins of Dream Catchers

The origins of dream catchers can be found in the Native American clans of Dream Catcher. If legends are to be believed then spider woman (sometimes known as Asibikaashi) wove very small dream catchers throughout the day and night, so that they could be hung above babies as they slept. The idea being that bad dreams would be captured in the web, so that only happy dreams would filter through. In the light of day, the bad dreams would break free to return to the shadows, leaving only happy, sleeping babies who laughed and clapped with joy on waking.

Eventually the Ojibwe tribe grew, and as such went off in many different directions. This made it impossible for the spider woman to visit all the places that babies slept to place a woven dream catcher above them. So, the magical secret was passed down to grandmothers and in turn to mothers, who could create their very own dream catchers from plants and willow.

Traditionally a dream catcher would either have seven points which would represent the Seven Great Prophesies of the Ojibwe or would have eight points to represent spider woman (8 legs). Turquoise is usually placed at the centre and feathers and crystals are woven into the web.

Of course dream catchers are now readily available to buy and many parents will still place them above a babies or child’s bed to ensure a peaceful nights rest. Increasingly adults are also using them to guard against insomnia and restless nights.

Ref: Encyclopaedia of Magic & Ancient Wisdom