The Seven Dancers (Origin of Pleiades)

the Pleiades constellation


There came a time in the history of the Ogweho:weh in which they became neglectful of their children. The older people were too involved in their own activities and had forgotten to teach their children the important lessons of the Ogweho:weh Way of Life.

The children had many questions that needed answers, but it seemed that adults couldn’t find the time to sit and talk with them. So, it happened in one village that eight boys began meeting together to try and find the answers they sought. They would go to a special place in the forest where they could sit and talk for hours. At this place each would recount things heard and practice the songs and music they wanted to learn.

One night all eight had the same dream. In the dream, a Being came and spoke to them. The Being told them that what they were doing was good, and that it was unfortunate that the older people were ignoring them. The Being told them that the older people needed to learn a lesson and the eight would help. They were told to gather at their meeting place the next night and were given a song and dance to do on that evening. They were told that in doing this activity a great thing would happen; a change would occur. While this change was occurring, they would hear their parents calling and they must not look back at them.

A group of people dancing in the fire

Description automatically generatedOn the following evening, the eight boys gathered at their meeting place. Their parents and other older people had followed them and were watching from the darkness of the forest.

They began singing the song and the dance they had been shown. As the people watched, the boys began to rise off the ground into the night sky. The parents became fearful and called to their sons, but they continued to rise. The people were crying and called out louder. The last boy looked back! As he did, he fell back to the earth, but the others continued rising to the sky. They became a constellation known as the Seven Dancers.

From this lesson, the Ogweho:weh learned not to take their children for granted. The Seven Dancers continue their dance in the evening sky reminding the Ogweho:weh that they must think seven generations into the future about the welfare of their people. Throughout the year the Seven Dancers position themselves to remind the Ogweho:weh when it is time to carry out their spiritual duties. This is one of the many stories told by the Ogweho:weh during the winter season to remind the people of their responsibilities.