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In many Native American groups, the vision quest is a turning point in life taken before puberty to find oneself and the intended spiritual and life direction. When an older child is ready, he or she will go on a personal, spiritual quest alone in the wilderness, often in conjunction with a period of fasting. This usually lasts for a number of days while the child is attuned to the spirit world. Usually, a Guardian animal will come in a vision or dream, and the child's life direction will appear at some point. The child returns to the tribe, and once the child has grown, will pursue that direction in life. After a vision quest, the child may apprentice an adult in the tribe of the shown direction (Medicine Man, boatmaker, etc).
The vision quest is the the learning and initiation process of the apprentice under the guidance of an elders.
The vision quest may be said to make the initiated establish contact with a spirit or force. Psychologically, it may have effected hallucinations.
The technique may be similar to sensory deprivation methods. It may include long walking on uninhabited, monotonous areas (tundra, inland, mountain); fasting; sleep deprivation; being closed in a small room (e.g. igloo).
|This page uses content from the English Wikipedia. The original article was at Vision quest. The list of authors can be seen in the page history.|