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| 12 min

This short documentary follows three Indigenous women as they practice ancestral forms of worship: drumming, singing, and using sweetgrass. These ancient spiritual traditions may at first seem at odds with urban life, but to Indigenous people in Canada who are used to praying in natural settings, the whole world is sacred space.

  • writer
    Gail Maurice
  • director
    Gail Maurice
  • producer
    Gerry Flahive
  • editor
    Katharine Asals
  • cinematographer
    Michael Grippo
    Stanislaw Barua
  • sound recordist
    Phil Brouwer
  • additional cinematography
    Gail Maurice
    Marcus Elliot
  • original music composer
    Ken Myhr
  • music performer
    Ken Myhr
  • production assistant
    Jeff Jordan
  • budget officer
    Ida Di Fruscia
  • senior production administration assistant
    Joanne Forrest
  • production secretary
    Corinne Herman
  • technical coordinator
    Mark Wilson
  • technical intern
    Nickolas Markovic
  • marketing manager
    Sue Mander
  • production coordinator
    Lisa Broadfoot
  • production supervisor
    Kemp Archibald
  • line producer
    Douglas MacFarlane
  • audio post facility
    Kitchen Sync Digital Audio
  • sound editor
    Jakob Thiesen
  • re-recording mixer
    Kevin Tokar
  • on-line services
  • online editor
    Dan Johnston
  • colourist
    Dan Johnston
  • production stills photographer
    Jag Gundu
  • executive producer
    Silva Basmajian


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Ages 16 to 18

Ethics and Religious Culture - Ethical Values
Ethics and Religious Culture - Religious Diversity/Heritage
Indigenous Studies - History/Politics
Indigenous Studies - Identity/Society
Indigenous Studies - Issues and Contemporary Challenges

This documentary can inspire research, discussion, projects and entry points for developing foundational knowledge in relation to First Nations cultural practices and protocols. What is smudging within a First Nations context? What are some medicines that are used for smudging within various nations across Canada? What does the process of smudging reveal about worldview? What are the Protocols for smudging and gathering medicines from the land, and why are they important to uphold? Is there a difference between spirituality and religion? How do ceremonies connect with the natural world and passing of time? Why would the act of smudging and other spiritual practices be demonized and outlawed throughout Canadian history? What does the drum symbolize for various nations? Why was professional cultural awareness of Indigenous healing practices such as smudging one of the Calls to Action of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Canada (2015)? Can an understanding of traditional plants and uses contribute to building relationships? 

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