How to dance like rain

How to Do a Rain Dance ~ Native American Rain Dance


Native American Rain Dance

When reading about the history of our country and in particular, the Native Americans many people have heard of a ceremonial tradition that is known as the Native American rain dance. The Native American rain dance was the most common among the Native American tribes in the southwest of America, since during the summers there they would have long droughts.

The droughts could bring serious problems for the natives since having some rain was essential for their survival and their food crops. The rain dance would usually take place in the driest month of the year, so usually this ritual was performed in mid to late August ever year. The Native American rain dance was performed by both the men and women of the tribe, unlike other tribal rituals where only men were allowed.

The Native Americans wore special costumes when performing the Native American rain dance ceremony, and these costumes were used just for this specific ceremony every year. The men would have long hair waving in the ceremony and the women wore their hair in a special tribal wrap at the sides of their heads. The mask that the Indian men wear is a mask with a turquoise strip that stretches from ear to ear across the face of the mask. Then the bottom is a band of blue, yellow, and red rectangles. A fringe of horsehair hangs from the bottom which covers the throat and three white feathers hang from the top of the male mask. The women’s mask is somewhat similar but instead of a turquoise stripe theirs is white and they do not have the rectangles on the bottom or the horsehair. The women’s masks also have goat hair around the top and an Eagles feather hangs over their face. The men also have their bodies painted up by tribal standards and wear special beads and they wore a fox skin hung behind them and also a silver bracelet and white apron type cloth. They also wore turquoise moccasins. The women wore a black dress and no parts of their bodies were shown except their bare feet. Then they wore a bright colored shawl with one black and one white shawl over that. Then they all lined up and performed the Native American rain dance in hopes of bringing the rain that they desperately need. Many reservations in the southwest still perform this ritual to this day.

Basic Guidelines on How To Rain Dance

(everyone/tribe is unique, be creative, remembering to honor the earth.  nothing can be taken less something given.)

1. Never do a rain dance on a hill.
2. Make sure you have a lot of room so you don’t run into anything.
3. Spin around in clockwise circles.
4. Make up your own rain chant.  It should be rhythmical
and easy to say fast.
5. Yell your rain chant while spinning around in circles.
6. If you are trying to get rid of rain, spin in counterclockwise circles and say your chant backward



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This entry was posted on July 18, 2012 by carinaragno. It was filed under culture, life, music, nature, photography and was tagged with culture, dance, geo, how to do your own rain dance, indians, life, music, native american, nature, photos, rain dance.

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    How to do a Native American rain dance (not that we need one)

    Let’s set the scene: it’s mid-to-late August, it’s scorching, the crops yearn for water and the people depend on the crops in order to survive the winter. When in drought, rain dance!

    A Native American performing a rain dance at an exhibition

    Native American tribes perform a ceremonial dance that has been passed orally from generation to generation. They hold this traditional dance to get rain by winning the favour of their gods. To this day, many tribes around the United States have kept this tradition alive and continue to perform rain dances.

    Young Native American men doing a rain dance

    Unlike most other rituals, rain dances are performed by both the males and females of the tribe (normally, it’s only the males that get to take part). Native Americans wear spectacular costumes when performing the rain dance ceremony, and these costumes are used specifically for this special ceremony every year. The only special outfit I have that I wear once a year is my Star Trek uniform for Halloween.

    A young Native American woman doing a rain dance

    So what are these costumes like? Well, the men generally have long, wavy hair and wear a mask decorated with vibrant colours such as turquoise, blue, yellow and red. A fringe of horse hair hangs from the bottom of the mask, which covers the throat, and three white feathers hang from the top of the mask. As well as wearing a mask, the men also have their bodies painted, wear special beads and have a foxskin hanging behind them.

    Native American moccasins

    The women usually wear their hair in a special tribal wrap at the sides of their heads. The women also have masks similar to the men, but instead of a turquoise, theirs is white and they don’t have horse hair hanging from the bottom. The women’s masks instead have goat hair around the top and an eagle’s feather, which hangs over their face.

    The women wear a black dress and no parts of their bodies are shown except their bare feet. Then they wear a brightly-coloured shawl with one black and one white shawl over that. As beautiful as these costumes sound, I don’t think they’d let me wear them in a nightclub!

    After they’re all dressed, they all line up and perform the rain dance in the hope of bringing the rain that they desperately needed. (Whereas us Brits are a miserable bunch when it rains, and would rather do a dance to stop it!). The steps of the rain dance itself are quite complex – the men and women stand in separate lines and make zigzagging patterns, but as previously mentioned, the steps are passed down through generations orally (so there’s no ‘Rain Dancing for Dummies’).

    During the 1920s and 30s, certain Native America tribal ceremonial dances were banned by the United States government because they were considered to be “backwards” and dangerous by those of the modern world. Tribal members in some regions would tell representatives of the federal government that they were performing a “rain dance” rather than revealing the fact they were actually performing one of the banned ceremonies.


    If you’re travelling to America, or anywhere else, remember your travel insurance. You’ll be covered for unexpected cancellations, medical expenses, lost luggage, and more. You can even add cover for natural disasters, in case you attempt a rain dance and end up causing a cyclone or tsunami!

    Learn to dance in the rain | Coffee Time

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    9000 “The meaning of life is not to wait for the thunder but in learning to dance in the rain. Life is not about waiting for the storm to end. Life is learning to dance in the rain.”

    I love that phrase! I heard it in 2010 and, by the way, it was included in my first published book, Dignity. The author of these wonderful words is an amazing woman Vivienne Green , American pianist, composer and singer. I will always be grateful to her for these words!

    For myself, I divided this phrase into several parts, from each part I singled out my thought, which became for me, so to speak, a guide to life, a pointer to action. Before, I did not like rainy weather, I associated it with cold and colds. At this time, I wanted to sit at home with a cup of hot tea, wrapped in a blanket. Looking out the window, I saw dullness in nature, pouring rain and rare passers-by, usually dressed in dark blue or black jackets.

    While studying this saying, I thought:
    What happens if it rains forever?
    Will I sit at home all day long and drink tea wrapped in a blanket? Not! After all, you need to take children to kindergarten, school, make appointments for business, and it wouldn’t hurt to go to the store to buy groceries.

    Photo by Kristina Tripkovic on Unsplash

    I realized that it was impossible to wait until the rain stopped! Why?

    • Well, first of all, I have no control over whether it rains or not.
    • And secondly, if I still wait for it to pass, I'll just waste my life sitting at home.

    So, my "work" on the first part of this catchphrase led to a positive: I decided to stop waiting! What did I do after that? After some time, I bought myself a raincoat. It is an unusual color - pink-white, with delicate flowers. I had never seen such coats before. Designed specifically for rainy weather, made of waterproof fabric, it is very stylish! I picked up a pale pink light scarf for it, and - "voila"!

    The second part of the saying goes like this: “You need to learn how to dance in the rain”

    Before, I didn’t understand: how is it? How can you dance standing in puddles, with wet feet, when it is pouring from above “like from a bucket”? But it’s worth trying once... I already had everything I needed for this: a raincoat, a scarf, an umbrella, waterproof shoes, and most importantly, a desire! I can dance, and quite well, so I can dance in the rain!

    Thank God, now I am one of those people who do not do what everyone else does! Realizing this makes me feel free, joyful and inspired. So when I danced in the rain when the lonely passers-by ran for cover, I really enjoyed it! It is unusual and bright, and I am everything that is bright!

    So I stopped waiting for the storm to pass and learned to dance in the rain! What has it changed in my life?

    Much! As a rule, our life does not consist of only bright sunny days, it has different periods and seasons, just like in nature. Therefore, having learned to dance in the rain, I realized that no matter what season of my life I was in - and in autumn, with its rains and storms, now I definitely will not sit back and wait until this "troubled" time is over! Not! On the contrary, I will try to dance even during this period of my life!

    No matter what happens, I will put on my colorful raincoat, elegantly throw a pale pink scarf over my shoulder and go through the puddles ... I will go dancing my life! After all, this is my life, and I like it! I am her mistress, and my mood, my "life dance" depends only on me: my goals, ideas and dreams. I will dance through life by learning to "catch" the waves of life's storms, using, tacking, or bypassing them as I head towards my next destination.

    Thus, the phrase spoken by the great pianist, having undergone all the semantic divisions that I accepted for myself after reading, gave me the opportunity not only to realize its deep meaning, but also to begin to build my life in accordance with it! This is very valuable to me! That is why I am writing these lines, inspiring you to reflect on the seasons in your life, especially the season of rains and storms! You can’t get away from them in everyday life, but I wish you to learn to accept them, cope with them, dance during these periods and still continue to enjoy life!

    Photo by michael podger on Unsplash

    Happy dancing in the rain!

    Main Photo by Max Okhrimenko on Unsplash

    Author Julia

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    Dance in the rain | Rain and interesting things about rain

    Our modern life is not well suited for strange people. You object, you say that any time is not suitable for them? Perhaps, but a long time ago, I remember, those who stood out from the crowd, although they were called holy fools, but they were considered close to God ...

    Yes, and in fairy tales, foolish Ivanushkas are usually lucky at the end. Not like nowadays! In the 21st century, being different from everyone else is quite difficult, and sometimes very dangerous! You say it's an exaggeration? Not at all.

    Even in childhood, kind-hearted relatives pitifully shook their heads - they say, a strange girl is growing up. All normal children cannot stand rain, they are afraid of lightning, and they completely run away from thunder, headlong, but this one ...

    Meanwhile, she didn’t even want to listen, as soon as the first drops hit the glass, she instantly climbed onto the windowsill and pressed her nose to the window - and listened, listened ... Yes, what could she hear there, at her 3-4 years old ?!

    And then she came up with an idea - to dance in the rain! She seemed to feel that it was going to rain soon, even if nothing was said about it, and ran out into the street by hook or by crook. Well, this dance in the rain was strange!

    That's when they began to talk openly: "And the girl they have, that ... crazy, dancing in the rain!" Mom, as soon as she tried to stop these attempts to arrange another dance in the rain - nothing helped! They even tried to lock her at home, not letting her out into the street - it was useless.

    One day she just opened the window and stood on the windowsill, somehow managed to take off, after all, the third floor. So they waved their hand, well, she wants to spin in the rain - yes to health! By the way, about health: she managed to never catch a cold even under the coldest rain! As if the meaning of her whole life was to perform this almost ritual dance in the rain every time ...

    They even sent her to a dance studio, but something didn't work out for her there. The teachers complained that she was trying to dance on her own, and it was rare that any lessons made her very excited. Here she grasped everything on the fly, but chose only those movements that she personally needed. Mom sighed, regularly paid for the studio every month and furtively shoved a couple more bills into the teacher’s hand, whispering pitifully: “Don’t kick her out, she’s just special for me ...”

    Apparently, she needed this dance in the rain so much, if stubbornly, over and over again, she jumped out under the cold streams and began to dance. If you look at it quite objectively, then it turned out better and better for her. Perhaps the spectacle could be called bewitching, if not for the strangeness of the situation itself - a dance in the rain. Yes, what to take from her - abnormal!

    This is how she lived, not understood by anyone, but, in general, not particularly suffering from this. According to the laws of life, sooner or later she had to be sent to a lunatic asylum.

    But according to the laws of a fairy tale ... No, he was not considered abnormal at all, the most ordinary guy. Well, maybe a little weird. Is that what all guys from 16 to 25 (30, 40, all their lives. .) do? That's right, girls are constantly changing. And he still could not find that one, that OWN one. He kept walking, looking, he didn’t like something, but he didn’t know what exactly. Some girls were all ... not real, or something.

    In general, sooner or later it had to happen. He was going somewhere or somewhere. It was walking, and it was raining, and there was no one else on the street. So we can say that they went together. And it soon became clear that they were not alone on the deserted street.

    The girl was dancing right in the rain, in the middle of a completely empty street. It was a mesmerizing spectacle - dancing in the rain. The girl moved as if she were an extension of the rain, one with these tight streams. She did not pay attention to anything, she danced as if for the last time in her life ... It was a breathtakingly magical dance in the rain.

    Well, then you can guess for yourself. Those who were originally supposed to meet met. And they did not seem abnormal to each other.

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