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Playing Native American Flutes For A Unique Spiritual Journey

Aug 4, 2008
Native American flutes are extremely popular for use in ceremonies and rituals, or as home decor collection pieces. I have always enjoyed Native flute music for its pleasing sound quality and ability to bring a tranquil calm to the atmosphere where it is played. Hearing Native flutes always reminds me of my mother's kitchen where she often had flute music playing to bring a peaceful calm to her home. The mesmerizing flute music revives the soul and brings about a calming affect on the spirit of all who hear it.

If you look at the history of Indian instruments, you will realize that along with the drum, the flute has a big role in the daily lives, festivities and traditions of many Indigenous people. Native American flute music takes you on a spiritual journey where generations look to their forefathers to lead them, and use their instruments to connect them with the spiritual world.

Flutes in one form or another have existed for hundreds of years and have been part of many Tribes and cultures around the world. The research of flute instruments in history shows us that they did exist in ancient cultures. The origin and design of the Native American flute is a little more difficult to research due to the fact that there were no written languages among North American Tribes at that time. It wasn't until travelers documented their discoveries, that record of the Native American flute is found in history.

You can't take in the true value of Native flute music until you realize that society came close to crushing this amazing art from with severe assimilation rules. The 1900's brought with it harsh rules for Native Americans that almost succeeded to forever silence their culture and people. Along with many other Indigenous traditions, these rules stopped the dispersion of Native flute music. It wasn't until the mid-1900's that assimilation laws started to decrease and Native traditions were able to be practiced within the Tribe and out in the open once again.

Over time, the prestige of the Native American flute flourished to the point that flute makers began producing these instruments in large numbers to sell, and not just for personal playing purposes. The materials used to make the flutes also advanced from undeveloped crude instruments to more refined, with the use of power tools and the ability to find various types of woods, plastics and metals.

Now days, there are a variety of choices available when choosing a Native style flute, and it is just a matter of personal opinion. There are some recommendations you should keep in mind though when buying an instrument. There are various styles of flutes, but all have one of two different sound qualities. The sound tone of the flute is based on whether it is a Plains style or a Woodlands style. A Plains style flute produces a buzz type sound while a Woodlands style will produce a bell sound.

No matter which sound style of flute you buy, it is essential to check the characteristics of that specific instrument, including the mouthpiece, size, shape and number of holes, in order to find one that is right for you. Native American flutes also come in many different types of wood ranging from exotic, rather expensive woods, to simple pieces of pine, cane or bamboo.

Thanks to the general enjoyment of flute music, you can conveniently buy Native American flutes online, in various music stores, and in decor shops that sell Indian musical instruments and southwest home decorating accessories. If you are looking for a simple instrument to learn to play, or are looking for real Indian musical instruments for playing in Indian powwows and ceremonies, consider keeping the culture and instruments of American Indians alive with the peaceful harmony of Native American flutes.
About the Author
Craig Chambers is the director of Mission Del Rey and offers free information online about buying Native American flutes for Native rituals and ceremonies. For more information visit http://www.missiondelrey.com
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