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Ohén:ton Karihwatéhkwen - Thanksgiving Address in Haudenosaunee Culture

Ohén:ton Karihwatéhkwen - Thanksgiving Address in Haudenosaunee CulturePinterest
Image Source: Dance for All People

In the Haudenosaunee language, the Thanksgiving Address is called Ohén:ton Karihwatéhkwen pronounced ‘Oh hon don Gar ee wah day kwon,’ which translates to “What we say before we do anything important.” In English, it is commonly known as the Opening Prayer, the Greetings (“giving greetings to the natural world”), and most commonly, the Thanksgiving Address.

In traditional Haudenosaunee culture, the Thanksgiving Address is spoken at the opening and closing of important cultural events, including traditional Haudenosaunee ceremonies, meetings and gatherings.

The Thanksgiving Address acts as a traditional thanksgiving by acknowledging the Haudenosaunee people, the earth, the animals, and the Creator. Through this process of thanksgiving, the Haudenosaunee worldview is expressed and defined, presenting interconnectedness and interdependence with nature, the earth and human beings.

From time-to-time the Ohén:ton Karihwatéhkwen is spoken and referred to by local Haudenosaunee peoples at cultural events in and around the City of Kingston. If you have an opportunity to participate in a local Indigenous cultural event, be sure to listen to the Thanksgiving Address and share in giving thanks for the life you lead and world you are a part of.

Interested in Learning More about the Thanksgiving Address? Check out these two videos:

 

Skä•noñh - Great Law of Peace Center - Thanksgiving Address

The Ohen:ton Kariwatehkwen (Words Before All Else)