Manataka American Indian Council









Manataka Creed Code of Conduct Manataka Oath
Code of Ethics Protocols Pilgrimages
    Relationships     Fire Circle     Spiritual Prep
    Life     Making a Relative     Travel
    Meetings     Tipi Lodge     Lodging
      Sweat Lodge     Gifts & Offerings
      Picnics - Meals     10 Do's & Don'ts


Native Americans have a very high code of ethics and rules of good behavior.  Our ancestors did not imprison each other or lock up valuables and depended on one another to be honest.  All contracts and agreements were verbal promises and they depended on one another to keep promises.  They also had to count on one another to be fair; to not take more from the earth than was needed to survive, and to care for one another.  

The Manataka Oath, Creed and Code are the essence of the standards our honored ancestors lived by.  They are based on honesty, integrity, helping one another in work and play,    making the best of things, being friendly and kind, respecting elders, and taking care of Mother Earth that gives us food and shelter needed to survive.  






As members of Manataka, we pray twice every day, perform sacred ceremony, and honor all laws of the Creator.  We love and keep Mother Earth and all things on her.  We respect and honor our ancestors, the Elders and each other.  We learn  ancient traditions and pass our wisdom to our children and others.




"I am one with Manataka, all Creation and the Creator.  I am learning to walk the good red road and the seven steps of our sacred Fire Circle.  As a member, I keep the creed, oath and code of conduct of Manataka sacred and inviolate.  I have strong faith in Creator, the Great Mystery and All-Mighty God. I love and respect all things.  I am truthful,  honest and fair.  I am a teacher of sacred wisdom and beauty.  Material possessions are not mine for avarice and gluttony are without honor.   I tread lightly on our Mother Earth and hold no dominion over her plants, creatures and elements. I am a giving and caring person who respects all races, religions and people without judgment.  I am a rainbow warrior and I come to spread our love, light, peace and joy amongst all our relations."   



"I, _______________ hereby swear to uphold and support the Constitution of the Manataka American Indian Council, the Constitutions of the State of Arkansas and the United States of America.  I swear to do everything within my individual power to promote the laws, traditions and goals of the Manataka American Indian Council. I swear to advance American     Indian cultural, heritage and traditions.  I swear to represent this organization with fidelity, truth, and honor." 

  1. A Manataka member should be able to:

*    Recite the Manataka Oath and Creed.
*    Explain the meaning of the Oath and Creed.
*    Explain the meaning of the Code of Conduct.
*    Be a role model for other members, peers, and community  through    

     deeds,  words, and actions.


Upon rising each morning and before retiring each night, give thanks to the Creator for the life within you and all life.  Thank the Creator for the good things and for the opportunity to grow a little more each day.  Consider your thoughts and actions of the past day and seek the courage and strength to be a better person. Seek for the things that will benefit others (everyone).

Respect: Respect means "To feel or show honor or esteem for someone or something; to consider the well being of, or to treat someone or something with deference or courtesy".  Showing respect is a basic law of life.



Always treat every person from the tiniest child to the oldest elder with respect.   

Give special respect to elders, parents, teachers, and community leaders.

Avoid hurting others physically, mentally and emotionally by words and actions.

Respect the privacy of others. 


Never intrude on a person's quiet moment or personal space.  Never walk between or interrupt people who are talking.

Speak in a soft voice, especially when you are in the presence of elders, strangers or others to whom special respect is due.

Never speak about others in a negative way, whether they are present or not.   

Gossip is a snake in the lodge of our people - do not fall prey to it.

Treat the earth and all her aspects as your mother. Show respect for animals, stone people and plant world. Do not pollute Mother Earth, rise up in wisdom and defend her.

Respect all life - especially the animal kingdom.  The Creator did not give humans dominion over animals, but rather the animals teach and guide humans. 


Show deep respect for the beliefs and religion of others.

Touch nothing that belongs to someone else without permission.



Always treat your guests with honor and consideration. Give of your best food, best blankets, best part of your house, and the best service to your guests.

Receive strangers and outsiders with a loving heart and as members of the human family.  All the races and tribes are different colored flowers of one meadow.  All are beautiful.  Respect all of the Creator's children.

Humans are created to serve others, to their family, community, nation and the world.  Do not fill yourself with your own affairs.  True happiness comes only to those who dedicate their lives to the service of others.

Know those things good for your well-being and those things that lead to your destruction. Listen to and follow the guidance given to your heart.

Expect guidance to come in many forms; in prayer, in dreams, in times of quiet solitude, and in the words and deeds of wise elders and friends.

Observe moderation and balance in all things.

Eat well but not excessively.  Eat 'natural' foods given by Mother Earth - for it is what you are made from.  Do not eat what man manufactures for it is full of poison chemicals and unnatural elements.


During Meetings and Gatherings

Listen with your heart in courtesy to what others say.  Respect the wisdom of the people in council.  Once you give an idea in council, it no longer belongs to you.  It belongs to the people.  Listen intently to the ideas of  others in council and that you do not insist that your idea prevail. Indeed, freely support the ideas of others if they are true and good, even if they are quite different from yours.  The clash of ideas brings forth the spark of truth.

Once a council has decided an issue in unity, do not speak secretly against what has been decided.  If the council has erred, the error will be apparent to everyone in its own time.

Be truthful at all times, under all conditions.

The hurt of one is the hurt of all, the honor of one is the honor of all.


Bring problems with others to the Elder Council.  Do not circulate these problems among the membership.  Harsh words against others only serve to inflame a problem.


If you plan to speak with an Elder or honored guest, it is suggested you offer a small gift as a sign of respect.   When the blanket is laid on the ground near the entry into the circle, please lay down a gift. 






Fire Circle -

You should be smudged before entering the Circle.  

Always enter from the east and move sun-wise.   

Never walk between the Fire and another person. 

No eating, drinking or smoking in the Circle.    

Children are not to run and play in the circle - adults included. 

Idle talking in the Circle is discouraged.  


New Members - Making of A Relative Ceremony

If you have not been present in the sacred Fire Circle of Manataka during ceremonies and received your blessings and taken the oath, and you plan to attend the Gathering, go to the Manataka lodge after the meal and before the start of ceremonies.  You will receive important instructions about your part in the ceremonies.  If you have an offering or gift to make during ceremonies, please make this known to the officiating elders.


Gifting -

If you plan to speak with an Elder or honored guest, it is suggested you offer a small gift as a sign of respect.   When the blanket is laid on the ground near the entry into the circle, please lay down a gift.  


Manataka operates solely on membership dues and gifts. Your help is needed to defray the cost of events and projects.  Walk the talk.


Manataka Lodge

Except for Elders and Clan Leaders, enter the tipi only when invited. 

Remove shoes before entering. 

Always move sunwise (clockwise) around the fire pit. 

Never walk between the fire pit and another person, walk behind. 

Please do not handle objects without permission. 

Children should be accompanied by an adult inside the lodge. 


Sweat Lodge

You must be invited to enter.  Protocols for the Sweat Lodge are explained by the Lodge Elder prior to entering.  The Lodge is a sacred place.  You will be asked to leave at the slightest disrespect.  Ceremonies in the lodge are done according to the ways of the tribe or nation from which the Lodge Elder received  training.   A Lodge will not be opened if no qualified Lodge Elder is present and consents to performing ceremonies.     


Potluck Picnic -

Paper plates, cups, napkins and eating utensils supplied.

Elders, honored guests, dancers and drummers eat first.  Those who brought food eat next.   If you did not bring a food gift, you are welcome to eat and make a gift to this event.


Parking -     Do not park on grass or at campsites without paying. 
Litter -          Do not throw litter on the ground - Take trash with you.
Dogs -    
Must be muzzled and on a leash.

Drinking -   No drugs or alcohol are permitted.  
Selling -     
No selling of kind is permitted on the sacred grounds.


Preparation for a Pilgrimage

Part One


Your pilgrimage to the Place of Peace, Manataka, begins now.  Many who come to pray and honor this sacred site begin preparations for this journey many years in advance.  Others come on a spur of the moment.  Neither group is favored over the other because all gifts are equal in the eyes of the Great Mystery.   Your journey is a gift. 


Your visit will be a wonderful blessing and gift to the Creator, Mother Earth, Manataka, the Rainbow Woman, and the Keepers of this sacred site.   It will also become a blessing to your family, friends, neighbors, and to you.   No one can say what lessons you will learn or the impact your journey will have on the rest of your life.   However, every person will receive what is needed and each will leave what is not.  


Before planning the date of your arrival, you should understand the importance of Manataka to humanity and ways its blessings can become yours.  More importantly, you should understand ways those blessings can best be utilized within the context of your walk in life.  Light energies, powerful messages, and visions are channeled by knowing your inner-self and following the spirit of Manataka, they can be concentrated and put to use in the best way possible Ė for the good of all Creation.


Spiritual Preparations

Here are three simple, yet powerful activities you can perform to help you achieve optimal reception and benefit from your journey. 


1.   Perform ceremonies daily.  Set up an altar in your home or in a special place outdoors.   Consider this place holy and sacred.  Place objects on or near the altar that have special meaning to you.   Go to your altar daily.  Give food offerings to the animals and your ancestors.


2.   Cleanse.  Smudge yourself daily and give prayers of thanksgiving in the morning and evening.  Do not ask for things for yourself.  The Creator already knows all your needs. Asking for personal benefits, whether for yourself or those close to you, shows a lack of faith.   Give thanks for the blessings that have happened or will happen.  Purge your heart daily of the negatives.   Were you intolerant of a family member?  Did you get angry at someone?  Did you leave an error uncorrected?   Guilt is a negative and not good.  Therefore, do what is necessary to correct errors and purge yourself of guilt.


3.   Fast.   There are good lessons to learn during a fast.  Lessons of endurance, patience, self-denial, strength, harmony, and peace.   Fasting is also beneficial for your body when done correctly.  Fasting helps to get rid of harmful toxins and fats and energizes the bodyís immune system. 


If your body is not accustomed to fasting, begin by fasting one day only.  Choose a day during the month when fasting will be convenient.   Take nothing by mouth except water Ė no other beverage.  If you smoke, stop for 24 hours.  Stop any other indulgent habits that may interfere with your pursuit of tranquility and prayers.   Once you have fasted one day, increase it to two days, then three.  Fasts of longer than three days require experience and supervision and can become dangerous for some people with chronic physical problems.   If you are diabetic, consult your doctor before attempting any type of fast.   


After a fast, envision your body as a holy vessel into which you will place only that which is clean and purified.  At least for one week after a fast, eat only that which comes from the Mother Earth and has not been factory processed by man.


Traveling Companions

A journey to Manataka is a personal experience.   Yet, many who come bring friends and relatives.  While sharing this experience with others is good, sometimes they can distract from the experience, especially if they do not understand and appreciate the purpose of your journey.  Therefore, choose your traveling companions well. 


Gifting and Offerings

MAIC and the Elders of Manataka require no monetary compensation for any service they may perform before, during or after your visit.    Money and material things have no place at Manataka.


Offerings to the sacred Manataka Mountain are o.k. but please be aware your gift may not remain very long unless it is small and well hidden.  Tourist-related businesses surround the mountain and foot traffic on the mountain is sometimes heavy during the day.  The government prohibits ceremonial fires within the boundaries of the National Park, but our elders are experienced in ways to observe the law and perform ancient rites in a prescribed manner.


As a sign of respect and honor, Elders may receive personal gifts.  You may give a contribution to the Manataka American Indian Council for general use or for a specific purpose, however there is never an obligation to do so.   Anyone who cannot afford to pay for ceremonial herbs, offerings, or meals will be provided these things by MAIC.



MAIC does not arrange travel or lodging except for groups of 20 or more.  Hot Springs has hundreds of hotel/motel rooms, condominium rentals, cabins, camping and recreational vehicle parks for your pleasure.  Restaurants of every size and description abound.   


Call 1-888-SPA-CITY (1-888-772-2489)  to request a tourist information packet from the Hot Springs Convention and Visitors Bureau.  Use the Diamond Lakes magazine enclosed to contact lodging facilities toll free.


10 Doís and Doníts

  1. 1.    Do pray, fast, and smudge before entering the sacred grounds.


  3. 2.    In prayer, ask permission of the Creator, the mountain and all 

  4.        beings who occupy the mountain, including the standing ones, 

  5.        stone people, animals, and birds, to enter upon the sacred 

  6.        mountain.


  8. 3.    Do not carry money, metal or food on the mountain.  The 

  9.        animals should not be fed human food.


  11. 4.    Do not carry recreational tobacco or alcoholic beverages on the

  12.        mountain.  Water is acceptable and may be advisable if staying 

  13.        for an extended time.

  1. 5.    You may bring tobacco, sage, sweet grass, mullein, cedar or 

  2.        other sacred medicines for use in ceremony.   For safety reasons,

  3.        Please do not start a fire on the mountain without an Elder present.   


  5. 6.    In the interest of safety and guidance, make arrangements with 

  6.        an Elder if you plan to stay on the mountain alone for an 

  7.        extended period (more than 12 hours).


  9. 7.    Taking pictures is a condoned accepted modern practice, 

  10.        although not encouraged.  Please ask before taking a picture of 

  11.        an Elder or others on the mountain.


  13. 8.    Do not remove stones or plants from the mountain.  We ask that 

  14.        you remove any trash you see and pack your trash out.


  16. 9.    Do keep a journal of your experiences.


  18. 10.  You may bring a blanket to sit on or to wrap yourself.


End Part One -

Part Two of your instructions will be given in-person, eye-to-eye, heart-to-heart. 



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