Dancing the Dream: The Seven Sacred Paths of Human Transformation



Widely recognized as one of the foremost teachers of Native American wisdom, Jamie Sams reveals the seven sacred paths of human spiritual development and explains how exploring each path leads to shifts in our personal relat

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Widely recognized as one of the foremost teachers of Native American wisdom, Jamie Sams reveals the seven sacred paths of human spiritual development and explains how exploring each path leads to shifts in our personal relat

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What People Are Saying

Larry Dossey
A magnificent blueprint for transformation.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780062515148
  • Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers
  • Publication date: 5/28/1999
  • Edition description: Reprint
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 288
  • Sales rank: 191,411
  • Product dimensions: 5.31 (w) x 8.00 (h) x 0.64 (d)

Meet the Author

Jamie Sams is a member of the Wolf Clan Teaching Lodge. She is the coauthor of Medicine Cards™:The Discovery of Power Through the Ways of Animals, author of The Sacred Paths Workbook, and (with Twylah Nitsch) Other Council Fires Were Here Before Ours.

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Read an Excerpt

Chapter One

The silver threads of the Dream Weave are fed by imagination and inspiration. They form the paths that take us safely to the heart of the invisible wonders that are ever-present in physical life. --Berta Broken Bow


Where are the dances of oneness,
That I knew before my birth?
Did I surrender my wholeness
In order to walk the Earth?

Did I choose forgetting
In order to make life real?
Did I inhabit a human body
So I could learn how to feel?

I am here to dance the dream
In my sacred human form.
To celebrate my uniqueness
And ask no other to conform.

Dancing through life's lessons,
I will learn to move with grace,
While I dream of remembering
The potential of the human race.

--Jamie Sams

Each Life Is a Sacred Path

EVERY human being who walks the Earth Mother has an individual sacred path through life. That sacred path is created by the weaving of many tangible and intangible threads, which connect all of our emotions, dreams, thoughts, and experiences. The spirit's invisible thread of life force unfurls at birth and carries us through the twists and turns of growing up and learning about life on planet Earth. Our lives will change directions many times as experiences urge us to grow. Every decision we make and every shift in our perceptions can alter the course of our path through life and bring new experiences or expanded horizons. Every time we alter our priorities, we change our path. Every time we allow ourselves to use our imagination, we change our view of reality. Every time we decide to changedirection, we design and redesign our lifestyles, habits, priorities, personal needs, and goals.

If you are alive, you are on a sacred path. In your life you have followed a multitude of paths with different directions, and yet all those paths dovetail, creating the one life path that represents your unique journey through the physical world. Becoming aware that each of us also travels an intangible or spiritual path is the beginning of the awakening processes found on the seven sacred paths of human initiation and transformation.

Some people go through life believing that there is no scheme, no rhyme or reason, to the workings of the universe. They see no connections between themselves, other life forms, and the Creator-until some life event forces them to go beyond that unconscious condition. How and when life beckons us to change is different for every individual.

Many people grow and mature, endure heartache, experience personal breakthroughs, and still do not consciously embrace the paths of transformation.


The seven paths of transformation are never forced upon us; they present themselves as opportunities. We may feel that we are at the mercy of life's events, but even amid tragedy, fears, or loss, we are given choices and the opportunity to wake up. We can deny the existence of these alternate paths of understanding and remain safely unaware of them, or we can risk looking deeper. When the light goes on and we embrace the awakening process, we start to remember the things that our spirits have always known. As we become more conscious, we become aware of the divine significance or spiritual purpose that we carry within us. Doors begin to open, and we start to perceive the spirit or life force that animates our universe. Only then do we awaken and realize exactly how our lives are intricately woven within the whole.

The awakening process allows us to become aware of a bigger picture. Each part of the seven sacred paths of human transformation allows us to expand beyond our former tunnel vision. There are no lesser or greater paths through life. We have free will and are allowed either to look beyond the accepted horizons or to remain on a life path that suits our views of reality. The seen and unseen realms are of equal importance. Becoming aware of the intangible forces that shape the human experience adds innumerable possibilities to our life experiences. If we choose to explore the intangible realms of consciousness, what my teachers call the Dream Weave, we discover new layers of the life force found in spirit, thought, emotion, dreams, feelings, aspirations, creativity, and intent. Our budding awareness of the intangible aspects of human life adds new dimensions of understanding and wisdom, allowing us to see how divine consciousness intertwines with every aspect of physical life.

If you choose to embrace these paths, you will remember that before your birth your spirit, your spark of life, was exhaled from the Creator, the Great Mystery, God. That spark of life came from the Creator's Fire of Creation and was attached to an invisible thread of spiritual energy that sent you forth into the universe and animated the physical body you inhabit with life force. Embracing these paths, you will remember your purpose for being, your role in life, and how to transform any part of your human experience that keeps you from becoming your potential. The challenges that you face during the awakening process and transformation are your personal initiations, marking your passage of change.

On the first path, the East Direction on the Medicine Wheel, we become illuminated and begin to see clearly that there is a purpose for our lives. We embrace a new form of clarity, which takes us beyond our former "What is life offering me?" perspective. On the second path, the South Direction, we learn how to rise above childish human reactions, compulsions, and unhealthy emotions. The third path, the West Direction, teaches us how to heal our pasts, our bodies, and our self esteem. On the fourth path, the North Direction, we learn how to share the wisdom we have gained as well as how to live with compassionate, nonjudgmental, open hearts.

Dancing the Dream. Copyright © by Jamie Sams. Reprinted by permission of HarperCollins Publishers, Inc. All rights reserved. Available now wherever books are sold.
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Sort by: Showing all of 4 Customer Reviews
  • Posted August 29, 2009

    Jamie Sams thank you for being you, and thanks to all who helped you become the person you are.

    This book was one I chose in a book store in my home town, I spent almost 2 hours looking and discussing things with a very nice woman at this book store and with her expertice and my desire to find the perfect book at this time, I selected Dancing the dream.

    I have only been able to read up to the first ten pages, and then i take a break and try to absorb all that it has said so far.
    I think on it and then when i feel ready i read it again.

    I think that so far this book is so entertaining because in just the first ten pages i have had to read it at least three times hahahah but i realy dont want to rush this book.

    I am a slow reader so it takes about twenty minutes to read those ten pages but i am a slow reader because i need to understand what i read.

    You have said so much that touches my heart and soul within those first ten pages, I am almost ready to read more, and I will finnish it soon, but wow good show so far.

    I have learned alot from your book that i was already aware of inside but it is so nice to see that it was already written over ten years ago, and it took me ten years to learn most of what i just read in these past ten pages...So, thanks for being there the whole time lol, I am doing ok now, and I am not afraid, I love everything that comes my way, I do not judge myself too hard or others either, but i do maintain my life, and my well being, and i just wanted to say thanks, for writting your book.

    love a good story
    your friend

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 18, 2001

    Great Book for Updating Your Life

    So much of my experience of reading this book is personal, and, therefore, would only fit within the context of my life experience,...so no personal anecdotes are offered. Instead, I will only say that I was looking for this book long before I found it. Once I found it, I began reading and wrestling both with some of the touchy topicality and with the parts of my Self that were being touched by that topicality. Once you purchase this book and begin reading it, be aware of times when the book gets heavy or you get overly tired when reading it. I've found that these are great times to put the book down. Forget about it, as well as you can, and only pick it up when your gut starts screaming for it. I can almost guarantee (if my experience can be used as a template) that something significant to where you are RIGHT THEN will pop up within the first few paragraphs. Now, I did end up finishing this book, and starting new chapters in my life that began while under the tuteledge of Ms. Sams. I have shared several copies of this book with others who've walked through my circle looking for the kind of transformation that this book had helped me with. To me, this book is OUTSTANDING, but I can really only RECOMMEND this book for you. You are the one who must choose to get this book.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted September 18, 2011

    Highly recommend

    If you feel your place on earth is not going anyway... Do you feel that life is not all what it should be.... Read this book. Your mind will first be overwhelmed. Put it aside, let your life go on. When you feel you are ready, read it again. It changed my look on life

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 26, 2009

    No text was provided for this review.

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