Wednesday, November 16, 2022

The Seven Fires Prophecies, by J.C. Kavanagh


In last month's blog, I referenced an Ojibwe legend about the Seven Fires Prophecies. It's a fascinating, genuine tale handed down over hundreds of generations by tribe Elders and Wisdom Keepers. The significance of these prophecies and how they've transpired over the centuries, cannot be understated. These prophecies became pivotal in the final book of The Twisted Climb series. Curious? Read more below in an excerpt from Chapter 20 of A Bright Darkness. 

Chapter 20 - The Seven Fires Prophecies

“In the ages when time had just begun for my people – the original Anishinaabe nation – seven prophets dared to speak to the Elders about the future. Their predictions and warnings are called the Seven Fires Prophecies. Each prophecy marks a significant turning point for our people. Let me explain.” Mrs. Beeforth, the Ojibwe Elder, settled in her chair. “The first prophecy spoke of our origins, of how we had to preserve our history, our traditions, and medicinal practices. All these things were to be written on sacred scrolls. The prophet said we had to travel from the shores of the great salt water – the Atlantic Ocean – to the land where food grows on the water. If we did not travel to this land, we would die.”

“The Second Fire Prophecy would be upon us when we doubted the wisdom of the Elders. During this time, the ancient ways would be ridiculed and stifled. It would take the insight of a young native-born boy to re-direct the people back to the traditional ways.”

“The Third Fire prophecy declared that the nation must continue their journey west, to the chosen land – the land where food grows on the water. I can tell you now that our people travelled for hundreds, perhaps thousands of years, settling in the Great Lakes Region. There, the food on the water was found – wild rice. Berries, beaver, deer and fish were also plentiful, and our people flourished.”

“The Fourth Fire Prophecy was met with skepticism. Remember, these prophets were from the beginning of our ages. In this prophecy, two prophets foretold the arrival of a Light-skinned race. One warned that the future of our people depended on whether or not the Light-skinned race was offering true brotherhood. If they arrived with a handshake and desire to share their knowledge, then our people would join to form a great nation. However, the second prophet advised that if they came with weapons, and if they spoke from both sides of their mouth and secretly desired to steal the riches from our land, we should beware. If the rivers turned sour and the fish die, that is the sign the Light-skinned race brings death.”

Mrs. Beeforth adjusted her glasses, eyes grim. “The Fifth Fire prophecy foretold a struggle amongst all Indian nations; an internal struggle concerning traditions and beliefs. The Light-skinned people promised their own kind of salvation as long as we relinquished our beliefs. The internal struggle amongst our peoples would last for many generations and bring the nations to the brink of extinction.”

“The Sixth Fire Prophecy speaks to the results of the Fifth Prophecy. The deceit of those pushing to destroy our way of life will become evident when the wisdom of the Elders is disparaged and ignored. It will become evident when children are removed from the teachings of the Elders, and when our people are driven from their lands. A new sickness will befall our people at this time. Languages will be lost. The purpose of life – of living, loving and learning – will turn into shallowness and grief.”

“This is horrible,” Jayden muttered, “because it all came to be.”

“Yes,” Mrs. Beeforth agreed. “It all came to be.” She took a sip of water and continued.

“It was during this time that the Wisdom Keepers – priests if you will – called upon every Elder and every Priest, from every tribe, to gather all the sacred writings and scrolls. Everything that defined our people – our medicines, our languages and our traditions – was to be inscribed on birch bark and placed in a sacred bundle. This bundle would be hidden in a hollowed-out log and the log hidden within the crevice of a rock cliff. The log could only be reached by scaling down the cliff. All the knowledge of our people, from time immemorial, would be kept hidden there until the Indian people were ready to practice their beliefs and traditions, respect their Elders, and resume our Native ways without reprisal from the Light-skinned people.”

* * *

Check out A Bright Darkness for yourself and read what the Seventh and final prophecy will bring.

In the meantime, stay safe!

J.C. Kavanagh, author of 
The Twisted Climb - Darkness Descends (Book 2) 
voted BEST Young Adult Book 2018, Critters Readers Poll and Best YA Book FINALIST at The Word Guild, Canada 
The Twisted Climb,
voted BEST Young Adult Book 2016, P&E Readers Poll
Voted Best Local Author, Simcoe County, Ontario, 2022
Novels for teens, young adults and adults young at heart
Twitter @JCKavanagh1 (Author J.C. Kavanagh)
Instagram @authorjckavanagh


  1. It's so sad when conquerors suppress ancient wisdom to impose their own culture and call it progress. I hope the last prophecy is one of collective knowledge and peace among nations. Thanks for sharing.

  2. Thank you for the share, J.C. There are times I am guilty of writing habitually. If I am not in the mood to write, I am not really writing anything. I need someone who can advise the best thing or what is right for me to continue writing. However, a good friend of mine named Ritehly went to visit the ReadersMagnet he told me there are lots of requisites that I can find there. And by the way, J.C, thanks for your valuable story.


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