- Continuity that the Walam Olum, Delaware Indian Big House Ceremony by Speck, and Birchbark Scrolls by Dewdney are each related is seen in their reference to "Picking Berries".
*Rafinesque recorded in the Walam Olum first part "the first women picking berries"
*Speck states that "Picking Berries" was done on the fourth, fifth, and sixth day of the Big House Ceremony. Picking berries was symbolic of the attendants action of picking up wampum scattered about at the ceremony. The Wampum was stored in the mouth while the attendants made the sound "M+". This symbolized birds picking berries from bushes. Others state that the action used to reward the attendants for their efforts with Wampum (Money).
*Dewdney recorded in the Birchbark scrolls that "Picking berries" was symbolic of taking the divergent path. The divergent path was taken to go to the heart berry when one is making a "breakthrough". Red Sky stated the temptation of the "strawberry" on the divergent path should be avoided.
*The Lakota and Delaware custom of recording yearly "winter Counts" on skin or birch bark was also widely recorded. See the book entitled "The Year the Stars Fell: Lakota Winter Counts at the Smithsonian "
*The heart berry basket was a woven red basket that the Ojibwa gave as a gift to a family that just had a baby.
I suggest that "picking strawberries" was allegory of temptation. The continuity of this phrase used in each of these documents confirms the cultural importance.
Could "picking berries" be another culture of saying "picking apple"?