Click to Hear It
book, paper (any paper product)

Iti Fabvssa

   "Iti Fabvssa" is a Choctaw phrase meaning "pole", or more literally, "long,
slender piece of wood". As some readers are aware, one particular pole has a
great deal of importance to traditional Choctaw people.

   Choctaw communities traditionally kept a record of our history through oral
stories that were passed down from elders to youth. Some of these stories
explain how the Choctaw people came to exist. According to one of the two main
versions of the origins account, the Choctaw originally lived far in the west.
Life became difficult and the Choctaw and Chickasaw, were directed by a prophet
to journey together to make a new home. Every night, the prophet placed a sacred
pole in the ground and, by morning, a supernatural force would have caused it to
lean in the direction they were to travel that day. Every morning for months,
years according to some accounts, the pole was found to be leaning to the east,
and so journeyed the group. Finally, in what is now Winston County, Mississippi,
the pole remained upright all night, indicating that the people had arrived at
their new home. This general area became the homeland of the Choctaw people.

   The writers of this column have chosen the name "Iti Fabvssa", both to honor
the pole that was used to guide Choctaw people on our original journey, and
because of the symbolism the pole provides. Every morning on the original
Choctaw journey, the end of the pole in the ground pointed in the direction that
the people had come from, towards the past. The top end of pole pointed in the
direction they would be headed in the future. It is hoped that through the
traditional information presented and shared in this column, Choctaw people will
be able to connect with our Choctaw pasts and together create a uniquely Choctaw

This article and others came from the Choctaw Nation Biskinik. To see more history please refer to the following sites.
Sounds of Choctaw - Social Greeting
Sounds of Choctaw - Weather
Lesson of the Day