Oh-Kee-Pah is a dance/ritual of the Mandan Indian people. In it the men suspend themselved from a tree by a pair hooks placed in their chest. This ritual has been brought into the public light by the movie A Man Called Horse as well as by Fakir Musafar, father of the "Modern Primitives", who performed an Oh-Kee-Pah suspension in the 70's, which can be seen in the film Dances Sacred and Profane.

From what I've been told, originally in an Oh-Kee-Pah suspension the hooks were placed through the pectoral muscles and the person suspending would be left to hang until he tore free, which could occur hours or days into the suspension. Nowadays the piercings only pass through the flesh and fatty tissue of the body, and the person performing the flesh hook suspension will not be left to hang nearly as long. The pain of a suspension begins as very intense, moreso in an oh-kee-pah because only 2 hooks are used, as opposed to 4+ in other forms of suspension. After the first few minutes the pain drains from the body and a state of euphora is reached, where no pain is felt, and a feeling of floating is attained.

Probably later this summer I'm going to perform an Oh-Kee-Pah suspension. From what I've been told by people who have done it, they've reacted with laughter, crying, screaming, temporary deafness and blindness, visions, white light flashes, and many other ways. It seems to be the most intense form of suspension, and I look forward to the day that I can do it.

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