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Indigenous Wisdom

“We’ve miscommunicated with our environment for a long time, not knowing its language.”
-Bear Heart, Muskogee Nation

“I deeply feel that the indigenous peoples of this planet are keepers of the cultural and spiritual map to another good place. If we all collectively contribute our energy, we will survive.”
-Rosalie Little Thunder, Sicangu Lakota

In my meditation today, I felt the need for American Indian voices. I felt the need for Earth prayers, Tree prayers, River prayers, Animal, Fish, and Bird prayers. There are many changes taking place throughout the world. With enormous change, comes a call for wisdom, guidance, and thoughtful deliberation. There is a need for kindness. And a great need for gentleness.

As gasoline prices rise, (along with pollution, greed, and destructive habits), alternative energy exploration is vital. Solar power, wind power, and water power are all possible. Likely, there are many alternative paths that will allow us to live in balance and harmony with all who share this planet.

I saw a recent news article covering an interfaith dialogue on environmental stewardship. There was no tribal elder represented in the discussion. With any advances, we have to see more than our own small viewpoint. We have to ask how the native plants and migratory birds will be impacted. We have to understand potential consequences to the earth, animal, sea, and human life should there be a natural disaster. We have to invoke creative solutions that work for all.

Have we asked the Earth: What do you need? Do we ask other species: How can we help? Do we explore consequences seven generations out?

When we pray for our loved ones, do we include our animal friends? What about the sky? How might our religious and spiritual practices change if we pray for the rivers and lakes? Do we show reverence for the ground we walk upon? Do we consider the earth sacred? Do we ask permission of the plants, creeks, trees, birds, and wildlife before building another road, bridge, or housing subdivision? Do we pray for guidance before we act? When we are ill, do we understand which plants can help us?

All are in the Sacred Hoop. All voices need to be included: Shamans, Healers, Medicine men, Medicine women, Tribal elders, Goddess/Earth-based spiritual leaders, Buddhists, Quakers, Amish, Mennonites . . . (to name only a few). Let’s share what we know. Let’s ask what is needed.

Now is the time for our elders and our children to be heard. Now is the time to listen, carefully, to Spirit.

In joy and gratitude,


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