This post is also available in: Spanish
Time Shift : Spirit of the Indigenous Peoples
Traffic jam in Malaga, mobile phone rings, late for work…. I am fortunate to have traveled in many countries where the pace of life is quite different from this. Although aware of this more hectic life, I can easily shift dimensions to be a ‘bridge person’; visualizing on the one hand my memory of a man tilling his vineyard on the slopes of Mt Etna or a cheerful group of young Maya people in Mexico walking to work in the fields at dawn. In Central America many people are still connected to following natural cycles, working with the earth, using traditional ways and growing food which more than make up for lack of material possessions. The undeniable problems of illiteracy and basic needs should not detract from the benefits of their traditional ways and closeness to the land that provides them food. This is in stark contrast to lifestyles in industrialized countries and the separation is a gulf that runs much deeper than materialism. The media view is always selective and creates prejudice that keeps alive the legacy of the Conquistadors. Recently though I hear people expressing thoughts that suggest they are waking up and are alarmed by signals the environment is giving us. They realize that governments won’t have the ability to co-operate with each other sufficiently to implement second stage post Kyoto agreements. This is where the indigenous peoples – particularly in the Americas, are taking action. The founding fathers of the United States of America – especially Benjamin Franklin – discovered that democratic principles and practices were already in operation amongst Native Americans of the Haudenosaunee League, also known as the Iroquois. The League was a peaceful and self-governing federation of a number of Nations. There were no democratic governmental role models in Europe at the time and the founding fathers used the League as a model for the constitution. Unfortunately, while adopting these ways, the American settlers left out the equal position of women, as well as the role of children and people’s sacred connectedness with nature, which were central to the Native Americans. In the 21st century many Nations of Indigenous Peoples have recognised the human race is heading for disaster. Some say that it is time for all of us to act to protect the future of Mother Earth from those of the industrialised world, whom they call the ‘Younger Brother’. They feel that they can show a different way forward and through a series of indigenous summits have made declarations stating their position and creating Seven Global Currencies (see Chispa Jun-July 07). These ‘currencies’ are the real foundation of life and they open a doorway to revitalise our attitudes by acknowledging the sacredness of all life and by choosing to replace money currency with this model.
Seven Global Currencies:
The Breath of Life: The air, winds and atmosphere
The Water of Life: The waters, the clouds, waterways, rivers and streams and oceans.
The Giver of Life: The Sacred Species: Buffalo, Deer, Salmon & Eagle
The Sustainers of Life: Corn, Beans, Squash (agriculture)
The Foundation of Life: The land and territory, Mother Earth
The Sharers of Life: Community and Nations
The Seed of Life: Spirit – Life