If you are following the reports on Facebook, you might have heard about the Dakota Access Pipeline being build through Sacred Native Land.
When I was a kid, I used to read a lot about the history of the Native Americans, being evicted from the land of their ancestors, treaties being broken, cultures being dishonored. Only earlier today did I read about the “Trail of Tears”: as a result of the Indian Removal Act of 1830 the Cherokee Nation was forced to give up their lands and migrate west. Many people died along the way because of malnutrition and maltreatment. And why? Because of greed. Because of people believing that power and money is more important than another human’s life.
When I look at what is happening today, it looks like nothing has changed. Treaties are being broken the same way as they were 200 years ago. Sacred land is being desecrated the same way it was 200 years ago.
What is different though today is people coming together. People of all cultures, religions and races standing up together.
I do believe that we have the power to change the world. I do believe that when enough of us come together, we can make this world sacred again.
And we will be able to teach others about how all things are connected:
Every part of the earth is sacred to my people. Every shining pine needle, every sandy shore, every mist in the dark woods, every meadow, every humming insect. All are holy in the memory and experience of my people. We know the sap which courses through the trees as we know the blood that courses through our veins. We are part of the earth and it is part of us. The perfumed flowers are our sisters. The bear, the deer, the great eagle, these are our brothers. The rocky crests, the dew in the meadow, the body heat of the pony, and man all belong to the same family. The shining water that moves in the streams and rivers is not just water, but the blood of our ancestors. If we sell you our land, you must remember that it is sacred. Each glossy reflection in the clear waters of the lakes tells of events and memories in the life of my people. The water’s murmur is the voice of my father’s father. The rivers are our brothers. They quench our thirst. They carry our canoes and feed our children. So you must give the rivers the kindness that you would give any brother…….The wind also gives our children the spirit of life……..That the earth is our mother? What befalls the earth befalls all the sons of the earth…….This we know: the earth does not belong to man, man belongs to the earth. All things are connected like the blood that unites us all. Man did not weave the web of life, he is merely a strand within it. Whatever he does to the web, he does to himself All things are bound together. All things are connected…..