Notable Blogs: 1/16/2011

Some time has passed since I last posted under the category of “Notable Blogs”. Here are four recent  blog posts I found especially engaging. As always, I hope you will visit the blogs and read the posts in their entirety. Please remember to leave the author a comment expressing your appreciation.

Samantha has been engaged in the challenging task of working out a definition of Indian. She’s also been talking with the elders. Seems to me the two might travel well together.

Rather than describe all of the wonderful things that I learned in the last two days, I want to reflect on what it has led me to think about.  One of the things that I heard from the Elder talk was that Canada is the only place that has an Act to define a person.  Rather than have someone define who I am, I want to define myself.  Obviously I would never be able to define myself as an entire person, so I am going to focus specifically on myself as a First Nations Person.

The most important thing is that I understand that I don’t know very much about my heritage. I’m Cree and I only know one word, although my grandpa did lose the language when he went to the residential school. I want to learn more about myself and my family, and I want to do things to make my entire family proud. Because education was so important to my family it has become the most important thing in my life. My definition is quite short, but i will forever be building on it.

Hidden Connections found himself in a tiny, poverty stricken town in Korea, performing ceremony for his wife’s ancestors, and expressing his appreciation to them for sending his wife into the world. I was left wondering how often most of us remember to acknowledge those who created the conditions for love in our lives?

And so in a small, nearly nameless town near Gyeongju, I bowed my head to show my respect to the people who helped make my wife, and I tried to introduce myself to them as best as I could, whether or not they were actually capable of hearing my thoughts. After all, who knows?

Walking the Drum attended a Solstice Sweat, and found himself with the opportunity to acknowledge, and pray for, all those, living and in the spirit world, who walk the road of life with us.

We huddle together in the orange glow of the Grandfather stones – fifteen of us, tired and sweating our prayers in the belly of Mother Earth.  Spirit has brought us together yet again to pray for our people in the sacred space of the inipi.

The final round is a difficult one.   Our life water nourishes the earth as the steam carries our invocations skyward.  It rolls across the dome of the lodge, crawls along the walls and drapes itself heavily across our backs.

Finally, Hwaairfan posted M C Raj’s Keynote Address At First Round Table Of World Parliament Of Indigenous Peoples, First Round Table, 07 – 10 January 2011, Booshakthi Kendra, Tumkur, India. Mr. Raj reminds us that we, First Nations peoples everywhere must speak for the living cosmos.

“Whenever moments of truth dawned on our indigenous ancestors, they used to say, ‘It is time’. Brothers and Sisters, I dare say that our time has come. It is time for us to say, with all the ancestors of all our indigenous communities, that we have arrived in time. We are in need of saying aloud it now more than ever, because as indigenous peoples we have always been silent just as Mother Earth is to all the pains and pangs inflicted on her. But it is our silence that is now becoming the nemesis of the world. If we do not speak up against the mindless exploitation of the cosmos in its totality, who else will? Our suffering has been inextricably intertwined with the sufferings of the cosmos. It is in standing up and speaking for the cosmos that we shall be able to speak for ourselves. The World Parliament of Indigenous Peoples, when it becomes a reality in world history should become a veritable mouthpiece of the peoples of the world.

May it be so.

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