soul food and freedom music
can you hear the singing, the beating of the drums, and the trilling of the wee wrens*? [updated]
Two days ago I read a statement by Arvol Looking Horse, spiritual leader of the Sioux Nation that mixed with other recent events and themes, and caused the tumblers in my brain to spin and whir, then click into place in a delightful jackpot of a new configuration. Allow me to share it with you; you may need a feel-good diary as much as I do.
Revolutionary themes are in the current zeitgeist, in part because of Russell Brand, but also because of the Indigenous movements that have taken quite a lead on the ground, from Canada to the Zapatistas in Mexico, to Peru, Brazil and beyond.
First read a few snippets from Russell Brand on revolution: ‘We no longer have the luxury of tradition’:
‘Throughout paganism one finds stories that integrate our species with our environment to the benefit of both. The function and benefits of these belief matrixes have been lost, with good reason. They were socialist, egalitarian and integrated. If like the Celtic people we revered the rivers we would prioritise this sacred knowledge and curtail the attempts of any that sought to pollute the rivers. If like the Nordic people we believed the souls of our ancestors lived in the trees, this connection would make mass deforestation anathema. If like the native people of America we believed God was in the soil what would our intuitive response be to the implementation of fracking?’
‘We require a change that is beyond the narrow, prescriptive parameters of the current debate, outside the fortress of our current system. We no longer have the luxury of tradition.
‘We have to be inclusive of everyone, to recognise our similarities are more important than our differences and that we have an immediate ecological imperative.
‘We are mammals on a planet, who now face a struggle for survival if our species is to avoid expiry.’
‘Time may only be a human concept and therefore ultimately unreal, but what is irrefutably real is that this is the time for us to wake up.
The revolution of consciousness is a decision, decisions take a moment. In my mind the revolution has already begun.’
I’d respectfully disagree that a sea-change in consciousness is simply a decision; I believe it can be catching when it’s in the air. But yes; it’s begun, and revolutio still endures in the Occupy Movement, and is embodied in Idle No More and Indigenous movements all over Turtle Island and beyond. More on that later, but keep Brand’s words in mind as you read the following:
From Chief Arvol Looking Horse, 19th Generation Keeper of the Sacred White Buffalo Calf Pipe, Spiritual Leader of The Great Sioux Nation and a few other Indigenous leaders: ‘Indigenous Elders and Medicine Peoples Council Statement on Fukushima’, some excerpts:
‘The Creator created the People of the Earth into the Land at the beginning of Creation and gave us a way of life. This way of life has been passed down generation-to-generation since the beginning. We have not honored this way of life through our own actions and we must live these original instructions in order to restore universal balance and harmony. We are a part of Creation; thus, if we break the Laws of Creation, we destroy ourselves. We, the Original Caretakers of Mother Earth, have no choice but to follow and uphold the Original Instructions, which sustains the continuity of Life. We recognize our umbilical connection to Mother Earth and understand that she is the source of life, not a resource to be exploited.
We speak on behalf of all Creation today, to communicate an urgent message that man has gone too far, placing us in the state of survival. We warned that one day you would not be able to control what you have created. That day is here.
Not heeding warnings from both Nature and the People of the Earth keeps us on the path of self destruction. This self destructive path has led to the Fukushima nuclear crisis, Gulf oil spill, tar sands devastation, pipeline failures, impacts of carbon dioxide emissions and the destruction of ground water through hydraulic fracking, just to name a few. In addition, these activities and development continue to cause the deterioration and destruction of sacred places and sacred waters that are vital for Life. Powerful technologies are out of control and are threatening the future of all life. The Fukushima nuclear crisis alone is a threat to the future of humanity. Yet, our concern goes far beyond this single threat. Our concern is with the cumulative and compounding devastation that is being wrought by the actions of human beings around the world. The compounding of bad decisions and their corresponding actions are extremely short-sighted. They do not consider the future generations and they do not respect or honor the Creator’s Natural Law.
‘In 1994 the sacred white buffalo, the giver of the sacred pipe, returned to the Lakota, Dakota and Nakota people bringing forth the sacred message that the winds of change are here. Since that time many more messengers in the form of white animals have come, telling us to wake up my children. It is time. So listen for the sacred instruction.
All Life is sacred. We come into Life as sacred beings. When we abuse the sacredness of Life we affect all Creation. We urge all Nations and human beings around the world to work with us, the Original Caretakers of Mother Earth, to restore the Original Instructions and uphold the Creator’s Natural Law as a foundation for all decision making, from this point forward. We will avert this potentially catastrophic nuclear disaster by coming together with good minds and prayer as a global community of all faiths.
Emergency Advisory: Mi’kmaq say, “We are still here, and SWN will not be allowed to frack.” Sacred Fire blockade to begin at noon on Nov. 4”
‘ELSIPOGTOG — The Elsipogtog community and the people of the Mi’kmaq nation are responding to SWN’s stated intention to resume shale gas exploration in New Brunswick. Community members and traditional people will come together to light a Sacred Fire to stop SWN from passing, in order to ensure that the company cannot resume work to extract shale gas via fracking. The Sacred Fire will last a minimum of four days and is supported by the Mi’kmaq people and the community of Elsipogtog. This comes as part of a larger campaign that reunites Indigenous, Acadian & Anglo people.
This is also an act of reclamation, as Mi’kmaq people are using the land in a traditional way, and are exercising their treaty rights, which includes ceremonial practices. The Mi’kmaq people have not been sufficiently consulted over shale gas exploitation and do not support SWN working on their territory. (read more here)
This link will take you to an open letter by Amnesty International that says that the brutal response by the RCMP and other hirelings brought down on anti-fracking protests at the Elsipogtog Mi’kmaq Nation was the fault of the Canadian government.
In another delightful burst of synchronicity, a hat tip to mafr:
‘”A special issue of the peer-reviewed scientific journal Climatic Change has taken this up a notch in a tacit admission: Common sense demands that governments bring tribes to the table as full participants in a discussion of how to deal with the challenges that climate change presents and that they treat indigenous viewpoints not as quaint supplements to Western science but as equally valid explanations of how the world works—that such observations, taken as they are over millennia, are a science in their own right.’
The current Popular Resistance newsletter is up: ‘Revolution of the Mind is Underway’, and contains loads of emerging resistance actions, philosophical underpinnings, and examples of calumny and oppression, including ‘Creating A Strategic Core That Builds A Mass Movement’; excerpts from a book by J.M. Smucker, and ‘Our Invisible Revolution’ by Chris Hedges.
What are you hearing?
*Karine Polwart, the King of Birds video
(cross-posted at My.fdl.com)