Tuesday, April 18, 2006

Doing Lunch With The Almighty

I was once told by my Grandfather, a Cherokee spiritual leader, that the beginning of developing spirituality and understanding of the spirit world and the Spirit of God is in basic gratitude and learning how to pray and with these things in mind, developing the proper relationship with what we eat- with our food. Perhaps the root connection for modern man is in fact for him to redevelop a proper relationship with his food. When we consider where our food came from, the sacrificed life that made it possible, the processes by which it was brought to us and the manner in which we consume it, all with a sense of gratitude and conscience and spirituality we will be closer to finding the right way to live.
This concept seems to be essential in discovering that equilibrium between physical reality and spiritual practice, between belief and experience. I can look around and see where the lack of this concept in the world has been devastating to our collective health and mental well being. This kind of self control, affirmation, gratitude and reverence regarding our food- that which sustains us is the key to spiritual empowerment, enlightenment and right relationship with the whole of Creation and the Spirit of God. Its really that simple.

Monday, April 17, 2006

Cherokee Words On Human Rights

Nigada aniyvwi nigeguda'lvna ale unihloyi unadehna duyukdv gesv'i. Gejinela unadanvtehdi ale unohlisdi ale sagwu gesv junilvwisdanedi anahldinvdlv adanvdo gvhdi.

All human beings are born free and equal in dignity and rights. They are endowed with reason and conscience and should act towards one another in a spirit of brotherhood.
(Article 1 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights)

The Creator Vs. Teddy Roosevelt's "Words of Wisdom"

In response to these "words of wisdom" by Teddy Roosevelt;

("But this is predicated upon the man's becoming in every facet an American, and nothing but an American...There can be no divided allegiance here. Any man who says he is an American, but something else also, isn't an American at all. We have room for but one flag, the American flag, and this excludes the red flag, which symbolizes all wars against liberty and civilization, just as much as it excludes any foreign flag of a nation to which we are hostile...We have room for but one language here, and that is the English language...and we have room for but one sole loyalty and that is a loyalty to the American people.")

In one very small area of what is now called "Northern California" there once existed at least 110 different "language families". These "families" were as different and distinct as Italian is from Viet Namese in nearly every case. Yet these diverse groups found a way to co-exist in relative peace and harmony for thousands, if not tens of thousands of years. This is just one example from Native America that disproves the thesis that a collective continental grouping of people must homogenize language and culture to survive or function smoothly. In fact, this xenophobic drive for homogenization only leads to "genocide of the mind" (if not actual genocides of human groups) and a culture that devours everything in its path. The natural state of God's good, nurturing creation is in fact one of diversity...infinite diversity in infinite combinations...not of homogenization, mechanization and industrialization.