Brian Wilkes con 100 Days of Indigenous Wisdom (English Edition)Are indigenous peoples still considered obsolete leftovers of human society? Quaint folklore souvenirs from a primitive past? Or, should we be recognized as offering an alternative, spiritual approach to relationships, politics, the environment and peace? If we do have something important to offer, is there anyone willing to listen?
Years ago, I began collecting and recording the sayings of those who shared their knowledge with me. Most of them have made their crossing now. To us, that doesn’t mean they’re gone, it must means they don’t always answer the messages we leave.
Earth is Our Mother, all creatures our Brothers and Sisters. Everything in the Creation is seen as having 'spirit' or life-force. Humans are the “younger brothers”, the latecomers, a recognition that leads indigenous peoples to great humility, sincere respect and a genuine thankfulness for all of the aspects of nature that make it possible for life to continue.
This first offering concentrates on Cherokee language and teachings. I am indebted to the teachers, friends, and ceremonial leaders who have shared so much with me.
There is one teaching per page, printed in syllabary, phonetic Cherokee, and English. The rest of the page is yours to use as a notebook, a journal of your changing and evolving understanding. When you reach the hundredth teaching, go back and start over, and see what may have changed in your understanding and experience.
"I will teach you about prayer. Where is God?
God is a passenger stowed away in your breath."
- Benny Smith, Keetoowah
In all of this, please keep the multi-generational perspective. It's really a blessing to suddenly have a deeper connection with our ancestors. So many speak of "honoring the elders" or the ancestors as a general concept, but have few specifics about their own ancestors. Today, it's not unusual to have ancestors buried in a dozen states. Graveyards or family shrines, even in the form of a generational photo album, or a collection of proverbs and sayings from the Ancestors, can be anchors in this turbulent world. We see hear their voices in the trees, see their faces in the mirror, and see their brilliance in the stars.
“Perhaps they are not stars, but rather openings in heaven where the love of our lost ones pours through and shines down upon us to let us know they are happy.”
~ Inuit Proverb
It is my hope that this book stimulates study of Cherokee and other indigenous languages, and encourages each of you to speak with your Ancestors while they still walk among us.