This past Wednesday in Peterborough, ON at Trent University I attended a talk given by Diane Longboat who is of the Kanehkiaha:ka Nation (Mohawk). It was a part of the University’s Indigenous Studies weekly informal “Elder Teachings” and was entitled Earth Changes: Indigenous Prophecies.
I attended with my Cousin who is also very active within our “Aboriginal” communities within this region of Turtle Island. Out of the blue I get a phone call and he asked if I wanted to attend and I found it to be more than a coincidence that this opportunity came up because of what I am working on, Spirit works in beautiful ways. What was heard in this talk just clarified the work that I am doing and what is to come.
Kahontakwas, Diane Longboat, Kanehkiaha:ka Mohawk Turtle Clan
Diane Longboat, Kahontakwas, (She is Picking Sweetgrass) is a Mohawk, Turtle Clan from Six Nations. She is a ceremonial leader, traditional teacher of Indigenous spiritual ways and a healer. She is a professional educator, with a graduate degree in education and has taught and lectured at Universities in Canada and many national and international conferences and gatherings on the topics of spiritual renewal as the guiding force for nation building.
From 1976 to 1994, Diane was director of research programs and educational offices both provincially and nationally with First Nations organizations. Her leadership responsibilities at the Sacred Fire of the Great Peace (located at Six Nations) include conducting many ceremonies that minister to the needs of her people.
Many dreams, visions and the cherished guidance of Elders have brought Diane to a place of deep spiritual commitment to the service of the Will and Words of the Creator for the rebirth of humanity and the renewal of Mother Earth.
The myriad of ceremonies and services offered by Diane and a dedicated group of spiritual leaders who have trained with her for almost two decades are now being housed in a non-profit organization to enable the work to receive donations from scores of individuals and allied foundations whose lives and work have been empowered by the connection to Natural Law and Spiritual Law blessed through the power and the presence of the Creator at the Sacred Fire of the Great Peace.
A Briefing on the Talk: What my Ears heard and what my Spirit Felt
What I received from her talk is a confirmation of the work that I am doing. Coming from a colonized and assimilated community which is too plugged into a system where many are afraid not only to act upon our injustices but are intimidated when some of us just want to gather and speak about our history, our current conditions and the realities of our prophecies. Using terms such as Decolonization and exercising Sovereignty is far too radical for many just as the reemergence of our Ceremonies was thirty years ago.
So it is always good to get out of the “Philosophical Isolation” of our communities to meet up with “like minded” people to get refreshed from the “social incest” conditions that exist within. It also helps to validate the work some of us our doing. At times it is draining when we are surrounded constantly by the “you can’t do that, you can’t say that, you can’t think that Syndrome” which attacks individual freedom.
Here are some quotes I managed to capture. I was going to record the talk but personally felt it would be disrespectful.
“The Earth shook three times before and is soon ready to shake once again” – Diane Longboat
Within our oral histories, ceremonies, prophecies our Indigenous People across Turtle Island speak of these things and Three Periods of Time we went through.
Western approaches as well know that continental drift, floods, and massive earthquakes happened and they talk of a time when there was a Super Continent.
“Time is going by faster and our Spiritual leaders across our Nations have been noticing this through Visions and Ceremonies and through the Guidance of the Spirits. The Earth has sped up her rotation. As well the Sun has seemed too moved. It doesn’t rise in the same place as it used to rise at a certain time of the month that it did forty years ago.” – Diane Longboat
In the Western Scientific community this is starting to be discussed.
We have been seeing a massive amount of species turning up dead for unknown reasons along with Floods and Earthquakes. I do not want to sound like a paranoid conspiracy theorist but am just seeking out logic from our Oral History, Western Approaches, Prophecies and what is currently happening.
“We need to start taking action on what we know and become Spiritual people again. We need to embrace what is coming because it is coming. Soon we will have no choice but to live like our ancestors again. We can gather and talk about our prophecies but we need to get active and start learning the ways of our people, including survival. It is our young ones that matter and we need to get them ready on how to live once again and to become Spiritual Warriors.” – Diane Longboat
As she spoke and said we need to embrace this change and that death is only a transition not to be feared she validated the thoughts and actions that some of us have been immersed in lately.
As I reclaim my teachings and culture I have noticed that our people, our Chiefs gather and talk on Sovereignty, our Spiritual people gather and talk on prophecies. I hear of talk that our Youth are the real teachers and we should listen to them. I hear that We are the Seventh Generation and need to choose what road we want to walk down and I see only a small percent that actually walk the talk of what is preached.
Do Chiefs listen to the Youth? Why are they still listening to white man? Our Culture should be used more than sugar coating funding proposals for economic development which exploits our Mother.
Why do we preach and dress like we are “Indigenous” on weekends but are so far from living the ways of the Earth and embracing who we are to the full extent while we return to our IPOD’s, Jersey Shore, Computer’s, Council Chambers during the week?
Being plugged into a system that works against the Earth are we going to be prepared to survive the harsh realities of Violent Earth Changes?
Diane also said that Prophecies and the Visions of our Elders tell us that Women will be standing up bringing back the balance of things and taking on Leadership roles. We can see this as in our communities as it is the majority of times it is the Women who are standing up and waking up our Nations.
I am inspired by our Indigenous Peoples and Nations and our Women who are more than just talk and exercise our Teachings.
We have always been a people accustomed to Change, Why then are we different now? We must not fear change.
Also we have always learned from the Earth and the Animals and so what is happening now we should apply to our “Indigenous Resurgence Movement”.
The Non-Violent Philosophy is the lasting remnants of the “hippie” era which has become an idealism in this Passive “New Age Pan-Indian Healing” Movement that exists within our communities.
If we are a people that learn from the Earth then we can learn a lot from what she is going to do. She is preparing for a cleansing from the abuses she has been suffering from.
She is not going to exercise “non violence” when this next “shaking” happens. The massive earthquakes, tornado’s, floods, continental drift will not be “peaceful” actions in dealing with an oppressive humanity. She will prevail and us an Indigenous People who understand true power and who are those Spiritual Warriors will survive alongside her.
There was a lot more to her talk which I feel I am not justifying in this briefing but I encourage us all to become active and get out there learning our teachings and putting them in to ACTION
I am preparing for this change disengaging from this Capitalist Society. If nothing happens, hey at least I will be exercising Anishinabek Sovereignty living the ways of the Earth.
“In the time of the Seventh Fire New People will emerge. They will retrace their steps to find what was left by the trail. Their steps will take them to the Elders who they will ask to guide them on their journey. But many of the Elders will have fallen asleep. They will awaken to this new time with nothing to offer. Some of the Elders will be silent because no one will ask anything of them. The New People will have to be careful in how they approach the Elders. The task of the New People will not be easy.
If the New People will remain strong in their quest the Water Drum of the Midewiwin Lodge will again sound its voice. There will be a rebirth of the Anishinabe Nation and a rekindling of old flames. The Sacred Fire will again be lit.
It is this time that the light skinned race will be given a choice between two roads. If they choose the right road, then the Seventh Fire will light the Eighth and final Fire, an eternal fire of peace, love brotherhood and sisterhood. If the light skinned race makes the wrong choice of the roads, then the destruction which they brought with them in coming to this country will come back at them and cause much suffering and death to all the Earth’s people”
– Anishinabe Seven Fire Prophecy