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I am a Native of North America

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posted on Apr, 6 2010 @ 10:59 PM
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My girlfriend showed this to me the other day. She got it in one of her assignemnts at school and thought I'd like it, I read it over and thought it was really beautiful and deep. I really enjoyed it so I thought I'd share it with you guys.

My apologies if its been posted before.




I am a Native of North America

Chief Dan George

In the course of my lifetime I have lived in two distinct cultures. I was born into a culture that lived in communal houses. My grandfather’s house was eighty feet long. It was called a smoke house, and it stood down by the beach along the inlet. All my grandfather’s sons and their families lived in this dwelling. Their sleeping apartments were separated by blankets made of bull rush weeds, but one open fire in the middle served the cooking needs of all. In houses like these, throughout the tribe, people learned to live with one another; learned to respect the rights of one another. And children shared the thoughts of the adult world and found themselves surrounded by aunts and uncles and cousins who loved them and did not threaten them. My father was born in such a house and learned from infancy how to love people and be at home with them.

And beyond this acceptance of one another there was a deep respect for everything in nature that surrounded them. My father loved the earth and all its creatures. The earth was his second mother. The earth and everything it contained was a gift from See-see-am…and the way to thank this great spirit was to use his gifts with respect.

I remember, as a little boy, fishing with him up Indian River and I can still see him as the sun rose above the mountain top in the early morning…I can see him standing by the water’s edge with his arms raised above his head while he softly moaned…”Thank you, thank you.” It left a deep impression on my young mind.

And I shall never forget his disappointment when once he caught me gaffing for fish “just for the fun of it.” “My son” he said, “The Great Spirit gave you those fish to be your brothers, to feed you when you are hungry. You must respect them. You must not kill them just for the fun of it.”

This then was the culture I was born into and for some years the only one I really knew or tasted. This is why I find it hard to accept many of the things I see around me.

I see people living in smoke houses hundreds of times bigger than the one I knew. But the people in one apartment do not even know the people in the next and care less about them.

It is also difficult for me to understand the deep hate that exists among people. It is hard to understand a culture that justifies the killing of millions in past wars, and it at this very moment preparing bombs to kill even greater numbers. It is hard for me to understand a culture that spends more on wars and weapons to kill, than it does on education and welfare to help and develop.

It is hard for me to understand a culture that not only hates and fights his brothers but even attacks nature and abuses her. I see my white brothers going about blotting out nature from his cities. I see him strip the hills bare, leaving ugly wounds on the face of mountains. I see him tearing things from the bosom of mother earth as though she were a monster, who refused to share her treasures with him. I see him throw poison in the waters, indifferent to the life he kills there; and he chokes the air with deadly fumes.

My white brother does many things well for he is more clever than my people but I wonder if he has ever really learned to love at all. Perhaps he only loves the things that are outside and beyond him. And this is, of course, not love at all, for man must love all creation or he will love none of it. Man must love fully or he will become the lowest of the animals. It is the power to love that makes him the greatest of them all…for he alone of all animals is capable of love.

continued...




posted on Apr, 6 2010 @ 10:59 PM
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Love is something you and I must have. We must have it because our spirit feeds upon it. We must have it because without it we become weak and faint. Without love our self esteem weakens. Without it our courage fails. Without love we can no longer look out confidently at the world. Instead we turn inwardly and begin to feed upon our own personalities and little by little we destroy ourselves.

You and I need the strength and joy that comes from knowing that we are loved. With it we are creative. With it we march tirelessly. With it, and with it alone, we are able to sacrifice for others.

There have been times when we all wanted so desperately to feel a reassuring hand upon us…there have been lonely times when we so wanted a strong arm around us…I cannot tell you how deeply I miss my wife’s presence when I return from a trip. Her love was my greatest joy, my strength, my greatest blessing.

I am afraid my culture has little to offer yours. But my culture did prize friendship and companionship. It did not look on privacy as a thing to be clung to, for privacy builds walls and walls promote distrust. My culture lived in a big family community, and from infancy people learned to live with others.

My culture did not prize the hoarding of private possessions, in fact, to hoard was a shameful thing to do among my people. The Indian looked on all things in nature as belonging to him and he expected to share them with others and to take only what he needed.

Everyone likes to give as well as receive. No one wishes only to receive all the time. We have taken something from your culture…I wish you had taken something from our culture…for there were some beautiful and good things in it.

Soon it will be too late to know my culture, for integration is upon us and soon we will have no values but yours. Already many of our young people have forgotten the old ways. And many have been shamed of their Indian ways by scorn and ridicule. My culture is like a wounded deer that has crawled away into the forest to bleed and die alone.
The only thing that can truly help us is genuine love. You must truly love, be patient with us and share with us. And we must love you—with a genuine love that forgives and forgets…a love that gives the terrible sufferings your culture brought ours when it swept over us like a wave crashing along a beach…with a love that forgets and lifts up its head and sees in your eyes an answering love of trust and acceptance.

This is brotherhood…anything less is not worthy of the name.

I have spoken.




I hope you guys enjoy it as much as I did.

-Danny



posted on Apr, 6 2010 @ 11:09 PM
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reply to post by DXFILMS
 

I enjoyed reading that. Thanks.
I just watched Little Big Man with Chief Dan George in it.

It is a parody but still artfully informative.

My girls are Chickasaw and my son is Chickasaw.


Chuckna chin chukna....how are you doing....Ayeee chunkna keni...i am doing fine....lol

There you now know some Chickasaw language.



Chief Dan George, OC (July 24, 1899–September 23, 1981) was a chief of the Tsleil-Waututh Nation, a Coast Salish band located on Burrard Inlet in North Vancouver, British Columbia. He was also an Academy Award-nominated actor and an author.
en.wikipedia.org...

[edit on 6-4-2010 by whiteraven]



posted on Apr, 6 2010 @ 11:20 PM
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Imagine what would of happened if Europeans when they came to the Americas or Australia etc, and shook hands and blended culture and philosophy and grew in harmony.



Although this video may seem off topic, but if you watch it to the end you will see what indigenous people have to offer.

ETA - Love the essay!! S+F

[edit on 6/4/10 by ghostsoldier]



posted on Apr, 6 2010 @ 11:59 PM
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reply to post by DXFILMS
 

beautiful heritage imagery displayed
with wonderful meaning.
I enjoyed this very much
thanks



posted on Apr, 7 2010 @ 12:17 AM
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Great post. Star and flagged.

I truly love the native american culture. They truly had a handle on things when it came to respect and care for each other and the land. Mostly for the planet though. I like how our society portrays them now as the wisest of cultures and societys throughout time and doesnt try to stereotype them and ridicule them anymore. The idea we all have about native americans is they were definetly more in tune with nature and had a much more positive take on things than the societys of today do. However lets not forget they did fight and kill. they fought each other and had no problem killing each other. Yep they were human beings also, although they were much more respectful of life and the earth than any one society or culture today.
I definetly regret the fact that the American Indian culture has nearly dissapeared because it truly is a great culture and we can learn alot from it however it was born of men and the spirit that is the native american will never die because it will always reside in the hearts and minds of men and may someday come back around to being a way of life again in the distant future.
what is a fact is that all that is today will die and fade away. What we become as human beings in the future is anyones guess. I just hope we dont destroy ourselves in the process.



posted on Apr, 7 2010 @ 12:37 AM
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there are no native americans.



posted on Apr, 7 2010 @ 12:46 AM
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Originally posted by bigspud
there are no native americans.


Nice add to the discussion.


Pretty vague.

If I were to infer anything from that statement, I would suggest that you are expressing nothing more than thinly veiled racism.

Call them Aboriginal, First Nations, Indigenous, Native American, what ever, we came and destroyed ancient cultures, and failed to assimilate the wisdom they had/have to offer.

There are no Native Americans... Does that make us all Africans?



posted on Apr, 7 2010 @ 02:09 AM
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reply to post by fizzy1
 


There are many Native American cultures....it's a pretty big place.

And despite all, those that survive....well, not all are thriving, but they are surviving, adapting to the world they inhabit.

So long as my brother and I live we carry our culture, making it anew in the spirit of the old ways. To survive no matter what, as ourselves, is something deeply embedded in our culture. Some Native American cultures face war and desperate circumstances with calm acceptance: "Today is a good day to die." As an Apache, I respect that, but it isn't our way. When outnumbered, outgunned, and out of ammo, an Apache attacks, not in hopeless desperation or noble sacrifice, but with the awareness that it may disconcert the enemy enough to provide a window to escape, and live to fight another day. If not, we live in their memory as a terror and perhaps freeze them enough to allow the next to escape.

My point is that while our losses have been grievous, and many are yet at risk in dire circumstances, our many cultures yet live, burning bright and strong in some places, as stubborn embers elsewhere. We live, we adapt, yet we remember who we were and are. We have learned patience, and how to pass on what is important. I have spent my life passing on what I can of my culture, trying to create a viable synthesis of their ways and ours, with mixed success.

A time will come when the land will no longer suffer under the will of those who have no respect for the proper rhythms of growth, harvest, decay, renewal. I don't mean to sound pastoral: those rhythms apply to all things, whether crops, building cars, or building nations. Know them, accept them, work with them, and life is good and stays in balance. The US is out of balance, has been for a long time. Sooner or later it will fall and we will yet be here, as ourselves: Assiniboine, Apache, Cheyenne, Choctaw, Iriquois, Navaho, and all the rest.



posted on Apr, 8 2010 @ 11:23 PM
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Thank you all for replying its nice to see other people enjoyed it aswell



posted on Apr, 9 2010 @ 10:16 AM
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Originally posted by bigspud
there are no native americans.




well hate to scrap your little post but they were here long before you and your folks crawled out of the dirt in Newschawwby land or whereever it is you are from... so you have a good day now...



posted on Apr, 9 2010 @ 10:23 AM
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Originally posted by bigspud
there are no native americans.




forgot to add this for you.... with so many diversified peoples in this nation long before we knew about the whit folks from Europe...we were the human beings.... we were at one with our creator, simple lives, respect for the earth mother, and we had (some of us now do) a balance with nature that this time in the worlds life seems to not understand at all...

we raised our children to respect the earth mother, respect for the elders of our respective tribes and families. We have still got one of the richest heritages in the history of this world... and we still contribute so much to the way this nation has operated in the past, and we will still do the same thing 1000 years in the future.

Our peoples have been here since time started (according to the old ones) and we will still be here right till time ends.

So with that thought in your mind.... please do not attempt to disrespect the human being in this nation... we are many, we are proud of our heritages our histories, or past, and strong on our futures. But you cannot attack the people. That has been done.... the gooberment has tried to destroy us all, in amny ways, and yet we are still here... And long after the white gooberment falls on its face and destroys itself.... guess what ? We will still be here to pull you out of your own ashes and prop you up.

Have a good day now...BTW.... I am Cherokee and Blackfeet with a little German in the mix.... But I am native American.





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