"After all we are all human beings created by one God, on one Earth, in complete unison."
[The Incarnation of the Holy Spirit, Shri Mataji Nirmala Devi, who came to the
American Indian Nation in the form of "The White Buffalo Calf Woman" clearly
tells us of the kinship of all humanity with each other and with God. American
Native traditions deeply reflect this reality.]
"After all we are all human beings created by one God, on one Earth, in complete unison. We are part and parcel of that One Primordial Being. We are cells in the body of that Great Being."(Shri Mataji Nirmala Devi, What are we inside, Birmingham, UK, August 9th, 1980)
"There is nothing like we are English, we are Indian, we are this - we are all universal beings. And once we accept this, suddenly you jump into the state of collective consciousness, into the state of the Virata." (Shri Mataji Nirmala Devi, Cure that Left Vishuddi, Shudy Camps, England, 1988-08-20.)
"The color of skin makes no difference. What is good and just for one is good and just for the other, and the Great Spirit made all men brothers. I have a red skin, but my grandfather was a white man. What does it matter? It is not the color of the skin that makes me good or bad."
White Shield - Arikara Chief
The True Peace
"The first peace, which is the most important, is that which comes within the souls of people when they realize their relationship, their oneness, with the universe and all its powers, and when they realize that at the center of the universe dwells Wakan-Taka (the Great Spirit), and that this center is really everywhere, it is within each of us.
This is the real peace, and the others are but reflections of this. The second peace is that which is made between two individuals, and the third is that which is made between two nations. But above all you should understand that there can never be peace between nations until there is known that true peace, which, as I have often said, is within the souls of men."
Black Elk - Oglala Sioux
[Shri Mataji Nirmala Devi shares some observations about Mother Earth. American Natives exhibited an innate understanding of the significant, nurturing grandeur of Mother Earth.]
"This one is a very big blessing to us that we all have this Mooladhara Chakra [qualities of innocence, purity, wisdom] now put into proper thing. When you sit on the ground also it helps more because the Mother of Shri Ganesha is this Prithvi, is this Earth, the Mother Earth and that's why we should look after the Mother Earth....We can glorify Her, we can beautify Her, we can do all kinds of things..."
"Nature is so beautiful, just look at the nature, it is never smelling, it's never dirty, every leaf is so organized that it should get the sunrays...we have to understand that we have to respect the Mother Earth." (Shri Mataji Nirmala Devi, Shri Ganesha Puja, Cabella, Italy, September 25, 1999.)
"The character of the Indian's emotion left little room in his heart for antagonism toward his fellow creatures .... For the Lakota (one of the three branches of the Sioux Nation), mountains, lakes, rivers, springs, valleys, and the woods were all in finished beauty. Winds, rain, snow, sunshine, day, night, and change of seasons were endlessly fascinating. Birds, insects, and animals filled the world with knowledge that defied the comprehension of man.
The Lakota was a true naturalist - a lover of Nature. He loved the earth and all things of the earth, and the attachment grew with age. The old people came literally to love the soil and they sat or reclined on the ground with a feeling of being close to a mothering power.
It was good for the skin to touch the earth, and the old people liked to remove their moccasins and walk with bare feet on the sacred earth.
Their tipis were built upon the earth and their altars were made of earth. The birds that flew in the air came to rest upon the earth, and it was the final abiding place of all things that lived and grew. The soil was soothing, strengthening, cleansing, and healing.
This is why the old Indian still sits upon the earth instead of propping himself up and away from its live-giving forces. For him, to sit or lie upon the ground is to be able to think more deeply and to feel more keenly; he can see more clearly into the mysteries of life and come closer in kinship to other lives about him."
Chief Luther Standing Bear - Oglala Sioux
"I was born in Nature's wide domain! The trees were all that sheltered my infant limbs, the blue heavens all that covered me. I am one of Nature's children. I have always admired her. She shall be my glory: her features, her robes, and the wreath about her brow, the seasons, her stately oaks, and the evergreen - her hair, ringlets of earth - all contribute to my enduring love of her.
And wherever I see her, emotions of pleasure roll in my breast, and swell and burst like waves on the shores of the ocean, in prayer and praise to Him who has placed me in her hand, It is thought great to be born in palaces, surrounded with wealth - but to be born in Nature's wide domain is greater still!
I would much more glory in this birthplace, with the broad canopy of heaven above me, and the giant arms of the forest trees for my shelter, than to be born in palaces of marble, studded with pillars of gold! Nature will be Nature still, while palaces shall decay and fall in ruins.
Yes, Niagara will be Niagara a thousand years hence! The rainbow, a wreath over her brow, shall continue as long as the sun, and the flowering of the river - while the work of art, however carefully protected and preserved, shall fade and crumble into dust!"
George Copway (Kahgegagahbowh) - Ojibwe
"When you arise in the morning, give thanks for the morning light, for your life and strength. Give thanks for your food, and the joy of living. If you see no reason for giving thanks, the fault lies with yourself..."
Tecumseh - Shawnee
"Our Elders tell us that we were given sacred laws which we were to use to honour our Mother Earth. We were given ceremonies by which we express our thanks to our Creator for His many gifts...The Great Spirit gave songs and dances to the different nations of Turtle Island. (North America)"
"We were given ways of dancing to express our joy of living and to pay tribute to all the life cycle. Traditional dancing belongs to us whether it be the Grass Dance, Rabbit Dance, Fish Dance, or the Eagle Dance. We know, when we dance, that these dances were meant for us. It is tribute to the animal life or for ourselves when we are in good health, or in thanks to our Creator."
"People say you can't have a Pow Wow without a drum, for it carries the heartbeat of the Indian nation. It is also felt to carry the heartbeat of Mother Earth, and thus calls all nations together... It is said that the drum was brought to the Indian people by a woman, and therefore there is something of a woman's Spirit that resides inside the drum. Appropriately it is to be treated with respect and care, and strict behaviour is expected of anyone coming in contact with the drum. The drum is often thought to help bring the physical and mental side of a person back in touch with his or her spiritual or heart side. As with many things in the Indian culture, the drum is used to bring balance and rejuvination to a person through participation in dancing, singing or listening to the heartbeat." Anonymous
"Holy Mother Earth, the trees, and all nature are witnesses to your thoughts and deeds. - Winnebago Wise Saying
The songs, myths, rituals, and living customs of those native peoples who have preserved their truth against huge odds speak to us of the grandeur of earth, of the wonders of nature, of the mysterious and marvellous ways in which Mother Earth surrounds, sustains, and instructs us at every moment.
In listening humbly to the traditions of these native peoples, we remember who we once were and what we still can be; we can experience once again the naked divine truth of the natural world and can learn from that experience to respect the laws of nature.
And what do the native traditions tell us of human and natural life if we listen? They initiate us into the three laws of sacred feminine reality - the Law of Unity, the Law of Rhythm, and the Law of the Love of the Dance. Taken together these three "laws" oppose to our fragmented, exploitative, self-obsessed forms of knowing and living an entirely different, far richer, and saner vision of what it is to be human and divine, and alive in nature.
Read what survives of the myths, songs, and rituals of any tribal peoples - whether the Innuit from Greenland, the Kogis from Columbia, or the Navaho from North America - and what will be immediately apparent is the knowledge running through them that life is one: one energy, one power, one force. Historians of religion used to believe that monotheism started with Akhenaten and the Jews; but the understanding of the sacredness of unity behind multiplicity was already alive in those tribal traditions that see life as one and everything that lives as holy. According to native traditions all living things are related to everything else, in a web of extraordinary delicacy that stretches over the whole universe. All things are in this web and part of it, and everything done to one of the parts of the web is done to all of the others. What the Mahayana Buddhist mystics call interdependence (or more fashionably "interbeing") is as old as the Aborigine's understanding that the rock formations of their deserts were "lines" in a song the Divine World was trying to "sing" to them; as old as the Innuit's knowledge that before seals could be hunted, the Ancestor Seal and the Gods of Nature must be prayed to; as old as the Native American's honoring of the buffalo after they killed it. Native traditions offer us a passionate awareness of this "interbeing". For them there is nothing sophisticated or intellectual about it; it is as obvious as sunlight or the cry of a baby. Reexperiencing the world in this unmeditated intensity of connection is crucial to the recovery of the Divine Feminine. Unless we recover the primal poetry of the Law of Unity with all things, we will go on killing and exploiting in a frenzy of false separation from nature and so from our deep selves, and we will continue to ruin our world.
The second law that native traditions, wherever they come from, all honor is the Law of Rhythm. Living in naked reliance on nature inevitably entails a reverence for those rhythmic cycles that permeate the whole of nature's workings. The laws of nature and so of the human life that is everywhere sustained by nature's environment are rhythmic. Our hearts contract and then swell out as they suck in and pump our blood; spring follows summer and winter precedes spring; the brain is swept by endless wavelike pulses of sleep, wakefulness, hunger, satiation. Only by recapturing - and following - this sense of life's rhythms will we be able to survive. Opening to the law of rhythm requires developing feminine powers of imagination, attention, receptivity, capacity to wonder, nurture and cherish, and a constantly, acutely sensitive, and sensible down-to- earth subtlety of approach that attempts to mirror the suppleness of life itself and its rhythmic alternations. If we wish to heal the natural world that we are in imminent danger of destroying, we are going to have to rebuild in ourselves those inner senses that can listen in radical humility to its voices, attend to its rhythms, and enact quickly what they tell us.
The third law of the Divine Feminine that native traditions inititate us into, if we let them, is the Law of the Love of the Dance. What is astonishing, when you read what has come down to us of the tribal myths and songs, is that despite the knowledge they all have of life and nature's horrors and difficulties, they ring with praise and adoration and gratitude for the blessing of being alive on the earth. In so doing, they give all contemporary seekers of the Divine Feminine, a very clear vision of that living in intimacy with nature the Mother necessitates - and creates - and what a return of that life-wisdom means. The restoration of the Divine Feminine to the heart and mind of the world will mean a return to the type of passionate embrace of life in all its pain, wildness, and passion that we see in tribal traditions. The native peoples never make any separation between soul and body, heart and mind, prayer and action, the "other world" and this one. They did not make these separations, not because they aren't capable of doing so, as certain arrogant modern thinkers have claimed, but because they would have seen such separations as crazy, as a betrayal of the unity of all being. Realizing this unity of being gives native peoples a rugged, unshakable faith in life's goodness. Within tribal traditions being born a human is to be born into a dance that every animate or inanimate, visible or invisible being is also dancing. Every step of this dance is printed in light, its energy is adoration, its rhythm is praise."
The Divine Feminine
Andrew Harvey & Anne Baring - Conari Press Berkeley, CA
ISBN 1-57324-035-4 (hardcover)
Pgs. 22, 24-26
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