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Equinox Twenty Thirteen

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September 22 Equinox Twenty Thirteen: Opening the Human Heart.
Four times each year the mother earth opens her heart into deep gateways called the solstice and equinox.
Modern people have forgotten how hard humanity worked for thousands of generations to know when these moments would arrive. Humanity no longer remembers why our ancient ancestors did that.
The old American Indians would call the equinox and solstice “Gateways”. Capital “G”. A way of passage. Going from one place to another place. Modern people do not do that either. They stay where they are. Maybe that is OK. After so many centuries, humanity in its modern form has stayed where it was, where it was.
Inside the house of the paymaster, a solstice or equinox is just another day to do business.
To the old Indians, a Gateway has eight sides. All sacred ideas are eight-sided. A human being trying to understand this is called “an eight-sided person”, or, a person who has an “eight-sided character”. Only people who are know to …

Nine Eleven || An American Indian At Ground Zero

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I was having my first cup of coffee that morning. As was my habit I turned on the cable news channel to see what had happened in the world during the night. I was in New Mexico, the little historic village of Taos. I was not dressed. I had my old Indian blanket wrapped around me in my old chair, sipping the coffee in the early morning chill of the high mountains. I was generally paying attention, also checking my email and doing those little things a modern person does in the morning…when the breaking news appeared.
At first I thought I had the wrong channel. What my tricked out brain saw was a tiny airplane fling towards the world trade center. It looked tiny to me, like a little old bi-plane. My first impression was that it was a promo for something. But then it changed. The picture and my mind came into focus. It was real. I sat stunned and watched the scene unfold live over national television, like so many others. I watched people jumping from the high building. Smoke rising, ta…

Cooperation, Personal Accountability, and Dreaming Together

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The history of Christianity, of Judaism, of Islam, of Buddhism, and all the world’s principle religions are well documented in thousands of books. Almost nothing is published about the origins, evolution and structure of American Indian religious and spiritual practices.
American Indians used collective cooperation, an expectation of persons being personally accountable, and dreams to build their complex and beautiful, rich religious life.
This is quite unique among the cultures of the world (though consistent with all indigenous populations around the world).
Part of the problem is tribal diversity. The Lakota are as different from the Hopi as the French are different from the Swedish. Differences in culture, in food, in social habits, different in religious expression.
However, just as we can find common elements of humanity among all the cultures of the world (family loyalty, work habits, vacation behavior, etc), the careful student can find shared elements among all the world’s t…