Monday, February 15, 2016

Frozen Truth and the War on Terror

©2016 Turtle Heart

For years I traveled with a version of the Four Directions Unity Bundle you can see in the photo. In those days it had a handle (made from Elk antlers), and I just carried it through the security checkpoint. I would tell the security people just what it was. They always let me pass through. Some years ago that experience ended. For several years now the security inspections have become so invasive, so mechanical, that it has become impossible to subject sensitive, sacred objects, such as a sacred pipe or an eagle feather, to this process.

So I had to stop traveling with the sacred bundle. It has been a few years now that I had to do that. I do not like it. It is creating an increasing sense of grave concern.

Departing on a journey in full possession of the moving parts of that sacred bundle that it is my life to protect and share with the modern word is a great feeling. Traveling without those sacred tools is an empty experience. It feels like I am betraying the trust, obliterating the opportunity, that humanity itself is being insulted, deprived and induced to believe fear is the only luggage we all carry when we travel abroad.

Arriving into society with only words to describe my work is not right. The old Indians do not approve of talking about the tribal sacred in the abstraction of words. What is needed is the practical, verifiable experience…not the words used to describe them.

There is not a single American Indian tribal community, or nation, that offers or provides official, state/diplomatic protection to the contents of sacred bundles in motion in the world. Not one. Every keeper of a sacred tribal bundle is on their own. This is yet more detail in the portfolio of information on how tribal communities fail to provide for themselves. Fail to step up. Fail to lead. Fail to understand that they have powers yet unimagined and opportunities they never see. There exists no authority or council I can turn to to certify, seal or protect the international movement of the tribal sacred. Likewise the United States government offers no recognition, protection or security to American Indian sacred objects in movement. The Federal government barely recognises that American Indians even have sacred objects or sacred movements worthy of protection.

Here is  link to another tribal Pipe Carrier, a tribal Chief, having his own troubles with the invasive security of airports these days : http://www.winnipegfreepress.com/local/Grand-Chief-files-complaint-with-CATSA-over-handling-of-sacred-pipe-bundle-368119641.html

This blog began as a record of the world journey of the sacred pipe and other ceremonies and ideas represented by its movement. Since the increasing intensity of invasion of privacy brought about by the so-called war on terror, that movement has slowed to a trickle. Over 1 million people have been logged reading this blog. Not one of those million people have contributed a dollar, an idea, or even an interesting comment to this interesting and historical journey. The work has never been a popularity contest. It does not matter if the mob is with me or against me. The mob has always been the mob. I expect only to continue. I have used the sales of my art and other work to pay the expenses of this project. While we live in a world where people give freely to political parties, by the millions of dollars, and otherwise through vast sums of money at any number of bizarre causes and events, no one has ever stepped up, in all of human history, to help any American Indians accomplish anything. Probably, this is to bad. But it has never been enough of a problem to stop the movement of the tribal sacred, of tribal ideas. It does slow them down. In a materialistic society, any forward movement requires both cash and infrastructure, even to just cross the street…much less try and go around the world. Like a real and actual Turtle I move slowly, since it takes time, lots of time, for me and my wife by ourselves to gather resources for each movement. In the coming days, weeks and years, we will continue to do that.

In politics they often want us to declare if we are left or right. So it is in choosing a path in life…do you go left or right? My choice has always been up. My choice has been to keep faith with the old Indians. In making that choice, I did not consider money, or popularity or even approval of the modern world. I chose faith; faith moving up. I can do no more than keep truth, keep faith with that motion, with those hopes of those old Indians…even in a world where it seems we American Indians are all but invisible. Up. Yes. I am an old man at this point. I know my days, and my opportunities, are limited. My work has not earned me a pension or retirement benefits, or even recognition. Yet when I look at my face in the mirror, I see a smiling, light-filled reflection looking clear-eyed back at me.

In moments of clarity, moments of silence, I see in this idea, in this journey out into the world, a great adventure, a wonderful idea, an important ceremony that could change……Everything. I see around me a sleeping society. Dreamless. Automated.Congested with sleep-walkers crowding out each other, choking the life from the very grass at their feet. Breathless. Only rarely, and then at a great distance, does any light appear. I am not afraid of that vision. But it does make me weep. Mostly in the morning are my tears, as the dawn spreads itself over the waiting world. In those early hours I can feel the whole earth stretching towards the dawn, stretching towards hope, silently accepting the hope and promise of a new day. In not one country on this mother earth, at this moment, does there exist a single competent “leader” whom embodies any of these values, or any values at all beyond pragmatic materialism and fear. This is a grey and dangerous moment in history. I see it and feel it in the hearts of nearly everyone around me, friend and foe, family and stranger. Society is looking down rather than up. Choking on the dust of denial rather than soaring with the freedom of imagination and hope. It is almost desperate…everywhere.

Those who read this blog, and who might actually understand and grasp what we are trying to do with this historic and important work, are invited to donate, invited to accept the sacred bundle into your community for a couple of days, invited to support and believe. Any time.

Very few people, I have learned, care even a little what the truth really is. I only realised this a few years ago. I have to admit, it came as a surprise. Yet, that remains where my work is. Imagine how lonely that is at times.

Turtle Heart (William Fredric Posey)
Pantelleria Island, Italy

sacredpipe.org

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