Situating yourself with an identity in a place that is ancestral is a way to communicate the world around you, and thus the stories that make you who you are. The ability to touch another person with words and images created by thoughts that are interdependent of one another tells a story, sends a message and teaches one how to communicate and interpret the deeper meanings of those words and images.
In my work with treaties, I have noticed there has been little speculation about women and treaties. In the past, across the Indigenous nations found in the United States it appears very little was known about women and their involvement with treaties. What I have learned is that their presence was rarely spoken about, and their voices were minimally heard among the U.S. government officials during the period of treaty making. In more recent times, women have spoken about treaties and their knowledge in relationship to their own nations is coming from a great depth.
As we continue to contemplate, teach, learn and apply environmental knowledge, wisdom and socio-political activism, we must remember that spiritual knowledge is the highest knowledge one can gain. This knowledge comes from original teachings that were shown to the human being via natural law. All cultures around the world had/have original teachings, although many fathers and grandfathers have lost their teachings and thus have lost their way.
We are growing gardens for an entire nation in the United States, knowing that the broad and diverse way food is delivered to each table is complicated. Yet we depend on many food groups that are grown as well as industrially, processed to feed our spirit, body, mind and emotions. Due to the lack of availability of wild foods, including the disappearance of some game and fish, our lifestyles and our knowledge of our homeland-based environments have undergone massive change, thus in turn, influencing who we have become.
As one might know, ecological and environmental indigenous knowledge is necessary for developing indigenous societies. There are many diverse indigenous societies among the indigenous nations and outside of identified indigenous communities. In the United States, there are thousands of indigenous communities differing greatly in area, isolation, non-isolation, elevation, climate, productivity and geological and biological resources.
As one might know, ecological and environmental Indigenous knowledge is and was necessary for developing Indigenous societies. There are many diverse Indigenous societies among Indigenous nations and outside of identified Indigenous communities. In the United States, there are thousands of Indigenous communities differing greatly in area, isolation, non-isolation, elevation, climate, productivity and geological and biological resources.
Water protectors is a term that became very well known during the NoDAPL (No Dakota Access Pipeline) movement in North Dakota. The actual meaning has many dimensions; for example, in some Indigenous cultures water protectors are not people they are the living spirit of what is present in all life forms. When you address this type of water protector life form, you are speaking about a very high station of awareness. By far, it is much more than the human quality that we have come to know.
As we know, because of climate and environmental changes, old ways of addressing new problems are a hot commodity. For example, last week, the "Rising Voices 6: Collaborative Science with Indigenous Knowledge for Climate Solutions" conference was held in Duluth.
The Cambridge English Dictionary explains for us what is Indigenous as: "naturally existing in a place or country rather than arriving from another place." The U.S. English Dictionary by Oxford says: "originating or occurring naturally in a particular place; native."
Cultural matrilineality among Indigenous people is an ancient tradition for many, if not most, tribal nations for practical as well as for historical continuity.