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The time has come to listen to echoes from our land...the wisdom and teachings of our Native American Indians. Their words are simple and their voices are soft. We have not heard them, because we have not taken the time to listen...
Perhaps now is the time to open our ears and our hearts to the words of wisdom they have to say.
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
Do not grieve. Misfortunes will happen to the wisest and best of men. Death will come, always out of season. It is the command of the Great Spirit, and all nations and people must obey. What is past and what cannot be prevented should not be grieved for ... Misfortunes do not flourish particularly in our lives - they grow everywhere.
Big Elk - Omaha Chief
Look at me - I am poor and naked, but I am the chief of the nation. We do not want riches, but we want to train our children right. Riches will do us no good. We could not take them with us to the other world. We do not want riches. We want peace and love.
Chief Red Cloud - Siou
Jasper Saunkeah, Cherokee
Treat the Earth and all that dwell thereon with respect.
Remain close to the Great Spirit.
Show great respect for your fellow beings.
Work together for the benefit of all Mankind.
Give assistance and kindness wherever needed.
Do what you know to be right.
Look after the well being of mind and body.
Dedicate a share of your efforts to the greater good.
Be truthful and honest at all times.
Take full responsibility for your actions.
Let us greet the dawn of a new day
when all can live as one with nature
and peace reigns everywhere.
Oh Great Spirit, bring to our brothers
the wisdom of Nature and the knowledge
that if her laws are obeyed
this land will again flourish
and grasses and trees will grow as before.
Guide those that through their councils
seek to spread the wisdom of their leaders to all people.
Heal the raw wounds of the earth
and restore to our soul the richness
which strengthens men's bodies
and makes them wise in their councils.
Bring to all the knowledge that great cities
live only through the bounty
of the good earth beyond their paved streets
and towers of stone and steel.
Honor the sacred.
Honor the Earth, our Mother.
Honor the Elders.
Honor all with whom we share the Earth:-
Four-leggeds, two-leggeds, winged ones,
Swimmers, crawlers, plant and rock people.
Walk in balance and beauty.
Native American Elder
Lakota Instructions for Living
Friend do it this way - that is,
whatever you do in life,
do the very best you can
with both your heart and mind.
And if you do it that way,
the Power Of The Universe
will come to your assistance,
if your heart and mind are in Unity.
When one sits in the Hoop Of The People,
one must be responsible because
All of Creation is related.
And the hurt of one is the hurt of all.
And the honor of one is the honor of all.
And whatever we do effects everything in the universe.
If you do it that way - that is,
if you truly join your heart and mind
as One - whatever you ask for,
that's the Way It's Going To Be.
passed down from White Buffalo Calf Woman
You have noticed that everything an Indian does in a circle,
and that is because the Power of the World always works in circles,
and everything and everything tries to be round.
In the old days all our power came to us from the sacred hoop
of the nation and so long as the hoop was unbroken the people
flourished. The flowering tree was the living center of the hoop,
and the circle of the four quarters nourished it. The east gave peace
and light, the south gave warmth, the west gave rain and the north
with its cold and mighty wind gave strength and endurance. This
knowledge came to us from the outer world with our religion.
Everything the power of the world does is done in a circle.
The sky is round and I have heard that the earth is round like a ball
and so are all the stars. The wind, in its greatest power, whirls.
Birds make their nests in circles, for theirs is the same religion as ours.
The sun comes forth and goes down again in a circle. The moon
does the same and both are round. Even the seasons form a great
circle in their changing and always come back again to where they were.
The life of a man is a circle from childhood to childhood, and so it is
in everything where power moves. Our teepees were round like the
nests of birds, and these were always set in a circle, the nation's hoop,
a nest of many nests, where the Great Spirit meant for us to hatch our children.
Black Elk, Holy Man of the Oglala Sioux 1863-1950
May the stars carry your sadness away,
May the flowers fill your heart with beauty,
May hope forever wipe away your tears,
And, above all, may silence make you strong.
Chief Dan George
So live your life that the fear of death can never enter your heart.
Trouble no one about their religion;
respect others in their view, and demand that they respect yours.
Love your life, perfect your life, beautify all things in your life.
Seek to make your life long and its purpose in the service of your people.
Prepare a noble death song for the day when you go over the great divide.
Always give a word or a sign of salute when meeting or passing a friend,
even a stranger, when in a lonely place.
Show respect to all people and grovel to none.
When you arise in the morning give thanks for the food and for the joy of living.
If you see no reason for giving thanks, the fault lies only in yourself.
Abuse no one and no thing, for abuse turns the wise ones to fools
and robs the spirit of its vision.
When it comes your time to die, be not like those whose hearts are filled
with the fear of death, so that when their time comes they weep
and pray for a little more time to live their lives over again in a different way.
Sing your death song and die like a hero going home.
Chief Tecumseh (Crouching Tiger) Shawnee Nation 1768-1813