Never doubt the power of small humble things like seeds. The heart and soul of creation, the fertility gifts of Gaia that are tenderly nurtured by the plant-spirits, seeds carry the ultimate promise of rebirth and regeneration, the growth of the springtime blossom and the tiny sprout that are the "green fuse" in wild nature. As small and unadorned as they seem, seeds hold the essence of the eternal spiral of life and represent spiritual renewal to the human soul. Recently an Anishnaabe friend brought back a gift for me from the Caribbean, beautiful seeds Indigenous to the region strung on simple, yet meaningful necklaces. She could not have known (except with the intuition of an earth-connected wisewoman) that these seeds would have such compelling meaning for me. Many years ago when my beloved grandmother's estate went up for auction I rescued items that were important, giving up many other objects in the mercantile process. Much later I realized that the unassuming and simple little things she collected, like her apple seed necklaces, were now lost forever. I regretted not having known the true value of the small things that had touched my heart. But in one of life's surprising and serendipitous moments, the longing I carried all those years dissolved when my friend placed the humble seed necklaces from Mexico into my hands. Chi Meegwetch for turning the sacred wheel of destiny, for allowing the circle to come around again, for bringing closure and a healing balm to my heart. This gift is a reaffirmation of the potent seeds of love that are Mother Earth's gifts, and the gifts of our Mothers and Grandmothers to us all.
An Anishnaabe friend gave me these modest and decorative bead bracelets at the solstice with a humorous request to "buy back the island of Manhattan on behalf of the original inhabitants of Turtle Island." How incredibly funny and dreadfully sad at the same time! Can we even imagine how beautiful and pristine the eastern seaboard was at the time of European contact? With our modern attitude of ennui can we even begin to understand how the original inhabitants of North America were embedded in the sacredness of the natural world, and how they respected the demarcated niche that humanity held in that ecosystem? Yes, the Eurocentric conquerors used beads as part of their trade offerings to secure access and title to lands. But what would pretty trinkets have meant to people that held the entire magnificent luminous world in their hearts and minds? To peoples who are in and of the land, not above it or separate from it, the idea of land ownership is inconceivable and obscene. How they must have tolerated these crazy white men, not believing for a moment that their world was in jeopardy. Now a couple of centuries have passed, Manhattan's skyscrapers and concrete jungles blot out the natural landscape, and if there is one thing we know for sure (the gift of indoor plumbing none-withstanding) is that the "civilized world" of the arrogant and destructive Settler Society is not the correct way to be living on Turtle Island. To earth-based traditions it is self-evident that we are inseparably linked to nature. We ARE nature, and the time has come for all people to remember who we are, where we belong and what is Sacred. We need to love the land, and to give thanks for the gifts of the Earth. The recovery of the Indigenous soul in all of us should come first, as it is the thread of our humanness woven inextricably into the world. Then, let us recover Manhattan, with green spaces, permaculture, bicycles, natural power, green technology, heirloom seeds and community gardens and whatever else it takes. And yes - nice joke, big sister, and Meegwetch for the baubles!
Pegi Eyers is the author of "Ancient Spirit Rising: Reclaiming Your Roots & Restoring Earth Community," an award-winning book that explores strategies for intercultural competency, healing our relationships with Turtle Island First Nations, decolonization, recovering an ecocentric worldview, rewilding, creating a sustainable future and reclaiming peaceful co-existence in Earth Community.
Stone Circle Press