“People who are involved with nature would not build pipelines.” Joshua Taflinger.
I’ve been thinking about the truth of that statement. Joshua is one of the main organizers of our local #noDAPL efforts, and is involved with the White Pine Wilderness Academy, which is part of a national network of wilderness schools.
One of the things that makes Scattergood Friends School and Farm such an amazing educational institution is the integration of the farm and prairie into the community and academic life of the school. Thinking back on my time there, I realize many of us were raised on farms or in rural communities, and didn’t really appreciate how different the experience must have been for our classmates and teachers from cities and urban areas.
Re-connecting with nature is a major focus of the work of the Kheprw Institute (KI) as well, with their aquaponics system, rain barrel production, composting, community gardening, and operation of a food coop.
Besides being raised on farms in Iowa, where I learned about the practical aspects of nature and farming, I was also very fortunate that our family vacations were camping trips to our national parks, where we were amazed by the beauty and majesty of the mountains, plains, canyons, lakes, and rivers.
I clearly remember sitting on my bicycle in a cloud of smog in downtown Indianapolis (this being in the early 1970s, prior to catalytic converters) and being horrified by the mental image of Long’s Peak in Rocky Mountain National Park, completely obscured by smog.
It was that image that made me realize I could not buy into the personal automobile culture, so I haven’t had a car for the past 35 years.
One of the many things I’ve been learning even more about during this past year’s work related to #noDAPL, is the deep integration of the natural and spiritual worlds in Native life and culture.
“No matter what they ever do to us, we must always act for the love of our people and the Earth. We must not react out of hatred against those who have no sense.” John Trudell
“Those who have no sense” include those who are disconnected from nature.
Re-connecting ourselves, and especially our youth, with nature and the Spirit is vitally important today and for our future.