It’s come up often lately, this issue of our American Individualism encroaching upon our paths forward to a new world of community and peace. The way forward is very much a process of self and it takes more time than we ever think or wish.
The question is often, What do I do? What is it I’m meant to do right now?
I’ve seen throughout time a common experience of misinterpreting what our ‘heart is telling us’…. We usually are being guided to do something but it is usually something we don’t ‘want’ to do, the harder path, the scary choice, and so we dismiss it, quickly forgetting that Creator does have our back, our hearts actually, and is trying to support us. We then mistakenly feel alone when facing something big like needing to move on or change something….a job, career, relationship, moving, taking on leadership, starting something, finishing something, etc. We are feeling what we are meant to do but it is usually the harder choice, triggering an immediate ‘ease and comfort’ meter assessment and neural path creation away from discomfort; the judgement and disposal of heart inspiration to brain landfill happens so instantaneously, we totally miss and/or immediately forget that the Creator just tried to answer our prayer!
All of this is to say, finding one’s place even in the urgent times we are in is a process of self that takes way more time than we ever realize. Most collective movements, truly healing and peaceful communities, the most powerful Love in the world is usually of people who are elders…. They have already walked the road we are currently on, they’ve done the work … the learning, repetition and practice of unloading the baggage and coming to know exactly Who they are and they are old because it takes time. Can we make it there faster? Perhaps… do you have an elder? Have you found one that speaks to your Spirit? If so, did you hang on? Do you honor them? Care for them? Check-in with them daily? Are you listening to their wisdom or, at times, placing it immediately in the ooo-i-don’t-want-to-do-that land fill? If you are seeking their words, reading them, are you rereading them to the point that they become part of you?
If not yet, that’s ok; they’re patient, they have many more years of patience than ourselves, and the lesson always comes back around, until we learn and get to level up to the next!
The wisdom, the Way forward is with our ancestors. I’d like to bring their writings and what’s been left for us to the soundcloud account, available for even just a few more searching for steps forward along the Red Road.
I’ll begin with the virtues of my ancestors, as it has been my journey since 2016 to come back to the Lakota Way to learn and to share.
Also placed below each virtue are some of my favorite Mother Teresa (MT) quotes as her wisdom has been truly illuminating for me in foggy times.
I find great solace in the practicality of her words. To me they are like a blueprint for the inner self, a lovely path of words for the hard work so elusive that words hardly ever suffice and which few have space to be able to gift in authenticity; the things which exist so fundamentally and innately but that cannot just be checked off a list.
Complimentary to her endlessly inspiring quotes, a book of her personal writings, Come Be My Light, is even more illuminating and supportive … It speaks to what the personal journey in service to the collective really is, what it really feels like and what it really takes. Of course we each get a unique journey, but to learn her experience is to know that even though she looked like a natural and it all came so easy, that is an oversimplification and so it puts us back into the place of personal responsibility and empowerment to listen to Exactly what our heart, the Great Mystery, is guiding our bird spirits to do, and to put away the fear and do it. We must do all that it takes to do what is in our hearts to do.
Elder wisdom X Elder wisdom BOOM! Perhaps I’ll be Wise and Humble enough to learn from experience and speed the process.
1 Unsiiciyapi “HoSheeCheeAwpee” Humility, to be humble, modest, unpretentious.
Of the twelve values, this One raises the power of the rest.
If you are humble, nothing will touch you, neither praise nor disgrace, because you know what you are.
2 Wowacintanka “WoahWahCheetanka” Perseverance, to persist, to strive in spite of difficulties.
Not all of us can do great things, but we can do small things with great love.
God does not require us to succeed, he only requires that you try.
Yesterday is gone, tomorrow has not yet come. We have only today. Let us begin.
3 Wawoohola ” WahWohHoLah” Respect, to be considerate, to hold in high esteem
Let us always meet eachother with a smile, for the smile is the beginning of Love.
If we have no peace, it is because we have forgotten that we belong to eachother.
I want you to be concerned about your nextdoor neighbor. Do you know your nextdoor neighbor?
If you judge people, you have no time to Love them.
4 Wayuonihan “WhyOwnia” Honor, to have integrity, to have an honest and upright character
Spread Love everywhere you go. Let no one ever come to you without leaving happier.
Kind words can be short and easy to speak, but their echoes are truly endless.
We shall never know all the good a simple smile can do.
What can you do to promote world peace? Go home and love your family.
5 Cantognake “ChawnTeyOhgoneAwekay” To place and hold in one’s heart = ” love”
Joy is a net of Love in which you can catch souls.
6 Icicupi “EachEachOobee” Sacrifice = to give of oneself, an offering>>Service
The fruit of silence is prayer
The fruit of prayer is faith
The fruit of faith is love
The fruit of Love is service
The fruit of service is peace
Love cannot remain by itself, it has no meaning. Love has to be put into action and that action is service.
7 Wowicake “WoahWeeJawckHay” Truth, that which is real, the way the world is
We do not need guns and bombs to bring peace, we need love and compassion.
8 Waunsilapi “WowSheLawpee” Compassion, to care, to sympathize
The most terrible poverty is loneliness and the feeling of being unloved.
9 Woohitike “WhoaEateeKay” Bravery, having or showing courage
Do not wait for leaders; do it alone, person to person.
10 Cantewasake “ChawnteyWashOnkay” Fortitude, strength of heart and mind
Be faithful in small things because it is in them that your strength lies.
11 Canteyuke “ChawnteyYouHeh” Generosity, to give, to share, to have a heart.
Whatever you have, give to those less fortunate; as one then, we have all we need.
If you cannot feed a hundred people,then feed just one.
12 Woksape “WokeSawPay” Wisdom, to understand what is right and true, to use knowledge in a good way
Never travel faster than your guardian angel can fly.
You can listen to the virtues and the wisdom of our elders here:
Listen to Start Here by LindseyLouOnTheMove on #SoundCloud
Mother Teresa’s words https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/1543796.Mother_Teresa
The Lakota Way
Written, and from which the values and their actions are referenced above https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/305508.The_Lakota_Way
The Virtues Spoken by our relative and elder Lee Plenty Wolf
Something fun to do:
By way of that epic elder wisdom and partaking in a beautiful practice of self, with the amplification power for the collective by undertaking it together, let us complete this challenge over the next 21 days ! https://kindspring.servicespace.org/challenge/