Remembering Grandmother Sara Smith (RIP)

 

Reposted from Macleans: https://archive.macleans.ca/article/2002/4/1/sara-smith

Shut the heavy door and the large, already homey kitchen in the Native Women’s Resource Centre becomes a welcome sanctuary from the grit of downtown Toronto. For the eight women sitting purposefully around a Formica table, an added balm is the person they have come to see—Grandmother Sara Smith, a Mohawk from the Six Nations Reserve near Brantford, Ont., a modest, big-boned elder with a mischievous smile and the kind of soothing voice you’d like to fall asleep to.

Once the dinner dishes are cleared, Grandmother Sara, as she is almost universally known, prepares to conduct what she calls “a circle,” a meditative gathering for sharing and healing spiritual wounds. From her medicine bundle she sets out a woven mat, deer antlers and a shell to hold the tobacco and other “sacred plants” she plans to burn, sending their aromas throughout the room. The discussion, too, flows as freely as the smoke between the symbolic and the everyday. Sara gently connects the dots: a baby’s cry down the hall leads into a homily about the natural intuition that is locked within us all.

Close your eyes and you could be transported back hundreds, maybe thousands, of years to late-night talk around a hearth and the gentle ritual of congregation. But “this is not religion,” says Grandmother Sara. “This is not native religion.” What she is proclaiming in her own quiet manner is spiritual journeying “as a way of life”—a way of being thoughtful today about the generations to come.

Now 62, Grandmother Sara began her own journey in earnest some 30 years ago as her four children were growing up and she felt there was something incomplete about her spiritual life. A stint in tribal politics didn’t fill the gap. Nor, entirely, did regular get-togethers with a group of women to analyze dreams, conscious meditative dreaming being a staple of inner life and decision-making for many natives. But both led inexorably to a re-examination of the old ways and the old legends, to long conversations with elders and visiting tribal leaders. And to the point where Sara is herself now one of those elders—the “Grandmother” is an honorific, though she’s a legit one, too, with 12 grandchildren.

In her day job, Grandmother Sara manages a non-profit gift store on the Six Nations reserve to help individuals with special needs. Her home is a cozy mix of native art and modern technology. An oversized satellite dish stands guard outside; a granddaughter does her homework on a laptop. But art and technology pale beside the signs of an ancient belief: in the backyard, a prayer circle of white pines; next door, a spiritual centre that she and her husband, Roger, had built a year ago, with a great hall and bedrooms for visitors. It is their gift—of a modest haven—to a world they see hungering for belief. And it is a world already beating a path to their door.

In Grandmother Sara’s kitchen, there’s a calendar of commitments that seems to stretch to another lifetime. Her travels have taken her to England, Europe, Australia, Central America and throughout Canada and the United States. A few years ago she was the only Canadian invited to meet with the Dalai Lama at a gathering of indigenous peoples from five continents at a Tibetan monastery in France. It was an event called the Gathering of the Shamans, and while Grandmother Sara feels native beliefs have much in common with Buddhism, she is categorical that she is not a seer or shaman—when pressed she says she is not even sure what the terms mean. She is simply a custodian, someone who keeps the oral traditions alive and links them, when possible, with the events of today. “We are a circular people,” she says, and by that she means many things. One of them: that a kind and thoughtful life can resonate for generations.

 

Time of the 6th Sun ft. Elders & Wisdom Teachers [documentary]

A 108-minute feature docu-movie, filmed in 16 countries over 11 years, featuring over 70 Indigenous Elders, Wisdom Keepers and Visionary Thought Leaders from around the world sharing their knowledge and teachings. Discover many ‘aha’ moments on this global cinematic journey offering great insights into the awakening and incredible changes to the consciousness of humanity happening on our planet at this time.
That initial question “Who Am I?” leads us into the awakening process as we look around at the chaos thinking, ‘there has to be another way’.
Then we look inside to find aspects of our own internal chaos which leads to change. But change will always bring up what we don’t necessarily want to look at as we discover our shadow side and so starts that journey within.
A process of purification as we let go of fears, conditioning, old programs, using ritual ceremony and the ways of the indigenous.
Descending from the mind to the heart space we attend elders gatherings who teach us that the visioning and the dreaming comes from the heart space.
And this dreaming will create a Vision for a New Earth, where we learn how to tread more lightly on the earth whilst reclaiming and celebrating our sovereignty, as we as a species ascend to a higher level of collective consciousness.
The movie stars Estas Tonne, a troubadour on his journey of enlightenment, challenged by the Trickster played by Peter Moore, guided by Spirit channeled through Geoffrey Hoppe and introduced by actress Greta Scacchi, with original music composed by Charlie Roscoe and featuring the music of Estas Tonne and 11 other artists.

 

Watch the movie here: https://watch.timeofthesixthsunlaunch.com/

 

ASK PERMISSION… GIVE THANKS!

 

Ask permission…
Before cutting the branch of a tree or removing a flower, tell the spirit of the tree or plant what you are going to do, so that they can withdraw their energy from that place and not feel the cut so strong.

When you go to nature and want to take a stone that was in the river, ask the river-keeper if he allows you to take one of his sacred stones.

If you have to climb a mountain or make a pilgrimage through the jungle, ask permission from the spirits and guardians of the place. It is very important that you communicate even if you do not feel, do not listen or do not see. Enter with respect to each place, since Nature listens to you, sees you and feels you.

Every movement you make in the microcosm generates a great impact on the macrocosm.

When you approach an animal, give thanks for the medicine it has for you.

Honor life in its many forms and be aware that each being is fulfilling its purpose, nothing was created to fill spaces, everything and everyone is here remembering our mission, remembering who we are and awakening from the sacred dream to return home.”

www.gettingtotheroot.org

 

Angel D’ Cuba (CYGM)

 

Angel D’ Cuba (Angel Luis Badell) is a conscious artist (singer/dancer/composer/multi-instrumentalist) from Havana, Cuba, now living in Miami (Florida), who has participated in inter-tribal unity efforts and is a great ally to the movement as a mentor to youth seeking connection with Afro-Cuban roots & culture.  Additionally, he is a highly-skilled funky Soul and R&B singer, which caused friction between him and the Cuban authorities who had a blockade on American influences on the island.

Website: https://angeldcuba.com/

 

As a youth in Havana, Angel D’ Cuba was already exploring music from the rest of the world at the same time that he was absorbing and sharing his own rich heritage.  He even got into breakdancing as a teenager and is the founder of urban music in his country (mixing Afro-Cuban with urban American/Caribbean/African street-orientated music).  His early career on the island included work with several bands including the group formerly led by the late, great Emiliano Salvador, but by his own account, his time as lead singer with the supergroup Mezcla, which performed (as a result of his influences) a broad spectrum of world music, soul, rock and jazz, in addition to the more “traditional” Cuban styles, was the experience that probably had the strongest influence on his future approach to music.

Coming to Chicago in 1998 meant leaving an established, reasonably secure career to pay a new set of dues all over again, but he persisted while developing a following and attracting some of the city’s finest talent to his ensemble.  Still, in spite of having a star’s voice, outstanding original compositions and an elite band, he remained relatively unknown in much of the United States outside of Chicago.

 

 

That is… until the release of his 2013 Heritage (album), which features Angel’s own compositions & arrangements (with assistance from musician James Cornolo) in an expanded ensemble setting, which finally gave Angel D’ Cuba a long-overdue proper introduction to the world at large, showcasing his wide musical range, while still honoring his roots.  This project has a Cuban heart, as you’ll hear in Muchacha de Escuela (a tasty Songo), and Can’t Hide Love (a Funk-Mozambique fusion guaranteed to make you move), and it also features a much wider range of genres including Vallenato-style Cumbia, Samba, Calypso, even some Reggaeton, which is all done con alma y sabor.

Angel d’ Cuba is now, as of May 2021, based in Miami (Florida).  He’s already made multiple appearances at Casa de Montecristo in Boca Raton, Alfaro’s on Calle Ocho in Little Havana, Yuca 105 in South Beach, The Creative Yard in Allapatta, The Globe in Coral Gables and other “hot” venues.  He is primed to take his musical act to the very top.

World… meet Angel D’ Cuba… and enjoy!

 

Read more Angel D’ Cuba (CYGM)

AFRICAN SPIRITUALITY Podcast by Malidoma Some (RIP)

For the elders in his village, Malidoma Some’s (1956–2021) life in the West was preordained.  As Malidoma related in his recent book “Of Water and the Spirit,” he was taken from his tribe at the age of 4 by Jesuit missionaries, who intended to make him a priest.  At 20, he rebelled and went back to his village.  But he could not speak his native tongue, was hardly recognized by his family, and was regarded with considerable suspicion by the villagers.  After much discussion by village elders and undergoing his tribal initiation, Malidoma, whose name means “be friends with the stranger/enemy,” was told that he would fulfill his destiny by living his life in the West as a teacher of African ways and wisdom. “The village will be reborn,” the elders predicted, “in the heart and soul of the culture that is destroying the village.” Under their spiritual guidance, Malidoma pursued a Western education.  He held doctorates in both political science and literature.

Malidoma taught that it is unthinkable to separate daily life from ritual contact with the unseen world of spirit, or to pursue political change without ongoing spiritual development.  Africa’s inherent wisdom of marrying daily life to a spiritual worldview, Malidoma suggested, may prove key to healing our own cultural catastrophes in the West.

Malidoma Some will be deeply missed!  His legacy & teachings will live on!

CoCreAvatars have written a deeply moving tribute in their newsletter for Malidoma Some, linked here:

http://consciousyouthglobalmovement.com/wp-content/uploads/2022/03/Its-never-too-late-to-reach-out-to-the-ancestors.pdf

Listen to his recorded teachings here: https://soundcloud.com/mackboogaloo/sets/african-ancestral-wisdom-dagara

CoCreavatars 2nd interview with BIKBAYE (CYGM)

CoCreAvatars is an international network and portal for Universal transformation.  Dedicated and in service to express true Oneness here on earth.  CoCreAvatars produces a spiritually enlightening newsletter via email subscription.

https://www.facebook.com/CoCreAvatars/

CoCreAvatars interviewed Bibkaye, founder of CYGM, for their New Moon Elders Message Series #024, which is linked here:

http://consciousyouthglobalmovement.com/wp-content/uploads/2022/01/Bikbaye-2nd-CoCreavatars-Interview-New-Moon-Elder-Wisdom-from-Bikbaye-Inejnema-__-Integrating-Initiations-mailchi.mp_-1.pdf

 

CoCreavatars 1st interview with BIKBAYE (CYGM)

CoCreAvatars is an international network and portal for Universal transformation.  Dedicated and in service to express true Oneness here on earth.  CoCreAvatars produces a spiritually enlightening newsletter via email subscription.

https://www.facebook.com/CoCreAvatars/

CoCreAvatars interviewed Bibkaye, founder of CYGM, for their New Moon Elders Message Series #019, which is linked here:

http://consciousyouthglobalmovement.com/wp-content/uploads/2021/12/BIKBAYE-1st-interview-with-COCREAVATARS-2.pdf

 

 

Time of the Sixth Sun Movie – Full Trailer

Time of the Sixth Sun is an inspirational and uplifting documentary film about the shift in global consciousness and the emerging movement to find a new way to walk more lightly on this Earth. Our ancestors understood our symbiotic relationship to nature and the elements, and foresaw the collapse of an unsustainable world. Filmed predominantly in North America, Mexico, Peru, S.Africa, India, Egypt, Israel and Australia, this film is a synergy of ancient wisdom from the indigenous Elders and insights from pioneers of new energy consciousness, who collaboratively hold the vision of a new earth experience.

Website: https://www.timeofthesixthsun.com/