Manataka™ American Indian Council
GRANDMOTHER SELMA SPEAKS:
By Grandmother Selma
Global Peace and Cooperation
There seems to be an upswing in the number of individuals who express an interest in Native Indian teachings and traditions. This is understandable due to the world situation and the economy, not to mention the ecological impact being felt world wide.
While the interest is a grand thing, the lack of dedication and commitment by those seeking is somewhat alarming! It is like they think it is a year long course at the local university and then they are degreed in that field of discipline. Fast food mentality of the masses.
They fail to understand that the teachings have to be incorporated into their own being and they foster almost forced growth in the individual. They must deal with their own hidden issues and overcome some serious and complex notions about the universe at large and how society is suppose to work as opposed to how it does work or not work.
It is much easier to take an individual who is interested who knows nothing and expose them to the teachings and traditions, than it is to take an individual who thinks they know part of it and expose them to the traditions and teachings. The latter has to unlearn a great deal in order to be open to the truths of the teachings without seeing them tainted from a biased perspective.
A concept as simple as the word " family" is a major challenge for those raised in dominant society. The average "white" or " non-native" biological family is riddled with undertones, silent issues, past history that has not be resolved, but swept under the rug of silence. Skeletons in closet, secrets and hidden truths. How in the world can they be truly close? They may appear to be close, and they joke and laugh and semi-support each other, and genuinely love each other; but most of them do not truly know each other at a soul level. They do not share their greatest secrets, fears, needs, or past events in a complete picture. They skim the surface of the past and the emotions tied to the past. There are barriers in what can be and what can not be discussed or even mentioned.
Some of them over the years have learned to form "chosen family" -- a small group of friends that they have bonded with and can be totally open and honest and blunt with. People that accept each other for who they are, where they are and the way they are. Scars and all.
No, they probably never totally agree on any one issue, but they allow others their view points and belief systems and honor those without trying to change them. They are accepted whether agreed with in totality or not. They accept. Though that acceptance and understanding comes a level of trust and loyalty and love that can not be shared or passed genetically. It is earned over time and thru tests and trials.
These people have a "step one" understanding of what a Native means when we say family, otherwise there is no way of explaining what that word or concept means to the non-Native.
And yet, it is that basic concept that the world needs to understand and experience if we ever hope to have any semblance of global peace and cooperation.
We can only teach this effectively by example and by being willing to accept those of pure heart and intent into that circle so they too may learn through experience.
Until we meet again, may you walk with those you call family.
©2009 Selma Palmer
A Short Biography
SELMA A. PALMER
(SOARING PAW 'N HOOVES CAWLEY)
Gram Selma is the Administrator of Ocali Nations Intertribial, a Florida native American Indian intertribal organization, and is of Navajo/Apache descent. Selma was born of the traditions and she has dedicated her life to the continued study of the same, having been blessed to be a student of many well known and respected Elders and Tribal Leaders.
She has served as a delegate to the White House Conference on Native American Education. From 1996 to 1998, she was honored and appointed as a Peace Elder for Wolfsong, an indigenous world wide elders council. She has also served on powwow committees and on Board of Directors of various Native American oriented organizations.
Recently she has been honored by having some of her traditional crafts purchased by the Fenimore Museum in Cooperstown, NY. Since 1990, Selma has dedicated herself full time to "perpetuating" and assisting others in the perpetuation of the traditional oral teachings, sacred traditions, ceremonial concepts and prophecies of "the people" (all Native Americans). Selma has shared "Circle of Life" classes for thirty years. She is a licensed minister and spiritual counselor of non denominational status.
Selma Palmer, biologically a Cawley, being the daughter of Robert Harris Cawley , who was adopted as an infant by the Palmer's of Georgia and of Una Johnston (maiden) of West Virginia.
Selma can be contacted thru The Ocali Nations Int. Inc., P.O. Box 2316, Silver Springs, Fl 34489
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