Manataka American Indian Council                                     Volume XI  Issue 07  JULY 2007


Manataka - Preserving The Past Today For Tomorrow 




Faster download!  The Smoke Signal this month is on 3 web pages.





2 Legends of Old:

Climbing the Mountain

2 Feature Story: The Manataka Summer Gathering 2006


Letters to the Editor:

Cherokee History, FDA Opression,
2 Politics Watch: Not Quite A Papal Mea Culpa
2 Organic Consumer Watch: Monster Monsanto Attacks People
2 Elder's Meditations: Wilma P. Mankiller, Cherokee
2 Member Recognition:
2 Health Watch:

Watch Out for Compact Fluorescent Lights

China Seafood Imports raised in sewage!

2 Herb Watch: Amaranth:  Food of the Gods
2 Fluoride Watch: Fluoridation linked to bone cancer
2 Animal Rights and Wrongs: A

Yellowstone Bison Action Alert

2 Sacred Site Watch: Keep Bullets out of Indian Sacred Sites






Climbing the Mountain

Cahuillan Indians, California

Here in the dry desert, of the southwestern part of our country, there lived the Cahuillan Indian Tribe, and just to the north of them, off in the distance, was the very high range of mountains we today call the San Bernardino Mountains. It was considered a great and important achievement to be able to climb this mountain, and so all the young boys of the village looked forward to the day when they were old enough that they could try it on their own.

One night, during the Fall season of the year, the Chief called all the boys together and said to them, "Now, boys, you are of the proper age to accept this challenge, and you may now all go out tomorrow and seek to climb that mountain with my blessings. Start right after breakfast, and each of you, go as far as you can, and, when you are tired, come back, but you must bring back a twig from the place where you turned."

The boys were so excited they could hardly sleep that night.

The next morning, away they all went, full of hope and dreams, each feeling that he could surely reach the top.

Soon a fat, pudgy boy come slowly back, puffing and sweating all the way. As he stood before his Chief, he showed in his hand, that he held a piece of green Beavertail Cactus. "My boy," the Chief smiled in disbelief, "I can see you did not reach the foot of the mountain. In fact you did not get across the desert to even start the climb."

An hour passed. Then another boy returned carrying a twig of Black Sagebrush. "Well," said the Chief, "I can see you did reach the mountain's foot, but you did not start to climb."

Another hour passed, and a third boy returned. He held a young Cottonwood sapling. "Good work," said the Chief, "you got up as far as the springs!  Very good!"

A bit of a longer wait, and there came a boy with a part of some Buckthorn. The Chief smiled when he saw it, and said, "You were actually climbing! I can see you were up to that first rockslide. You are a hard working boy."

Later in the afternoon, one arrived with an Incense Cedar frond. "Well done, my boy," said the Chief. "You made it half way up! You have seen the heart of the mountain. Very good job."

An hour after that, one came with a branch of Ponderosa Pine, and to him the Chief said, "Good job. You went to the third life zone. It looks like you made it three quarters of the way. I bet if you keep trying, next year you will undoubtedly reach the top!"

The sun was low, and even the Chief was starting to worry a bit. There were many pitfalls on that mountain to overcome, and the last of his boys was still outside of camp. Could a Grizzly Bear have ambushed him? Or maybe he fell off a tall rock facing somewhere, never to be heard from again ? Maybe he had lost his way, or ran out of water.

As it happened, just when the Chief was to send out a search party to look for the boy, he was at last returned. He was a tall, splendid boy of noble character, everyone already knew he was marked to be successful in life. He approached the Chief and held out his hand. It was empty, but his face was glowing with happiness when the boy said, "My Chief, there were no trees where I came from. I saw no twigs, no living thing up on that peak. And far away I could see the glorious sight of the sun shining off the sea."

Now the old man's face started to glow too! He turned around, and said aloud with an almost musical tone in his voice, "I knew it! I just knew it when I looked upon your face. You have been all the way to the top! It was written in your eyes! It rings in your voice! And it is alive in the way you carry your body! My boy, you need no twigs for token. You have felt the uplift in your spirit because you have seen the glory of the mountain!"

Dearest Scouts, keep this in mind, that the badges that are offered you for your achievements, are not "prizes" to be "won". For prizes are things of value, taken by force or contest from their rightful owners. These badges, are then, just tokens, of what you have done, and where you have been. Remember this that as fun as these badges are to earn, they are just twigs collected from the trail, to show how far you got, during your climb to manhood.

~Submitted by Blue Panther Keeper of Stories




The Manataka Summer Gathering 2006

By Linda VanBibber, Missouri



You can smell the smoke from the campfires as soon as you turn into Hot Springs National Park.  It’s around five-thirty in the evening and we’ve been on the road since a little after 9 this morning.  Even so, the anticipation of meeting old friends and making new friends at the Manataka Summer Gathering is enough to perk up everyone in the car.  


Just a little further and we’re turning into Gulpha Gorge.  “Are we here?” asks my excited nine-year-old granddaughter, Imani, starting to bounce around in the back seat.  Before we even stop the car, Imani’s friend, Randy, has called her name and she’s got the seat belt off.  She’s out the door and I still have to park the car. 


My daughter, Lisa, who shares my love of the Manataka Mountain and the people who have gathered around it, gets out of the car and stretches.


The Manataka teepee is already up. Walking towards it, we hear Becky Flaming Owl Moore call out to us, pleased to recognize us from a distance without her glasses on.  Hugs are all around. I ask if my dear friend, Becky’s husband Lee Standing Bear, is around. I am informed that he has gone home to rest for awhile.   After more hugs and hellos we find Imani and head out to find a hotel room.  I want to get settled in and get back to the gorge in time to climb up to Goat Rock before sundown.


Nowhere on the planet do I feel more balanced and complete than when I come back down the trail from Goat Rock.  It is as if the energy of the mountain, Rainbow Woman’s energy, aligns my energy to itself and rebalances, refreshes and rejuvenates my being.  It happens every time.  I look forward to my next visit as soon as I’m on the road back to my home in Independence Missouri.


After my quick trip up the mountain I again inquire about Standing Bear. This time I am told that someone has been asked to go and get oxygen for Bear.  I don’t see Becky, so we head back to get some supper and rest before the gathering starts in the morning. 


The Roadway Inn sits right at the foot of the south side of Manataka Mountain, ‘officially’ known as Hot Springs Mountain.  I usually stay there if I’m not camping.  There is a trail that goes from the back of the hotel up the mountain.  Standing Bear had told me about it last fall, indicating that the ceremonies were likely once performed about where the parking lot is now. 


At 6 am I am awake and headed up the mountain, leaving my daughter and granddaughter sleeping in the hotel room.  While cooler than the previous night, the air is heavy and humid.  The mountain is quiet and still.  Dead Chief’s trail undulates along the south side of the mountain gradually elevating to the point where it joins the trail up to Goat Rock where it gets increasingly steep.  I have my staff with me.  I started this staff at the Fall Gathering last October.  It is covered with spirals, animals and spirits which were discovered in the wood as it was carved.  It also has a vulture feather which was gifted to me last fall and which I used for cleansing and healing my brother who had been badly burned.  I would gift this staff to Rainbow Woman to request my spirit name.  But now I just took it up the mountain with me, along with white sage and water to offer as gifts to the Mountain and to the seven directions.


When I return to the hotel, I wake up my sleepy roommates and we go to Phil’s Restaurant for a country breakfast that will keep us going most of the day.  Imani is meeting her friend at 11:00 in the Gorge and the Gathering will commence – sometime.  We’re on Indian time now, so we just hang out and see what happens next.


Being back in Gulpha Gorge for the Gathering is special.  Due to a misunderstanding with the Parks Department the necessary permit was not granted and the Gatherings were held at Bald Mountain Park last year.  I was not able to attend the Summer Gathering, but I was there in the Fall.  It was still wonderful; the respect and love of the people of Manataka make all the Gatherings fulfilling.  But being in the Gorge at the foot of Mantaka Mountain – on sacred ground – it’s just not the same anywhere else.


We soon learn, however, that we still don’t have a permit to use the fire circle.  We will be gathering in an open area of the campground.  A young couple have reserved the fire circle for a wedding later in the day.  And since they are members of Manataka, they will graciously allow the use of the fire circle after the wedding for the performance of the sacred ceremonies for the Mountain.


Manataka Mountain and the Valley of Vapors (now Gulpha Gorge) have a unique and wonderful history.  Before ‘civilization’ capped off all the hot springs and rerouted them to bath houses where they could bring profit to the greedy, the mists from the springs created rainbows over the Mountain.  It was said that Rainbow Woman guarded the Mountain and the Valley below. 


Manataka means ‘place of peace.’  According to legend, all the tribes of the Americas visited Manataka.  No weapons were allowed in the Valley.  It was a place held sacred as far away as South America.  Mayan artifacts have been found on the Mountain.   At previous gatherings I have heard this story related by Lee Standing Bear.  But Bear will not be telling the story at this gathering.  I learn when I arrive that he was taken to the emergency room in Little Rock the night before and is in intensive care.  This will be the first Gathering he has missed since the Manataka American Indian Council was formed in 1997.  


Now people are beginning to gather, bringing their chairs and blankets to an open area.  A line has formed for smudging. The smell of white sage permeates the air.  Each individual is smudged with great care and attention.  The sense of entering the dimension of sacred space becomes stronger.  Ceremonies are being led this year by David Quiet Wind.  A circle of hands is created and the ceremonies are opened. 


The drummers lead several songs, calling the Creator to join us and be among us. Manataka has an all-woman drum circle, which is unusual.  I am reminded of an article I read by a Native American grandmother which stated that the drums were given to the men by the women to allow them to become closer to Mother Earth.  The drums are the heartbeat of Mother Earth.  However, the men have not been faithful to the drums.  So the women are taking them back.   Being a member of an all female Afro-Brazilian drum group, I like this story.  It feels very right to me.


It is hot.  And humid. We do not need a lodge to sweat at this gathering.  But just as Quiet Wind is beginning the ceremonies, a cooling rain refreshes and cools us, the raindrops offering gentle blessing.  My granddaughter is excited.  Maybe there will be a rainbow above the Mountain like there used to be. Maybe she will see Rainbow Woman.   


Two basic ceremonies have been a part of every gathering I have attended: the Making of a Relative Ceremony, for new members, and the Naming Ceremony.  While there are many ways in which a spirit name is received, it is the custom at Manataka for the Seeker of a Name to offer a gift which they have made themselves and prayed over during the making.   If an Elder of Manataka is so moved, they take the gift to the Mountain and ask for the Vision that gives the name. The name is sacred and tells something about the Path of the person who receives it.   It is not known when a name will be received.  Some have waited years.   During the ceremony the story of the Vision is given as well as the name. 


Several names were given at this gathering.   Among the stories were those of a Great White Healing Bear, of a Red Bird’s Song and the Two Feathers of an Eagle.  Everyone present at a Gathering is joyous over the names received.  The name received describes each person’s personal Gifts and all Gifts belong to the community.    It is the sharing of who we are that makes us all strong.


We do not see Rainbow Woman.  But we feel Her Presence.  The rain has left us in time for the wedding.  The air is cooler and the trees sparkle.  The sacred fire is lit.  The young couple are handsome.  He is tall and stands proud.  She is beautiful and the sun shining from behind her lights her face.  This couple is a blessing.


My granddaughter has had an upset stomach, so we leave early to get her into bed.  Tomorrow is our last day and I plan to drive over to Little Rock to see Bear in the morning. 


The next morning I am already headed up the mountain by 6:30.  This time I am joined on Goat Rock by a young woman.  This has happened the past two times I have come to Manataka.  The first morning I am undisturbed and rejuvenated.  The second morning I am joined by a young woman and find myself sharing the story of Manataka. 


This young woman shares a story of getting angry and throwing a can of Sprite at her husband when her son was only four years old; she is shamed that he still remembers this now at eight years old.  I give her the story of the heart berries and explain that we react in such unexplainable ways when we do not know how to share what is really in our heart.  I tell her to share this with her son and assure her that he will understand.  Her name is Kathrin.


The walk down the Mountain is slow and quiet this morning.  I no longer have my staff.  It has been entrusted to Quiet Wind.  I feel the reluctance to leave that I always feel.  Someday I will be able to come here every day.   But not now.  Now I have responsibilities at home and have to return.


Lisa and Imani will stay at the Gathering while I drive to the VA Hospital in Little Rock.  Becky tells me they only allow visitors on the hour for 15 minutes.  It is after 10 o’clock now, and the hospital is an hour away, so the best I can hope for is to get there for the noon visiting time.  


It is 11:35 when I arrive at the hospital, just enough time to find the room and catch my breath.   Standing Bear looks good.  His ‘numbers’ are good on the monitors, once I figure out how to read them.  He does not say so, but I can tell he is proud that Becky is taking care of things at the Gathering.  He asks about the gathering and seems pleased that everything went well.  He tells me that when we go up on the Mountain with our hearts we are awakening the Spirit of Rainbow Woman.  I tell him that She awakens my Spirit.  We talk of love; I say take care of yourself, love yourself.  He says learn to love the enemies far away and you will learn to love those close to you that have more power to irritate you.  We agree that Love is One.  It is the same Love no matter where it starts or ends.   It is time to go.  He wants someone to bring contraband – chocolate ice cream.  I agree to pass along the request.


Back at the Gorge, a crystal is being charged with prayer. I am immediately drawn into the group, my energy added to theirs.  A few minutes later, Quiet Wind calls the group back together.  There is one more Name to give.  Then people are given the opportunity to speak.   Becky shares a chant for Owl Medicine; a Warrior speaks of protecting the Mountain.  Gayle Texas Wind shares Prayers that she has been Gifted.  Thunder rumbles.  A prayer is said to close the ceremony and a summer storm dumps a torrent of rain as the People rush for tents and vehicles. 


The Summer Gathering has ended.  We are cleansed and refreshed.  Somewhere there is a Rainbow.





The Shame of the Cherokee Nation

Many members of Congress were rightly outraged by the Cherokee Nation’s decision earlier this year to revoke the tribal citizenship of about 2,800 descendants of slaves once owned by the tribe. The tribe’s leaders have since tried to avoid any punishment by restoring partial rights to some black members.


Congress should disregard that ruse and move ahead with legislation that would force the Cherokee to comply with their treaty obligations and court decisions that guarantee black members full citizenship rights, including the right to vote and hold tribal office.


This dispute dates back to the 19th century, when Cherokee, Seminole and Creek signed treaties with the federal government that required them to accept their freedmen — many of whom had mixed black and Indian parentage — as full tribal members in return for recognition as sovereign nations. The tribes have repeatedly sought to abridge black Indian rights, but the treaties have been repeatedly upheld in federal court.


Black tribal rights were also upheld last year in the Cherokee tribe’s own supreme court. Then the tribe voted to expel black members. This could potentially deprive them of their cherished tribal identities, along with access to medical, housing and tribal benefits.


Representative Diane Watson, Democrat of California, is circulating a draft of a bill that would strip the Cherokee of hundreds of millions of dollars in federal aid, and suspend the tribe’s gaming rights, until it returns black members to full citizenship. The bill would also require the Department of the Interior — which has dragged its feet on this issue — to report to Congress on the status of freedmen’s rights in all tribes.

It is shameful that the Cherokee have to be pressured into restoring the rights of their own black citizens. But that clearly is what is needed.


~Submitted by Flag Dancer






Manataka receives dozens of letters each week. Space does not allow us to publish all letters but we make a concerted effort to

print letters that are representative of a majority. Let us know if there is a topic you feel needs to be addressed.



Dear Manataka,


These are photo's of regalia stolen from Darrell Goodwin's sister and brother-in-law Melinda and Rick Whitecloud while they attended the Gathering of the Nations Powwow in Albuquerque, NM in April.  Please be on the lookout for these items and spread the word.


~Submitted by Helen RedWing Vinson 

I never fit in with white culture




My mother always said that I am the "white sheep" of the family. My great grandma was Cherokee. She always wanted me to visit with her and learn tradition. But you know how kids are - too busy growing up and doing things with there friends - then it's too late and great grandma has gone to the other side of the river.


Since my own mother passed I have become close to my aunt, her sister, and she has invited me to gatherings, and I am slowly and alot on my own learning tradition, and understanding what the Red Road means. I read your smoke signal and it also helps me on my path. I have a family photo with all of my aunts, grand parents, and cousins--they all look native and I stand out like a sore thumb--blond and blue eyes--where did that come from everyone says!  I had a dream that my relatives that have crossed were standing on the other side of the river smiling and waving at me to let me know that they are there for me.


Now I finally understand why I never fit in with white culture, mainly church and social philosophy, but couldn'tfigure out what was "wrong" with me. I am so relieved to have found my path, and it seems so natural. Thanks to the Creator that there is a place for all of us - we just have to pay attention to what our heart is telling us, even if our packaging is different.  Love to you,  -Renae 


Heath Freedom Jeopardized



Big Pharma and the FDA want to shut us up for good:  Details of a new FDA "final solution" plan to utterly destroy natural medicine by regulating herbs, supplements, vitamins and even massage oils as drugs while criminalizing anyone who sells such products.


If the FDA has its way, even vegetable juices will be regulated as "drugs."  Massage props and hot rocks will be classified as "medical devices," and the entire nutritional supplements industry will be destroyed, wiped off the slate, and replaced by a stronger-than-ever pharmaceutical monopoly that has already taken over virtually the entire U.S. government.


This is an urgent action item.  You still have until April 30 to post comments with the FDA or write your representatives, and you can join hundreds of thousands of other readers who are taking a stand right now to stop this medical tyranny in its tracks. Contact details and web links are printed in the story below.  Click the headline to read...


Health freedom action alert: FDA attempting to regulate supplements, herbs and juices as "drugs"

When it comes to health freedom, this is the FDA's end game. A new FDA "guidance" document, published on the FDA's website, reveals plans to reclassify virtually all vitamins, supplements, herbs and even vegetable juices as FDA-regulated drugs. Massage...


The FDA and Big Pharma-funded criminal gangs have declared war on the American people.


You see, they not only want to eliminate your access to vitamins and supplements, they also want to eliminate your access to INFORMATION about vitamins and supplements! You, the consumer, were never supposed to find out about this.  When you read this story, you are reading information that will likely soon be OUTLAWED or CENSORED.


Read it while you still can.


To your health and freedom,
- Mike Adams, the Health Ranger


Cherokee Nation Bureaucrats Attempt to Change History


Hello Editor,

Hello and Greetings to the board of the Tahlequah Chamber of Commerce. My name is Paul Thomas Vickers, I am the Author of the book : Chiefs of Nations : The Cherokee Nation 1730 to 1839 109 Years of Political Dialogue and Treaties 0-595-36984-7 iuniverse publishers Oct. 2005. My research is derived from first class sources and is the only book that correlates the official dialogue and the treaties with U.S. government and the Cherokee Nation. The purpose for the email regards recent public announcements by the United Keetoowah Band of Cherokee on their website and the plans to meet with your Chamber.


Although they were granted permission to use my book and have done so, and have used my research for
their projects, like the Cherokee Nation of Tahlequah, they have chosen to continue to espouse false accounts of this history; lately it is the erroneous  assumption that ALL ARKANSAS CHEROKEES removed into present Oklahoma following this alleged treaty in 1828.


This is almost totally untrue, as this treaty or alleged treaty was not given sanction by the Arkansas Cherokee National Council; it also defies our beloved Chiefs of this point and time who in 1825 passed a national resolve not to sell or exchange lands in Arkansas. Out of some 40 Chiefs of the Arkansas National Council and some 6,000 Cherokee citizens, only 1 Chief { John Jolly } and his sub-chiefs and approx. 300 Cherokee agreed to this treaty. By doing so they were hence insurgents.


Moreover they soon began communicating with the John Ross faction in the east, of whom the real Arkansas Chiefs and the real Chiefs and people of the eastern Cherokee  ( 75% to 80 % ) did not recognize as a government of the Cherokee Nation.  The books have made this man and his following martyrs of the Cherokee people and this is also a farce, as nothing could be further from the truth.


Note: The town of New Echota created 1825 was not ever a town in the Cherokee Nation prior to this parties existence;  like its so-called leaders-it simply had no right to exist as a capitol town.

The fact that the United Keetoowah band has decided to follow in the  footsteps of Chief Chad Smith and his rendition as well as Author Robert Conley, is appalling and a true  dishonor to all the Cherokee people and chiefs who vowed to remain on the lands that were the only lands agreed to by the authentic Cherokee National Council in 1817.[ This was the very last treaty executed by the true Cherokee National Council ]

You can learn more truth by reading the book or going to my website at

Yours Truly,  Paul T. Vickers








Not Quite A Papal Mea Culpa (apology)

The pope's half-hearted apology to indigenous groups in the Americas shows he has a long way to go in understanding history.


Pope Benedict XVI has apparently, sort of, admitted the truth about the forced religious conversions of the native peoples of the New World. On May 23, he acknowledged that "unjustifiable crimes" were committed during colonial-era evangelization in the New World. But he did not repudiate the statements he made on this subject during his visit to South America earlier this month, as was demanded by indigenous groups and by Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez. Chavez even accused the pope of ignoring the "holocaust" that followed Columbus' "discovery" of the New World in 1492.

The complete article can be viewed at:,0,1589347.story?coll=la-news-comment-opinions


Submitted by Robert J. Miller, a professor at Lewis & Clark Law School, the chief justice of the Grand Ronde Tribe and an Eastern Shawnee. He is the author of the new book "Native America: Discovered and Conquered."


mea culpa (n) An acknowledgment of a personal error or fault







Since 1998, the biotech industry and industrial food corporations have unsuccessfully tried to take away local and states' rights to ban or regulate genetically modified organisms (GMOs) and other controversial foods and crops. For example, OCA and other public interest groups successfully generated a mass outcry in 2006 that blocked the passage of the National Uniformity for Food Act. This highly unpopular bill would have nullified 200 food safety and food labeling laws across the U.S. Failing to suppress grassroots control over food safety laws and labels in the last session of Congress, industry has now called on their friends in the House Subcommittee on Livestock, Dairy, and Poultry to slip a similar poison pill into an obscure section of the voluminous 2007-2012 Farm Bill. The provision would give the White House appointed Secretary of Agriculture the power to eliminate local or state food and farming laws, such as those in four California counties banning genetically engineered crops, and set an an ominous precedent undermining states' rights.


Monsanto's plans to grow 500,000 acres of genetically engineered crops in Venezuela have been thwarted by the nation's popular President, Hugo Chavez. According to Chavez, when he learned about Monsanto's Plans, "I ordered an end to the project. This project is terminated." Chavez is now encouraging Venezuela's national legislature to pass some of the most sweeping restrictions on genetically modified organisms in the entire Western Hemisphere. Learn more:



The problem of cancer causing benzene turning up in sodas seems to pop up in the U.S. with alarming regularity. Last week, the FDA reported that it tested 100 sodas and found unacceptable levels of the known carcinogen in five of the drinks. Some of these drinks had benzene levels nearly 100 times that which is considered safe by the EPA for drinking water. The toxin is formed when a soda manufacturer uses two ingredients that can react to form benzene: ascorbic acid and sodium benzoate or potassium benzoate. Soda companies found to have dangerous levels of benzene have vowed to reformulate their drinks. In the meantime, boycott the following beverages and consider avoiding any soda with the "toxic two" ingredients, found in an astoundingly high number of popular drinks. (As a note, beverages labeled as "organic" cannot contain these ingredients.)

Sodas Found to Contain Carcinogenic Benzene:

  • Safeway Select Diet Orange

  • AquaCal Strawberry Flavored Water Beverage

  • Crystal Light Sunrise Classic Orange

  • Giant Light Cranberry Juice Cocktail

  • Crush Pineapple


A new Hartman Group survey indicates that consumers have generated a greater demand for green and sustainably produced products than the market is able to provide. While the vast majority of consumers say they want to purchase a wide variety of products from companies with sustainability ethics, relatively few consumers actually know where to find those products.

  • Nearly 3 out of 4 U.S. consumers believe their purchases have significant impact on society.

  • 71% say they would pay more for sustainably made products.

  • Only 5% of consumers can name companies that they know have values based on sustainability.

  • Only one in ten consumers know where they can buy sustainably made products.


Although finding sustainably made products in your local strip-mall may be difficult, there are an increasing number of independently owned retailers, coops and online businesses where you can research and/or buy green products from green companies. The Organic Consumers Association has teamed up with to bring you one of the world's largest directories of green and organic businesses. Buy Green, Sell Green, Be Green  Find Green Products and Services in Your Area and nationwide.

This article is brought to you by ORGANIC BYTES, from Organic Consumers Assoc. 







I don't think that anybody anywhere can talk about the future of their people or of an

organization without talking about education. Whoever controls the education of our children controls our future, the future of the Cherokee people and of the Cherokee Nation."

-Wilma P. Mankiller, Cherokee


The world has changed in the last 50 years. It will change even more in the next 50 years, and it will change even faster. We must educate ourselves to ensure our future generations will maintain the language and the culture of

our people. We need to be concerned about our land because when our land goes away, so will our people. We need to be concerned about leadership, our families and about alcoholism. We need to be concerned about

what's going on around the world. We can only do this by being educated. Then we can control our future.


Great Spirit,

please guide

our children;

let me know

how I can


By Don Coyhis






Manataka "Spirit Award"

for exemplary volunteer service to the organization and community was awarded by unanimous decision of the Elder Council to the following:









Watch Out For Compact Fluorescent Light Bulbs

By Joseph Farah, © 2007



WASHINGTON – Brandy Bridges heard the claims of government officials, environmentalists and retailers like Wal-Mart all pushing the idea of replacing incandescent light bulbs with energy-saving and money-saving compact fluorescent lamps.


Brandy Bridges of Prospect, Maine, shows a newspaper insert promoting the type of CFL (compact fluorescent lamp) bulbs she says have caused elevated levels of mercury in her home upon breaking (photo courtesy: Ellison American)  

So, the Prospect, Maine, resident went out and bought two dozen CFLs and began installing them in her home. One broke. A month later, her daughter's bedroom remains sealed off with plastic like the site of a hazardous materials accident, while Bridges works on a way to pay off a $2,000 estimate by a company specializing in environmentally sound cleanups of the mercury inside the bulb.


With everyone from Al Gore to Wal-Mart to the Environmental Protection Agency promoting CFLs as the greatest thing since, well, the light bulb, consumers have been left in the dark about a problem they will all face eventually – how to get rid of the darn things when they burn out or, worse yet, break.


CFLs are all the rage. They are the spirally shaped, long-lasting bulbs everyone is being urged, cajoled and guilt-tripped into purchasing to replace Thomas Edison's incandescents, which are being compared to sports utility vehicles for their impracticality and energy inefficiency. However, there is no problem disposing of incandescents when their life is over. You can throw them in the trash can and they won't hurt the garbage collector. They won't leech deadly compounds into the air or water. They won't kill people working in the landfills.


The same cannot be said about the mercury-containing CFLs. They bear disposal warnings on the packaging. But with limited recycling prospects and the problems experienced by Brandy Bridges sure to be repeated millions of times, some think government, the green community and industry are putting the cart before the horse marketing the new technology so ferociously.


Consider her plight.

When the bulb she was installing in a ceiling fixture of her 7-year-old daughter's bedroom crashed to the floor and broke into the shag carpet, she wasn't sure what to do. Knowing about the danger of mercury, she called Home Depot, the retail outlet that sold her the bulbs.







Seafood imports from China raised in untreated sewage
Fish products consumed by Americans treated with dangerous drugs, chemicals


By Joseph Farah
© 2007

WASHINGTON – China, the leading exporter of seafood to the U.S., is raising most of its fish products in water contaminated with raw sewage and compensating by using dangerous drugs and chemicals, many of which are banned by the Food and Drug Administration.


The stunning news follows World Net Daily's report last week that FDA inspectors report tainted food imports from China are being rejected with increasing frequency because they are filthy, are contaminated with pesticides and tainted with carcinogens, bacteria and banned drugs.


China has consistently topped the list of countries whose products were refused by the FDA – and that list includes many countries, including Mexico and Canada, who export far more food products to the U.S. than China.






Amaranth:  Food of the Gods


Three Excellent Articles on Amaranth



Amaranth is a tall plant with very broad leaves; it produces many thousands of tiny seeds. The leaves and the seeds are edible. The amaranth is closely related to pigweed, spinach, beets, and other plants in the goosefoot family.


Although the amaranth is sometimes classified in the goosefoot family, it is most commonly classified in its own family, Amaranthaceae. The point of all this is that persons who tolerate spinach and beets well may do very well on the highly nutritious seeds, leaves, and flour of the amaranth. Special Foods™ amaranth flour is made from organic amaranth seeds. Amaranth flour has a pleasant, nutty taste. It makes good tasting bread, muffins, bagels, pasta, milk, imitation nut butter ,cookies, gravies, sauces, pancakes, flatbreads, doughnuts, dumplings, and who knows what else. (Recipes are supplied with the flours). ALL recipes are made without wheat or other grains, without yeast, and without milk, eggs, or sugar.


Amaranth pasta is light brown in color; when cooked, the pasta is the color of whole-wheat noodles and the consistency of regular noodles.


Cooking with Amaranth

Karen Hursh Graber


What food was considered so important to the diet of Mexico's pre-Hispanic population that it was fashioned into images of the gods and eaten as communion? What food was outlawed during the conquest of Mexico, and the people of New Spain forbidden to cultivate or consume? And finally, what food contains between 75% and 87% of total human nutritional requirements? If you've answered "amaranth" to all of the above, congratulations.


Further congratulations are in order if, like a growing number of enthusiastic cooks and gardeners, you have begun to incorporate amaranth into your favorite recipes, and maybe even include it in the kitchen garden. It's English name comes from the Greek amarantus, meaning "never fading", an apt designation, given the varying degrees of esteem and loathing in which this humble plant has been held.


Current interest in amaranth, while well-deserved, gives no indication of the cultural conflict it once caused during the sometimes painful birth of a new nation. As fully as amaranth was appreciated by the indigenous population of what is now Mexico, it was just as fully reviled by the Europeans, as one of the foods they associated with "pagan practices."


Amaranth, a plant used for both its spinach-like leaves and for the grain gathered from the center stalk, had tremendous ritual significance for the Aztecs. Many of their ceremonies included the formation of an image of one of the gods, made with a paste of amaranth grains mixed with honey. Tlaloc, the rain god, Ome Acatl, the patron of banquets, and Xochipilli, the god of youth, poetry and flowers, were all honored with amaranth likenesses. The images, once formed, were worshipped, broken up and distributed to eat. The birth of a male child was also an occasion involving amaranth grains, this time made into a paste for the formation of a replica shield, bow and arrows, symbolic of hunting in particular and manly pursuits in general.

The leaves, too, had their place in ceremonial meals, ground and used in the tamales offered to the fire god Xiuhtecuhtli, and to the dead on the feast of Huauquiltamalcualitztli, a mouthful to say as well as to eat, meaning "the meal of the amaranth tamales." Amaranth was so necessary to both the religion and nutrition of the Aztecs that it was one of the four grains considered as acceptable tribute from outlying parts of the empire, the other three being corn, beans and chia. The Mendocino Codex indicates that the equivalent of the modern measure of 4,000 tons of amaranth a year arrived in Tenochtitlan.


When the Spaniards landed in the New World, immediately undertaking the zealous, often forceful, conversion of the inhabitants to Christianity, one of the first things they did was to outlaw foods involved in indigenous religious festivals. Diego Duran, in compiling this long list of forbidden foods chronicled in the Book of the Gods, noted amaranth as something to be particularly shunned, the consumption of amaranth idols being considered a blasphemous parody of the Christian communion. The friars were quick to issue a ban against its cultivation.



                Mexico's Cooking with Amaranth

                Amaranth and Nutrition


~Submitted by Graybeard Vinson





From Crystal Harvey, MAIC Correspondent

Fluoride Action Network


Fluoridation linked to bone cancer:
Finding prompts calls to halt practice

Young boys who drink fluoridated water are at an increased risk of developing bone cancer, according to a new study published in the May issue of the journal, Cancer Causes and Control.

A team of Harvard University scientists, led by Dr. Elise Bassin, found a five fold increased risk of developing osteosarcoma in teenage boys who drank fluoridated water at ages 6, 7, and 8.  The research, funded by the National Institute of Environmental Health Studies, reinforces previous findings in both animals and humans.  Dr. William Mass, the head of oral health at the Centers for Disease Control, told the Wall Street Journal  (July 23, 2005) that Bassin "did great shoe-leather epidemiology" (1)

According to Fluoride Action Network (FAN) Executive Director, Dr. Paul Connett, "Increasing a child's risk of contracting a frequently fatal bone cancer is too high a price to pay for a small reduction in tooth decay.  The 60-year old gamble that ingested fluoride could protect the tooth enamel without damaging other tissues, has clearly been a bad one."

The new study is an extension of an analysis first completed by Bassin as a Harvard PhD thesis in 2001. However, the thesis adviser, Dr. Chester Douglass, was charged in 2005 by the Environmental Working Group of withholding and misrepresenting these findings to the public and scientific community (2). These charges have been "under investigation" by Harvard for almost nine months, but no report has yet been given on the results of this investigation.

Douglass has recently praised Bassin's work saying "She did a good job Š  it's a nice analysis" in an interview with Fox TV (Boston) News (3).

According to FAN science research director Chris Neurath, "Bassin's approach of investigating the risk of osteosarcoma as a function of the year in which the child is exposed is a breakthrough in understanding how fluoride may cause bone cancer.  Bassin points out that if studies which only look at lifetime fluoride exposure or accumulated bone fluoride levels are re-examined with her method, they too may reveal the same relationship."

This week, the director of a major British cancer study center reported finding age-specific risk factors at play in many forms of teenage cancers, including osteosarcoma (4).  Dr. Jillian Birch, head of the UK Pediatric and Familial Cancer Research Group, said that childhood growth spurts and hormone variations with age seem to trigger cancers that appear in the teenage years, thus corroborating Bassin's research.
According to FAN director Connett: "The Bassin findings deal another serious blow to the US fluoridation program.  This paper comes just two weeks after a major National Research Council report on fluoride in drinking water which also raised serious health questions about the dangers of fluoride exposure. We stand firmly behind the recent call by eleven EPA professional unions for an immediate halt to water fluoridation and a full Congressional investigation of this outdated and risky program."


Contact: Paul Connett, PhD, 315-379-9200; 802-355-0999;

For further background information, see:



No offense intended for any individuals or tribes.


The Donkey



The pastor entered his donkey in a race and it won. The pastor was so pleased with the donkey that he entered in another race and it won again.


The local paper read:  PASTOR'S ASS OUT FRONT.


The Bishop was so upset with this kind of publicity that he ordered the pastor not to enter the donkey in any more races.


The next day the local paper headline read: BISHOP SCRATCHES THE PASTOR'S ASS.


This was too much for the Bishop, so he ordered the pastor to get rid of the donkey.


The pastor decided to give it to a nun in a nearby convent.


The local paper, hearing of the news, posted the following headline: NUN HAS THE BEST ASS IN TOWN.


The Bishop fainted.


He informed the nun that she would have to get rid of the donkey so she sold it to a farmer for $10.


The next day the headlines read:  NUN SELLS ASS FOR $10.


This was too much for the Bishop, so he ordered the nun to buy back the donkey and lead it to the high plains where it could run free.


The next day the headlines read:  NUN ANNOUNCES HER ASS IS WILD AND FREE.


Alas ... the Bishop was buried the next day.








Yellowstone Bison Action Alert

Newborn bison calves and their families sentenced to death.

The Montana Board of Livestock decided to capture and slaughter all Yellowstone bison in Montana.
, because there is still time to save these bison from Montana's death sentence.


EMERGENCY ALERT! Slaughter of Buffalo Calves Planned by Montana
Please pass this alert on to everyone!

Press Release- 05/29/07
Department of Livestock to Capture and Slaughter Yellowstone Bison

View Slideshow of the Yellowstone Bison Sentenced to Slaughter

Video from 5/30/07
These newborn bison calves and their families have been sentenced to death. The Montana Board of Livestock decided yesterday to capture and slaughter all Yellowstone bison in Montana, including this herd that we filmed as they frolicked on our National Forest lands. Take a look at this video and then TAKE ACTION, because there is still time to save these bison from Montana's death sentence.


~ Submitted by Hardy Wright







~Submitted by Sheri Awi Anida Waya Burnett




Keep Bullets out of American Indian Sacred Sites

in the Los Padres National Forest

Support the The Coalition to Save Husahkiw-Chumash Wind Caves


The Husahkiw Wind Caves site, like Petroglyph National Monument, is qualified for National Monument designation. It is an internationally recognized archaeological site, known to be one of the most significant
in North America due to the unique polychrome images - Sacred Cave Paintings. It is still utilized by Chumash People.  This site has been constantly degraded by the Winchester Gun Club.


Manataka feels there is ample evidence for the U.S. Forest Service to deny the Winchester Gun Club access to the 140 acres of land adjacent to and anywhere within hearing distance to the the Wind Caves sacred site -- regardless of present or past lease for this purpose.


*    The sound of gunfire seriously affects religious ceremonies conducted at and near this site.


*    The sound of gunfire also negatively impacts other visitors to the National Forest.


*    There is a clear and present danger to the public safety from bullet ricochets and stray bullets.


*    The soil, air, surface and ground water may be permanently damaged from lead and toxic contamination

      from hazardous shooting debris and chemical residues created from target shooting that are a definite    

     environmental risk.


*    As a result of the negative impact on water and sound, local wildlife and plants are damaged.


*    There is no need for another shooting range when other nearby ranges exist.


*    There is a strong potential for wildfires anytime live explosive materials are used in a forest.


*    Sound vibrations from constant exploding gunfire could cause the earth to move causing cave-ins.


According to Dr. Steven J. Waller, Ph.D., of  La Mesa, California and member of the American Rock Art Research Association:


"...Acoustic measurements are presented that document the presence of strong echoes and reverberation at the “Husahkiw” Chumash Wind Caves rock art site (CA-SBA-509). 


This observation is culturally significant, since there are many myths from around the world that attest to the belief that echoes were attributed to supernatural spirits.  Thus the presence of echoing at Husahkiw may have contributed to the belief that this site is sacred, and may help explain the motivation for the rock art placement there.  These results are consistent with the observations of unusual acoustics at over 300 rock sites on six continents. 


Also documented at Husahkiw was the presence of gunshot noise from the nearby Winchester Gun Club.  It was noted that the sound of these gunshots were not only significantly above background level, but also have a greater than expected auditory impact because of the amplification caused by the echoing and reverberation in the rocky amphitheater-like site. 


In light of the spiritual significance of echoes and the need for a quiet background to experience and practice religious rituals including those involving echoes, the disruptive and intrusive noise from gunshots near Husahkiw should be discontinued.  Conservation of the natural acoustics at rock art sites including Husahkiw is urged...."


From: "Acoustic Ecology at Husahkiw Chumash Wind Caves (CA-SBA-509), 21 May 2004


Immediate public pressure must be applied to Congressional representatives and the U.S. Forest Service to stop this blatant abuse of an important American Indian sacred site.  Please contact



Steven J. Waller, Ph.D., La Mesa, California




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