"Why is man the most restless, dissatisfied of animals? Why do wandering people conceive the world as perfect, whereas sedentary ones always try to change it? Why have the great teachers—Christ or the Buddha—recommended The Road as the way to salvation?"
- Bruce Chatwin
Day 83 - Wednesday, September 13, 1995 - Rain fell all through the morning, up till late afternoon when the clouds drifted East and the sky cleared.
Some of the Sunbow walkers traveled to Middle State Tennessee University. They spoke before about 20 members of the school's Native American Student Alliance." We told them about what we are doing and why," Joe Soto explained. “I think we made a big impact."
From his home at the Santa Clara Pueblo north of Santa Fe in New Mexico, walk advisor Jose Lucero spoke with the walkers via telephone in the morning. After hearing an update on how things were going, Jose called and spoke with me.
José mentioned that based on what he is hearing, he understands that some of the people in our group are walking to fulfill the prophecies, and some are walking for peace and for the Earth. "It's okay either way," Jose said, "the main thing is to remember that this is a very simple walk, a prayer walk. It must stay focused."
José asked people to pray for the Seminole people, especially the Billy family, which has lived many long years at the tip of Florida in traditional grass-thatched housing. He said the state of Florida is trying to move the Billy family off the land and onto some old tugboats so the land can be used for some other money-making purpose.
The seemingly isolated situation of the Billy family, José said, is actually part of a worldwide pattern of governments and corporations moving indigenous peoples from ancestral land so that it can be "developed" in various ways.
Special Note: As Odyssey of the 8th Fire unfolds on this website in the weeks ahead, I will tell the story of how a delegation of walkers backtracked from Memphis, Tennessee, to Washington, D.C., in 1995 to attend an important prayer vigil at the base of the Washington Monument.
Just now—as I am finally writing the story in 2006—I want to inform readers that the annual Prayer Vigil for the Earth will happen in Washington, D.C., this coming weekend, Sept. 15, 16, and 17, 2006. All people of all traditions are welcome to participate.
The vigil is a powerful spiritual event: a tapestry of cultures and traditions woven into a living prayer for harmony with the natural world, and the well-being of all creation.
A sacred fire burns throughout the weekend. The native caretakers of Turtle Island (North America) and other spiritual leaders will open the vigil with ceremony that welcomes and ignites a wave of offerings from the many traditions of our land.
|A Prayer Vigil for the Earth at the Washington Monument in the U.S. Capital, was a key event for the Sunbow walkers in 1995. The Vigil will be held again September 15-17, 2006. Photo courtesy of The Circle.
According to the organizers, creating a sacred circle at the base of the Washington Monument is more important now than ever before.
Metaphysical literature suggests that an obelisk such as the Washington Monument represents masculine power, and broadcasts information and energy. The sacred circle, a feminine power form, provides balance for the masculine obelisk and energetically invites feminine values such as home, family, relationships, and community to be active and present in right relationship with the masculine virtues.
The organizing committee intends that this annual joining of masculine and feminine energy -- within the context of the world's many spiritual teachings and practices -- will serve to consecrate the land and the whole of our Earth, and also produce healthy seeds for the generations to come.
For information about this year's gathering (Sept. 15-17, 2006) see Prayer Vigil for the Earth.
Copyright 2006 by Steven McFadden
Read Day 84 -- Odyssey of the 8th Fire