The Four Worlds International Institute

Up the River and into the Rain Forest

Beloved Relatives,
With the utmost gratitude, I extend to each of you my warm love and greetings. The on-going love, prayers, support, and contributions from each of you and the many other loved ones we work with are vital to the success of our collective efforts toward co-creating a more just and sustainable world. All of your dedicated service for the upliftment of the Human Family are deeply appreciated.

As we move forward together in manifesting the Reunion of the Condor and the Eagle and the Fourth Way, it is very clear that the Ancient Ones are empowering and guiding our every step. We only need to make our best efforts to live a healthy, happy, loving and wise life of service and the Creator will take care of the rest.

In my first efforts to write an on-going blog, I would like to share with you one of the highlights of our journey to Panama this past week. When I learn how not to be so descriptive and wordy, I’ll try to twitter. Further blogging efforts will be shared through our FWII Social Networking site that will be publicly launched on May 23.

(Sat, May 9, 2009) After a brief farewell breakfast with Michael and Greg, an Indigenous couple, Alino and Nadris, picked me up from our hotel to escort me to a meeting with the Caciques (Chief’s) and other representatives of Panama’s more than 300,000 Indigenous Peoples. When we left the hotel, I really had no idea where we were going or how long it would take. We drove through the country-side for about an hour and arrived at the shore of a beautiful lake surrounded by a deep rain forest and beautiful mountains.

Two Indigenous brothers were waiting for us with a long, narrow, dugout canoe powered by a small outboard motor. Without a word we got into the canoe and began our journey across a long expansive lake and into the mouth of a long winding river.

As we traveled up the river, an Indigenous brother stood at the front end of the canoe. As we turned corners and negotiated rough water, he used a long hand hewn pole to ensure the dugout was always in the river’s deepest channel and to maneuver past jagged rocks and submerged logs. The brother in the back steered and controlled the speed of the motor while watching his brother in the front, who made small hand gestures and motions with his head for cutting-edge guidance and navigation. (On our return they changed positions. )

Both brothers had an uncanny ability to sense every twist, turn, and changing depth of the river. They were one with themselves and the river. Together we were of One Spirit, everywhere all at once. They reminded me of the way my father rode horses, with complete grace at every speed and over every terrain. I felt completely at home and at ease as we sliced through the water with the sounds of the river and the forest surrounding us, punctuated by the on-going sounds of rolling thunder. Both our brothers laughed and nodded when I joked with them that they were the Caballeros (horseman) of the river and that their long dugouts were their horses.

We traveled deeper and deeper into the rain forest without seeing any signs of human life. After almost three hours we saw some young boys enjoying a warm afternoon swim in the river. Shortly later we arrived at a sandy beach and pulled up next to other dugouts. We took a small path up the embankment and entered an Indigenous village like one could find in a National Geographic Magazine. We were warmly embraced and greeted by National Chief Betanio Chiquidama and were formally welcomed to the National Indigenous Gathering of Panama on Climate Change.

Four of Panama’s Seven Chiefs, Representatives of the three other Chiefs, Council members, community members, representatives of youth and women’s organizations, and Indigenous lawyers were in attendance. Chief Betanio asked me to share my heart and mind with all the Relatives who were gathered. As is our shared tradition, before I spoke I shared a prayer and song of love and thanksgiving to our Creator, in remembrance of all our ancestors and for the great honor of standing with them on their Sacred part of Mother Earth. Along with some inspired Spanish that re-emerged from my days in Bolivia in 1970-1972, a McGill University (Canada) Anthropology Professor from the City of Knowledge who ”just happened to be there” helped, when needed, with translation.

As promised, I shared messages from the recent International Indigenous Leaders Gathering in Lillooet, British Columbia, the fulfillment of Ancient Prophecies, the Reunion of the Condor and Eagle, and the Fourth Way. Our relatives clapped and nodded in unity with our words that this is the time long promised by the Ancient Ones of the rebirth, reunion, and arising of our Indigenous Peoples and Nations. We were in harmony with all that we shared. We all knew and understood that we were all members of one Human Family and that the Earth was our Mother and the Sky was our Father.

After speaking, a Four Directions Ceremony was conducted with Chief Betanio. At the conclusion of the Ceremony our respected Brother and Chief was given a Blue Cloth Offering from the Cree Nation and a red, yellow, black, and white Coup Stick from the White Swan Dakotas. The Cloth Offering given on May 9 in the Rain Forest of Panama to our Indigenous relative was consecrated for this purpose at a Sweat Lodge Ceremony in Lillooet on May 2, exactly seven days before.

This Sacred Ceremony was jointly led by Black Pipe, Horse Thief, He Who Kills The Grizzly Bear, Sitting Stone Man, and Messenger. We were all further empowered and supported through the heartfelt prayers and Sacred songs of a large circle of Sun Dance Dancers, Sweat Lodge keepers, Pipe Carriers, Singers of Sacred Songs, Smoke House Dancers, and a Tibetan monk. What we sang and prayed for in regard to our journey to Panama was fulfilled.

In response, I was deeply moved by two beautiful dances given by women from the village presented in honor of my visit, the words I shared, and the gifts sent from the North for Chief Betanio. These beautiful sisters danced together in harmony through the steady rhythm of two special bamboo sticks that were clapped together by the Head Woman Dancer. Dressed in the simplicity and innocence of their grandmothers, with spiritually meaningful tattoos adorning their bodies, their bare feet touched, drummed, and merged with the Earth with a graceful, tender, loving, compassionate and powerful oneness. There are no words in my vocabulary to describe the experience.

As they danced I saw more than I could understand and I understood more than I can say. I was filled with the memories of all the good feelings, prayers, songs, deeds, love, and sacrifice of so many dedicated relatives, past and present, that were being honored with me, through the Sacred Teaching and understanding “The Honor of One is the Honor of All and The Hurt of One is The Hurt of All!” The gifts that were shared from the land of the Eagle were received in the same Spirit as they were sent -- with the utmost respect, love, kindness, compassion, thanksgiving, and understanding. After the dances were over the Head Woman Dancer gifted me the two special bamboo sticks used to harmonize the dance with the heartbeat of Mother Earth.

Then came the time to eat together and visit. Among other issues such as global warming, we visited about the establishment of the Four Worlds Foundation at the City of Knowledge, working together to develop a Panama-wide Indigenous Peoples ICT training and development plan, and developing social networking with other Indigenous Peoples across the Americas and around the world through Indig.e.Net. It was very encouraging to find that some of Indigenous Communities are already beginning to work with our strategic partner, Certiport, via one of their Panamanian Channel Partners.

As the clouds begin darkening and thunder begin to roll again from the Four Directions, it was time to go. After shaking hands with everyone again, Chief Betanio accompanied me to the sandy beach and our dugout for my return trip. After another round of farewells we slipped into the river and were gone. Although the dark clouds kept heralding rain, only rolling thunder accompanied by occasional thunder bolts that pierced the sky inspired and uplifted our journey back to the hotel. In the morning I flew to Houston, then Seattle and home to White Rock on an airport shuttle.

With Warm, Loving and Respectful Greetings,
Brother Phil

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Comment by White-Bear on September 2, 2014 at 12:07pm

Thank you for theses words on this day


Apache Elder

Comment by Karma Chodzin Lalo on June 5, 2009 at 8:12pm
Wow-I am so delighted and thrilled that the Spirit from Lillooet made it to Panama !- and that the Women are dancing the Beauty Path...
We are gardening and building a platform for the Moroccon ceremonial tent to be erected for the SEEDS OF CHANGE gathering June 28- July 6...the Peace Camp and Golden Thread of Intuition Ashram is blooming with Twinflowers, Foamflower, Salmonberry, Salal, Indian Potatoe and soon Fireweed...
All are welcome to visit and enjoy the forest foods, creel water and alter dedicated to Galactic Center and the precession of the eqinoxes at 2012...
namaste, lalo

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