It all starts with the land

No matter where we are in Canada, we are never too far from a place where we can connect with the land.  I live not that far from the centre of Toronto. This morning I took my dog Cinco through a break in the fence two blocks from our home. Twenty metres down all I could see was green, even if the noise above reminded me that six million other Canadians live close at hand. I learned from the Anishnaabe journalist Tanya Talaga that the people of this land consider plants and animals to be All Our Relations. I read her book to learn about the horror of child suicides, but in the process also had a first insight into a worldview that sees all beings as equal in value and in constant interaction with us. In my attempt to connect with the land this morning, I kept my eyes open on the walk, looking for a sign. I found one within five minutes.   Continue reading

The Words We Say Before All Else

    The people who first lived in this land have offered us a way to bring ourselves together in common purpose. We say the following words at the beginning of any serious undertaking, such as the building of a new nation. We draw on a thousand-year tradition of diplomacy in committing ourselves to relationship with the land and with one another.  I give thanks to the Haudenosaunee Confederacy for offering this "ThanksgivingAddress" for us all to say:   Continue reading