We can all learn lessons from the past as perhaps in today’s busy instantly connected world we forget what is important and take this earth we live on for granted.
Chief Seattle was an American Indian who wrote the following letter to the then President in 1854, this letter is still relevant today as we have to look at the toll of our behaviour on our environment.
“We heard from your President back in Washington that he wants to buy our land but how can you buy the sky, the land, how can you buy the freshness of the air and the sparkle of the water, the idea is strange to us. Every shiny pine needle, every sandy shore, every mist in the dark woods, every meadow are all holy in the remembrance of my people
We are part of the earth and it is part of us. The perfumed flowers these are our sisters, the bear, the deer, the eagle , these are our brothers. Each ghostly reflection in the clear waters of the lake talk of the experience and memories of my people. The waters murmur with the voice of my grandfather’s father. The rivers, these are our brothers, they carry our canoes and feed our children. If you buy our land, know that the air is precious to us, that the air shares its spirit with all the life its supports.
The wind that gave my great grandfather his first breath, also received his last sigh. This we know, man does not own the earth, man belonged to the earth. All Things are connected like the blood that binds us together. Man did not create the web of life he’s simply a strand in it. What he does to the web he does to himself. Your destiny is a mystery to us. What will happen when all of the buffalo are slaughtered? What will happen when all the secret corners of the forest are heavy with the scent of many men and view of the ripe hills is blotted by talking wires?.
It’s the end of living and the beginning of survival when the last red man and his wilderness are gone and their memory is only a cloud flying over the prairie. Will there be any memory of my people left? We love this land like a newborn loves its mother’s heartbeat, so if you buy our land, love it as we have loved it, care for it as we have cared for it. Hold in your mind the memory of the land when you receive it and preserve it for all children.”
The sad thing is we all know what happened here and this has been repeated again and again in many lands.