An Invitation from Chief Phil Lane, Jr.:
At this unique and unprecedented moment in human history – in the midst of mounting social, political, economic, psychological and spiritual restlessness and uncertainty – there exists an unnamed rootlessness that permeates the very heart of the Human Family and condition.
And it is time to name it.
Too many human beings in the modern world have been in the pursuit of the industrial and material dream severed from our Indigenous Spirits. We have forgotten how to live in harmony on our Mother Earth, and have thus lost touch with our Indigenous Roots and our intimate connection to one another and all Life!
We are all part of the ancient Sacred Circle of Life, and therefore we are all Indigenous Peoples of Mother Earth. The essential truth of this reality cannot be denied no matter how we look at it; it is simply an irrevocable truth.
To embrace and reclaim our Indigenous relationship to all Life is to remember and lovingly celebrate our sacred relationship with our Mother Earth, all relatives of our One Human Family and our kinship with all Life.
The realization of this truth renders any form of prejudice intolerable, and equally renders any form of mistreatment of our sacred Mother Earth as completely unacceptable.
We have experienced a Great Spiritual Wintertime in the past 500 years. This has been a time of conquest, colonization and assimilation that has been filled with the utmost human cruelty, violence, injustice, abuse and physical and cultural genocide.
What we are finally discovering, however, is that the ”Hurt of One is the Hurt of All,” and that such actions strip away our essential humanity along with all things that make life worth living!
The global crises we experience today are additionally fueled by our belief in separation… a myth that has convinced us that we are separate from one another and separate from the Natural World. This has further channeled into the destructive belief that we are not whole and that we are hopelessly inadequate.
The industrial and material dream is given power by our sense of lost connection and wholeness with ourselves, each other and our Mother Earth.
It persuades and propels us to consume to no end, in a feeble attempt to recover a wholeness that cannot be bought or filled with material things.
It thrives on our inability to recall the ways of the ancestors, and celebrates the forgetting of our own sacredness as Sacred Beings.
For when we recognize the sacred within ourselves, we see it in all other things.
But this is all changing. It has been prophesied that a Great Spiritual Springtime would emerge out of this unimaginable darkness.
We live now not in the days of the prophecies, but in the days of the fulfillment of the prophecies.
As foretold by the Elders, the Indigenous Peoples of the world are reawakening to their spiritual and cultural identities. They are demonstrating to all members of the Human Family how to walk the Fourth Way, the Beauty Way… the Path that transcends assimilation, resignation and conflict to a new place of understanding, reconciliation and healing broken trusts!
This Sacred Path of the Fourth Way must be walked together in unprecedented, unified action to manifest World Peace – the Day that will not be followed by night!
We, the First Nation Indigenous Peoples have a strong, enduring and unbreakable spiritual foundation of cultural values and guiding principles. These have empowered us to survive and arise in the face of unspeakable hardship and suffering, yet we stand with greater strength and wisdom than ever before.
So we invite you, Our Beloved Relatives, to reawaken with us to what is already within each of us – the Unity of One Human Family and all Life.
We offer you our heartfelt greeting of solidarity and our shared wisdom of 16 Indigenous Guiding Principles to ensure that we may walk together on a Sacred Path that fully honors the Natural Laws and rights of Mother Earth!
This new Spiritual Springtime foretold by our Elders is now unfolding globally… as sure as the sun rises every morning.
My Beloved Relative, it would be an honor for you to join us.
Chief Phil Lane
Invitation From The Shift Network:
Have you held in your heart a vision of healing for the world? One in which we restore the sacred bonds of trust and respect, learn to live in harmony with the natural world and leave a legacy of beauty for future generations?
Many Indigenous Peoples now believe that we are entering the springtime of a new possibility, one in which we can redesign our world to work in a more sacred, holistic and respectful manner.
At The Shift Network, one of the most important keys to making this possibility real is to receive and apply the wisdom of our Indigenous brothers and sisters… not just as an exercise in appreciating different cultures, but in understanding a more sacred way of living in the world – one that has essential insights we all need to not only survive but thrive.
Hereditary Chief Phil Lane, Jr. reminds us in his letter above that we are ALL Indigenous Peoples. And yet most of us have lost our grounding in ancient ways.
If we had experienced mutual understanding and cultural exchange when Europeans first came to the Americas, for instance, we may well have seen an integration of wisdom that balanced out the patterns that led to so much suffering.
We can now grieve that history and work to heal it. And it’s also vital to engage in the sacred exploration of what a world built with respect for Indigenous wisdom would look like.
How would we make different political decisions? How would we learn to listen to each other? How would we begin to feel, sense and appreciate the wisdom of others rather than try to impose our way?
The Indigenous Wisdom for Compassionate Living and Unified Action virtual program is designed for you to develop real skills in discovering and applying Indigenous wisdom – based in sacred respect for the power in every voice – in your life.
You will learn how Talking Circles work by participating in them – lending your voice to key areas of exploration and seeing how the wisdom of the whole is harvested.
You will learn how to engage in participatory decision-making process that can be a model for a rejuvenated approach to democracy.
You will co-create a field of powerful blessing and healing intention for yourself, your community and our world.
You will experience a transmission of ancient wisdom in service to transforming modern life.
You will reclaim or deepen your own indigenous roots so that you can be a better leader of positive change.
You will, in short, help restore the sacred hoop that connects us all into one family.
While Hereditary Chief Phil Lane, Jr. is the main teacher, facilitator and catalyst for this journey, he is building upon principles of wisdom distilled by leaders from many tribes and traditions.
During the 9 modules in this sacred circle, you will receive:
- A profound understanding of ancient Indigenous prophecies and their fulfillment at this unprecedented moment in human history
- The insight/path to embrace your own Indigenous Spirit as an Indigenous being of Mother Earth, and as sacred and valued being with gifts to offer in this time of great healing
- The Indigenous teachings of The 16 Indigenous Guiding Principles with their spiritual and practical applications for building a peaceful and harmonious world (The 16 Principles were developed and utilized by spiritual elders and leaders from over 40 years of consultation, reconciliation and the bringing together to heal the human family around the world.)
- Deep insights on the inner and collective transformation of ourselves and our world, and the sacred connection between them
- The ability to work with a blessed talking stick, leading and guiding the ancient tradition of the Indigenous Talking Circle – an ancient way of building authentic and trusting relationships with each other by ensuring all people feel heard, seen and loved
- Guidance and Indigenous mentorship on how to live “The Fourth Way,” the way of healing, transformation and unprecedented unified action (as differentiated from the ways of hopelessness and defeat, assimilation or violent resistance.)
- A keen awareness on the inevitable role of conflict in transformation, and the ability to use Indigenous Principles of Consultation to help heal the greatest challenges of the human spirit: divisiveness and disunity.
- Stories that will excite you, inspire you, bring you to tears as well as overtake you with laughter!
What You’ll Learn in These 9 Modules
In this 9-module transformational program, Chief Phil Lane, Jr. will guide and mentor you through an Indigenous path where you will embrace and reclaim your Indigenous relationship to all life and remember and lovingly celebrate your sacred relationship with Mother Earth.
Each session will build harmoniously upon the next. You will develop a complete, holistic understanding of the practices, tools and principles you’ll need to embrace your own indigenous spirit as an Indigenous being of Mother Earth.
Module 1: Indigenous Rising
Around the world at this very moment and as foretold by the ancient Indigenous Peoples of Mother Earth, we are reawakening – lighting the way to a sacred wisdom and entering into a way of being that is helping to lead us to heal and unify as one human family.
Hereditary Chief Phil Lane, Jr. will share an introduction to Indigenous Talking Circles and The 16 Indigenous Guiding Principles for Building a Sustainable and Harmonious World.
In the first learning circle, you will:
- Gain an overview of the historically profound 16 Indigenous Guiding Principles for Building a Sustainable and Harmonious World (derived from four decades of work among Indigenous leaders globally)
- Learn how Indigenous Talking Circles can provide a forum for local and global transformation on the planet
- Embark on the journey to uncovering your role in the healing process needed to guide the planet to a more sustainable way of living
- Link the 16 Indigenous Guiding Principles inextricably to your own life and to a process that is bigger than you are
- Engage in a deep reflective process about your personal journey in this current space and time to discern what will enable you to be more consciously engaged in actively creating a different pathway into the future
Module 2: Walking the Fourth Way & Embracing Your Indigenous Spirit
Peoples from all walks of life during the past 500 years of the Great Spiritual Wintertime have dealt with hardship and suffering in various ways. These paths have ranged from the hopelessness of a broken spirit and despair, assimilation, self-hatred and discrimination, and even violent resistance. Not one of these outcomes nourishes the spirit of a person and their people, nor leads to the healing that is required to overcome and transform our destructive realities.
In this module, Chief Phil Lane, Jr. will share his ancient knowledge about the Medicine Wheel and the Four Directions that will help you to see and understand more of the ancient wisdom available from these integral energetic and healing Indigenous systems. In this teaching, he will explore the utility of this ancient symbolism and its application to your current life and the powerful gifts that you contain.
In the second circle, you will:
- Learn how the four elements represented by the Medicine Wheel have distinctive and powerful aspects representing the physical world as well as your own nature, promoting balance and the will for living
- Uncover how the four aspects of your nature have potential to grow into powerful gifts and how a vision of those gifts can be a strong magnet pulling you toward your true nature
- Illuminate how your identity affects your ability to actualize your potential, as well as influence the healing or suffering that you experience
Module 3: Reawakening How to Be with Each Other
In the haste and paving over that is so characteristic of the modern world and material dream, ancient traditions for building and sustaining community have been largely forgotten. Even the most aware of us still carry unwanted patterns of being that can detract and discourage us from connecting with others and ourselves. And we often lack a “spiritual compass” to help guide us to maintain authentic relationships and engagement with others in community. The principle of a Talking Circle is that starting from within – working in a circle, in a sacred manner – we heal and develop ourselves, our relationships and the world.
In the third circle, you will:
- Learn about the basic principles behind Talking Circles, and how they contribute to a more cohesive and collaborative way of conducting business, creating dialogue in conflict-ridden scenarios and building continuity and trust among all people
- Learn the steps to conduct the ancient practice of Talking Circles in a way that can be used to promote trust, problem resolution and action, even in places that currently do not have good relationships
- Uncover how the attributes of respect, commitment, consideration, valuing, diversity and contribution create consensus – even in the most difficult situations
Module 4: The 16 Guiding Principles
After learning, applying and facilitating the Indigenous Talking Circle tradition, we can begin to sit with one another and deeply explore The 16 Indigenous Guiding Principles for Building a Sustainable and Harmonious World. These principles, developed and successfully utilized over the past 45 years, are fundamental truths exemplified in the phenomena of the natural world and our evolution as human beings. They are not doctrine or dogma – nor require any beliefs. They are a “spiritual roadmap” for building and sustaining peace, within ourselves and in our communities.
In the fourth circle, where you will learn about the first four Indigenous Principles, you will:
- Gain an understanding of how human beings can transform their world and that this belief is the most essential piece in any effort to make lasting, positive change
- Identify how the truth emerges from within, and that when you neglect the inner life, it halts your own development as well as any transformation that you might be able to invoke in the world
- Learn how to evoke the vision of who you can become and how that will contribute to a sustainable world, as well as uncover how your vision works as a powerful magnet, drawing you to your potential
- Begin to heal your past, close up old wounds and learn healthy habits of thought and action to replace the dysfunctional thinking and disruptive patterns that prevented your own sustainability in the world and have prevented your profound contributions to date
Module 5: Interconnectedness
Mother Earth is one unified and living being, in which all life – including human life – is an interdependent and interconnected part of the unfolding story of Spirit that calls her home. Everything is connected to everything else. Therefore, every aspect of our healing and development is related to all the others (e.g., personal, social, cultural, political and economic). When we work on any one part, the whole circle is affected.
In the fifth circle with Hereditary Chief Phil Lane, Jr., you will learn about the second four Indigenous Principles, and will:
- Uncover that you cannot heal and transform yourself without realizing and engaging with the vast web of relationships that define your spiritual and collective journey with others
- Explore how the concept of unity, or oneness, is the key behind the movement forward into healing and transformation of our world, and that disunity is the primary disease of our communities
- Begin to participate in the active engagement of your mind, heart and soul to promote your own healing and development and take ownership in your own destiny
- Understand how every person (regardless of gender, race and religion) must be accorded equal opportunity to participate in the process of healing and development, and to receive a fair share of the benefits
Module 6: The Hurt of One is the Hurt of All, The Honor of One is the Honor of All
If everything in our world is connected to everything else, how much more must we human beings be connected to each other? The basic fact of our oneness as a human family has always been known and understood by the wise. Nevertheless, the reality is that what happens to some of us really does happen to all of us.
We have recently begun to learn that if we poison the air we breathe and the water we drink (i.e. the environmental commons), we are poisoning ourselves. Similarly, if we poison our relationships with other people who live in the same social world as we do (the social commons), then we and our children will sooner or later discover that we have poisoned our own lives.
In the sixth circle, where you will explore four additional Indigenous Principles, you will:
- Learn that human beings are both material and spiritual in nature, and that neither you nor the rest of humanity can live sustainably without bringing your life into balance with your spiritual nature
- Tap into your moral foundation which is centered in the wisdom of the heart and will help you to maintain your own moral compass and live by your own ethical principles, causing you to evolve in consciousness and action
- Sense how the oneness of the human family requires living and acting with the knowledge that all beings must be cared for, or the world is not sustainable
- Uncover how your own healing and development, and that of the human family, must be rooted in the wisdom, knowledge and living processes of the culture of the people.
Module 7: Understanding the Human Spirit
In the mounting crises of our current age, we must have understanding and compassion for relatives who are no less frightened out of their wits, and therefore, unengaged and ineffective in supporting or leading change. Disbelief turns to despair, despair can transform to disconnection, grotesque disillusionment or total apathy. The negative strikes fear in people and drains energy.
This is not to say we should ignore the negative, but that it should be balanced with the antidote of hope, vision and unified action that moves to the positive by creating the world we wish to live in. This fills the human spirit rather than depletes it. To act otherwise is to misunderstand what it is that connects, inspires and enables a human spirit to engage fully in life in the face of our global challenges.
In the seventh circle, you will hear about the final four Indigenous Principles, and will:
- Strategize about the best approach to solving the critical problems in your life and community by visually focusing on the collective strengths we already have, rather than on fighting the things you want to change
- Identify how the concept of learning and seeking the truth is at the core of healing, development and social change, and begin to integrate hard truths into your own life for healing and global sustainability
- Learn how to promote sustainability within yourself, your community and the globe through an efficient use of resources
- Explore how to walk the path of your new way, and invite others to join in by positive role modeling and the creation of living examples of the solutions you have envisioned
Module 8: The Indigenous Principles of Consultation
Conflict and crisis are at the core of what it means to be an individuated spirit among relatives who, just like ourselves, are journeyers in this world. Being human is not easy! It is not a matter of IF conflict will arise, but a question of how it will be dealt with when it happens, and how it can be used as a force for connection and transformation. Sustained disunity is the poison of development, and too often it remains present through our inability or lack of wisdom to heal it. The Principles of Consultation have been utilized by thousands of Indigenous communities and other members of the human family around Mother Earth!
In the eighth circle, Chief Phil Lane, Jr. will support you to:
- Outline the values behind Indigenous Principles of Consultation, so that you will feel skilled and supported in taking your vision into your life, community and world
- Help you feel emboldened to take the prime aspects of this consultative approach into your action in the world with respect and appreciation for the diversity of each member of the human family
- Learn to expect that the truth will emerge from the clash of differing opinions, and that from the process of this collaborative model, optimal solutions will emerge to promote healing in yourself and on the planet
Module 9: Protect and Restore the Sacredness of Mother Earth
In this module, Brother Phil will support you to synthesize the vast richness available in the Indigenous wisdom principles and in the collaborative processes shared to envision how you will next move into the world in your truth and power as an empowered, compassionate healer who will make unified change happen in multiple dimensions in your life.
In this final module, you will:
- Review and practice the collaborative process for using the Talking Circles
- Synthesize the learnings from the Indigenous Principles, and think through how to use these principles in nitty-gritty conversations with your family, community, and even globally
- Explore how you can integrate the Principles of Consultancy with The 16 Indigenous Guiding Principles to resolve deep-seated and intractable conflict within your community and across the globe
- Design a version of a personal or social action project that will manifest your passion, vision and skills into the world in new and creative ways
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