Canada day, coming together

/ July 1, 2022/ Holistic Nutrition

I have very fun and happy memories of Canada day. Sadly, I have to acknowledge that is not the general experience. Today, I am still happy to be part of this country and I wish to extend an invitation to learn and reflect about our history in addition to your own celebrations.

So, I thought that a great way to spark reflection was to listen to the Skywoman Falling, an excerpt from “Braiding Sweetgrass” by Robin Wall Kimmerer in this podcast by  Earth Feels Podcast. It is a creation story. I feel touched deeply by this rendition of the creation story as I feel like one of those who came to join Skywoman in Turtle Island lured by the wild grasses, flowers, trees, medicines and plenty of food:

​They waited and waited for him to return, fearing the worst for their relative, and, before long, a stream of bubbles rose with the small, limp body of the muskrat. He had given his life to aid this helpless human. But then the others noticed that his paw was tightly clenched and, when they opened it, there was a small handful of mud. Turtle said, “Here, put it on my back and I will hold it.”
Skywoman bent and spread the mud with her hands across the shell of the turtle. Moved by the extraordinary gifts of the animals, she sang in thanksgiving and then began to dance, her feet caressing the earth. The land grew and grew as she danced her thanks, from the dab of mud on Turtle’s back until the whole earth was made. Not by Skywoman alone, but from the alchemy of all the animals’ gifts coupled with her deep gratitude. Together they formed what we know today as Turtle Island, our home.
Like any good guest, Skywoman had not come empty-handed. The bundle was still clutched in her hand. When she toppled from the hole in the Skyworld she had reached out to grab onto the Tree of Life that grew there. In her grasp were branches—fruits and seeds of all kinds of plants. These she scattered onto the new ground and carefully tended each one until the world turned from brown to green. Sunlight streamed through the hole from the Skyworld, allowing the​ seeds to flourish. Wild grasses, flowers, trees, and medicines spread everywhere, And now that the animals, too, had plenty to eat many came to live with her on Turtle Island.​

Skywoman Falling, an excerpt from “Braiding Sweetgrass” by Robin Wall Kimmerer

I like this day to become the day where we all agree to come together as one and do what it takes to reconcile and help heal all Canadians. Let this day be the day that we start deepening our relationship with the land, with each other, and with all living beings. We are all kin. We are all one!

Whatever way you choose to acknowledge this day, may hope and joy be part of it.

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