I have been privileged to spend a little time with indigenous people over the course of my life. Growing up in rural Sussex in England, I was attracted to the Druidic, pagan or Wiccan tradition; then in my late teens during a year spent on VSO in northern Labrador, Canada, I was introduced to some of the Inuit culture; then on my travels through Asia in the very early 70s was exposed to many different cultural perspectives. But I regret that I have not yet been to South America. Nevertheless the Achuar people in Ecuador and their partner-collaborators, The Pachamama Alliance, can be credited as the source of inspiration for Conscious Travel.
I became a facilitator of the Awakening the Dreamer Symposium a few years ago and have incorporated the concepts and some of the brilliant audio-visual materal into my presentations ever since. So I am very excited to be co-delivering the symposium with the Be the Change Earth Alliance and host, Joe Kelly, at Capilano College on November 22nd – see here.
Aware that humanity does not have time on its side, the creators of the Symposium have also invested in the development of a 170 minute DVD which is available here and the Pachamama Alliance just held an annual fund raising luncheon in San Francisco which attracted 1500 participants “in the flesh” accompanied by another 400 or so online. John Perkins is right, there is a power and a magic to the Awakening The Dreamer program. And as activist Paul Hawken, author of the seminal work, Natural Capitalism back in the 70s (long before sustainability became trendy), said in 2008, Pachamama is the most powerful NGO out there because it understands it’s all about mindsets:
I cannot say enough good things about the integrity, dedication and professionalism of the Pachamama team and urge you to have a look at their new web site: www.pachamama.org.
At the luncheon, two senior representatives of the Achuar people, German Freire and Patricia Gualinga spoke briefly, passionately and eloquently about their fight to prevent their sacred land being destroyed by oil exploration. Click the images below to view their presentations.
They and the Pachamama Alliance have achieved wonders in the Amazon basin – not only protecting their lands but by creating history. Ecuador is now one of two countries that has successfully recognized the rights of the environment in the nation’s constitution.
As many of my readers will be unfamiliar with this great program I am providing a link to a 15 minute video describing the amazing journey of the Pachamama Alliance and, if you are moved, encourage you to visit their web site and make a donation. I guarantee your contribution will be put to very good use.