Tag: Origins

Origins – A Documentary for Wellness & Sustainability

The documentary Origins is an exploration of our origins as human beings is to be the key to understanding our current predicament. Exploring our origins will lead us to answers for our health issues, our individual and collective purpose, and of course, how to transform our lives into sustainable ones.

“The wisdom of the ancients is truly the medicine of the future.” – The Origins Movie



Source: DoYouYoga.com

This may seem like a lot to chew on, and it is. By scaling a question like this one to ourselves, we can better understand then, how we play a role and how the Earth plays a role in our lives as well.


I’ve reflected on mindfulness as it extends to intentional living: how are my choices helping my life and how are they impacting the future lives of children I wish to have? Are my choices true to my values, if I actually research the steps involved in bringing my food to my table or my clothes to my closet? These thoughts scare me. They probably should, as long as this awakening leads to constructive action.

“The truth will set you free, but first, it will piss you off.” – Gloria Steinem

With record high numbers of people feeling disconnected, depressed and sick, it’s becoming hard to ignore the proverbial elephant. There’s so much misinformation and fear in our media that it’s difficult not to feel confused, overwhelmed and paralyzed into our habits. I know that personally, I’ve struggled with my career choices, my relationship with food and with my relationship to the environment.

One of the best decisions I’ve made in reducing my stress levels is boycotting traditional media and seeking information on matters that interest me as I feel ready to learn about them and take action. The saying “knowledge is power” is true, only if it is used wisely. And that’s key; use it!

There are many amazing organizations, activists, writers, educators, elders, spiritual leaders and light workers out there who are working very hard to show us a better, kinder way, for all involved. If you truly want to find truth and empowerment, you will find it.


In a nutshell, struggling with dis-ease is not being in harmony. Struggling with depression is not being aligned with our purpose. When we understand the relationship between ourselves and our environment, whether we do so practically or symbolically, it becomes obvious that oneness is the answer. We cannot manifest the answer to our needs if we aren’t one with our environment, whether those needs are physical or spiritual.

You are One with Great SpiritNative Americans believe that we are a part of Nature, that we aren’t the “supreme predator” and shouldn’t consider ourselves as such. In Native traditions, it’s common knowledge that the Earth Mother cares for us, provided we are connected to her. I’ve heard the analogy of the mother and her child travelling abroad with no contact information as a way to explain how it is we find it so difficult to have our “needs” met.

Picture a young adult leaving their mother to go travelling without giving her their contact information or address. When that child calls mom in a panic for help, mom has no way to find her without her saying where she is, how to reach her and what’s happening.

Wouldn’t you want to leave the Earth Mother your number and address?


I’m not an expert at this but I take this daily challenge on gladly, as I know it ultimately betters my life and those of the people I love and in future, those of strangers whom I may or may not meet.

My Top Reconnecting Methods:

1. Yoga and Meditation
2. Reiki
3. Being present and mindful practice
4. Being in nature
5. Gratitude

Yoga and meditation have been practices used for thousands of years and the great Gandhi wouldn’t have achieved peace for his people without the use of his mind, made sharper through these practices.

Reiki is a holistic technique for relaxation which encourages the flow of life force energy for the creation of ideal health. Reiki brings awareness and helps clear the body of blockages to allow it to do its natural job of healing itself. To introduce yourself to reiki, check out Diane Stein’s book.

Presence and mindful practice have the benefit of quieting the mind in an accessible way. When we do something mindfully, like cooking or dancing to music, we’re fully present without making an effort to do so. All we do is focus on the task at hand and enjoy it. If you haven’t read Eckhart Tolle, do so, you’ll be grateful you did!

Nature is a great teacher and listener. Bodies of water have the ability to absorb your cares and convert them into life. We wash away worries as we do dirt. Trees are mighty and full of memory; they show us growth is greatest when rooted. Rocks show us patience as they have been created over millenia. Animals teach us about BEing and seasons teach us about cycles. Walk in nature and allow yourself to be in awe.

When we cultivate gratitude, we get more of what we need and sometimes, more of what we want. The beauty of it is, we want (and want for) very little when we are grateful. We assess all that is given to us and we’re humbled. Do whatever works for you; a gratitude jar or journal, a morning prayer, an evening thanks…

All these practices create a sense of peace and clarity which allows for better decisions.

Creating Ideal Health

In regards to our physical health, there is much research that shows how our nutrition is dumbing us down, numbing us to our reality and the experience of living. We’re cultivating dangerous sugar additions, as described in Fed-Up. It also shows that our lifestyles as they currently sit (pun intended) are dulling our senses and ultimately killing us.

For a better understanding of how nutrition and lifestyle are affecting us, do yourself the favour of watching (and re-watching) the Origins movie. It’s free and it’s a very good tool to start educating yourself on the importance of your personal choices on your health, your family’s well-being and the state of our planet.


Together, we can do this. I send you all my most loving wishes in your quests back to your authentic selves and your intentional lives.

Finding Your Clan

The names Grey Owl, Morning Star and Crazy Horse have held a place of wonder in my mind and in my heart from a young age. I’ve pondered the nature of these names and of the practice behind it. I’ve also wondered about the meaning of clans and if they necessarily had ties to lineage. It would seem that as an adult walking into a culture that was never explained to me, my genuine curiosity is met with warmth and in time, I’m discovering the ways in which these practices hold meaning.

I was not fortunate enough to grow up in the tradition of my Cree ancestors, but I am trying to learn about their ways and find the wisdom in their customs, legends and beliefs. I was named in my late twenties and have only recently received my clan. How do a spirit name, a clan and a person interact?

The truth is, I’m finding out as I go. I have yet to fully understand what my name means, and I’ve even more to learn in regard to my clan.

What I do understand is that we are children of Sky and Earth. We are souls, who’re given a nature and a body. We have an essence that is both metaphysical and physical. We are gifted from our spiritual father and from our spiritual mother.

Spirit Names

In my limited experience in bearing a spirit name, I understand it as a gift from tFather Sky. It’s the guiding principle in my life and in finding myself, despite all the noise. A name is given by an Elder (or a family member), which is used in ceremony, during teachings or when in alignment with my purpose, my true nature. The name is given when the bearer is ready for the responsibility it entails, as the bearer grows into the full meaning of the name and carries this medicine with them. A name chooses the bearer. It is given as a ceremony and must be feasted and honoured.

Dodem (Clan)

Bear Jim Oskineegish

Artist: Jim Oskineegish

A clan, or dodem (i.e. totem is an adaptation of the original word), is a soul family. It helps the clan member understand his or her nature and his or her role in the collective. This isn’t a blood line, as far as I understand it. Traditionally, members of the same clan wouldn’t marry, even if they were not related. My clan, or dodem, is a gift from the Earth Mother. It’s the group that shares my life mission, my values, goals and skills. Clans are also revealed in ceremony and should be considered an honour and it’s a privilege to be “accepted” into a clan. The clan chooses us, much like the name.

A clan is not to be confused with astrology or with power or spirit animals. Power animals (or spirit animals) are guides or helpers that come into our life and journey with us either for a temporary period, to help us learn a lesson for example or stick with us for life. These are considered helpers or teachers, but are not your clan. Your clan is essentially what you’re made of, where you come from and that does not change.

Both clans and spirit names are very personal because they pertain to our truest selves.

Wolf Pack

Source: Massiflux.com

There are many existing clans, depending on the beliefs and customs of the Nation to which one belongs. I asked a Cree Elder because my heritage is mostly Cree. There are far more than I could name here, but I have heard of Fish, Bear, Bird, Moose, Turtle, Wolf, Butterfly and Snake clans to name a few. A common approach when discovering your clan is to become familiar with the animal’s traits, qualities, habits and environments. This, in turn, helps us understand their medicine. What do they carry and what do they have to teach us about ourselves?

What About City Slickers?

In our contemporary world, finding your clan may mean something different to you. It may mean finding a group of friends who love and accept you for who you are. They support you in your life mission, when you are being authentically YOU. Your clan understands you because they are your kin on emotional and spiritual levels. Your clan acts as your support system. These are the people who share your values and your goals. They aren’t competing with you, but rather, are moving independently towards a shared vision and cheering you on.

Remember that First Nations do not marry into their clan, so it’s perfectly normal to find your clan as friends outside of your romantic relationships. Your clan’s place is that of your soul family, so if you have a complimentary relationship with your partner, that’s nothing to be concerned about.

I am fairly certain that my partner and I are not from the same clan, and for us, it means that our natures compliment each other. We share values and goals as well but we are not alike and that keeps things fresh. We also catch each other’s blind spots. Other clans can act as wonderful teachers.

I have met remarkable Moose Clan and Fish Clan Elders and one of my closest friends is Bear Clan. Because they differ from my nature, I learn from their personalities and perspectives.

Different Belief Systems

Thunderbird Norval Morrisseau

Artist: Norval Morrisseau

Whether you adhere to the spiritual concept of a soul family, in very real terms, or whether your belief system differs from this one, the importance of finding the people you most identify with will help you learn greatly about yourself. It will also provide tremendous support in being who you are and provide courage and inspiration. Your clan also offers safe haven and an environment to refuel. We may be born into families, but we all have clans, which may or may not be our physical families. This is something First Nations understood. We are given a physical family but we also have our heart-centred families – or rather, we find them and they find us.

I feel that I have gained so much from learning my clan. Many of my questions about myself were resolved instantly. Others will resolve over time and familiarity with the characteristics and values of my clan. I will study the characteristics of the emblem and meditate on its medicine.

Will you honour yourself by honouring your origins, and your clan?

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