Teaching and artwork shared by kQwa’st’not~Charlene George of the tSouk peoples.
“Eagle and Changer teach us that when we listen to history with our eyes & ears open … more possibilities open up to us … we can ‘see’ what is in front of us ~ we can see plainly the side that we did not see before … may you invite eagle seeing into working supportively with those who might seem the ‘other side’ from you.”
THE CHANGER AND THE EAGLE
After walking some distance, the Changer (XÁLS) came to a different village.
He met a girl sitting down in a house. He asked her questions about sight.
She said, “My eyes. I can’t see very well.”
“All right, I’ll fix that.” He slapped each side of her face and said, “All right, take a look out there. Look across the room.”
“Oh yes, I can see plainly now. I can see that side which I didn’t see before. Thank you for giving good eyesight.”
“You will be the eagle,” said the Changer (XÁLS).
And the girl flew off into the sky
About the artwork: The canoe (SNEW̱EȽ) represents the Changer (XÁLS) because we are all in a tippy canoe together. Eagle (QELEṈSEN) demands that we fly on a mindful path towards a transformational inclusive future. Artwork by kQwa’st’not~Charlene George.
Find Support from Others
As you consider the story of Eagle and Changer, here are some ideas to help you form a team and find support.
Find someone you can talk to about this issue. Select someone you can learn from and brainstorm ideas and solutions. This could be an Elder, a relative, a community leader, a biologist, or someone you know who has experienced similar issues.
Find out who is involved in the issue. Consider all of the voices, including the quiet voices, the loud voices and the absent voices. Here are some common key players in forestry-related issues:
Local communities (both Indigenous and non-Indigenous)
Ministry of Forests, Lands and Natural Resource Operations
Logging companies (also called “licensees”)
Regional District elected officials
Other tenure holders in the area such as ranchers, trappers and guide outfitters
Environmental organizations such as Sierra Club BC
The quiet or absent voices might include the beings in the forest, our relatives, our children and our ancestors
Photo by Shannon Elmitt
Start forming your team. Find like-minded people to help. We may be able to help connect you with others in your community. Have a small gathering or two. Break the ice, talk about what information has been gathered, and consider different perspectives.
Consider the structure of your group. Do you want to keep your group informal? Is there an existing community organization that can form a sub-committee for this project? Should you register a new society?
Connect with other communities around the province that are working on similar projects. Here are some examples of local community groups that are working on forestry issues. You can take inspiration from them and connect with them to share ideas.