Christmas Greeting by Sitting Bull
"Ultimately our life was given to us by birth and our food by nature. Nature's gifts were first ordered by the gift of the light of the sun. Giving is more blessed than receiving because everything in this world is actually a gift. This is not the dominant reality today. Some persons presume to rule over the gifts of the world, exploit them and amass power.. Humans are only users of the gifts of our world, never theirrulers
By Sitting Bull (Lakota)
[This article written by Sitting Bull on December 19, 2003 is translated from the German on the World Wide Web, http://f7.parsimony.net/forum9673/messages/35332.htm.]
The time of contemplation and reflection has come. In this contemplation we should remember the old virtues, the knowledge slumbering deep in us.
Remembering is hard for us. The hectic bustle of our days in the search for happiness and money diverts us from this knowledge. What we celebrate is obstructed by worldly institutions and rule.
I hope I can refresh our memory.
What do we remember and what do we celebrate? Christmas is the feast of love and hope. A yearly cycle is completed again. The rebirth of light is imminent. The sun will shine longer from December 21 on. In this rebirth is hidden the mystery of the eternal cycle that we people have sought to fathom from the very first beginnings. We celebrate this feast by kindling lights as a symbolic act when we get together in the circle of our loved ones.
Light is warmth. Light is hope. Light is creation. Light is life. Light is love.
But light is inconceivable without darkness. Both phenomena as a whole constitute the complete cycle that we people have known for millennia.
Do we recall why we unite the feast of light with gifts?
The gifts that we restlessly and hectically seek today are a very old relic of a long past epoch of the so-called matriarchal gift societies. In that age, giving was still self-evident.
Ultimately our life was given to us by birth and our food by nature. Nature's gifts were first ordered by the gift of the light of the sun. Giving is more blessed than receiving because everything in this world is actually a gift.
This is not the dominant reality today. Some persons presume to rule over the gifts of the world, exploit them and amass power, either as a fear compensation for their own transitoriness or more likely as a means of domination. These persons disdain the rules of the natural order. However humans are actually only users of the gifts of our world and never their rulers. Whoever rules does not use but exploits.
The ruler divides the world into two halves, one that rules and the other that must be ruled. Out of pure greed, he excludes others from the gifts of the world and even consumes gifts without regard to losses. Whether coming generations can still use the gifts of this world is none of your bloody business. Since one has the law on one's side, one takes more than one really needs. Ultimately everyone does this.
Living this way is sick. Most of us are marked by a constant fear of shortage and scarcity. This negative side of rule is repressed by all of us. The hope of being a winner and escaping the suffering of existence robs us of intelligence.
We don't even notice any more what is withheld from us.
Things like property and law were invented to determine who may control gifts. With force, one made sure that no one breaks the laws. Institutions were created that dictate "true" faith to us.
Thus the lie was the twin-brother of rule. Those against this rule were destroyed. The destruction of all autonomy, socialization and self-sufficiency was sold to us as salvation, as part of a globalized world market that would solve all problems.
Money and interest were invested to ensure that we no longer easily recognize rule. Money as a means of power was sold to us as a wondrous invention, namely as a means of exchange or a means of savings. Money cannot be both simultaneously. Money as a means of power now replaces the former gift of abundant nature and inexhaustible human labor power. This money is lacking to the majority of the world's population.
The gifts of nature only benefit a few. The money that means everything is distributed very unequally. If it were not scarce, money would have no value. Whoever has more than he needs is given more. What is the origin of this more?
Others must work hard for that or become indebted. More gifts of nature must be made into money. Thus we force our brothers and sisters to work for us and don't even notice.
We force our Mother Earth to destroy her gifts that she received in millions of years in a few generations for a mad system that we created ourselves and regard as the best invention of all times. For what? - For the pure "more" that is still sold to us as the solution for all problems, as the wonder weapon "growth".
This "more" veils our understanding of these processes. Why is it good whenever anything grows? Be distrustful. All growth could not solve our problems in the past. Only consider the increasingly widespread poverty, hunger, homelessness and unemployment.
This growth leads to the exponential growth of money. Everything else is devoured exponentially. Life doesn't know any permanent exponential growth expect for the murderous cancer.
Thanks to its abstract value and its interest conditions, money separates the growth pressure form all worldly counterparts. Money is now god, our mammon.
Thus money and the world regularly destroy themselves. When vast money exists, people begin to lose faith in its value. When many have very little, the social tensions become intolerable.
While we cannot liberate ourselves, we cannot ignore our need for liberation. A death pressure starting from this invention governs. Millions of my Indian brothers and sisters could confirm this if they weren't murdered, uprooted, made alcoholics or otherwise brought to silence. The whole world will make a similar experience in a few years. Alternatives exist like free money (Freigeld) that is only updated through a hoarding fee without the madness of interest as a driving force. Have you heard of free money? If not, is anyone interested?
Today you attempt to enslave knowledge and cheat yourselves.
What is the next step?
A wise Indian brother recognized al this: Sometimes a person believes that he is the elevated to be the owner or ruler. This is an error. A human is only a part of the whole. His task is to be a guardian or steward, not an exploiter. A person has responsibility, not power.
Oren Lyons... chief of the Onondaga nation
Christmas time is a good occasion or perhaps the only opportunity to escape the madness of our time.
What can we give to a world that is only determined by cash value? Logically all gifts as much as they come from hearts have a monetary value in our society. Should we abandon giving?
No - Let us think only of our most important gift, love. Love will always be a gift of our hearts without any financial equivalent. This is good.
Love exists independent of a return favor but is first perfected when it is reciprocated.
We expect that the world will love us. We want to be sheltered, looked after, cared, live in satisfactory socialization and be loved.
But how can the world love us if we don't love it?
Another Indian brother, Henry Old Coyote, once said:
"If you don't let your heart become cold, if you show little kindnesses to fellow human beings, they will answer you with affection. They will give you friendly thoughts. The more people you help, the more these good thoughts will be directed to you. That people are well-meaning to you is worth more than riches."
That is the real Christmas message.
It is time
to turn to rest,
and to remember.
Love exists. Let us give a place for love in our hearts and give this love to our environment. This is our only hope.
Joyous Christmas and contemplative, thought-provoking days!
alias Dirk Gerhardt
Hamburg December 19, 2003
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