Monday, January 17, 2011

ECOLOGY - Red Indians Chief Seattle's Speech of 1854.

ECOLOGY in the past and now -

In  1854 the speech of Chief Seattle to US President


The term ecology came into existence long before Oil Pollution. Many of us think that m.t.Torrey Canyon and the later oil spills invented this word. But, in fact,  respect for Mother Earth and all flora and fauna is the oldest Religion practiced, long before many present day beliefs came into prominence. Survival depended on this. Thus Man & Nature co-existing was practiced by all mankind in some form or other universally.

We have today realised that for sustainable economy  to be in place did not mean we wipe out or damage the flora and fauna through indiscriminate acts of de-forestation etc.

Global Warming, Food & Water Shortages, Mercury poisoning in lakes by effluents and devastation of natural resources are spin offs of such senseless acts.

To illustrate that, such respect for Nature was enshrined in all cultures read on:




In 1854, long before the Oil crisis, the food crisis, the environmental protection Act and such associated trivia of our times, one of the most beautiful and profound statements on the Environment & Man was made.
It was made by a Savage, Chief Seattle, a Red Indian in reply to a Letter from the President of the U.S.A. offering to buy a large area of Indian Land.


1.        How can you buy or sell the Sky; the warmth of land? The idea is strange to us.
2.        If we do not own the freshness of the air and the sparkle of the Water, how can you buy them? Every part of the earth is sacred to my people. Every shining pine needle, every sandy shore, every mist in the dark woods, every clearing and humming insect is holy in the memory and experience of my people. The gap which courses through the trees carries the memories of the Red man.
We are part of the Earth and it is a part of us. The perfumed flowers are our sisters; the deer, the horses, the great eagle, these are our brothers. The rocky crests, the juices in all the meadows, the body heat of pony and Man all belong to the same family.
This Shining water that moves in the Streams and Rivers is not just Water but the blood of our Ancestors. If we sell you Land, you must remember, that it is sacred, and you must teach your Children that it is Sacred, and that each ghostly reflection in the clear water of the Lakes tells of events and memories in the Life of my People. The Waters murmur is the voice of Father’s,
Father…….We know that the White man does not understand our ways. One portion of Land is the same to him as the next, for he is a Stranger who comes in the night and takes from the Land what he needs. The Earth is not his Mother but his enemy. And when he has conquered it, he moves on …..
He treats his Mother, the Earth and his brother the Sky, as things to be bought, plundered, sold like Sheep or bright beads. His appetite will devour the Earth and leave behind only a desert. The air is precious to the Red man, for all the things share the same breath – the beast, the tree, the Man, they all share the same breath. The White Man must treat the beasts of this land as his brothers…. …..For whatever happens to the Beasts, soon happens to the Man. All things are connected…..If Men spite upon the Ground, they spit upon themselves. This we know; the Earth does not belong to Man – the Man belongs to Earth. This we know; all things are connected. Whatever befalls the Earth, befalls the Sons of the Earth. Man did not weave the web of Life; he is merely a strand in it. Whatever he does to the Web, he does to himself…..
Where is the thicket ?  ----  Gone!
Where is the Eagle?  -----  Gone!
The end of Living  and the beginning of Survival.
From: Svetasvatara Upanishad
The God who is in the fire, the God who is in the water, the God who has entered into the whole world, the God who is in herbs, the God who is in trees – adoration be to that God, adoration to Him!

No comments:

Post a Comment