Based on the traditional wisdom and the cultural knowledge of the Teyuna, the Teyuna were born to the planet upon a defined territory, the Sierra Nevada of Santa Marta, to keep its validity and to ensure its perpetuity. The Sierra is a living compendium of the biodiversity of Earth.
The Teyuna consider themselves an element of Earth rather then a separate entity upon it. As such, caring for Earth is caring for all of existence. The immutable law known to the Teyuna as Original Law, or Law of Se (Harmony) guides their way of life. The study and handling of Se is guided Spiritual Guides calledmamos, that live fully immersed in this state of oneness.
When Mother Earth is balanced and healthy the Teyuna people, and ultimately the human race is guaranteed. In this sense, The Territory, as a whole is formed by the totality of its living natural elements and this is what sustains all the actions and guidelines that the Teyuna must follow, and becomes the expression of the Law of Origin – Law of Se, or harmony. The Territory itself is cultural identity, the fundamental and foundational principle that forms a harmonious and balanced coexistence and guarantees the sustainability of life strengthened by a sense of belonging. Dedication to this principal guides the Teyuna to perform pagamento, literally payment to Earth for Her Service to humanity. In turn, in balance, and in divine order, the spiritual fathers assist the Teyuna in meeting the material needs of their communities.
The assured vitality of the sacred territory of the Sierra is crucial to the survival of the human race. The territory as a whole is where life originates and develops, therefore its considered the foundation of all spiritual and material law. Connectivity and relationship among all beings as defined by the first Fathers at the
GUIDING CRITERIA FOR DIALOGUE AND AGREEMENTS
Taking into consideration that the Teyuna people has a vision closely linked to the territory and their cultural values, it is important to understand that these are the guidelines which define the social actions and political movements. And this was evident in the recent events that were called “Peaceful Mobilization for the preservation of the Cultural Identity and the Ancestral Territory” which were defined by the unified political
views of the Teyuna framed by the Tayrona Indigenous Confederation – CIT.
The guiding criteria for dialogue and discussion are as follows:
1. Ancestral Territory
2. Culture and Traditions
3. Self-Government and Autonomy
4. Preservation of Seeds and Ancestral Economy
All of the above preserve the ethnic and cultural diversity of the peoples of the Sierra Nevada and consequently support the Teyuna in living harmoniously and peacefully within the Sierra, and within the world.
As Ancestral Territory is being threatened by the Colombian Government in the form of environmental license for more than 400 mining projects without consultation of our people and whereby this act threatens not only our fundamental rights, but our very existence, the Teyuna in their efforts to preserve their Cultural Identity and their Ancestral Territory request:
1. Halt mining exploration and issuing of mining titles and related mining policy such as damming of rivers and related construction.
2. Implement Plan de Salvaguardas de los Pueblos de la Sierra for the protection of Arhuacos, Kogis, Wiwas and Kankuamos
3. Extending and sanitation of the Indigenous Reservation.
4. Adopt and implement Protocolo Autónomo y la Ley de Protección Territorial of the Teyuna.
5. Issue environmental policies protecting the Linea Negra, Implement decree 2333 of 2014.
6. Comply with Court Decisions and other Constitutional Court legal instruments (Sentences T- 849/2014, T-005/2016), T-025/2004).
7. Comply with agreements outlined in the Plan Nacional de Desarrollo 2014/2018
8. Request International Monitoring to ensure the Compliance with the Agreements between the Teyuna and the Colombian government in regards to all the issues of the Sierra Nevada de Santa Marta. (ONU).
We would like to express our gratitude to the Honorable Constitutional Court of Colombia which has demonstrated a real commitment to ensure the survival of the Teyuna people, based on the rules of Colombian jurisprudence regarding the indigenous population.
Submitted in Valledupar, Cesar, Colombia on September 2nd, 2018