Rio Magdelena

The Magdelena River begins in the Sierra Nevada de Santa Marta and spans the length of the country that has been known as Colombia since 1886. It was at the mouth of this river that the mamos and zagas did pagamento for fires worldwide over the last 3 days.

The Sierra Nevada de Santa Marta houses one of Earth’s most diverse ecosystems and we’re running out of time to protect it. 80% of the diversity of the planet is in the care of 300 million indigenous people. What that means is that nearly all of what’s left of Earth’s natural environment is protected by 4% of the population of the planet, and that 4% is indigenous.

The correlation between biological richness and cultural diversity on both geopolitical and biogeographic terms, the strategic importance of indigenous peoples in the biomass appropriation; the remarkable overlap between indigenous territories and world’s remaining areas of high biodiversity; and the importance of indigenous views, knowledge and practices in biodiversity conservation cannot be questioned. An urgent recognition of a new bio-cultural axiom is paramount: Earth’s biodiversity can ONLY be effectively preserved by preserving diversity of cultures. Period. 

Today North Americans celebrate Thanksgiving, a holiday that honors the generosity of the North American Indigenous. On this day in 1621, the Plymouth colonists were invited to share the Wampanoag harvest. The Wampanoag intended to send the Europeans home happy, with full bellies, but the Europeans stayed and colonized. 

What’s this to do with South America and the Teyuna? There are few indigenous cultures left on the planet who survived colonization fairly intact, and the Teyuna are among them. 

The young Arhuaco girl in the below video describes the Magdelena river as having been kidnapped. That’s how they see it. The river is alive and it’s in custody and it will die if it isn’t liberated. Nearly 80% of the planet has been kidnapped. If we don’t help save the very little bit of Earth that’s still not paved, what else is there to do?

The Teyuna Foundation is committed to raising $177,000.00 for territory that will be lost to mining operations if we don’t meet two December deadlines, 1 early and 1 late in the month. Is there a better cause, a better gift you can give yourself or loved ones than air to breathe, water to drink and earth to dance on? Please click here to donate now. Please support the people who support the planet. It’s a win/win. It’s the only win/win that really matters. 

Yesterday’s post spoke of a pagamento the spiritual leaders of the Teyuna performed for the fires worldwide. As a California resident I’m grateful to have been able to go outside today without a mask for the first time in over 2 weeks,  because it’s raining. As the North American representative for the Teyuna I’m grateful to the mamos and zagas who traveled 24 hours on a bus to ask for Mother Earth’s mercy. I don’t question that Nature responded to their plea. I’ve spent enough time with them to know that if we knew a fraction of what they do about how to interact with nature we might not be experiencing what has lately felt like the end of the world.