My firstborn son Hatuey (left) and myself (right) at Sitting Bulls gravesite
NO-ONE can do EVERYTHING needed to make a difference in the world - but EVERYONE can do SOMETHING needed to make a difference in the world.
When I FINALLY was able to visit the Lakota in May 2013 (a Tribal Nation I grew up in admiration of - that boasts such famous Amerindian heroes like Crazy Horse and Sitting Bull) and I learned that they no longer had wild Tobacco they grew themselves...I asked myself what I could do to change that....years ago I brought wild Tobacco from the Pakaraima mountains near the Border of Guyana & Brazil - back to my own Lokono-Arawak people of Pakuri Territory of the Coastal plains in Guyana (60 miles inland from the Sea), because I could not find any plants anywhere on our territory when I began my traditional spiritual revival movement among my people.
So with the help of a Taino-Arawak brother, and a Lakota brother, I was able this year to give over half a million wild Tobacco seeds BACK to the Lakota people, better yet - to Sitting Bull's own Hunkpapa Lakota's!
I feel proud that the once young boy (me) who grew up listening to the words of Sitting Bull and taking them to heart, was is his (my) adult life not only able to visit his grave site and pay my traditional respects (with my firstborn son next to me), but was also able to give Tobacco - one of the most sacred of all plants to Amerindian traditionalists throughout this Hemisphere - BACK to one of my hero's descendants. Maybe my vision of the Buffalo head on a hide shield and a voice that said "Now you know how to reach me - when you pray - use the feathers" ...when I was 16, was maybe a portend of this act I would accomplish as a grown man? Because the Buffalo is from the Great Plains of North America, NOT the great plains of South America, and it was a symbol for Sitting Bull's name.
So YES, one person with an idea and a determination to make it become REALITY - CAN and WILL make a difference in the world! It is in fact - often the ONLY kind of person who ever DOES! Believe in the fact that you VOLUNTEERED as a spirit to come here to DO positive things in this physical life, and when you do negative things and stumble and fall....get UP and go forward again focused on doing GOOD - having learned your lesson in the consequences of distractions.
Just a note to ignorant people for whom Tobacco is a 'bad' plant 'that causes the death of millions'.....NO, get your facts straight, the ABUSE of Tobacco (for it is a sacred plant and should be used accordingly) is what causes the death of millions each year. Let me explain further....myself, my wife and my children all grow Tobacco, we use it to offer prayers to the Great Holy Spirit or in healing the sick via 'blowing' in traditional prayer healing ceremonies ONLY, we do not smoke it ourselves for recreation, that would be a sin, holy plants are for spiritual uses not for your personal enjoyment...and if that is how you use it - expect negative consequences to come back to YOU.
Secondly - you are NOT supposed to MIX Tobacco with any other substance ESPECIALLY man-made substances (which is precisely what cigarettes are!).
You are not even supposed to pick the leaves when they are green - unless you asked the plant for forgiveness first - because picking green leaves is like pulling hairs out of a human being...it hurts the one being 'harvested' (only a Shaman needs to use the 'green juice' of a Tobacco plant, not everyone).
We wait until the leaves turn brown on the plant then the plant is 'giving' the leaf it no longer needs to you - so you are free to accept the gift in good conscience.
One cannot claim to be a spiritually-minded native and yet show complete disrespect for one of our most sacred plants - by abusing/incorrectly using it, or denying it's sacredness.