Aaron Perry

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  • Episode 57 – Mohawk Women Leading the Three Sisters Sovereignty Project

https://youtu.be/0aRlgSRWYaw

The Three Sisters Sovereignty Project, led by three Mohawk women, is based in the Schoharie Valley of central New York, the ancestral homelands of the Mohawk people. Tiffany Cook, Fallan Jacobs, and Kaweenniiosta Jock discuss how this profoundly important effort – in fulfillment of prophecy – is being launched with future generations in mind.

The Three Sisters Sovereignty Project focuses on three core objectives: Food Sovereignty, Energy Sovereignty, and Cultural Sovereignty. At the heart of the near-term plans is building an educational long house – mixing both traditional and modern techniques for sustainable design – teaching the Mohawk language, ceremonial and cultural traditions, and growing organic food and medicinal herbs using soil stewardship and regenerative agricultural practices. The project can be supported through their Go Fund Me page: https://www.gofundme.com/f/ThreeSistersSov.

Tiffany Cook is a grandmother and mother of three who runs a successful juicing and nutritional support initiative to bring healing through food to her tribe. She has a farm and indoor grow facility where she grows all of her own micro-greens for her business.

Fallan Jacobs is the mother of four children who has worked closely with the Ahkwesasne Mohawk reservation community on economic development, labor market information, and small business support initiatives. She works with indigenous youth and familiies to rekindle, restore and enhance their sense of cultural identity, land-based teachings, and community connections.

Kawenniiosta Jock is the mother of five children, who helps develop traditional support, cultural teachings, and cultural preservation of the Mohawk tribal ways. She works with women, children, and men who suffer from domestic violence and sexual assault. She is also a self-taught seamstress and has a small business making traditional dresses as well as her own clothing line.

More information at: threesistersproject.org and gofundme.com/f/threesisterssov

Transcript

(Automatically generated transcript for search engine optimization and reference purposes - grammatical and spelling errors may exist.)

Welcome to the YonEarth Communities Stewardship and Sustainability Podcast Series.

Today we have a really special episode for you as we are at the Three Sister Sovereignty

Project with Fallan Jacobs, Hi Fallan.

Go any of us to Jocke, and Tiffany Cook.

And what's happening here in Central New York is an absolutely spectacular and a

very important story, not only for indigenous sovereignty, not only for what

women, leaders and community are doing, but truly for our whole country and

for our whole society. And I'm so excited to dive into our conversation and

before we get started, let me just tell you a little bit about our guests.

So Tiffany Cook, immediately to my right, is a grandmother and mother of three.

She runs a successful juicing and nutritional support initiative, which brings healing

through food to the tribe. Tiffany also has a farm and indoor facility where she grows

all of her own microgreens for her business, helping people get off of their diabetes

pills, heal and detox from the poisonous environment surrounding them.

Fallan Jacobs at the other end is a mother of four children who has worked closely with

the community of the aquasasinate on economic development, labor market information studies

and small business support. As a fierce defender of sovereignty and human rights,

Fallan spent 12 years in successful court battle against the Canadian border service agency

precipitated by an egregious harassment at the border where she was subjected to unprotected

uranium exposure, resulting in the loss of her baby. The agency was found guilty of six

discrimination counts by the Canadian human rights tribunal, the federal courts and the

federal appeal courts of Canada. Fallan now works with indigenous youth and families

to rekindle, restore and enhance their sense of cultural identity with land-based teachings

and community connections across the province of Ontario.

Galwenios, the jock spends most of her time as a homemaker caring for her five children.

She's in the middle, if you haven't figured that out, we're pointing this out a little

bit for video. She has helped develop traditional support, cultural teachings and preservation

within the tribe. She is currently enrolled at the Native Education and Training College

in a one-year program to be healing and wellness counselor. Galwenios has always been compassionate

about her people and community and wishes to continue working with women, men and youth

who suffer from domestic violence, sexual assault, as well as help others to regain their

cultural identity. Galwenios is also a self-taught seamstress and has a small business making

traditional dresses as well as designing her own clothing line.

Now some of you may have heard of the Mohawk people and we'll be talking about what

this whole movement of returning to the ancestral homelands is all about and if I could maybe

fall in and ask you to kind of kick us off and talk about what's happening here and why

are we here at this particular place?

This is our ancestral soils, our territories and we back when prior to colonization this

is where we had originally lived on the land here and colonization happened and reservations

happened and small boxes were placed in areas where we had to live on. So we've had this

beautiful opportunity to partner with the Waterfall Unity Alliance to come and return

back to our ancestral soils to build our community back up. I think that you need this and it's

just really important to us. So we've actually established the Three Sisters Sovereignty Project.

Do you have anything to add to that?

No. I think once we get into this we're going to be talking about it also. No.

I'm wondering, could you tell us a little bit about your name and what it means and how that relates

to the work that you're doing for the community more broadly and also here for this project?

Well, how many of them means my carry a message or I make good words?

I guess now that I'm an adult, I'm living up to my name and I have many messages.

But as far as the work, I've been on my healing journey since I was 30 so for the past six years

and now I'm just to the point where I'm ready to give back and help other people start the process

and figure out what the pieces back together to their own puzzles and just their healing journeys.

Thank you. Tiffany, you with healing have been doing a lot with the plants in particular.

And you've been making very delicious and very helpful juices for people and I got to try this myself the other day.

It was amazing and thank you for that.

You're welcome.

And I'm wondering if you've shared with me a bit over the last few weeks about some of the conditions at the reservation.

And maybe you can describe a little bit what's been going on there with the people in terms of some of the industrial pollution and everything and how you've been helping with the work you do with the plants.

Well, the green drink was designed to help with detoxing the body, especially with the heavy metals and it also is helping people to get off a lot of their medications that they're on.

And I think that with the environment, a daily detox is needed in order to even have any kind of, you know, healthy life.

So, especially on the reservation, I feel like we need it every day.

Yeah, and it's my understanding on the reservation that there's essentially a super fun site resulting from industrial pollution right from a couple of different factories.

Yeah.

Can you, like what I forget what the companies are that were there, not that this is necessarily about calling out any particular companies because this is something that's been going on all around the country and all around the world.

But just so people have a bit of context around the specifics at the reservation, I think that would be helpful.

Well, one of them was GM and one was alcohol.

GM and alcohol.

Right.

And they were making all manner of industrial products, materials with incredibly toxic byproducts, right?

It's actually still there in the ground and they've covered it up thinking that it's safe just by topping it off with topsoil.

Right.

So, it's also in the waters close by that come down into our water.

Mm-hmm.

And just in the past, bring, they started the dredging so they were bringing everything back up.

And then it was airborne again.

Mm-hmm.

Yeah.

So there's like our waters are contaminated with PCB.

So there's an advisory that we can't eat any of the fish from the waters because of the levels of mercury and stuff like that.

You know, that's why Tiffany has the green drink to get those heavy metals out of the bodies because in the mercury and the PCB start reacting with other substances that are in the body.

And it's really not good.

Right.

It starts breaking your system down.

But Tiffany had mentioned alkoa.

And would you say GM?

GM.

And then there's also rentals and then there's dontar.

So we had a tremendous amount of toxic sites around us.

But that's just really how it was planned out.

I guess not by us obviously.

But that's really how they put sites onto lands as they do it around reservation areas where there's the indigenous peoples.

You know, like not only do they put us put the reservations on like the crappiest soil areas, but they also put them on the boundaries in case there's any type of invasions that should happen from another country.

They would have to go through the indigenous peoples first.

So we're always the ones that are defending everything.

And so our land that we have on the reservation in aquisusnet is not the best soil.

Like Tiffany had said, like a lot of the toxins are still trapped in the soil because they didn't they didn't extract and pull the soil out and ship it all and have it cleaned and refresh the soil there.

So actually just put it into containers.

It's in the ground and then they just put a layer one layer of gravel and top soil.

And so what happens when we have summer heat is the condensation.

It's all airborne, right?

Like the moisture, if it rains, it comes up through the soil.

And these these top these sites are like terrible.

I remember being a little girl and seeing all these big smoke stacks, right?

And just billowing into the air and even if we like wanted to go to like the closest little city which would have been the city of Cornwall, you would even smell that.

It was terrible.

And the dom flowering that was the paper mill, but it was just gross because they were just, you know, I don't know if there was any regulations or what, but they all had their pipes right into the water.

And so it was just like draining.

And it's international water. So who's going to regulate it, right?

Like because they're going to be American, Canadian, New York, Ontario, Quebec, like, who? Nobody.

So they just get away with something and everything in there.

And so it's always up to the people in the community to be strong and say like we've had enough.

Like we, you know, we can't be doing this.

Like the cancer rates are through the roof and diabetes.

And a lot of birth defects too.

Now the young mothers having babies, there's a lot of, there's a lot of difficulties.

Like just, just being able to give birth to their babies and that's not a month that we've noticed.

Yeah, yeah.

And I just make one point too.

The other point is that that's the reason why I started growing inside.

And that was part of the whole, you know, concept of the green drink was to grow as much as I could inside.

So that, you know, like it could really help with the environment problem.

So that it would help to detox our people just by growing herbs and greens and microgreens.

So.

Yeah.

That's the biggest reason why I started growing inside.

And I love your name.

Got you Jahaway.

Got you Jahaway.

Which means carrying the flowers.

Yeah.

And you're from the, maybe you could tell us a little about the clan system and your clan and how that relates to the healing work you're doing.

Well, the Bear Clan is medicine.

So it's definitely something that's really important.

So, yeah.

I feel like not only do that, but I try to help in other ways of healing, like just especially a lot with children.

Yeah.

I have a really close bond to a lot of children in the community.

And I believe that's why.

It's because of my clan.

Yeah.

Yeah.

I think it's just our energy because all kids love her.

Just the kids that just meet her.

Yeah.

Yeah.

And Galenio, you're from a different clan, right?

Yeah.

And can you share a bit about that?

Well, I'm Wolf Clan.

And so with the Mohawk people, there's three clans.

There's Bear Wolf and Turtle.

And both of my sisters are Bear and I'm Wolf.

So all my kids are Wolf and that's how we carry on.

Our class is through our mothers.

So.

And what is the significance of Wolf Clan?

What's that special identity that you're carrying?

Well, they always say that we're very political.

Okay.

We're arguing.

I was gonna say that.

Standing back, you can now put down.

You can even tell in babies when they're Wolf Clan underborn.

Really?

Yeah.

Yeah, because my granddaughter's a wolf.

Yeah.

And she's.

More vocal?

She's a lot like a wolf.

Yeah.

Yeah.

We don't take shit from nobody.

All right.

I've noticed that.

Yeah.

Yeah.

Yeah.

That's really beautiful.

And so you've got at the reservation that the Mohawk people

didn't decide to move there necessarily, right?

This was all part of a history that's played out over centuries

with the incursion of the Europeans going back many centuries.

And now where we're situated, as we're recording this,

it's at this beautiful waterfall house in Central New York,

right near Fultonham, near Skahari in the Skahari Valley,

south of the Mohawk Valley.

And these lands here are in pretty good shape in terms of

not having a whole lot of industrial pollution.

And so it's amazing that you're in the process of coming back

here to the homelands and to grow the food and grow the medicine

here as part of the three sister sovereignty project.

Mm-hmm.

And I'm wondering, Fallon, maybe I'll ask you in terms of the history,

the backstory, and what's happening now and how that relates to

prophecy.

What's the significance of the three of you being here right now?

Well, first of all, my name is Dan and I say,

you didn't talk about my name.

I didn't get there yet.

Okay, anyhow, the significance of us being here with prophecy?

I think that while we had been discussing a lot of things for quite

some time and how do we get to a place where we're able to attain

something like this, like it always seemed like there was just

something bigger that we were supposed to be doing and we were

trying to just go throughout life doing what we needed to do.

You know, that like, I don't even want to say it's western,

but kind of western of just getting the bills paid, stuff like that.

But there was always something that was bigger

and there was something more and it was on a larger level.

And we weren't really able to identify exactly what that was

because we had so many several little projects.

And then how do we attain all of these projects?

And then how are we supposed to attain all of those projects

when we were in such a tight boundary line by a reservation?

Because really, we wanted it to be more like a good friend of mine.

His name is Salt. He always showed up to Salt.

Anyways, he had always considered reservation to be preservation.

Like we're supposed to be looking at it as a preservation to preserve

what we have and take it from there to the next level, right?

So now we're in Skahari Valley at the waterfall house.

And there's just a beautiful environment here because of the trees

like in the medicines and natural medicines and natural root systems

that are here in the ground because the soil is so healthy here, right?

And we even had went down to the waterfall and we drank radar of the water.

It was really clean and sweet and like we can't drink the water at home.

Like we can't just go on to the river and grab a cup and drink it.

Well, we could, but do you really want mercury in your body?

But here you're able to just scoop the water and drink it if you want.

So I think that when we have a cleaner environment and we're eating cleaner,

the air is cleaner, our thoughts become cleaner and we're able to move forward

with all of our projects and that's really everything that's natural

because we're not industrial people.

We see another way of moving forward where it's a little bit sustainable

on the ground level because we are natural people.

We recognize that we are a nature, we're a part of nature.

We're not, we're not a both nature.

And Deja Hundate, I was going to ask you about this.

So my apologies I didn't get to it as quickly, but I love what your name means also.

And I think it really relates to what healthy landscapes have, right?

Yeah, and so...

Will you tell us what it means?

Well, throughout my life, Deja Hundate means bright green grass.

And so I found out kind of learning, right, what my name meant by living

because my name's pretty old.

It has passed down to me by my great-great-grandmother's best friend.

So that's pretty old.

But what I'm finding out in my lifetime with my name is that

it's hard to accept when something's gloomy or dim

because my name has bright in it.

And so I'm always doing what I can to brighten the situation

or shine some light on it and create that foliage like that bright, you know,

that bright environment like.

And I think that's how I've become so positive and optimistic

because it's part of my name, I think.

That's so beautiful.

I love we were all down at the waterfall earlier this afternoon.

And we had quite an adventure.

We actually walked through the river to get to another spot

by the waterfall and it was cold water and we had a lot of fun.

And I noticed along the way there were a bunch of beautiful patches

of very bright green mosses and other green growing things.

And it just brought me right back to my childhood

and to the incredible hopefulness and nourishment that I experience anyway

when I see these very bright green growing things.

And I'm just wondering, you know, how much that by itself

is medicine for people?

It feeds our spirits, you know, just being in that environment

and it just feels like home and it just feels like that's just where we belong.

And you know, like what file and say and how we've had to become like

a custom for the Western society and like have jobs and whatnot.

And we never feel like we are in our natural element until we're back.

You know what I mean?

And like, all right, we're home now and we can just enjoy our lives

and our surroundings and it really feeds our spirits, you know?

Absolutely.

And I want to just share that while we were down at the waterfall,

we had the opportunity to take some really beautiful photos and some videos

and those should be on the website, threesistersproject.org,

for you to check out.

And I don't know, I'm sure we'll talk it over in terms of whether we put

some of the funny outtake videos on there too,

but we had a lot of fun down there, right?

And just so much laughter and joy, I could just tell that being there

was so uplifting.

Yeah.

Yeah.

A little bit of goofing around too, right?

That's good medicine.

Yeah.

Laughter is good medicine too.

Yeah.

Get us to do anything.

Yeah.

Yeah.

Well, I'm wondering also, I think, you know,

some of our audience is probably familiar with three sisters

and what that is referring to.

And Tiffany, I know you're getting ready for the first round of gardens

and growing here.

And maybe you could tell us a bit about what three sisters means in the garden.

It means corn beans and squash.

And I'm hoping to get all heirloom seeds,

and we're going to start stalking them.

Beautiful.

So even in addition to the food that's being grown here,

it becomes a repository of some really robust heirloom seeds as well,

which probably becomes a beautiful resource for the broader community as well.

That's wonderful.

And I know some of our permaculture friends are familiar with the idea of guilds

and planting certain plants together where they really thrive and flourish together

and the beans are nitrogen-fixing.

And maybe you could tell a little bit about how they all work together.

Why is it such a good set of three to grow together?

Because the corn grows the tallest.

And then the beans and squash, they grow to the ground.

So the corn acts as a shade for them at the hottest point,

because they like it cooler.

Yeah.

So they all go really happy together.

And then the beans just like to spiral around the corn.

Yeah.

And then like even we have a food song that we do.

They're in ceremony called Gyohaekwa.

And we do that.

And our 13th ceremony is throughout the year.

And even when we do that, the men get up and they start and align,

going around.

And the women get in between and at one certain point.

The women act as if they're the beans, the men are the corn.

And then so we weave in and out as if we're going around the corn.

Beautiful.

Yeah.

I think that's old though.

I really think that that's old because I feel like it just were only in the last couple of years

that it's coming back because some people don't do it like that.

I think things have been forgotten or not taught.

They grow everything separate.

Yeah.

But it should all be grown together.

Yeah.

One of the things I'm really struck by with your vision for the three sister

sovereignty project right here is building a long house for education.

And for the continuation and preservation of the cultural knowledge.

Yeah.

And I also know for you that the preservation of the language itself is essential.

Absolutely.

And yeah, maybe you could describe for us what's going to be built here next year.

And what will this look like for people?

Well, we hope to start the long house on spring.

Excuse me.

And the long house is the first thing on our list up to do.

And then we want to get the canary up or the cook house.

The cook house is where we all the women go to cook for ceremonies or for any type of gatherings.

It's almost like that's where everyone gathers.

You know, to share food, to share like those subsidence and whatnot and nourishment.

And then we want to get the language school up because that's what connects us to both worlds.

You know, this world and the sky world.

That's our connection to the earth.

That's our connection to the plants, to the animals, to just the other world there.

And our names are also that's how we connect.

We always introduce ourselves and where we come from to the plant so that they know who we are.

Especially when we need them to need their help, you know, for different sicknesses and whatnot.

So the language, though, is really, really important because there's been a huge growth in the number of fluent speakers now in the younger generation.

And there's a lot of programs that were developed specifically for language where even adults can go take a two-year program where it's strictly mohawk.

And they come out and they're able to be teachers, mohawk language teachers.

And then back home we have the Aquasusna Freedom School, which is a mohawk immersion school.

I went to that school, my kid's school to that school.

My 10-year-old daughter is a fluent speaker.

It's just really important, you know, it's part of our identity.

And that's what keeps us strong and our mind strong and gets us through a lot of things.

Absolutely beautiful.

Yeah, our language is really colorful too.

Like it's very vibrant, you know, like English language is just very kind of streamlined.

It's not, in order to describe something in the English language we'd have to say like yellow, orange, blue, or whatever, but in our language it's so much more vibrant that it encompasses that feeling and what you're seeing.

So something might mean like it's the color of the sunset on a summer day so that you're like, wow, right?

Because you think of the sunset on a summer day and you're like, they're gorgeous.

You know, so that's really what the language is like.

It's very beautiful.

Yeah, it's not really like what, like at the chair, you know, on its guala.

It doesn't mean the chair actually talks about, I believe the legs, like of what's holding you up underneath.

So that's what's keeping you up above, above, above the floor.

So yeah, the language is really, I don't know.

You could say one word and then when you translate during Glish it's like a whole sentence, you know.

Yeah, it's so rich.

Yeah, I'm really excited about what is happening with the language and the opportunity

for there to be more education resources here around the language.

And for that to go along with the experiences of walking through the forest and to the gardens

and down to the water's more, it's a really kind of holistic approach, an immersion approach

that I think will be really powerful for people. Yeah.

Well, let me just share it with the audience that you can go to 3SistersProject.org

to check out some of the videos and photos and more information about the vision for the project

and also right now it's so important that we support the project at whatever level works for us

and you can go to the website to figure out the link to gofundme.com slash f slash 3Sisters SOV

and we'll include this link in the show notes as well. And right now the initial budget is a little

over a hundred thousand dollars to get things going with the long house and the gardens

and to really get this powerful beautiful project underway in Central New York.

And regardless of where you're located, my hope is that you'll engage and you'll support

and help make this a reality. And you know, one of the things I want to make sure to share for

our audience to help connect a dot that I gather most people may not really know about when

Ben Franklin was helping to frame up the Constitution for the United States. A lot of the core key

ideas that he brought to the convention actually came from the Mohawk people and from the Iroquois

Confederation, right? And so maybe you could tell us a little about this but I think this is such an

important link to the culture and the society we're sharing more broadly here in the United States.

And you know wherever we're finding democracy around the world at this point.

Well the core elements of the Ghana will go with those great pieces or the great laws,

righteousness, peace, love. Well they say power too but it's not. Power is not like

you wouldn't say power like like you have a higher authority. Yeah, we don't like to use power

anymore because we see how people have these recorded power in another system. So in our way,

power is like it's that responsibility. It's a responsibility. It's your like your inherent

responsibility to or not here yet. When we were taught as babies, we always have to look out for

the next seven generations like that's something that they teach us all through our lives. Everything's

based off of that and it's all about peace. It's all everything is about peace like maintaining a

peace and using your voice and how we come to make decisions is through consensus.

It's not we don't like vote in with ballots and say whatever it is. It's a lot of dialogue and

conversations that have to happen to come to a consensus and if the people don't agree on something

on that night then the issue is put under the pillow for the night and then you come back to it

the next day. However long it's going to take for your community to come to a consensus to be able

to make a decision to move forward. So that's part of peace because everyone's voices are heard

and then your peace is always just something that you've always done and I mean if you're having a

hard day or not a hard day but if you're going to disrupt the peace then maybe you should

go be alone in the woods somewhere or go fasting or go take care of yourself, your self-care

whatever that looks like so that you can keep that going on that peace within you so that the

peace you have peace around you you know so that's not like you just keep the peace.

Yeah it's so important right even when we're preparing food for ourselves for our family

if we're in a bad space to take some time to adjust that right yeah it's such an important practice

even when I saw something you know because my energy goes into the whatever I'm making and

intentions good intentions keep your intentions well right because otherwise I mean you put

something not so well all it's going to come right back so just do your work your inner work

with issues if you have issues take care of them heal them yeah move forward so that you're just

peaceful peaceful enjoy it yes yeah that sounds fun when go any of the you I saw you sewing earlier today

some amazing amazing skirts and some of the pictures taken at the waterfall obviously you guys

were wearing these absolutely beautiful garments and yeah you were doing stitch patterns I didn't

even know existed it's incredible what you're creating and what you're sharing and I know if folks

support the project at a certain level they'll be able to get a skirt themselves and anyway tell

us a bit about what what's that for you when you're making these these beautiful skirts and garments

what what's that process like well like I it's actually a very long process because some I don't

know if people expect to just say okay I want to dress and somebody just hurrys up and does

adjust real quick um I can't do it like I I take a lot of time and I really look at the fabric

like does this is this gonna suit this person you know is this gonna look really look nice on this

person um today's colors you know match the person well um and I'm not gonna make something where

I know they're not gonna be happy with it or not even want to wear it you know so um I'm very

detail oriented and so that's kind of my shortcoming a little bit because that is slow the process

down just because sometimes I think about it so much like is she really gonna like this you know

or even them um because I don't only make skirts I make all kinds of clothing traditional

clothing for men for kids um every day where I've done um clothing lions for um couture high fashion

um ready to wear that's really my passion is the ready to wear and the high fashion stuff um

but as far as the skirts um I really enjoy making them you know um excuse me I go to a lot of the

quilt shops and I really I get the uh the good material and it's really gotta speak to me

like papa at me and yeah the ones I've seen are exquisite and the color combinations are

they're extraordinary I mean it's like you're painting with a painter's palette yeah I've always been

I've always been an artist um since I was a girl um high school I've always been uh into art and

different things um and I just think it was because of the school the freedom school I remember um

I don't know if anybody's familiar with goji juni fox um that's who I remember coming into the

school when I was a little girl and she always would teach us different types of uh projects

using different media and like clay and like painting and you know we got to do all kinds of stuff and

so um they taught us how to sew and um and that's what my daughter's learning my oldest daughter

they're teaching them to quilt and cook and um

um life skills life skills yeah so important so beautiful because now because of that I'm able to

support my family you know um yeah so that's keep this in mind when you're thinking about uh

supporting the project and you're thinking about what level you want to get involved at and uh

you know I want to take a minute to also give a big shout out to Bethany Yaro and uh we we right

now we are we are at the waterfall house which is a an early 19th century roadside in and it's just

an incredible gathering space and Bethany has graciously and so generously made this available

uh to you and many from the mohawk community for the three sister sovereignty project

yeah and to get things going and also to do ceremony here yeah back on the ancestral lands right

and yeah just yesterday uh when you know uh we're recording on a real day the real time and this does

not air live and so just yesterday uh from the recording here um was a beautiful ceremony right here

on this land and uh just perched above the the waterfall yeah and uh I I know that there's a lot

that occurs in ceremony we we don't talk about and record but maybe you could just share a little

bit about uh what was that yesterday and and why was that important to be able to do right here on

this land uh well we did um the moan ceremony and uh it was just the way to bring the women

back here and connect spiritually with um with the waterfall um the moan um because the moan is

really important for for women um and that's our connection you know through our moan time through

our child childbirth um through our plants growing all kinds of things that you know we really

need the moan the the moan place a really huge role in our everyday lives and it's really important

that we acknowledge her and think her you know every month when she's at her most

powerfulness you know so that was actually I don't know if that was the hunters

moan or what moan? Beaver moan? So usually we try to come together on a full moon right

um and do our our women's ceremony or women's lodge them um to uh connect manifest

open the portal beautiful yeah yeah yeah so there's 13 moons in the year right 13

pieces about turtle shells for turtle island and um that's really what we follow

is the 13 moons we don't really follow the 12 month calendar right you know our our ceremonies are

based off of the 13 moons that moon cycle and even for like our viewers I mean if you think about

when you're like patting into the full moon or you want to keep track of the full moon on your

calendars it's always good to know when the full moons are because the the strength of the

moon is very magnetic and some people don't know that sometimes what they're feeling is just the

full moon and how to let things go on full moon because our bodies are like a large percentage of

water content and the full moon has the power to create tsunamis off of the oceans you know

the full moon is what creates the tide so our bodies are water so it's important that you take

that time on the full moon to do what you got to do um because it is pretty tight it's intense out

there around the full moon if you don't know what a full moon is you know yeah yeah it's interesting

that all around the world the number 13 has tremendous significance around the the female aspect of

the divine the goddess energy and there there are some amazing um aspects of this number 13 that

I'm sure we could talk about some other time in more depth and and for those of you who are

familiar with the Fibonacci series it's in that series of numbers as well and um there's some

really beautiful knowledge to unpack around that yeah to understand I think more fully our human

experience and you know I think if the entire planet could understand how the full moon is then

like there'd be an immense amount of peace because everybody would be acknowledging the full moon

and its powers and you know honoring the full moon and also taking that time to let things go

issues go whatever's bothering them or take a salt bath to like cleanse their energy or any type

of ritual that they can find to do around the full moon just to get back into that's going to like

that peace you know enjoy I mean yeah I think that the planet would totally it'd be a different

vibration and frequency yeah be happy yeah absolutely absolutely salt baths are a great idea

of mentioned something about salt baths in just a minute and I want I want to take a second to

remind our audience that this is the Y on earth community stewardship and sustainability podcast

series and we are in central New York at the waterfall house at the Three Sisters Sovereignty

project and we're visiting with Galonia Stajac Fallan Jacobs and Tiffany Cook and talking about

what's getting underway here with the project and I want to take a moment to thank all of the

sponsors that make this series possible through the Y on earth community and on that note of the

joy and peace we through the Y on earth community we are doing community mobilization work

throughout the country and throughout society and we focus on soil regeneration and climate action

and we have a third leg which is culture of kindness and it's so important that we each as individuals

are cultivating this peace this joy this kindness with everything we're doing and it's a lot of

folks who are making this work possible and I want to just give a special shout out to Patagonia

to Purium beauty counter earth coast productions the Lidge Family Foundation the International Society

of Sustainability Professionals and of course Waylay Waters which is the hand crafted bathing salt

soaking salt hemp infused aroma therapy that are are just a beautiful medicine a beautiful

way to help yourself relax after a long day or recover from some aches and pains or whatever it

might be right it's really wonderful and we we have some special links with beauty counter and

Purium if you go to the Y on earth dot org website and you want to purchase from those companies

using the Y on earth link or code some of those proceeds will come back and support the

nonprofit and of course Waylay Waters not everyone knows I make these by hand and if you want to

get involved with our monthly membership program at a certain level you can sign up for our monthly

Waylay Waters salt bath program and get those mailed to you on a regular monthly basis

um and I want to also just remind you to go to three sisters project dot org to learn more

about the three sister sovereignty project and to get involved in support with your financial

contributions to the project which is through gofundme.com slash f slash three sisters

solve SOV at the end there and um wow I I'm just I'm I'm so thrilled about everything that's

getting underway here and I'm really excited we've got this opportunity to sit and visit a bit

with with our audience and get some more folks involved with what's happening and um I'm wondering

Tiffany if you're thinking about you know here we are heading into the winter months and when

you're thinking about coming back uh through the springtime and what's going to be happening here

what what do you envision that is maybe most exciting or brings you most joy about what you force

the next year um I really just can't wait to get the gardens going and uh yeah and have all the

kids here for a summer and working in it can't wait to sing our songs yeah these songs yeah

yeah absolutely beautiful well and I know after hunter moon soon comes one of my favorites I think

the rest of moon oh yeah I like that idea and then hibernation moon yeah the hibernation

that's the one that gets me coming up and then soon after that is the planting right the the

activities of soil of course is very active in the winter and it's not too far off now that uh

we're getting some of those seeds started right yep I'll plant a lot inside and get them started

probably like February yeah right around the corner yeah beautiful and I'm wondering before we

wrap up our conversation for today is there anything else any of you would like to share with our

audience about the project about your work about your vision for the future the project's awesome

go find me um well I just think that we're just at a beautiful maybe uh a beautiful point um where

you know we're looking we're looking to move forward with the project um just to help kill the people

in our future really and it's not it doesn't have to be so specific we're very friendly people

and we're very open you know so if any if visitors or anyone who wants to come and learn more or

stuff like that like we're always open to that um beautiful I'm just looking forward to bringing

our people back and bringing them home and um just being able to get reconnected and you know

just just to be able to um find that missing piece to their puzzle and really um

because for for a lot of us you know we we don't know like we don't know that place is like this

exists or that we even have an opportunity you know to be able to come back you know and like

yeah because before like we're we're we've had we've had some history right traumatic history

even even if we had wanted to build a larger village somewhere and we'd have to we'd have to

just reclaim the land like and there's a lot of fighting and sometimes we're just tired of

fighting we don't want to fight we don't want to have to fight for everything that we have

just to be able to breathe you know and so now and we have beautiful opportunities like this thank

you Bethany um that is just very uh I can't there's not really any words to put to that like

how much respect or how grateful I am that there's this opportunity to be able to

build something beautiful for the people and I love how others in the community right around here

with European ancestry are stepping up and helping out and saying hey we've got some land we can

make available and it's it's absolutely beautiful how people are responding yeah it's almost like

uh take some moment to process yeah yeah it does especially because of you know what we've been through

and what it normally takes for us to you know want to do something like this you know where we are

really used to having to fight like that's even being back home and up with us and every day we

have to fight for who we are and fight for what we believe in and we're constantly fighting

fight or fight mold you know that really gets in the way of the joy and peace thing of notice

yeah for me you want to use your energy to create or build for you know manifest or

in a helpful way you don't want to have to change your energy to have to fight to

you know and so there's like two different there's many different ways you could use your energy

and why not spend your your time or your essence um during your younger years to put in

the work at that time and um create and build right yeah yeah and really it's just like that

enough with us and then because uh like the population's growing and the land is not growing

and the land is sick there yeah and so like the people you know it's just not people are

people are you sick too yeah well I absolutely admire the courage that each of you

shows and your leadership and from my perspective it's a real uh humble honor to have

an opportunity to be a part of this in a small way and to help share the story of what you're doing

and I know there are a lot of folks in our YonEarth community living in lots of different

places who as I've mentioned just a little about this project are so excited to hear about it

and I know there are a lot of folks who will want to hear more as things are developing

so uh just a a big huge thank you uh for doing what you're doing and thank you for taking the time

to visit with us and share share of it with us can I say that yeah yeah what is it y'all go uh

y'all up go uh that's a big thank you y'all up go uh yeah y'all up go uh and uh I'm also learning a few words

slowly but surely and I know the short way to say goodbye but maybe before we sign off we could

say a little bit of a a blessing or a longer goodbye uh in in the mohawk language if you guys would

like to or till next time yeah well when we say oh no that means goodbye okay um we also say

want to give a head like I'll see you later you know i want to give a head yeah um i goodbyes pretty

short uh when we want us when we know we're gonna see you again maybe later today tomorrow yeah

i'll give a head i'll give a head and how do we say thank you for all of your support um

y'all up go uh um

y'all up go like that that word really speaks yeah you know a lot

cool yeah well before we sign off is there anything you guys would like to say

are we said what i wanted to say no i'm i'm just really um excited to really get the ball rolling

and get right into this and um i just want to people to really know that you know there's another

there's a place because a lot of people are in there it's starting to to uh like what are we

gonna do you know a lot of people are asking themselves what am i gonna do what are we gonna do

you know so i just can't wait to let them know that there's a place you know with lots of medicine

and pine and clean water and fresh water a lot of deer yeah yeah and Tiffany anything you

want to say um i think basically we were planting the seeds for our future yeah it's like

people that plant a tree never ever get to enjoy the shade of that tree they're planting it for

our future our future grandchildren great grandchildren and really where um we're just you know um

fulfilling our our responsibilities as as mothers as caretakers of the land um

you know we're doing what this is what we're supposed to be doing

you know

all right well thank you so much and uh y'all with that will we'll sign off for now so goodbye everybody

the YonEarth community stewardship and sustainability podcast series is hosted by

Erin William Perry author thought leader and executive consultant the podcast and video recordings are

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Y On Earth - Podcast Cover
Stewardship & Sustainability Series
Episode 57 - Mohawk Women Leading the Three Sisters Sovereignty Project
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