Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Roots

Truth involves more than our heads. It goes beyond our ability to think and decide for ourselves, although these faculties and processes are integral in discovering and knowing truth. There is much that is decided for us in the embrace that conceived us and long before the moment when we begin recognizing something as valid and valuable.

Mathew and Melinda. Alabama Tories. I never met them. Somehow, though, I feel like I know them and have always known them. Mysteriously. Intimately. Ancestrally. It’s something uncanny, hard to define with words. Yet it is something unavoidable and as real as my own breath and pulse. It is, after all, their genes that have trickled down to me via my maternal line.

I rate finding my Great, Great Grandmother’s grave in the same category as my meeting the Great, Great Granddaughter of Chief Red Cloud. Accidents? No.

We were on a quest to find graves of my maternal ancestors. The Chief’s granddaughter crossed my path on the plains of Western Kansas in 2002 at a time when I was becoming aware of the terrible injustice dealt to the First Peoples by the greed filled European immigrants that knew how to deal in lead and gunpowder to get what they wanted. Both of these were personally moving experiences, spiritual events in my life.

No. I’m not talking about some kind of weird metaphysical hocus pocus, connecting with spirits, or any of that sort of witchery. I don’t have visitations, visions, or hear voices in the dark … the stuff that surrounds dabbling on the dark side, séances, or spiritual mediums. Heaven forbid. And it does forbid.

It has more to do with understanding, having a mind for history, and a heart hunger to know the real deal, the honest truth, truth that has a way of peeling the scales off our eyes, truth that rises like the sun to burn away the fog that keeps us from seeing where we’ve been, where we are at, or where we are going. Sadly, most people, practically all white people, live in a dense fog.

Truth involves matters of the heart that are not easily scientifically defined and explained. Roots stuff. Roots that are attached to and anchored in generations that have gone before. Roots tapping into resources that have a definite determining effect on life as it is lived today.

Roots that bring the best and the worst in us to light.