Indigenous Peoples and Human Rights

March 28, 2019

What I learned from the Zapatistas, Generosity and Grace

What I learned from the Zapatistas - - Generosity and Grace

In the Spirit of Autonomy, Dignity and Self-Reliance

By Brenda Norrell
Censored News

It was not so much from their words, but from being with them. And it wasn't from just the Zapatistas in Chiapas, but from the others who came as well, from Indian Nations, Europe and around the world.
It wasn't from their words, because my Spanish was so bad, I knew little of what was being said, or where we were headed.
Still there was this gift, the gift of being present.
There was a glimpse, a glimpse of what was possible, a glimpse of a better world possible.
It taught me of the power of the absolute, the absolute power of knowing, of certitude.
But as we dashed from town to town in Mexico on our journeys, there was silence, there was laughter, there was song, the songs of resistance.
Courage would be too simple of a word, the force was one of magnitude.
I didn't know what was being said, but it didn't matter then. I like it better now, just having been there, and having been  present with your horses in the river, on those hot days near the Guatemala border.
On one of these journeys, I could not find the words to write about it. We seemed to be on a different plane of existence.
It was all raw, without precedent, and today much of it remains a mystery.
Words vanished in the state of Guerrero, where death and oppression of the people stung the air like wasps, sucked the oxygen from the lungs.
Time has preserved its essence, distilled it into a few words.
The words come now my friends. I remember your generosity and grace, and I'm thankful for the gift of being with you, of being present in those rivers, mountains and that great jungle where corn was life and all things were possible.

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