have come to love the Ojibwa language because it takes the concept
of the dichotomy to another level. My Ojibwa nickname is Ondamitagos.
That means 'Causes Others to Lose Track of Time by Talking.' All
Ojibwa names have a positive and negative facet to them, even nicknames.
I have to ability to be profound and deep in my discussions of subjects,
but I also talk too much, too often and guess who is the first one
to get lost?
I live between two worlds.
One is the world I grew up in, one that uses fear to manipulate
and control us, and the other, a world that is struggling to keep
an old ethic. The Ojibwa call it Bimaadiziwin 'A Good Life.'
Our 'Culture of Fear' makes
us buy insurance to protect us from the inevitable and plan for
the future we dream of for ourselves. We are frightened of dying,
living and dealing with the problems of our lives. We are taught,
through living in this culture, that this is considered normal.
Bimaadiziwin like all Ojibwa
words has two meanings, a positive and negative meaning. One meaning
is a trap and the other is the key to life. You see when we see
the words 'A Good Life' we are focused on our life and how good
it is, this enables the ego the swell and take hold of our dreams.
When we see that Bimaadiziwin also means 'A Life of Good' we see
the heart of the idealism of Ojibwa Culture. When we live just for
doing good, we transcend ourselves and fill our place in society,
and give the culture its spirit.
Every person has to face
these aspects of themselves. We can dance with great greed or with
great deeds. Freedom comes when we abandon fear and accept that
we have been given the gift of life and our path through it nothing
but our opportunity to walk a path with purpose of something more
than filing our purse.
It is so easy to get lost
in Life's small details and big fears. Mutual Assured Destruction
has never been a comfortable night-light, but it is a reality of
human capability. We fear the darkness of our own souls and never
learn to nurture them. What is fear but something we put there,
not something others put there, but something we have bought into.
We are the masters of our destiny no matter how much we deny it.
Which is the better life? One where we have all the treasure of
the world, but still live in fear of the world - or one where the
world is the treasure.