Live your life that the fear of death can never enter your heart. Trouble no one about his religion. Respect others in their views and demand that they respect yours. Love your life, perfect your life, beautify all things in your life. Seek to make your life long and of service to your people. Prepare a noble death song for the day when you go over the great divide.
Always give a word or sign of salute when meeting or passing a friend, or even a stranger, if in a lonely place. Show respect to all people, but grovel to none. When you rise in the morning, give thanks for the light, for your life, for your strength. Give thanks for your food and for the joy of living. If you see no reason to give thanks, the fault lies in yourself.
Abuse no one and no thing, for abuse turns the wise ones to fools and robs the spirit of its vision. When your time comes to die, be not like those whose hearts are filled with fear of death, so that when their time comes they weep and pray for a little more time to live their lives over again in a different way. Sing your death song, and die like a hero going home.
~Tecumseh -(1768-1813) Shawnee Chief
The taking of life brings serious thoughts.
We have come thus far, my brothers. We have already laid our plans. With magic power the trail is made easy, bordered with flowers, grass, and trees.
The enemy saw the apparent bounty of nature and assembled, laughing, to gather the seeds and plants. It was the power of the distant magician which made the enemy enjoy his fancied prosperity.
In the center of our council ground the fire burned and, lighting a cigarette, I puffed smoke toward the east. Slowly a vision arose before me …
On the mountain tops was a yellow-spider magician, upon where I called for help. He went to the enemy, darkened their hearts, tied their hands and their bows, and made them grow weak as women.
Then he pushed us on to destroy the enemy. We rushed upon the Apaches and killed them without difficulty.
With gladness in my heart I gathered the evidences of my victory and turned toward home.
You may think this over, my relatives. The taking of life brings serious thoughts of the waste; the celebration of victory may become riotous.
~A Pima Poem
“In the Lakota/Sioux tradition, a person who is grieving is considered most holy. There’s a sense that when someone is struck by the sudden lightning of loss, he or she stands on the threshold of the spirit world. The prayers of those who grieve are considered especially strong, and it is proper to ask them for their help. You might recall what it’s like to be with someone who has grieved deeply. The person has no layer of protection, nothing left to defend. The mystery is looking out through that person’s eyes. For the time being, he or she has accepted the reality of loss and has stopped clinging to the past or grasping at the future. In the groundless openness of sorrow, there is a wholeness of presence and a deep natural wisdom.”
~ Tara Brach
- Khetani Machangana: Learn To See