This blog is dedicated to healers and the healing of individuals, families, communities, nations, and Mother Earth. More often than I like, I also report on harm done in the world. I do so because I believe naming injustice and brutality is part of bringing healing to the victims of such violence.
Friday night marked the beginning of Yom Kippur, the Jewish Day of Atonement. We are told by the Rabbis and by healers and teachers in many First Nations faith traditions that we should atone each day for those harms we cause others and the Earth. Yom Kippur calls upon us to do so.
Last night, after the sun set, ending Yom Kippur, I received an e-mail from a Native colleague. The e-mail reported that 14 Peruvian Amazonian Native shamans had been brutally murdered in the past twenty months. The author posted a link to an article in The Guardian, which reported:
“The traditional healers, all from the Shawi ethnic group, were murdered in separate incidents over the last 20 months, allegedly at the behest of a local mayor.”
The Guardian also reported the murders appear to be religiously and ethnically motivated.
These murders are not isolated. Rather, they are part of a long history of attacks on Native healers and community activists in Amazonia. These individuals died working to heal their communities, and to save their traditional territories in the Amazon. They were the doctors, politicians, and religious leaders of their communities. The news of their murders, coming as it did at the close of Yom Kippur, is as ironic as it is heartbreaking.
If you wish to express your concerns to the Peruvian government, you will find a contact list at the Foundation for Shamanic Studies. Please act now. Your voice will aid the Peruvian government to understand the World watches and cares.
May our brothers and sisters, killed simply because they are healers and wish the best for their people, find their way home.