Native American Peace Principles as applied to the OWS Mission Statement

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Declaration of Interdependence

We the people of Planet Earth, presently expressing ourselves as the Occupy Wall Street Movement of New York City do hereby declare our interdependence with each other to go forward with this Movement, our interdependence with Mother Earth to sustain us for the coming generations, our interdependence with people from all over the world to join us and our interdependence with the Creative Forces of the Universe to guide us.

Interdependence is a paradigm shift that values cooperation first and acknowledges that each being, cmmunity and country has a piece of the answer to share.  Awareness of our interdependence opens the door to an attitude of mutual responsibility in caring and nurturing all walks of life. 

We the people of the Planet Earth, presently expressing ourselves through the Occupy Wall Street Movement of New York City, do hereby commit ourselves to the following Peace Principles:

Always Work for Peace,

Always Work for Unity,

& Always Carry a Good Message.

We express our gratitude and thanksgiving to the Elders of the Native American Traditions that held these teachings in their hearts and passed them down to us. We accept the following brief description of these principles

Peace in a Native American Language does not translate directly into English. In English, Peace is the absence of war. In a Native Language Peace is an openness or connection to the Miracle of Life. Peace is the presence of a positive energy that you carry with you.

Unity is the commitment that allows consensus to work. Unity can involve hours of dialog for the unified answer to come forth. Unity is a process where all ideas are heard until the answer that works for everyone evolves. There is the commitment by everyone that Unity will include personal flexibility.

Carrying a Good Message involves always coming from a positive place and not saying bad things about other people. No gossip. Issues between people are to be peacefully resolved, person to person with a moderator present if necessary.

The New York Occupy group commits ourselves and asks the other Occupy Locations from all over the world to form separate study groups to process responses to the following questions. We will assist our Sister Locations in organizing and processing all of this information. Within one year we will convene a summit of all study groups to summarize the data collected and further solidify our mission statement.

While this study is happening we the 99% will continue our protest against oppression by the 1%. We must keep up this pressure as we become a positive vehicle for long term social change and justice.

With the Peace Principles to guide us, we are committed to answering the following questions:

This list of questions are only examples. The final list to be complied by the group.

      1) How can we save our planet from environmental collapse?

  1. How can we disable every nuclear warhead?
  2. How can we equitably distribute the bounty of the earth?
  3. How can we form a truly representative government?
  4. How can we most efficiently demonstrate our positions to the people in power?
  5. How can we dismantle the greed centered economic interests?
  1. How can we start integrating on a global level more sustainable approaches such as permaculture, organic farming, low impact living?
  2. How can we start shifting our educational system to give our children a foundation based in sustainability, respect of nature, non-violent communication?
  3. How can we start offering on a world wide basis holistic preventive practices that support health at low cost?
  4. What changes to we need to make to reconnect families….
  1. How can we create boundaries without mallace or aggression?
  2. How do we manage our expectations? What expectations are reasonable to provide a uniform distribution of the earth’s resources?
  3. How do we connect with and support the ongoing work that others have started in many of these areas?

Occupy Wall Street Movement’s

Mission Statement

The above document is a possible Mission Statement for the Occupy Wall Street Movement. It is my feeling at this point in time that the Mission Statement should be very brief and simple to understand. It should embody a group of core values that will empower the movement and carry the movement forward.

I am proposing the Peace Principles as handed down from Native American Elders as the foundation for this movement. These Principles have been practiced in New York State for over 1000 years. They have undergone the test of time. They originate in the same geographical area as the OWS movement. And these teachings from the Original Peoples of New York State had a great influence on the founding fathers of our country and the form of democracy they created. The founding fathers did their best, but they missed a couple of essential elements of the Original Teachings. For example a real democracy functions on consensus, not on 51% majority rule.

When the founding fathers were signing the Constitution, the Native Elders told them “By signing this document, you are creating a place for evil to dine at your table.” The Elders knew that with 51% ruling, 49% would be unhappy. This can create a two party system where one party will always blame the other party for the problems that neither party can solve. Consensus and a commitment to Unity are essential for an organization for be successful.

The best source for information about these Principles is to google “The Great Law of Peace”

With the Peace Principles as our guiding philosophy, I would suggest we make a list of questions that we will solve. This will demonstrate the movement’s commitment to being inclusive and to opening a dialog with the whole world in seeking solutions to Global Issues. It will keep us from being put into an “Us vs Them” situation until we have the time to fully define ourselves. I feel that part of defining ourselves will come through the process of answering the questions. The process itself will teach us who we are.

I also suggest that each individual “Occupy Location” create a working group to process answers to these questions. We will ask the media, the presidential candidates, congress, etc. to answer these questions. One year from now we will have our own “G-20” meeting with people from all over the world to dialog for answers.

I would suggest leaving the Peace Principles unaltered. If the group feels that these principles are not the correct ones for the OWS movement, I would suggest the group adopt the same format as this proposal: a very simple philosophical statement followed by a list of questions.

Peace and Blessings,

Bill Record

Cultural Engineering

2 Responses to “Native American Peace Principles as applied to the OWS Mission Statement”

  1. Ross Wolfe

    Again, I can’t stress how preferable this document would be to the Blueprint.