Thursday, December 15, 2011

"From a Good Place in my Heart"

From a good place in my heart; I said to my wife today. But I laughed. It is a common phrase Indians use when they are making a public prayer or speech. It's not that I don't think it is sincere. It can be quite sincere when someone uses that phrase. But it is a little common and so some Indians like to make fun of each other for using that phrase. It gets a little played out, just like one of those songs on the radio. It is quite good for a while and then it loses its luster. Not that it is not a good song (or phrase) but its been used to the hilt. So we kind of make sport of it. Like when the song Achy Breaky Heart hit the airways way back when. Everyone was nuts over that song. And then bang it became a song to mock. (Not that from a good place in my heart should be mocked). But sometimes we can laugh at ourselves. I bet lot of people laugh at themselves for being Achy Breaky Heart dancers.

We can laugh at each other. Just like these old guys at a Sweat Lodge from Piapot Reserve in Saskatchewan. They were all sitting around during one of the Sweat Lodge rounds (at some places the people who conduct the Lodge allow breaks between the Sweat rounds, usually there are four rounds to a Ceremony). As they were sitting around they started to tease each other about Sweating and singing in the Lodge. One of the old guys says to Art, "Oh even the Creator is tired of Art's singing; that Art again same old songs".  Art and the other old guys just laughed. There is sincerity in his singing, but the guys knew how to tease.
Same with the phrase I say this from a good place in my heart.

I was thinking about that phrase and about sincerity. It came to mind as I started to remember an incident a while back. About 20 years ago about this time of year the local news story was about some unknown person who had cut down a fir tree in someones yard. A fir tree is used for Christmas trees. The home owner was upset about someone cutting down the tree in his front yard (and rightly so), but the home owner also went on to say, "he should have asked me , I would have bought him one". Meaning he would buy a tree for a perfect stranger if he asked.  My friend Earl and I laugh about this, still to this day. It is a common phrase we use when the opportunity permits itself. Because the phrase sounded so funny, insincere that it must have sounded absurd to anyone who heard it, or to the person himself for saying it. But hey who are we to question sincerity?
So we use the phrase ourselves at opportune times in a not so sincere manner. :)

But anyway, I hope you do have a great day, and I say this from a good spot in my heart. :D

Oh by the way there are some more phrases being used these days by the Traditional gurus. "Come if your intentions are good."  This is when they post invitation for a ceremony they are holding. Or "all are welcome that come with good intentions".  I  wonder who they know which ones to turn away?

Do I look like I got bad intentions?


  1. Thanks for this one and for the Christmas tree story-I had a laugh.A Tydenaga relative fowarded me a joke I'd like to share with You:"An Ojibwe went to China Town in San Francisco, while there he found a Bronze Rat at a Thirft Store. ''How much do you want for that rat'' he asked. $3 for the rat and $1,000 for the story that goes with it said the shop keeper. Just give me the rat the Ojibwe said and then he left with it.
    As he walked down the street he noticed that a couple of rats were following him. As he walked further more and more rats were chasing him. By the time he got to the bay there were thousands of rats chasing him. So he climbed a pole and threw the Bronze Rat into the bay. To his amazement the rats jumped into the water.
    The Ojibwe returned to the the Thrift Store...Ahhh the man said, now you want to hear the story. "No'' said the Ojibwe, I just came back to see if you had a Bronze White man."For those who feel offended:please don't.Every time we frown because of indian jokes or mascots,you tell us we take it too seriously and we should know that it comes from the good spot in your heart...Btw.I'm an Apache and an Apache has a heart of a white dove.I keep it in a jar of formaldehyde.

  2. Lots of good stories out there for sure. Thanks

  3. Man came back and re-read your comment Silaada. It made me laugh again. I keep in a jar of formaldehyde.