INNER JOURNEY | 11 years of Self Exploration

INNER JOURNEY | 11 years of Self Exploration

Every day that passes is one step closer to ourselves.
I walked, walked a long time and for 11 years on this unknown path to discover myself, answer essential questions and try to make sense of my existence. The clues and revelations found on my way hit me hard. And made me fall, several times, into a muffled cry.
But as an indefatigable warrior, I got up to question again.

Photo by Sophie Narsès

The birth and maturity of Native Immersion was as subtle, magical and laborious as that of a living being. It was necessary to be present, attentive, patient as a parent knows how to be, to assure it a confident arrival to the world. Its name was pronounced 7 years ago. There in the back room of a restaurant in the heart of the boreal forest, which today no longer exists. Thousands of miles from my home.

The time to finish my studies and to embrace for the first time the indigenous culture in the living of its flesh, to celebrate the ultimate commitment with my Love, here I already felt the non-negotiable appeal of the west. An indescribable strength that propelled me to a 6-year adventure in the Atikamekw community of Manawan, Quebec. A hollow of the world offering to become my house intermittently. I ended up stopping counting the trips, but it seems to me that I have been there no less than 17 times.

I could have gone around the world, but it was not at this stage of the scenario. I had found another family branch to love, in this universe parallel to mine. Each reunion with the boreal forest and its people marked a new chapter in my life there, with so much novelty and wealth that it was always a first time.

And although I went there with my camera as a traveling companion, the arms laden with very commendable intentions to change the world, with the ambition or the fantasy of saving the Amerindians from this society in perdition – naivety and enthusiasm of youth – I really settled down there to immerse myself in the essence of the life in reserve of the contemporary Indigenous.
Understand the reason and the expression of a collective traumatism, with the hope of guessing the solutions.

For years, Native Immersion has been very discreet, as in hibernation.
From this period, I bring back thousands of photographs of others, places, but very few of me.
I was not able to document my life there publicly, because the experience was so overwhelming, so intense, so transformative that it took me years to talk about it with the appropriate words. All this apparent stagnation has been a slow and a profound inner transformation, in order to be ready for this great day. Later, I will tell you about the storms that have been crossed, the battles won in the heart of its underworld, teeming with life.
Today, I have this feeling of coming out of the cave of secrets, to offer the world keys essential to the understanding of the science I have been able to explore, through what was and what is always, my own experience.

Photo originale par Thérèse Ottawa

I am so grateful, I feel so privileged to have had the time and freedom to learn, to walk the earth and breathe it in unknown and sumptuous spaces, but especially to have met the human in such different realities, to make me bloom in the greatest humility, the deepest compassion.

I did not stay long on the road planned by others. I left as soon as I was able to fly away from the weight of expectations, even if the conditioning loved to show up from time to time. Deciding on the road for yourself is however so impressive, because of unending possibilities. I went to Manawan with a bleeding heart of one of the greatest bereavements of my life, to heal my inner grief on this new territory.

11 years is an eternity, several lives and also a fraction of a second.
I found the keys I was looking for. Of course, not all of them, I still have some treasure hunts to go. But a beautiful collection, all the same, that I prepared unconsciously but with faith, for this great moment that humanity is living. An awareness acts on the Being like a tsunami, an earthquake, a sort of end of the world. We live it right now on a large scale.

The science to which I was initiated touches the human and his possibility of being in a powerful bond of fraternity and sorority in the service of the living. A bond that is created and lived through the journey. The most beautiful thing, taking a step back on the canvas woven over all these years, is that you can see a constellation of sublime embroidery, connecting all these extraordinary sciences to each other.

Travel, Human, indigenous peoples, love and justice of the living, ancestors are the ingredients brewed in the pot of Native Immersion. The delicious perfume that emanates from it is a little daring: it invites to the exploration at the borders of the possible.

I sat in the hemicycle at the United Nations with indigenous representatives from around the world gathered to make their voices heard and share their stories. All over the world, as well as at our doorstep, basic rights are being violated in the name of capitalist predation. The good news is that there are solutions to generate a great deal of self-determination.
And that goes through each one of us.

United Nations with the World Indigenous Tourism Alliance & Benki Piyako, Ashaninka traditional leader, Brazil

Traveling to meet indigenous peoples, whose essential role to our humanity could find support in a practice of altruistic travel, solidarity beyond borders, because necessary for the survival of all, is one. The voices rise. Why is the rights of indigenous peoples so important, vital, essential? Because guaranteeing rights to human beings that have preserved an existence so intrinsic to Nature gives space to root intelligences to continue their saving science for the benefit of all living things on Earth. As simple and powerful as that.

Native Immersion took 7 years to define itself, to get to explain.
We had to get together to get there.

I have so much to tell you.
I am happy to be able to share with you this personal journey, demanding but sublimated of its beauty and wisdom. We will together attempt to decolonize our minds, to find the track to the teachings of our ancestors through the diversity of the Guardians of the Earth, to make us more conscious humans.

And now ?

Now is filled with hope and joy to write our collective story in this ambitious human book.
The conscious, courageous and accomplice journey is within our reach, able as ever to engage in a process of regeneration of ecosystems by honoring peoples. The heroines and heroes of this world are numerous, indefatigable, extraordinary. Looking forward to meeting you soon.

Welcome to the era of the original peoples.
When do we go?

Aurélie

Photo by Sophie Narsès

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