The following is attributed to an unnamed Hopi elder of the Hopi Indian Nation, Oraibi, Arizona:
You have been telling the people that this is the Eleventh Hour.
Now you must go back and tell the people that this is the Hour.
And there are things to be considered.
Where are you living?
How are you living?
What are you doing?
Why are you doing it?
What are your relationships?
Are you in right relation with Mother Earth?
Where is your water?
How grows your garden?
It is time to speak your Truth.
Create your community.
Be good to each other.
And do not look outside yourself for the leader.
This could be a good time!
There is a river flowing now very fast. It is so great and swift that there are those who will be afraid. They will try to hold on to the shore. They will feel they are torn apart and will suffer greatly.
Know the river has its destination. The elders say we must let go of the shore, push off into the middle of the river, keep our eyes open, and our heads above water.
And I say, see who is in there with you and celebrate. At this time in history, we are to take nothing personally, least of all ourselves. For the moment that we do, our spiritual growth and journey comes to a halt.
The time for the lone wolf is over.
Banish the word struggle from your attitude and your vocabulary.
All that we do now must be done in a sacred manner and in celebration.
We are the ones we've been waiting for.
I first became aware of this "advisory for our times" by reading Alice Walker's wonderful book, We are the Ones we've been Waiting for. And the more I read the passage, the more sense it made to me.
I've never really believed that we would "extinct ourselves" or that some form of cosmic or extra-terrestrial intervention would save us at the "eleventh hour". Like the man in line at the airport said to me when I muttered something about the rudeness of most people, "If there were more bad people than good, we'd all have been dead long ago."
And I believe that now, I believe that we'll survive this and outgrow this and become something better and gentler than this. Someone told me today that we have a bit more than two years to live. In 2014, the earth supposedly will be destroyed. The world will end, she said. I just can't get with that. I remember my Mother telling me that at the onset of the twentieth century, the predictions were of total annihilation. But here we are, reasonably intact, one hundred-plus years later.
Like the Hopi Elder, I believe that this is the hour, the first hour, the hour that means the most in this time-period. It is time to ask the questions: Where are you living? What are you doing? What are your relationships? Are you in right relation? Where is your water? Know your garden. How goes your garden?
And: It is time to speak your Truth, create your community, and be good to each other.
And: Do not look outside yourself for the leader.
This last item is so important. All peace comes from the heart. Outer world peace cannot exist without the inner peace of individuals.
The heart and soul and body must be in the right place. Some are sun-worshipers and they should have much sun. Some need water near them and they should live near streams, lakes, and oceans. Some should be alone in the mountains, and others close together in the cities.
Are we creating art, music, beauty, poetry, and good works, all the time, every day? If not, we must force ourselves to start doing so. The things we make from our hearts and minds are the things that make us fully alive, and the things that make our world more beautiful and lasting. They are unfolded dreams.
Are our relationships pure, full of trust and love and respect and truth? If not, our hearts will wither in those relationships. And we must know how to relate, not just to each other, but to the Mother of all of us and everything, the Earth. If we are not in "right relation", we are unhealthy, lost, confused, and short-lived.
Finally, we all need gardens because they keep us alive. We need water also, just as all living things do.
If we depend of monolithic corporations to take care of us with processed non-food and polluted water, we are breaking our promise to our ancestors and to ourselves. We are giving away our power. We are admitting defeat. This is no time for defeat, but a time to celebrate with those in the current with us.
We must not follow leaders such as these. Somehow, we must be where we can GROW, not just our food, but our selves.
Not everyone can do all these things. To some they are impossibilities, but many of us must try, so that many of us turn the Eleventh Hour into The Hour. Those who cannot follow now will do so later. They are good and kind also.
I've tried to "Turn The Hour" by making music, by telling truths, by writing, by honoring my friends, and by loving as much as I can. I'm not always "in right relation". But it's something to work towards, every day.
We have a few billion years to become who we can be. A few billion years is enough.