Spirituality is Unity: A Sacred Walk

Ottawa gathered in solidarity with the Anishinaabe community for the “Spirituality is Unity” Sacred Walk. Since 2016, talks about urban development priced at $1.2 billion have taken place to build condominiums on unsurrendered Algonquin territory, violating the recognition of their rights, the reform of reconciliation and the worship of our sacred land.

The reverberation of the drums envelops our hearts and can be felt at our core as each one of us takes a step forward towards the peak Victoria Island which overlooks the natural sacred site for the Indigenous people which is now surrounded by the pillars of Canadian democracy. Akikodjiwan which comprehends of the Chaudière Falls and Victoria Islands is an accessible island which holds spiritual significance for the Indigenous people is used as a continuous ceremonial and traditional gathering location. The government’s participation in agreement with the condominium and retail village is parallel to intruding church grounds to host a backyard barbecue. In this era of reconciliation, the disregard of the holiness of land projects abandonment towards our Indigenous community from the current government promising gusts of hope for their commitment for truth and reconciliation.

Whether it’s a political power move by the Trudeau government, an apology requires more, the Indigenous communities in Canada have faced cycles of overpromising calls of actions left deserted by the election promises; with stalled processes of reconciliation between Canada and the Indigenous community. The violation of rights of Indigenous Peoples is a repetitive course in Canadian history and remains prevalent as seen in the Kinder Morgan pipeline project; the original Trans Mountain pipeline built in 1951 breached the reconciliation model when it comes to acknowledging land but at the time, it was illegal for Indigenous peoples to organize political affairs on their behalf.

Today, Trudeau’s cabinet is extracting $4.5 billion of taxpayers’ money to buy the Kinder Morgan Trans Mountain pipeline for use of expansion, breaching the respect and support of Indigenous rights. It seems, the dishonour of sacred land reigns over policy making, power players at the Hill. The Government advocates corporate moves over progress to heal the horrors of the past and promote religious freedom.

As the crowd gathered at the heart of the Nation’s capital; Indigenous, Muslim, Christian and NGOs sang in solidarity and emphasized the restoration of the sacred site for our children and grandchildren. We stand as a one Nation under the reign of settler colonialism and a history that is poisonous. One leader emphasizes the notion of unlearning, we must “unlearn the models that are not concerned about the well being of human beings and our water; when we talk about reconciliation, we must fight against material, cultural and law indeed. Land has been designated for public use and not private use. We must unlearn this.” It is time that we walk the walk and talk the talk. It’s time we take back our spirituality.

The petition has been successfully accepted by the House of Commons and will be presented by MP Romeo Saganash to ask the federal government to protect the sacred site and Ottawa’s Heritage views.