Sunday, July 25, 2010

Chief Seattle's One Condition

Chief Seattle of the Duwamish Tribe in the state of Washington told the United State government, in 1855, that he would sign a treaty with them under one condition. He knew at the time that his life and those of the tribes he represented would be forever changed whether he signed the treaty or not.

Here is what Chief Seattle told President Franklin Pierce:

“If I decide to accept, I will make one condition. The white man must treat the beasts of this land as his brothers. I am a savage and I do not understand any other way. I have seen a thousand rotting buffaloes on the prairies left by the white man who shot them from a passing train. I am a savage and I do not understand how the smoking iron horse can be more important than the buffalo that we kill only to stay alive. What is man without the beasts? If all the beasts were gone, men would die from great loneliness of spirit, for whatever happens to the beast also happens to man. All things are connected. Whatever befalls the earth befalls the sons of the earth. Man did not weave the web of life: he is merely a strand in it. Whatever he does to the web, he does to himself.”


  1. Will we ever learn this lesson?

  2. admitting that all things are connected would require that we fundamentally alter our behavior, in every domain.i'm not hopeful that i will see that in my lifetime, on a planet-wide scale.