John Lundin with City Paper Bogato shared an important piece leading into the Thanksgiving holiday that’s celebrated in the United States on Nov. 26. A day that family’s mark with a large feast and an underlying notion of thankfulness is a reminder of dark days for the people of Columbia.
Lundin referenced quotes from his book “Journey to the Heart of the World,” which was written with the indigenous Elders of the Kogi, Arhuaco and Wiwa peoples of the Sierra Nevada de Santa Marta, where the Columbus story re-surfaced.
Quoting the Arhuaco elder:
“We speak of this invasion by the younger brother as ‘Columbus.’ For us Columbus was not a person but an event, an event that continues to this day. Columbus was the return of the younger brother and the beginning of the rape and killing of our Earth Mother.”
The elder described the people and environment of Columbia living in peace and harmony prior to the arrival of European explorers. In Columbia, the term “Columbus” speaks more to an epically traumatic event rather than the man Christopher Columbus. And the event continues on today.
Columbus also survived. Columbus is alive and well and living in Colombia today, at least as the Elders understand the Columbus event. It has never ended.
In an act of unity, the Elders of the three indigenous peoples of the Sierra Nevada have decided to close Tayrona National Park during the month of November, in order to “purify” their sacred and ancestral lands.