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The Eagle and Condor Meet
by Rod McAfee

I really didn't know what to expect. I was a little leery of going and I didn't really see any reason for me to go, but even then deep in my innermost feelings I knew I had to do this. I didn't know why but I had this feeling that I really had to do this. So when I got there, I just accepted it for what was there. I didn't make it any harder or any easier, I just accepted what was there. I guess the word is "materializing."

After we left the paved roads and the city I saw something I was already familiar with, dirt roads, rough roads, a lot of natural growth, trees, different kinds of plants. So it was again like opening up old wounds of what I was exposed to in my youth on the reservation here in Arizona.. They had the checkpoints, military where the Indian people were in command and were part of the opposition, part of the police. That's what basically what we experienced years ago, opposition from law enforcement officers, the law so to speak, being in conflict with our own beliefs and our own ways of dealing of situations that arise.

Once we got through the checkpoints we went into the very natural powerful natural growth, natural environment. The village where we first stopped [Amazanga] everything was basically something similar to what I experienced in my youth. However, these people and young children were experiencing some, I'd guess you'd call it modern conveniences, like electricity, running water, flushing toilets and places to take showers., It wasn't really like modern showers and bathrooms but it was so much more than I experienced in my youth on the reservation in Arizona.

 They cooked on open fires, which I experienced in my very early stage of growth. I remember when I was three to four years old, we used an open fire, no wood stoves just an open fire. The children were all very healthy; they run barefooted, they played in the dirt and the mud. All this is what I experienced in my early growth. That was a long time ago. I'm seventy years old now so that was a long time ago.

I accepted even before I left here that my journey there would be to respect their ways, their medicine, their beliefs. This is what I was told by the spirits. That everything is there for you to use if you're going to do a ceremony. This is the way to respect the spirits and respect the medicine. The experience was very natural, very good, the energy was good. What helped that for me to accept was that the only preparation I did before leaving was just to accept that I was going into the unknown and just accept what was there. I was given books to read before I went there, but I didn't read them, I just accepted what was there. It was very good, very positive.

The building [where the inauguration ceremony for Wanduk Yachay was held] was the only thing that had a cement floor, but it also had the traditional round structure, no square corners, thatched roof. That was the schoolhouse, the school building. There were presentations from the tribal members, and then five of our group from the States did our presentations. Our translator had her hands full translating both sides, from their tribe on our side, translating into English and translating English into Spanish. I could feel the real closeness of people on account of their listening with respect and wanting to learn. But really there was nothing much we could teach them, maybe possibly just upgrade what they had already known and what they had already done. A few words of guidance and encouragement, to show them that they're not alone.

The Condor and the Eagle were constantly mentioned in the presentations. One member of our group presented the elders with Eagle feathers. This is a small start of the beginning of fulfilling the prophecies of the meeting of the Condor and the Eagle.

Our group was involved in five different ceremonies in this first village. All the ceremonies were very spiritual and we all were honored in the most traditional and respectful way of these people.

We journeyed to another village [Mariposas]. We got there at night. We had to travel by foot for almost a half mile through the dark by the light of candles. The trail was a little on the rough side, slippery rocks, mud puddles, slippery grass, uphill, downhill, but going in a good way we all came through, no missteps, a few wet feet, a few stumbles, but we came out good, in good shape. Coming into the village plaza we were greeted again by the people of that village, then we had to travel another quarter mile to that place [where we were to sleep]. This was again by candlelight and flashlights, carrying our heavy baggage to our lodging.

Ceremonies were also part of this stay. The feeling was that we all learned and went through healing. There were other things that happened, but again there are times when words are not enough to describe the individual feelings of our group. This is just my point of view of the highlights of our journey. This is all I can share at this time. All my relations.

Rod is a 70-year-old elder of the Pima Nation. He is married to Linda Neale, Executive Director of the Earth & Spirit Council.

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