Canticle to Brother Sun
Most High, all powerful, good Lord, yours are the praises, the glory, the honour, and all blessing.
To you alone, Most High, do they belong, and no man is worthy to mention your name.
Praised be you, my Lord, with all your creatures, especially Sir Brother Sun, who is the day and
through whom you give us light.
And he is beautiful and radiant with great splendour; and bears a likeness of you, Most High One.
Praised be you, my Lord, through Sister Moon and the stars; in heaven you formed them clear
and precious and beautiful.
Praised be you, my Lord, through Brother Wind, and through the air, cloudy and serene, and every kind of weather, through which you give sustenance to your creatures.
Praised be you, my Lord, through Sister Water, which is very useful and humble and precious and chaste.
Praised be you, my Lord, through Brother Fire, through whom you light the night, and he is beautiful and playful and robust and strong.
Praised be you, my Lord, through our Sister Mother Earth, who sustains us and governs us, and who produces varied fruits with coloured flowers and herbs.
Praised be you, my Lord, through those who give pardon for your love, and bear infirmity and tribulation.
Blessed are those who endure in peace, for by you, Most High, they shall be crowned.
A Message from Chief Seattle
My father said to me,
I know the sap that courses through the trees
as I know the blood that flows in my veins.
We are part of the earth and it is part of us.
The perfumed flowers are our sisters.
The bear, the deer, the great eagle, these are our brothers.
The rocky crests, the meadows, the ponies—
all belong to the same family.
. . .
The voice of my grandmother said to me,
Teach your children what you have been taught.
The earth is our mother.
What befalls the earth befalls all the sons and daughters of the earth.
. . .
We love this earth as a newborn loves its mother’s heartbeat.
If we sell you our land, care for it as we have cared for it.
Hold in your mind the memory of the land as it is when you receive it.
Preserve the land and the air and the rivers for your
children’s children and love it as we have loved it.
The Aspirations of Shantideva
From The Bodhicharyavatara
(The Way of the Bodhisattva)
For all those ailing in the world,
Until their every sickness has been healed,
May I myself become for them
The doctor, nurse, the medicine itself.
Raining down a flood of food and drink,
May I dispel the ills of thirst and famine,
And in the ages marked by scarcity and want,
May I myself appear as drink and sustenance.
For sentient beings, poor and destitute,
May I become a treasure ever plentiful,
And lie before them closely in their reach,
A varied source of all that they might need.
My body, thus, and all my goods besides,
And all my merits gained and to be gained,
I give them all away withholding nothing
To bring about the benefits of beings.
. . . . .
May I be a guard for those who are protectorless,
A guide for those who journey on the road.
For those who wish to go across the water,
May I be a boat, a raft, a bridge.
Tatanka Yotanka, Sitting Bull
Behold, my brothers, the spring has come;
the earth has received the embraces of the sun we shall soon see the results of that love!
Every seed has awakened and so has all animal life. It is through this mysterious power that we too have our being and we therefore yield to our neighbors, even our animal neighbors, the same right as ourselves, to inhabit this land.