HOLDING HISTORY

Resources

 

 

HOLDING HISTORY Film Festival

  • Windtalkers – In World War 2, the Navajo Wind Talkers helped win the war using their Navajo Dine language.
  • Indian Horse – The Movie Indian Horse tells one of the stories of attending Residential Schools and Surviving. It was said that you were more likely to die in Residential schools then going to World War II
  • Bury My Heart at Wounded Knee – This movie shares the story of Native American people during the time of 1860 and 1870s. It shares details about how they were treated during the time of being forced into Reservations.
  • Atanarjuat: The Fast Runner – The movie is about the Inuit People in Canada’s Artic. It shows the crime that happens and how it effects the tight knit group of people surviving together. The Film was shot in Nunavut and it is entirely in the Inuktitut language.
  • The story in the film is from Oral Stories that have been passed down for many generations and shares how it was like about 2,000 years ago. They wore authentic clothing that they would wear back in the day as well.

HOLDING HISTORY Songs

HOLDING HISTORY

Activities for Children and Families of All Ages

  • Family Tree – Make a family tree going back to children’s great grandparents and use real full names. Tell what stories you know about each of the children’s ancestors.
  • This Land is Their Land – Go to the Native Land Digital Map at  https://native-land.ca/  and type in your location to find out which native lands you live on.
  • Say Grace – Similar to this month’s spiritual challenge, write a family table grace you can say together before each family meal.

 

HOLDING HISTORY

in Online Essays. Podcasts, and Videos

Theme for October is

HOLDING HISTORY 


Reflect on HOLDING HISTORY

  • Do you believe that history is “written by the victors”? How have you experienced the “losers” version of history winning out?
  • When you tell the history of the pandemic ten years from now, what story do you think you will begin with?
  • What if the question isn’t, “Did it really happen that way?” But instead, “Why do you want to remember that it happened that way?”
  • What has life taught you about memory and pain? Have you forgiven yourself for that mistake-filled chapter in your own history?

 Reflections for Parents on HOLDING HISTORY

  • What is the hardest part about reconciling your personal history with the history of your nation? Where do you get stuck in this history, and where do you move through with resolve?
  • We hold some histories in our bodies, through our genes handed down from our ancestors. What aspect of your physical self most connects you to them? How do you feel about this connection?
  • What memory has been with you the longest?
  • We all “stand on the shoulders” of those who came before. Whose shoulders are you most grateful for?

HOLDING HISTORY Quotes

  • To acknowledge our ancestors means we are aware that we did not make ourselves.” – Alice Walker
  • “It’s not forgetting that heals. It’s remembering.” – Amy Greene
  • “Tradition means giving votes to the most obscure of all classes—our ancestors. It is the democracy of the dead. Tradition refuses to submit to the small and arrogant oligarchy of those who merely happen to be walking around.” – G. K. Chesterton
  • “The prophetic tasks of the church are to tell the truth in a society that lives in an illusion, grieve in a society that practices denial, and express hope in a society that lives in despair.” – Walter Brueggemann

 

HOLDING HISTORY Bookshelf

  • Lies My Teacher Told Me by James W. Loewen
  • This Land is Their Land: The Wampanoag Indians, Plymouth Colony, and the Troubled History of Thanksgiving by David J. Silverman
  • An Indigenous Peoples’ History of the United States by Roxanne Dunbar-Ortiz
  • 1491: New Revelations of the Americas Before Columbus by Charles C. Mann.
  •  

Children’s HOLDING HISTORY Bookshelf

  • The Undefeated by Kwame Alexander (Author), Kadir Nelson (Illustrator) – Picture Book.
  • Stolen Words by Melanie Florence (Author), Gabrielle Grimard (Illustrator) – Picture Book
  • Molly’s Pilgrim by Barbara Cohen Illustrator Daniel Mark Duffy – Chapter Book
  • Stamped: Racism, Antiracism, and You: A Remix of the National Book Award-winning Stamped from the Beginning by Jason Reynolds, Ibram X. Kendi  Middle School
  • An Indigenous Peoples’ History of the United States for Young People by Roxanne Dunbar-Ortiz; adapted by Debbie Reese and Jean Mendoza. – Middle School

SPIRITUAL CHALLENGE

Saying Grace

This month I challenge you to write and use a table grace for meals.  If you live with others, perhaps make it a household or family project.  Numerous studies in fields ranging from neuroscience to psychology have found that people who consciously practice gratitude or counting their blessings overall tend to be happier and less depressed than those who do not.  Mealtime is often cited as a casualty of modern life. Perhaps for the first time in human history have human cultures developed that don’t ritualize mealtime and the blessing of and giving thanks for the food.

Neuroscience research tells us that our brains have  “negativity bias” that is hard-wired by evolution to focus on fear and danger and take less notice of contentment and positive feelings.  This has helped us survive, but now is a root cause of chronic anxiety, depression, and worry.   Studies show that a simple regular practice of taking notice of positive feelings, giving them a moment to register and allowing them to cause a response of gratitude can 21 Lessons From America’s Worst Moments | Timehelp diminish the negativity bias and restructure neural pathways in a positive direction.   Brain researcher Rick Hanson calls this process “experience-dependent neuroplasticity,”  and says “the main way to develop inner strengths is to have experiences of them; repeated feelings of gratitude make a person more grateful. As neuroscientists might say, positive neural traits are built from positive mental states. “

 My wife and I say grace every time we eat meals together, which is most nights.  She often says a prayer common to the Episcopalian Christian tradition as she is an Episcopal priest.  I usually say something simple and rooted in the awareness many people don’t have food or family to share it with.  Your grace can be very simple or very complicated. It can be short or long.

 To help you out, you can download my resource “Saying Grace : A UU Table Graces Resource” here: Saying Grace: A UU Table Graces Resource – Google Docs

As always, Rev. Tony would love to hear about your experiences. Email him ( revtony@pm.me ) or call him (508-344-3668) and let him know what you did and how much fun you had!