You do not speak for me: Grieving my country


Grieving America

If you do not speak for the earth

You do not speak for me.

If you do not care for the water

You do not care for me.

If you do not protect our skies

You do not protect me.

If you do not see our firey sun

You do not see our food is on fire.

If you do not preserve our lands

You are destroying our home.

If you do not listen to the creatures

You do not listen to any of us.

If you will not put human life before greed

You do not not speak for us.

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Letters from the RTC 2016

Shiloh painting green face

Dear One,

This is a fine line for me – to share politics. But it goes beyond that at this point in our country. My sacred assignment is encouragement for the journey and I like to stay focused there, so I hope you can see this in the light in which it is shared. This is encouragement to write and paint, sharing my process with you and inviting you to get intentionally creative.

We are no longer dealing with just “politics” but our very survival, and integrity as a country, as a people. I had to go to the canvas yesterday, I felt the tears would consume me. So I painted into one of my process paintings where I put the hard stuff in – I added prayers for earth air fire and water, and at the very end this earth tear dropped down. I invite you to paint what you are feeling too – it helps move energy and then motivates us to take action. Also drumming a lot. If you are a painter and you drum, you can use your last painting as the doorway image to journey – it is a very powerful vehicle of personal transformation.

Since my early twenties I have said, what is true for the tree frog is true for me. Meaning, what a tiny creature goes through is of my concern, of utmost concern. If the frogs are sick, I am sick, we are sick. IF they are hurt we are hurt. I would say to my LOA friends, did the tree frog call on having 5 legs from a contaminated river? It has long been my deep personal metaphor, and, it is also one of the primary symbols of my teacher, Sue, the frog, the raven, the owl, and moss.

So when I woke up this morning I had those words going through my mind; What’s true for the tree frog is true for me and I started to write the above. I wasn’t going to share it. But then…

Then. Hop Hop Hop. In my studio, right in front of my easel I saw something strange, it was a hopping dust ‘bunny’ – a ball of dust was hopping to my easel where it stopped. I got closer and it was a teeny tiny frog, all covered in dust. I picked it up and took the dust bunnies off, she was sticky and had gathered up all this dust and had become a a ball of dust. I have no idea where she came from as she came from the direction inside the house. I took her outside and thanked her. She was gorgeous, pale moss green and ochre yellow. And so, my Red Thread Cafe today is this writing, tea with the tree frog changes everything.

Take it our leave it, but, wherever you are, blessings on your own path, we are each on a journey, and this is quite a ride! Sending a hug to you since I needed one too 🙂

Speaking of being Intentionally Creative, On August 12 and 14, Shilo Shiv will be joining us from Bangalore, India, and we will bring the intensity of our experiences into the canvas together and share time with you online and in person. Our class, Fearless Belonging could not be more timely actually – because during this madness, each of us needs to continue to CHOOSE to belong here.

Many of us don’t know what to say, cannot find the words, find ourselves speechless. Let’s move through that. Let’s start talking in new ways together. It’s time for untethering from silence.

With heart from the Red Thread Cafe in my studio,

Shiloh signature 2016

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I am keeping the watch

~ To our ‘leadership’

Who are you? I do not know you. I do not know this America. I do not know what democracy means now. We don’t have a democracy. I don’t know what this is, but you have made our home a hostile place. I pray to the Great Spirit that all truths about you will be revealed and that we will wake up. Add your prayers that truth will prevail. Against all odds #‎truthprevails

This is not a war cry, this is just a cry. I am grieving America. A home I love. An idea I thought I loved. Yet, an idea built on the bones of ancestors. Not ours. The Ancestors of THIS land. This is occupied territory: America. How could we get this right, When we have not made amends for our arrival invasion here? The saga of betrayal continues. I just want to go home, but where? Yes, I know full well I am also you. I am also part of this problem and part of this solution. In this cry, I will do my best to stand apart from you. I will not stand with you.

Who am I? Who am I to say anything at all?

I am a gatekeeper from a circle of gatekeepers. You don’t know us. Yet you will be hearing from us. We do not know you either, but we see you. You do not sit our circles. You do not listen to our children, our cancer, our climate, our creatures. But. We hear you. And hear this: We do not stand with you. Any of you, who do not speak for earth, You do not speak for us. Your “power” is an illusion. May the veil part to reveal your plans. Feel us, seeing your deceptions. This is my cry, this is my prayer. #‎weseeyou

To Our Allies:

People of other lands who have looked to us. Look again. Friends of America. This is not what democracy looks like. They do not speak for us. Americans are people, not a concept of America. Not the one you see right now. Not the killers, the suits, the racists and the sexists, not the liars, the belligerents and the traitors.

Worldwide, let us all not make the assumption that our governments represent our people. There are few countries that do. Speak to each other across borders You will see, powers-that-be – you do not speak for us. Let’s stop the grand generalizations shall we? I am still American, but the government does not speak for me.

Who are we? We are citizens of earth. We are watching you. We are keeping ourselves strong for the journey ahead which you have laden with challenges for our children and our earth. And for what? You poison our future for profit. And then lift up your ideas. This is madness. What many of us have been seeing that was hidden, about America, is now revealed in the behaviors of men and women who do not speak for us but say they do.

We must keep the watch! #‎keepthewatch

I strengthen myself through the calling of circles, the writing of poems, the painting of images, the gathering of friends, the participation in goodness in my community and in not turning away from your plans. I will vote, knowing it rarely counts, but I will vote since I am not sitting this one out. I will not go numb. I will not go blind. I will see you. And I am watching. This may mean nothing to you. To me, it means everything. I have read almost everything I can find, about all of you, yet, I am naive, and astonished. But I am waking with a roar in my heart. I will not go to sleep on the questions that love asks. I am a gatekeeper and I am grieving, all the while I am growing stronger. We are growing stronger. Hear us, we do not stand with you.

Signed, Pissed off in America,

Shiloh Sophia, Artist

United States of America, The Election Year 2016

Kiss of Wisdom painting

Kiss of Wisdom by Shiloh Sophia

Revolution is Personal

Dive into the impossible

Don’t turn back now

Don’t look away

Choose to open all your eyes In seeing what is –

You are opened

Resist the temptation to go numb

Tune into the greater field

Don’t be distracted by the confusion

We need you here, awake & ready

Revolution is personal

It starts with your curiosity

This kind of openness strengthens

There is a journey ahead for us

I will meet you on the path

Between madness and celebration

There’s a little cafe by the roadside

We’ll unravel the mysteries of the universe

together over tea

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Shilo Shiv Suleman Graphic

Painting, Poetry and Storytelling


AUGUST 14 In Healdsburg

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Encouragement for the Journey