Believe What You Like But Know What You Must

People are free to be consumed with contemplating their existence, their origins, the origins of the universe, supreme beings, controllers of destiny or anything else. But solving "the Great Mystery" is neither a requirement of being Ohnkwe Ohnwe nor does it provide a path to righteousness. I maintain that spirituality does not require faith or the leaps that faith requires but rather awareness. If it helps to believe that "God has a plan" and we just must have faith that "He" knows what "He" is doing, then walk that path. My interest is in taking the mystery out of life by pointing to the obvious that is ignored everyday in the midst of fanatical ideology and the sometimes not too subtle influences of promoting beliefs over knowledge. I have said it before: “beliefs are what you are told, knowledge is what you experience”. I support a culture that prepares us to receive knowledge and to live a life with purpose. I am certainly not suggesting there is only one way to do that.

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Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Mohawk protesters block Ontario bridge over arming of border guards

A boy joins Mohawk protesters at their demonstration. (Submitted by Christopher Clarke)


Mohawk protesters block access to the Skyway Bridge, which spans the Bay of Quinte near Belleville, Ont., and links the Tyendinaga Mohawk Territory and Prince Edward County. (Submitted by Christopher Clarke)



Last Updated: Monday, June 8, 2009 6:23 PM ET Comments479Recommend122
CBC News

About 40 Mohawk protesters blocked a bridge in eastern Ontario Sunday evening in support of a nearby First Nations community engaged in a standoff with the federal government over the arming of border guards.
Protesters blocked either side of the Skyway bridge, which spans the Bay of Quinte near Belleville, Ont., and links the Tyendinaga Mohawk Territory and Prince Edward County.
Shawn Brant, a well-known activist in Tyendinaga, helped organize the blockade. Brant and other Mohawks plan to stay on the bridge until the federal government makes a commitment to hold what they describe as meaningful talks with Mohawks in Akwesasne. The Akwesasne territory is located near Cornwall, Ont., east of Kingston.(CBC)
Talks between Mohawk officials from the Akwesasne and the Canada Border Services Agency broke down last weekend over the issue of arming guards assigned to posts on Cornwall island, which is in the middle of Akwesasne, a territory that straddles Quebec, Ontario and New York state.
The border guards in Cornwall were set to start carrying 9-mm handguns last Monday, under a new federal policy enacted across the country. Instead, guards left their posts at midnight last Sunday, citing safety concerns, after hundreds of Mohawks set up camp near the border to protest the gun policy.
Canadian authorities then shut down the Seaway International Bridge into the United States at Cornwall last Monday. The bridge, which spans the St. Lawrence River, handles about 2.4 million crossings annually.
Possibility of Closure
For the time being, travellers have been advised to use a point of entry at Prescott, which is 60 kilometres west, or the Dundee crossing, which is 17 kilometres southeast.
The Akwasasne protesters are angry about guards being allowed to carry guns, because they say it violates their sovereignty, and increases the likelihood of violent confrontations.
The federal public safety minister said Sunday the border crossing might be shut permanently unless Mohawk leaders accept a decision to arm border guards.
Peter Van Loan told CTV's Question Period the government is examining all options, including moving the port of entry.

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