MOTHERING OUR NATIONS
An event with Pualani Case, (Hawaii) MaryAnn Bear Heals & Melaine Stoneman, (Sicangu Lakota)
These brave woman represent their nations back home, where they work tirelessly to keep the sanctity of the land and their people intact. To mother a nation, is to be responsible, to take action, and to be considerate of the future generations of human life and all life that inherit the outcome of our choices today. We call upon the original people to share how their cultural practices and ways are central to the work that each of these women do to maintain harmony with the world around them. They come with a combined message to encourage each of us to explore the traditional ways of our own ancestry and to weave them into the way we walk in this world.
This event is by donation. No one will be turned away for lack of funds.
Pua Case born and raised on the Island of Hawai’i surrounded by the high mountains of Mauna Kea, Mauna Loa, Hualalai and Kohala, the fresh waters of Kohakohau and Waikoloa and the plains of Waimea. Pua’s life path and purpose has led her to become a Kumu Hula, a teacher of traditional dance and chant, and a teacher of the ways, culture and traditions of the kanaka maoli or native peoples of Hawai’i. With a degree in Hawaiian Language and culture, and a teaching degree in Social Studies, interwoven with the traditional teachings, philosophies and expectations from her kupuna or elders, Pua has integrated ‘Ike Hawai’i or Hawaiian knowledge and lessons into the public school system for over 30 years.
Pua and her ‘ohana, her family are active as spiritual and cultural leaders in and beyond their community. They are an integral part of the protocol and ceremonies for Nā Kalaiwa’a, Moku o Keawe Makali’i Voyaging Canoe, as well as for Hōkūle’a and other Pacific Island Voyages. Pua sits on various educational and cultural boards including the Waimea Hawaiian Civic Club, Waimea Community Education Hui, and MKEA, Mauna Kea Education and Awareness. Pua and her family are petitioners in the Contested Case hearing filed on behalf of Mauna Kea Mountain. As a representative of the Mauna Kea ‘Ohana Nā Kia’I Mauna, Idle No More Hawai’i Warriors Rising and Idle No More Mauna, Kea she and her family have traveled throughout the continent, to Europe and various places across the Pacific to network, support and address the issues and challenges facing sacred places and life ways of the people of HawaiʻI and beyond Hawaii. In the past two years, Pua has represented the Mauna Kea Movement in Aotearoa and in California, she is in support of the Winnemem Wintuʻs efforts to bring back the salmon to the McCloud River. She has stood on the frontlines in North Dakota at Standing Rock and Sacred Stone Camps with fellow Mauna Kea Protectors. In October, Pua has been featured at Indigenous Peoples Day Celebrations in New York City for five years. This work is a one of commitment, dedication, passion and a mission to weave the relationships and strengthen the alliances with peoples everywhere for the highest good for the earth.
MaryAnn Bearheels (Ta Oyate Waste Wi—Her Good Nation Women)
MaryAnn a Ceremonial Prayer Woman of the Sicangu Lakota from Rosebud, South Dakota. “Our Lakota way of life starts with our creation stories and oral traditions that have been handed down over 500 years. We are creating awareness about our Indigenous environmental issues through our teachings of the water, buffalo, and bear teachings. Re-vitalizing our spiritual and physical being as Lakota women is vitally important to our future generations. Lakota community genetics is an overall look at how we are able to re-birth our nation utilizing our sovereignty and inherent rights to protect our ceremonies and women. We are the backbone to our nation and the umbilical cord to our earth.”
Melaine Stoneman, (Wakinyan Ska Wi—White Lightning Women)
Melaine is an environmental Earth warrior protecting sacred sites, water, food, women and children. She is a member of the Braveheart Women’s Society where all women’s ceremonies come together to support women and children. Women’s societies play an important role that is necessary to the traditional way of life. One of Melaine’s roles within these women’s societies is teaching the young girls about the spiritual Wasna,(spiritual food, corn, buffalo, chokecherries). These spiritual foods are utilized to spiritually cleanse and heal. The current environment is not safe to harvest the traditional foods, the waters upstream are being contaminated and the Buffalo roam is limited. These traditional foods are connected to the spiritual DNA of the people, which is why this knowledge is safeguarded and taught to the young women, so they can pass along these ways through the generations. Melaine Stoneman is an advocate for M.M.I.W., Missing Murdered Indigenous Women. MMIW has been Melaine’s pathway to bring awareness about the victims and survivors of such violence. She organizes A walk/ride/run to help heal the area’s increasingly polluted waters affected by pipelines and to raise awareness about the epidemic of missing and murdered indigenous people.
She believes that protecting the women and girls is a priority because the women and environment are spiritually bounded to the sacred sites, water & food. They have a responsibility to hold space & heal at these sacred sites to help with our connection to Unci Maka, Mother Earth. The sacred sites are being diminished by people that want their land and water. Women have the right to hold space for prayer, birthing, ceremony, song, dance and cooking. Melaine Stonemen is devoted to keeping these traditions alive & protected. “We are the backbone to our nation and the umbilical cord to our earth.” –Melaine Stoneman