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Reemergence through loving the world


K’a’teshil K’inal [1]

Sna’elsba sk’aal te ik’e ja’ sna’el te ak’ope.
Ya sna’ te pasbilat ta k’ayo sok ta sch’ejan k’inal,
jich te lekil k’ope ja’ spoxil,
te sbolilal k’inal sok kontrailetik.

Sna’elsba sk’aal te ja’e ja’ sna’elaba.
Ay ta na’el te pasbilat ta xab sok ta syujk’ab te ja’e.
K’aal ajk’ubal ya xmalik beel, 

ta bajk’el tajimal.

Sna’elsba sk’aal te k’ajk’e ja’ sna’elsba snopbenal ajol.
Ya sna’ te pasbilat ta xojob sok ek’etike.
Ta axinal te waichiletike,
ya yak’ik unin snich sk’alel uetik.

Sna’elsba sk’aal te lum k’inale ja’ sna’elsba te awo’tane.
Sna’o te pasbilat ta ts’unubiletik sok ta ch’ich’.
Ta banti sjaltiklayesba awisim ya xmal te sbujts’ k’inale,
yak’be yip te kuxlejale, kuxul te k’anbaile . . . 

Fertile Ground

To know the Sun of Wind is to know your word.
Know you are made of songs and silence,
the kindest word is where the healing comes
from tempests and from foes.

To know the Sun of Water is to know your form.
Know you are made of abyss and waves,
day and night they flow and go
in constant restless games.

To know the Sun of Fire is to know your mind.
Know you are made of light and stars
that in the shadows dreams
give tender moonlight gleams.

To know the Sun of Earth is to know your heart.
Know you are made of seeds and blood
within your web of roots bliss flows
to nourish life, to live in love . . .


This will be a familiar story.
It will be a story of blame, shame, self-loathing, and condemnation of “the other” that morphs into remembrance, resilience, reverence, and love



Once upon the greenery of my years, panic held me in his grip of uncertainty. I was barely hanging from the horns of the moon with no safety net underneath. Mere existence hurt in beauty and dismay, bliss and horror. Not unlike today.

Stories run fast about a world that is inert, dreamless, merely for stock . . .

Domination bolsters loss—subjugation furthers bondage.

These tales of alienation and division, conquest and defeat, they paralyze us. Unable to act, we become sterile, fearing our creativity due to our destructive power over the world.

What wicked influence convinced us
of guarding an inner cell
against our dreams? 

Roaming in the maze of powerlessness, unable to belong, I had little of the sweetness of youth and was heavy in the bitter taste. I was too young for wisdom, and already too exhausted from fighting for my life. Between recklessness and hopelessness, I dared the world to counter back.

Time felt rock rigid then.

from my own rigidity of unattainable control.

But uncertainty is freedom. 

I imagined humanity carrying a heart of stone. Then, I realized Elder rocks are made of tiny sibling particles—slowly, slowly packed together. While they may seem as if weighed down by time, most often buried, silent, and left for dead, they are still porous. Channels between the Siblings run, through which water and wind flow. There is a song resounding in their heart.

Their hearts are full of reverence, their wisdom full of Spirit from the Lands.

And so, this was their song:

Dear One, we know very well the mud you’re in. Know its breadth. Surrender. Still. In its depth lies the acorn’s dream of groves. Your story, while it seems your own, is always woven with others. Now, a thread looking for warp and weft; later, a web of food shared, a good home to all others. 

Theirs is a gift of trust, a gift of commitment. These words are water that does not resist but coheres. These words bridge time, the past into the future, spiraling into this present moment when you read them. These are the stories of my Elders that return sowing seeds of reverence, of home, of love. It is a love that weaves in collective ways. A love that reaches your heart, warping and wefting into a colorful fabric of plurality.

Loving the world

it opens and flows

reemerging . . .

About the Contributor

Yuria Celidwen, PhD, springs from an Indigenous Maya and Nahua lineage of mystics, healers, and poets from the highlands of Chiapas, Mexico. Her scholarship on Indigenous forms of contemplation examines self-transcendence and its embodiment in prosocial behavior (reverence, ethics, compassion, kindness, awe, love, and sacredness). She calls this work the Indigenous “Ethics of Belonging” toward planetary flourishing rooted in honoring Life. She is a researcher at the University of California, Berkeley, and senior fellow at the Othering & Belonging Institute.

Image Credit

Rithika Merchant is a visual artist from Bombay (Mumbai), India. Her work explores comparative mythology as well as science and speculative fiction, featuring creatures and symbolism that are part of her personal visual vocabulary. She creates bodies of work that both visually link to our collective past and imagine possible new worlds that we may come to inhabit. @rithikamerchant


1. Poem in Maya Tseltal and its translation into English by Yuria Celidwen.[top]

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