Fleeting Power

January 14, 2020, Peach Springs-

The Colorado River flows, past a point about ten miles from where I sit.  If I were to follow Diamond Springs Road to its terminus, I would be able to stand and witness the power of this still mighty flow.  The Colorado’s power helped to carve out the massive series of gorges that envelop it.  The Grand Canyon itself has an intense set of powers, all its own.

So, it is ironic, to the nth degree, that the people living in its midst have come to feel powerless, for much of their existence within the framework of the most powerful country of the past 1 1/4 centuries.  The Hualapai and their near neighbours, the Havasupai, know the Canyon more intimately than anyone, with the possible exception of the Dineh (Navajo).  Until about ten years ago, though, the Hualapai enjoyed very little of the economic benefits of the Grand Canyon’s drawing power.  The tribe has established a set of West Rim attractions-a Sky Walk, Eagle Point, and a rafting enterprise, as the Colorado can be accessed from a point on the Reservation.  There is also the comfortable Hualapai Lodge and a fairly well-stocked, if somewhat pricey Walapai Market.

I can tell people who feel powerless, from their language- an inordinate reliance on profanity and pejoratives as their means of projecting force.  The louder and more frequently a person curses; the more often someone is dismissive of people who are different from self, the more there is compensation for one’s own perceived irrelevance.

I’ve seen that, in many places-and I see it with several of the children with whom I’m working here.   That, alone, makes the 1 1/2 months I am likely to spend here, extremely urgent.  Not only building them up, but helping to establish a framework for long-term success, have to be primary goals.

Power derived from deception and intimidation is fleeting.  The Hualapai can no longer afford to rely on this means to power.

6 thoughts on “Fleeting Power

  1. Sending prayers to you and those you have been chosen to walk with at this time. Your comment “I can tell people who feel powerless, from their language- an inordinate reliance on profanity and pejoratives as their means of projecting force. The louder and more frequently a person curses; the more often someone is dismissive of people who are different from self, the more there is compensation for one’s own perceived irrelevance.” This really hit home. This morning, trying to navigate life, I found myself cursing like a drunken banshee, then looking up and apologizing to the Creator – more than once. Kept trying to figure out why I was cursing so much today. Decided to pray and let it go. Just found my answer here, thank you. While I’ve not walked the path of these beautiful people, powerlessness can be deeply felt as well when life gives you lemons but not enough energy to make lemonade, so to speak. You will bless each other with the work you are doing and the lessons you are sharing. Also, may I share this quote from your post on my wall?

    Liked by 1 person

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