We begin with deep thanks to the first people of what settler culture calls Sonoma County. For thousands of years before colonization, southern Pomo people lived in the territory where we now work and reside. Members of the Pomo, Coast Miwok, Onatsatis and other local nations reside here today. This land is their land, still. We hope for reconciliation and repair of the damage done by colonization and the attempted-genocide that allowed for the establishment of these United States.
We offer great thanks to the dozens of mentors, teachers, allies, and elders who have directly shaped Weaving Earth over the years. We are forever indebted to all you have generously offered to our evolution through your work in the world. We are grateful to have joined you in the dreaming and are doing our best to carry the vision forward with respect, authenticity, and integrity.
Passing on the teachings we have been given is a great responsibility. Some of what we have received comes from people who have been systematically oppressed (past and present) through colonization, white supremacy and cis-heteropatriarchy.
We strive to:
The following writing outlines how we approach issues of Cultural Appropriation.
The exchange between cultures has been happening for thousands of years and is not problematic in and of itself. Discerning the difference between healthy exchange and misappropriation rests in understanding historical and present-day power dynamics and how new cultural practices are adopted. Far too often, members of dominant groups take cultural elements from oppressed groups without consent, understanding of the cultural element, or regard for the harm such actions cause—this theft perpetuates the oppression and reaffirms mistrust.
Our current working definitions, co-created with J. Miakoda Taylor of Fierce Allies, are:
The adoption or use of the elements of one culture by members of another culture with consent.
The adoption or use of the elements of one culture by members of another culture without consent.
The adoption or use of the elements of one culture by members of another culture that results in commodification, desecration, misrepresentation, and/or disrespect of the practice and its culture of origins.
We acknowledge that:
What follows is a list of individuals who have had a significant influence on the work and direction of Weaving Earth. This list is by no means comprehensive as we have been profoundly impacted and influenced by myriad teachers, family members, past and current participants, and perhaps most notably, the natural world. We give deep thanks and respect to all our teachers — we wouldn’t be where we are without you, and we pray that we honor you through the work we do.
We give special thanks to these teachers/elders/guides who have offered their gifts to the world, and to us, in such beautiful and generous ways:
Most of the photographs that appear on this site were taken by Jenny Erbes, a 3-year graduate of the WE Immersion. Jenny is a skilled naturalist, an aspiring filmmaker, a phenomenal photographer and a devoted protector of the endangered snowy plover. You can see more of her work HERE.
The kingfisher illustration featured on our About Us page was drawn by Lara Birchler, who is currently completing her 3rd year of the WE Immersion, in addition to guiding backpacking trips for WE. More of her artwork is available at www.larabirchler.com.
Our website was redesigned in 2019 by the capable folks at Montaia. Big thanks to their creative input and vision.