One of the next issues addressed has to do with Devil’s Tower. A place long been sacred to the Lakota, has also become a place of tension in the last few years. Once a year the Lakota run around the boundary of the lands that they once held before European contact. One of the places that they run by is Devil’s Tower. Devil’s Tower has also traditionally been a place where the Lakota leave offerings, do ceremonies, and make prayers. The Lakota consider rock climbing on the Tower to be disrespectful. In cooperation with the Forest Service they have asked rock climbers to stay off the Tower during the month of July. This is *not* a mandatory ban, but a voluntary one. Many climbers, however, continue to climb even after the reason for the ban has been explained. I shake my head and wonder why.
This fight is our fight. As paganism moves on into the future there will be places on the Land that we too will consider powerful, and worthy of preservation. One day we too will hope that others will help us when places that are important to us are threatened. Or will we all end up just turning the other cheek and find somewhere else to go? If so, I would argue that that place really means nothing to us when the chips are down. Pagans (Celtic pagans especially) must start asking the question, “What does it mean to be ‘indigenous’ to a place?”. And we must start to ask our society why it is so hard to stop climbing on someones “Church” for one month out of the year?
When will we as a society stop valuing money over proper stewardship of the Land that gives us life?