Offering Visionary Leadership Training - Healing, Optimism, Purpose, Evolution
In early October this year I embarked on the annual overnight Vision Quest. This quest is held as part of my responsibility in managing Helpers Mentoring Society and all the communities touched by the teaching we provide. As I do each year, I pray and ask for guidance for how to move the spiritual healing of humanity forward in the best way, and for any information that needs to be shared to the Helpers community.
This year’s quest was unusually challenging to me. Typically, I experience a sense of serenity and calm as I enter the quest. I also typically experience physical comfort during the quest. This year that was not the case. I experienced a sense of tension on a mental and emotional level for much of the quest. Physically I struggled with the cold, even though I have previously quested in MUCH colder weather. The spiritual communication was also challenging to receive and filled with warning. I was happy when the long night was over, and I could return to...
Summer has quickly passed into fall and now fall is almost winter. Over the past month Bison People Land has gone through tremendous changes. The project has grown into a collaborative venture with Eco-Restoration Communities, the organization has incorporated, we have lost and gained a newborn bison calf, and had to cull our beloved bull, Buck. All of this, in combination with land management, numerous ceremonial events, and international travel has prevented me from providing an earlier update on Bison People Land.
We were blessed in June to have a newborn calf join our small herd. The calf quickly grew into a playful young bison. Over the past months her light cinnamon coat has transitioned into the thicker and darker hues of a mature bison yearling. The nourishing milk from her doting mother has been more than enough to support her accelerated development. Even now, after transitioning to grazing, she stays close to her mother, sometimes still attempting to nurse....
Forty years ago, Jon Young began offering mentoring programs for young people that grew into a world-wide network of mentors helping communities connect to nature, themselves and other people. The foundations of Seeing through Native Eyes and Kamana began in 1983, supported thousands of people's learning and connection journeys over 40 years, and continue to this day.
Tracking our Roots in Nature is both the name of this live re-record journey and is also what the final product of the newly recorded version of Seeing Through Native Eyes will be called.
We are happy to have the opportunity to re-visit the invaluable wisdom within these offerings, to honor the origins of the teachings, and to bring this forward to the Future Generations in a good way.
The Language of the Land, our annual nature connection camp was held at the end of June 2023. The participants had opportunities for various nature connection activities, including tracking, plant medicine, swimming, hiking, fire making, sensory awareness, sharing stories, and gratitude. This year the children got a special treat when we rented a boat and a tube to pull the kids around the lake. The weather was beautiful with hot days and cool nights - and we were blessed with powerful thunderstorms. All of the campers enjoyed the beach and swimming every day. We held a community campfire every night.
The Language of the Land camp is a cultural exchange for the participants – for people of diverse backgrounds to meet and spend quality time in nature connecting to the truth of our common relationship to the natural world. It is also an opportunity for the Native American youth to reconnect to the land and remember their old kinship with...
After the many sacred fire ceremonies across the earth over the solstice, there is much wisdom to be shared from the ceremonies. As is often the case, the messages and insights offered through these deeply connective practices are global messages pertinent to all nations. This video is an opportunity to harvest the learning from the fires for life that can help us all. View the video for a rich harvest of the many sacred fire ceremonies which burned to support life moving forward into the future. Hosted by Salvatore Gencarelle and Penny Jerram.
After a long hard winter in the Black Hills of South Dakota, Spring life is returning in its fullness to the land. The grasses, flowers, and trees bring their energy, and more life is flourishing.
The migratory birds are returning and bringing the medicine of song to the hills, and it is good to hear the gentle noises of Spring as a counterpart to the quiet of the winter months.
With the land rich again with nutritious plants, the Bison are often up in the hills away from the property, with their needs being met by nature.
We were deeply saddened to discover that our Bison had had a calf, but it had died. We do not yet know what happened, but the Bison appeared to be mourning their loss, and we are very respectful of this process.
However, we are delighted to announce that a second, healthy calf was born in the last few days. Our small herd is doing really well, and Buck is very protective of the young one. The balance of life and death is very perceivable here in the Hills.
Fires will again be lit worldwide in support of life this coming June solstice. Learn how you can get involved in your own way and hear the motivation and intention behind these fires. This is the fourth year that fires have been intentionally set across the globe in unison, and we hope to have the same positive impact that was achieved with all the previous year’s endeavors. Presented by Penny Jerram and Salvatore Gencarelle.
Each year Helpers Mentoring Society looks for opportunities to give to the Indigenous communities from which many of our teachings are sourced. This sharing of material abundance is part of the spiritual agreement between Helpers Mentoring Society’s founder Salvatore Gencarelle and the ancestors who have shared these teachings.
Besides the ongoing support to the decedents of Salvatore's teacher, we also annually sponsor a 'giveaway' event, in which material items and food is distributed to the Indigenous community. In the past month this has been through the sponsorship of the wake, funeral, and giveaway for the passing of a young native infant who died from SIDS in the town of Wanblee, South Dakota.
We also host the annual Language of the Land Camp in the Black Hills of South Dakota for Indigenous children and families to connect to the natural world, learn bushcraft and survival skills, nature sensory development, and to have a fun time in nature....
The winter season has been long and severe this year in the Black Hills of South Dakota. Temperatures have dipped well below freezing many days, including one night which went to -50 degrees Fahrenheit (-45 degrees Celsius).
As challenging as us humans tend to find those periods of deep cold, the bison seem to enjoy the cold weather. They do need plenty of good grass to eat to sustain their energy requirements – which means we can often find them close to the hay, munching away.
This year, due to the many contributions to the Bison People Land project, we secured plenty of hay to keep the bison well feed during the winter. Our small herd can go through about 1000 pounds of hay in about a week.
As much as the bison enjoy the cold weather, I’m sure they are looking forward to the fresh spring grasses and the warmer days that will be coming in later April and May.
To learn more about the...
At the heart of all that the Helpers Mentoring Society offers is a unique, powerful, and ancient body of knowledge, understanding, and wisdom on how to connect and heal. Many who hear the teachings observe that it speaks to something profound and universal within them. This wisdom has come from multiple generations of interaction with creation, seeking life. Human beings are not born knowing how to live; we must learn, which is part of the human experience. The modern understanding of life is deeply flawed as it has lost the previous generation's wisdom through conflict and colonization. The wisdom of living in health, happiness, and connection to life is sought through asking the unseen for guidance. What often returns as an answer is ceremony and song. Within these ceremonial processes are maps of how to live. These maps are simple yet hold a universal wisdom that fits within all creation. The ceremonies teach us how to live. If we approach with humility and listen deeply, we can...