Tree of War
Oil, Not For Sale
In Iroquoian History, is an entire epoch relating to the Peacemaker. HE came at a time when people were fighting constantly with each other. His purpose was to bring Peace to the Warring Factions and to establish Creators Laws among the people. In the journey is a critical time. He has yet to get his first converts to his ideas of Peace, and so he visits the Mohawk who are starving in their stockade villages, and they are mistrustful of him, and hard headed. They do not want to listen to his words.. and so he told them: “I am sent by the Great Creator from whom we are all descended to establish the Great Peace among you.”
The Peacemaker saw a twisted and dying tree that had grown out over a chasm. Here he sprung upon the end of this tree in precarious balance. Here the Peacemaker spoke with authority, exclaiming that the People wanted Peace but their actions created enemies from their fear. He came in Peace and was greeted with suspicion and fear. “Look,” the Peacemaker said as he pointed to the ground where the tree trunk writhed out of the earth. “I can see your hatred and your fear. Can you see it too, crackling through the air?” At the very moment the storm clouds, which for some time had been gathering overhead, suddenly exploded. As a deafening roar of thunder shook the twisted tree beneath him, a crackling fork of jagged lightning danced ominously upon the very ground at which he pointed.
“Look,” the Peacemaker repeated as the crowd stood stunned. “I will show you your hatred. It flows from the group of you standing there up the trunk of this misshapen tree and fragments, like these dying twisted branches, then into numerous twigs and brittle forks.” “The idea you live with, that warfare is necessary, is a lie that you believe in. It is misshapen and as precariously rooted as this dying tree that hangs suspended over this gorge. Your belief in warfare as a way of life not only divides you from other tribes as the branches of a twisted tree divide from the trunk, but it also divides you from your families, from your own hearth fires, from all the things you love the most. And everyday you go forth to fight you know this is true.”
“Do you increase your security with this monstrous lie? No!! You know this is true for you bury your loved ones. You believe that war will bring you prosperity, but you hide in your palisades starving. This lie you believe is like this dying tree, a tree that offers no comfort, no fuel, no shade, a tree that saps the strength and twists the values of all those who become entangled in its many devious branches. “
“I am not a Mohawk. But neither am I the enemy you imagine. I come from the tribe of Real People. I am Ongwehoweh. I represent the Maker of Men and I now implore you to move your village under the great boughs of the living Tree of Peace. Men of the Mohawk Nation, if you care for truth then cut this tree of violence from your hearts”. Then the Peacemaker shouted above the fury of the wind driven rain, “It is I who have said the twisted Tree of War must be cut from your lives. It is I who will cut away this tree and fall with it. My act will give you a teaching that my words have not. No man should ever be afraid to cut falsehood from his life even if it is the thing upon which he is standing.”
With savage fury the Peacemaker began to hack away at the twisted Tree of War until a few more blows would sever it completely. As he looked up from his work, he saw in their faces a different expression, that of respect and understanding. At that moment the Peacemaker stood, the sun broke through the clouds and a rainbow appeared in an arch of brilliance across the valley below. He spoke. “There is no place for violence in the heart that honors the teachings of the Great Spirit. Remove such error from your hearts as I now remove this tree from its false roots.”