Native American Peace and Dignity Journey arriving in Paso Robles on July 8

Saturday, May 11th, 2024

Peace and Dignity Journey Paso Robles

Photo courtesy Peace and Dignity Journey website.

Indigenous-inspired run travels from Alaska to Columbia

—The Peace and Dignity Journey (P&DJ) is an indigenous-inspired prayer journey that invites the participation of native and non-native individuals who are committed to preserving Native American cultures. The North American runners start in Alaska and meet the South American runners in Columbia. The route from Fairbanks to El Cuaca, Columbia covers over 5000 miles and takes around seven months.

A small group of core runners left Fairbanks, Alaska May 3, expecting to arrive in Paso Robles on July 8.

Jessica Tzikin, one of the California organizers, said, “By the time we reach Paso Robles, we should have about 30 to 40 runners.” Anyone interested can join the run at any point and commit to running any distance. The number of runners can vary throughout the journey. Tzikin, who ran in 2016, said there is a core of 10 to 15 runners who reach Columbia.

Jose Malvido, one of the primary organizers, describes the run as a time to “heal and move people forward.” The run is considered a prayerful opportunity to spread peace and healing.

Native American ceremonies Paso Robles

Peace and Dignity Journey preparing to leave Fairbanks, Alaska

The inspiration for peace, dignity and unity

—The Peace and Dignity Journey has its roots in 1990 in Quito, Ecuador. Over 200 representatives from indigenous nations from as far north as the Arctic Circle to Argentina and the Caribbean gathered to address the state of indigenous people and to organize a hemispheric response to the upcoming quincentennial of the establishment of the “New World” led by Christopher Columbus.

The members discussed the significance of the ancient eagle and condor prophecy, deciding that one way to share the knowledge of indigenous nations was to unite the people of the North, symbolized by the eagle, with those of the South, symbolized by the condor. This assembly marked the first time indigenous people from throughout the Abya Yala (Western Hemisphere) had come together. Abya Yala means “mature land” in the language spoken by the Kuna of Panama and Columbia.

The eagle and condor prophecy, with origins in the Amazon, predicted that there would be a 500-year period during which the eagle would become so powerful that it would nearly drive the condor out of existence. As the 500-year period came to an end, the potential would arise for the eagle and condor to fly together and create a new level of consciousness for humankind.

The leaders from the Quito conference encouraged the prophecy to be embraced as a guiding principle. In 1991, participants from the Quito assembly and other indigenous organizers met in New Mexico and founded the Peace and Dignity Journeys to express the traditions of running as prayer and indigenous cultural self-determination.

Join or support the journey

Anyone interested in joining the journey or providing community support can sign up on the 2024 Route page of the Peace and Dignity Central Coast website.

Those wishing to assist with financial support can donate through the Peace & Dignity Journeys 2024 GoFundMe campaign.

The runners are arriving in Paso Robles from King City on July 8 and continuing to San Luis Obispo, Pismo Beach, Guadalupe, and Santa Ynez over subsequent days. Other regional destinations on the way to Paso Robles include Aptos, Salinas, and Indian Canyon near Hollister. For current information and progress reports, follow Peace & Dignity Journey on Facebook.

—Jackie Iddings




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