If you are headed out to Standing Rock it is important to remember that you are a guest on Tribal Lands and joining a Tribal effort. The following resources are to assist you in acting in a respectful and considerate way
Scroll down on this page to find information about:
Appropriate Inter-Cultural Protocols
Conflict Resolution Resources
But first, a very important Letter from Standing Rock Tribal Council to those who may join as visitors to the Standing Rock Reservation:
OCETI SAKOWIN CAMP Seven Council Fires Camp Seven Lakota Values Prayer. Respect. Compassion. Honesty. Generosity. Humility. Wisdom.
This is a ceremonial camp. Act accordingly.
• If this is not your home territory, remember that you are a guest. • Do not cultivate fear or doubt-- it works against our cause. • Before helping yourself to food, allow for the spirit plate to be served. Elders, women, and children eat first. • Women who are on their moon must avoid the Spirit Fire and the kitchen areas where food preparation is happening. Women who are on their moon must also avoid sweat lodges and other ceremonies. Try to remain at your camp during your sacred time. • Men and women do not sweat together. If you don't wish to be in spaces that are arranged according to gender binaries, you are able to politely decline ceremonies if invited.
Respect • Listen. • Step back and step up. • If you are new to camp and staying for the winter, please attend several winter camp meetings and just listen. • When an elder or mobility-impaired individual arrives in the meeting, offer your seat. • We do not disrespect anyone, especially women and children. • Never interrupt anyone when they are speaking. Withhold from back-and-forth conversations. • As we are a prayer camp, we ask you to dress in a respectful manner. Women should wear long dresses or skirts during ceremony. For daily dress, we ask that women cover their shoulders and we discourage revealing clothing. It is always appropriate to wear long skirts if you would like (even over your pants).
Compassion • We expect everyone to look after each other and to ensure community safety. • If you see someone that needs something, help them. Don’t wait to be asked. • We are accountable for the things we do, and for things we don't do.
Honesty • If you have an idea or suggestion for the camp, consider whether you are going to stay here long enough to implement. • Withhold from offering ideas or suggestions that you cannot commit to working on. • Be comfortable with receiving feedback.
Generosity • If you are with the camp on a short-term basis, we ask that you give more than you take. • If you have something to offer or share, including special skills, please check into the Volunteer Booth. • All community matters (ideas, needs, wants, donations) should be written down, and include your contact information, and taken to camp meetings for community agreement. This includes financial donations. • All supply and material donations should be taken to the supply tent. Please write down a list of the items you are donating, bring it to a camp meeting, and give it to the Finance Secretary for checks and balances.
Humility • Be present in a state of Humility and Grace. • If you recently arrived, please withhold from sharing your ideas right off the bat. Chances are, your idea has already come up and been addressed. • Before speaking, consider whether your question or comment needs to be addressed to the whole group, or whether you can speak to one or two people directly outside of the meeting space. • Respect silence. People may be praying. Do not rush to break the silence. • Before deciding on where to stake your tent or structure, check in with those camping around you. Make sure you are respecting their space. Get to know your neighbors. • Drugs, alcohol, and any type of substance use are not allowed, in camp or in us.
Wisdom • Remember why you are here: to stop the pipeline as a ceremonial camp. • If approaching an elder for Wisdom, always make that person an offering, such as tobacco. • We are in a constant state of Prayer and Ceremony.
appropriate inter-cultural protocols
Resource Packet for Standing Rock- Circulated by Standing Rock Lakota Sioux
conflict resolution resources
The Empowerment Manual
Center for Non-Violent Communication
Ojai Foundation ( Way of Council)
Conflict Resolution Network
Tribal Convergence Network
Peace Pledge Union for Non-Violent protests
Excerpt from ReInhabiting the Village: ROADMAP for TENSION REVELATION PROTOCOLS
You may be familiar with “Conflict Resolution” practices. Tension is natural within communities or teams as humans have many needs and perspectives to consider and working with others brings many personal things to the surface. If not appropriately navigated, conflict can demoralize a group and limit effectively reaching your goals. Within the Tribal Convergence Network Council we shifted this term to “Tension Revelation” honoring that were not only striving to resolve conflict, but we were learning to reveal the greater gifts through staying present to these challenges and finding the way to reveal what “medicine” was laying underneath the tension.
Revealing the Gift of Tension
See Tension or conflict within a group as a dynamic edge to engage in order to find more understanding, perspective, and growth within the group.
Tension and challenges can be opportunities to clarify, to deepen relationships, to clear false beliefs or expectations, or to redefine something that is no longer serving individuals or the group’s needs.
Use protocols to effectively address tensions as they arise and find resolution and insight from conflicts rather than avoid or inflate conflict.
Ideally a tension will be engaged and worked with until a gift or insight has been revealed for all parties involved. However, if a genuine effort has been given and this is not feasible due to time constraints or other limitations, then a resolution where all parties feel clear, centered, ready and able to focus on the immediate needs of the vision will suffice until a time when communication may continue uninterrupted or until time allows for a different perspective to emerge.
Tips for TENSION RESOLUTION AND REVELATION
Look inward: Can you find the source of your tension? Can you identify patterns or behaviors that tend to trigger you? What conditions make you shine? What conditions strain you?
Know your own triggers: Take responsibility for owning your wounds. Be willing to name what tends to “set you off” or create a stress response. Be willing to be imperfect and realize others are imperfect too. Realize that the only person you can change is you. Look to the choices you make and groups you align with to see if you are placing yourself in an environment that supports your gifts AND your challenges.
Develop self soothing practices: Learn ways to address your own stress response before you get to the “boiling point”. Take a walk, breathe deep, write in a journal, sing, exercise, what ever helps you “move the energy” rather than blowing up.
Respond instead of React: When you are triggered, you can slow down, engage your practices and come back to a situation when you can RESPOND instead of React to a trigger. Use your heart to guide the conversation. Distinguish between facts, thoughts, feelings, needs, and requests. All have their place and are helpful to share in a heart-centered context.
Be empowered to ask for what you need: When we can clearly ask for our needs to be met, we are more likely to create the conditions around us for feeling supported, understood, and respected. While others may not always be able to accommodate our needs, sometimes there are compromises that can be arranged. If someone can’t meet your needs, then you can always make a new choice. And sometimes just the act of speaking what your needs are helps to avoid conflict later through staying silent
Be direct and utilize compassionate communication techniques: It’s important to clear tension as soon as you are able to come from a response-able place and to clear it directly with someone when possible. For more information on “Compassionate Communication” check out the Center for Non-Violent Communication at https://www.cnvc.org/
Be a good listener: Often, if we are willing to really hear another person and practice “Active Listening” techniques we can slow down the nervous system and create a safe space to share and to hear another. We may have a change of heart or new perspective by simply striving to really hear a person and understand their need or feelings.
If the tension cannot be resolved without support: Sometimes we are just not able to effectively communicate with another. When you need to, utilize pod or team leaders, council, or facilitators and request support to communicate with you in the intention of resolution and collective empowerment.
If the person(s) are not willing to do so or if you do not feel safe (for yourself or others) approaching them - find somebody ready and willing to mediate.
With mediator as a point-person (re)approach the person(s) who the tension is with and ask if they are willing to communicate, now as a group, with the intention of resolution and collective empowerment.
The purpose of the group or mediator is primarily for holding the space of witnessing, support, and accountability, and secondarily for giving input.
If the tension cannot be resolved with a mediation: Take a break from the situation to see if time can allow for understanding or a shift in perspective. Ask the team / group that forms the immediate container in which the conflict is occurring to support the communication with the intentions of resolution and collective empowerment. Remembering that all parties are playing for the same team and do your best to shift your own experience towards to resolution and collective empowerment, even if the other person is still holding on to the tension.
Sometimes tension brings groups to an impasse: This is the cross-roads moment of any group. Do you find a way through? Does someone make the choice to move on? Trust the process and know that sometimes there is a reason for things to change. Often if a group is not empowered or able to find a way into resolution there are important lessons that can lead to wisdom for future teams or communities.
Create clear agreements BEFORE you arrive at tension! One way to navigate the things that cause tension in a group is to create the agreements and practices about HOW your group will work together, make decisions together, handle disagreements, and how people enter and exit the group with ease. Holding each individual in a group accountable to agreements can often create a strong foundation for team coherence. By mapping out your approaches at the VERY beginning phase of your team or community coming together you have a blueprint to follow as you evolve!
FEEDBACK FUELS GROWTH! Create feedback mechanisms to gather useful info. about how to better function and work together as a group. Allow for the opportunities to make course corrections and help groups and communities to evolve through healthy feedback. Creating the safe and intentional space for community dialogue is a powerful way to allow for reflection and growth within groups and those who work together the most.
CREATE AN EXIT STRATEGY: Outline clear steps for reconsidering your participation, for continued service in a role, or for leaving from a project or group. By designing the pathways for people to succeed or the clear steps to leaving, you allow for empowered choices about participation and create a clear and neutral path out of the group if someone is no longer aligned with the values or vision.