May 19 – Daily Feast

May 19 – Daily Feast

If there is one thing that scares us, it is the thought that any part of life has been wasted. We look back and ask why we let it happen – what was so important that it could steal our youth, our strength, our capacity to be somebody – to just be happy. Is it too late to begin again? Never. It may be with a different set of rules, a standard of values that has changed drastically, but begin again? Yes, Many have started over and have had more happiness and contentment in a short time than in all of what is known as the wasted years. Anyone who has ever traveled a trail of tears wishes they had known then what they know now. But we did not know, and life is not lived by hindsight. We did what we knew to do – sometimes with great ignorance. But if we know the difference now and want to begin again – then why not? And why not now?

~ Years of trial and anxiety, of danger and struggle, have maintained the ….Cherokee people as a distinct community….and such must continue. ~


‘A Cherokee Feast of Days’, by Joyce Sequichie Hifler

May 18 – Daily Feast

May 18 – Daily Feast

Have we lost control of who we are? Have we allowed ourselves to get in a position of little or no control – believing that we must forfeit bits and pieces of who we are to get along? The one weapon against us that has the total respect of the world is the business of weight loss. Never have so many fought so long to lose so little. Think of the dollar value put on a pound of flesh – the hype, the remorseful tears, the acceptance that we cannot control our eating. Though overindulging in anything is dis-ease, it is not disease. It is the silent enemy, the spirit of destruction that the Cherokee calls, u so nv I, which is not good but downright evil. It is the enemy with no power except subliminal suggestion. But enter the Great Holy Spirit, and its great roar is but a pip-squeak. We have to care, but we also need to know the truth to be free.

~ When the Great Father sent out men to our people, I was poor and thin,; now I am large and stout and fat. It is because so many liars have been sent…..and I have been stuffed full of their lies. ~

RED DOG, 1870

‘A Cherokee Feast of Days’, by Joyce Sequichie Hifler

May 16 – Daily Feast

May 16 – Daily Feast

There is a chance that a decision we make will lead us into battle, an inward and an outward battle against our own will and against the negative flow of the world in general. A cherished goal challenges us that we cannot do it – we can’t possibly do what smarter people have tried and failed to do. But chances are we have a source of wisdom that others may not have had, though everything points to their advantages over ours. Maybe we have a source that is more reliable, that no weapon formed against us can prosper. Chief John Ross taught the Cherokees to be persistent. Not a moment could be wasted in apathy, but we had to be there with muscles and mind toned and ready. The tribe’s willingness to follow through with honor and integrity helped us to survive.

~ Our cause is with God and good men, and there we are willing to leave it. ~


‘A Cherokee Feast of Days’, by Joyce Sequichie Hifler

May 15 – Daily Feast

May 15 – Daily Feast

Our willingness to work at whatever we can opens doors to new opportunities. Willingness breathes life into us and gives us vision. Hope is good but determination is even better. It sets the tone to move, to do the thing set out for us. And we can do anything when we do not stop to consider what if we were to fail, or what is we are not appreciated. Cherokee women were never considered inferior to the men. They were honored and respected and educated themselves so they could teach their children. It meant hard work and determination to perfect what they could so they could pass it on. Sometimes, the main objective of our work is not just to prosper us but to do a worthwhile thing well. We keep labor on a high level, never taking the easy way out. There is honor in work – even in the most menial job. Success is short-lived when the work is done for appearances.

~ If our children should visit this place…..they may see and recognize with pleasure the deposits of their fathers. ~


‘A Cherokee Feast of Days’, by Joyce Sequichie Hifler

May 14 – Daily Feast

May 14 – Daily Feast

How many times she called me to her side to share something beautiful – the glowing embers in a sunset, the call of a whippoorwill, or one of those rare moments when Venus draws near the new moon. How many times she held my hand to comfort me through hope and fear, birth and death, happiness and unhappiness. How many times she taught me that no one is ever alone. We are always in the presence of Father-God who loves us – no matter what might appear to frighten us. How many times she said, “You can do it!” and how many times she refrained from saying, “You’ll never make it.” And how many blessings I wish upon her – my mother!

~ I will come with my family and pitch my lodge in your camp, that others may see….you are under my protection. ~


‘A Cherokee Feast of Days’, by Joyce Sequichie Hifler

May 12 – Daily Feast

May 12 – Daily Feast

Country people do not find it strange to hear the pond is turning over. They know it is not doing a flip but everything that has fallen in it suddenly comes to the top. It is nature’s way of cleaning house. It isn’t pretty but it does work. The whole pond of human affairs needs to turn over at times. When everything seems to happen at once, friends disagree, and coworkers are suddenly mired in stuff from the bottom of the pond, it is time to clean house. It isn’t always, u wo du hi, beautiful or pretty, but it does work. The best part is that it doesn’t last long. Everything rights itself with time – for a while. It helps to know that when something unclean falls in the water, eventually the pond will turn over to get rid of it. It just takes time.

~ We took an oath not to do any wrong to each other or to scheme against each other. ~


‘A Cherokee Feast of Days’, by Joyce Sequichie Hifler

May 10 – Daily Feast

May 10 – Daily Feast

We are complex combinations of many things. Mind, body, and spirit, yes, but with all the height and depth and feeling that make up the three. If one of these is not kept in shape and made to be harmonious with the others, we are out of balance. There is almost always more interest in one part rather than seeing the necessity of developing the whole person. What reading a book is to one person equals running a mile to another. It is natural to do what pleases us and makes us feel worthy. The Cherokee claims that if you, tso tle s di, sit down all the time or are idle in mind and spirit, the whole, I ya dv ne li da s di, complex system, suffers. Once upon a time, Indian dancing served the whole person, worshiping, exercising, and activating the mind. True fitness requires it all.

~ We work as hard as you do! Did you ever try skinning a buffalo? ~


‘A Cherokee Feast of Days’, by Joyce Sequichie Hifler

May 9 – Daily Feast

May 9 – Daily Feast

Sentences half spoken and beyond total hearing are the source of difficulty. Only in the bright light of reason and understanding can these cloudy mishaps be corrected. Some are simply tuned to hear the negative – even when it was never intended to be. They hear with an ear that is already bent toward trouble and only too willing to pass it on. We might consider what we want to hear – because everyone has moments when words tumble out with little meaning. Whether it is a slip of the tongue or simply filling in a quiet spell, we are sometimes guilty of speaking when we should have been listening. The tongue is a little member and sometimes kindles quite a fire when it should spit on the matches.

~ We are becoming like them…..all talkers and no workers. ~


‘A Cherokee Feast of Days’, by Joyce Sequichie Hifler

May 8 – Daily Feast

May 8 – Daily Feast

There is something very good about suppertime. Suppertime is more than just a time to eat – it is warm with happy memories. A few sunny hours to run barefoot after school, a time of homecoming and hearing what everyone else did during the day. Suppertime means watching Grandmother make, digalvnhi, Cherokee grape dumplings, and hearing her sing as she worked. A day, a time, an hour never stands on its own, but is bolstered by all those hours that have gone before. Nothing is ever lost – not even the simplest things – for time enhances what has been dear to us. We tend to look back and think something no longer exists. But it does, in all the lovely hours that wait for us – like suppertime – like singing in the kitchen and warm bread baking. This is not just memory, it is sharing life.

~ We do not want riches, we want peace and love. ~


‘A Cherokee Feast of Days’, by Joyce Sequichie Hifler

May 7 – Daily Feast

May 7 – Daily Feast

If we ignore everything beautiful and look down the road to some future time, chances are it will be the same. This is the time, the e to a, the now, the present, to see the dearness of other people, the chance to be grateful – to enjoy. Why wait? Perfect times are elusive. They create an atmosphere that life should be lived on some high emotional level instead of experiencing love. Time goes by. The peaks were not what made life worthwhile – but the in-between times that gave us a chance to stand in the quiet of a wooded glen, even if it is just in our hearts, and know that love made it all worthwhile. Love will continue to make each a giant of peace in our souls.

~ I want to tell you if the Great Spirit had chosen anyone to be chief of this country, it is myself. ~


‘A Cherokee Feast of Days’, by Joyce Sequichie Hifler