• May 16th, 2022
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Cuentos de Mi Chante Chicano: Mexicanidad y Chicanismo


 

Daniel Stange

 

Yo Soy Chicano. Soy Mexika. Soy hijo de la tierra. Child of the land. Not just any land, but the land on which we know today as América. For 500 years our people have resisted the European colonization. Just like other cultures through the African continent, South America, India, Southeast Asian countries, Australia and Pacific islanders. It really did become a global phenomenon, this ideology of European dominance and extension of Greco-Roman culture that seeks to conquer and subject natural people to the will of commerce and globalism. The Viking culture also aligned with these propositions and their cultural identity is still evident. Thor claiming to be the mightiest Avenger?

 

It is all packaged and sold to us through media and education, it’s very sinister and subliminal. Today’s scientists have done nothing more than justify the means to this end by perpetuating a view of reality towards progress. Filling our young impressionable minds with visions of space exploration and planet exploitation. Continually reinforcing the basic precept that we just follow our human instincts, which are nothing more than primal survivalist behaviors. That survival of the fittest and man against nature are the most common denominators and they calculate our inevitable destruction.

 

Far from being the only perspective on reality, progress and human tragedy has been touted as the only reality that “sells”. Critics profess that people only want to hear about the tragic news and the story of perseverance must always conclude with maintaining the status quo. All the heroes in today’s stories are fighting to keep the world’s global mechanisms in place. As if the political structures that exist today are the only hope to remain free. Yet, we lock up more people in América than any other country. You must realize that the Russian and Chinese television and media also claims that communism is the only hope for the human race to flourish and find peace?

 

Peace results from that harmony built into human society and actualized by human beings as they thirst for greater justice. Unconditional and effective respect for each one’s imprescriptible and inalienable rights is the necessary condition in order that peace may reign in a society. The concept is clear and sounds so achievable, but the very thirst for justice is a condition that bequeaths conflict. We are constantly presented with a juxtaposition that we must fight, but the struggle is what prevents peace. In order to build peace into a society, there must exist a premise of life in harmony and balance. That we comprehend the natural phenomena, which science observes and reports, to be one of cooperation instead of conflict. Sadly, the major religions of the world adopt the premise that God has somehow cast us out and some ‘fall from grace’ is the principal starting point from which we all engage.

 

There are also a few key insights that reinforce the driving force behind colonization and ‘white’ dominance. Naturally, the language is pervasive when the definition of White vs the definition of Black, are so blatantly opposed. But consider how the first commandment of God to Adam in the Bible is to ‘name’ all of the species. Consequently, objectifying the ‘other’ life forms as forever inferior. And it further continues to claim that “God” gives dominion to Man.

 

From an Anahuacan perspective, humans are the most fragile and must depend upon the other kingdoms – minerals, plants and animals.

 

Obviously, we have an instinct to endure, some call it survival instinct, that is inseparable from our physical being, (we can’t even bite through our own skin). We have an instinct to reproduce through pheromones and other natural processes that we have little control over. But we can control the decisions that we make in that very moment of truth. Perhaps this is where the idea of our “free will” comes from?

 

I say the idea of free will because I have a serious doubt about the reality of this concept. One that is rigorously defended by the religious ideologies all over the world! Scientists and Atheists both accept this idea, that you have the capacity to choose and whatever results you face are a result of your choice. What is actually more relevant, is the options of choices that you are presented with. I suggest that the amount of things that you actually employ your freedom of choice to, is insignificant to the factors in life that manipulate your choices and the mountain of situations that you have no choice in the matter, what-so-ever! How is this free will? Only the freedom to accept the circumstances or fight against them and half the time you can’t be certain what situation is working in your favor and what situation is causing you grief.

 

But HOPE that things will get better is that saving grace. The eternal cycle of day-to-day reality is also a constant factor and one that we often take for granted. We all understand that once the sun retires to the west and we give our body the rest it needs, a new dawn will awaken another opportunity. Another chance for whatever we hope for. Another encounter with life in this short existence that we move through from our birth until our death. But we’ve always been here. We always will be. Everything generates from the earth and returns to it. Man is not at the top of the food chain. He is a cog in the natural processes of life that moves every moment through birth, growth, decay and death; only to be recycled by feeding those he had lived off so long. Your environment plays the biggest role on what is affecting you. It is the unescapable reality.

 

The moon plays an enormous role in your natural environment. It rotates the tides, binds orbits for the satellites and inspires our minds and dreams. It is not often realized on our daily personal perceptions and yet the people of Anahuac are very susceptible to its behaviors. Metzli is the moon in Nahuatl. When we say México it means the “Place in the Umbilical Cord of the Moon”. Most of us think, Mexican as a national identity but the Spanish priests were calling us Mexicans in their letters long before there was a country called México.

 

One myth describes our ancestors following Mexi in their pilgrimages and that’s why they called them Mexika, but really it was the moon that they were following. Gringo history books say the Aztecs worshipped the Sun? ¿Otra vez? Getting to understand Mexicanidad is going to take our own people to describe the concepts and sense of reality. We are in a new frontier in this 21st century. We have the ability to effect the reality of the next generations of Americans. We can continue to struggle or we can step into our power.

 

North and South Americans have millennials of historical culture that is yet to be reclaimed. Chicanos began this mission of self-determination and we continue to bridge relationships with Indigenous nations that have conserved their language and ceremony. If América is a melting pot, then we should all melt into Native Americans and stop calling ourselves white. The root that goes deepest will survive the strongest storm. The true root of your lineage is the one that helps you understand yourself.

 

Yes, we have Spanish blood too and we are related to both the colonizer and the colonized. We have to face our racist biases if we expect whites to do it. ¡Si se puede!

 

Many thanks and I ask for blessings to the Frésquez familia for providing the space for these discussions here at The Weekly Issue/El Semanario. Please share their mission and support their work. More than ever today, we need media that speaks from the hearts of community members and speaks truth to power. Tlazokamati – Thank you – Gracias – Yo Soy Chicano.

 

 

Daniel Stange is the Grant Manager with Sisters of Color United for Education in Denver, Colorado. Read the eighth edition of Cuentos De Mi Chante Chicano here.

 

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