March 18, 2009
So Nancy gives me another reading. She is telling me that Pow Wow is standing underneath a tree and there is one apple hanging from it. He points at it but doesn’t take it.
The message was that we needed to go to Puerto Rico to a indigenous site in Ponce. I knew right away that she meant the Tibes Ceremonial site. I asked her if she knew why we were going and Pow Wow wouldn’t say. He just said we needed to go. At this point, it felt like we were given this giant jigsaw puzzle and we had to slowly figure out what Spirit was trying to tell us.
As we approached the town of Ponce, we saw a row of Flags blowing in the wind…black and red…black and red. It felt as if someone was telling us “Welcome”.
After stopping for breakfast, we arrived at the ceremonial site. An employee told us that we couldn’t go off on our own and that we needed to be part of a walking tour. So, although we didn’t want to, we joined the next tour.
Our guide started by introducing us to all the medicinal plants and trees that were planted at the site. He explained that the site was a typical place where the Taino lived, where every tree and bush is intentionally planted with the knowledge and understanding of their medicinal qualities. My grandmother Adelina immediately came to mind. She once sat with me on her terrace and told me the names of every tree and bush in her back yard, their medicinal qualities and how to prepare the home remedies.
He said, “Look at this fruit. It’s in the shape of a heart and it’s called custard apple. In Spanish it’s known as corazon (which means heart). The fruit and it’s leaves are used to help people with ailments of the heart.” As he stood there pointing to the fruit, it reminded me of Nancy’s reading where Pow Wow stood there pointing out the apple.
I immediately nudged Nancy…this was in her reading. Ok, so far so good. This served as a validation for us. He then walks us through the park and explains that in this particular location, the leader of the people was a cacica, a woman. The most famous cacica of the island was Dona Ines. I was shocked. I never knew there were cacicas. I always thought that the Tainos were only ruled by men caciques. So the first chance I got, I asked the guide about the cacicas.
He confirmed for me that there was absolutely cacicas and as a matter of fact Dona Ines, Agueybana’s mother, was a very powerful cacica. She was a sorceress, trained in the lineage of the ancient wisdom. When the Spanish arrived, she knew the only way for her people to show power was to give Agueybana, her son, the title of cacique. The Spanish would only respect and fear a man.
Taino chiefs wore a gold medallion, called guanin, around their necks that announced to all the tribes people who was in power. The gold coin symbolized that they were rulers of their own yucayeque, or village. Dona Ines took off her guanin and gave it to her son Agueybana before they greeted the Spaniards.
Then the realization hit me. Agueybana is known today as the head cacique of the entire island. So this meant that Dona Ines was not only the cacica of her own yucayeque. She was also the supreme cacica of the entire island of Borike…astonishing. Then Nancy’s words echoed in my mind…”This is Lalu’s land”. When she said this I thought it was in reference to the farm but now I am thinking that it can be more than that.
Nancy also kept telling me that I was like a Pocahontas, a daughter of a chief. In my vision, I remember that I was a descendant of a woman ‘shaman’ and I was in fact a ‘shaman’ myself. So I thought, was it possible that in this past life I was Dona Ines? Or was I her daughter Guanina?
Guanina was trained as a sorceress as well. Had the Spanish not invaded, Guanina was in line to take over her mother’s’ throne, since the Tainos were a matriarchal society. Her love affair with Sotomayor, a Spaniard, ended in tragedy and she was buried with her lover under a huge ceiba tree where as if by magic red hibiscus and white lilies appeared. These flowers are representative of the true love these souls had for each other. In the tarot, these flowers represent Love & Spirit, Earth & Sky. They say this is a similar legend to the one of John Smith and Pocahontas.
The tour guide than explained that when the caciques or cacicas died, they were always buried with their lovers. He had a funny smile on his face when he explained that Dona Ines was buried along with all her lovers. By the way, the lovers were buried alive. Sorry, I know. This part always bothered me.
March 27, 2009
After having time to do some research and think about what has transpired, I am wondering the why as to all of this. Why is Spirit directing us to find out about this life and why not just tell us why itʼs so important? Why the cryptic messages, the assignments to search for answers and the huge jigsaw puzzle that can only be solved with time and effort?
Was the story about the cacicas, the guanin (gold coin) and the details of the burial sites clues to help validate who I was in a past life and what my connection is to Pow Wow? Perhaps the intricacy of the tasks given is because if we are just told something, especially when it comes from Spirit, there is less credibility. If we search for the answers and live through the amazing synchronicities, then there is a true validation.
After reading material on Dona Ines, Agueybana and Guanina, I am cautious as to itʼs authenticity since it has been told by the survivors of our Taino Nation. Although most of us in PR have Taino blood, history is always written by the victors and usually to fit into an image they want to portray to the world.
Grandmother Ayleens words resonate….We are a people that donʼt know where we came from so we donʼt know where we want to go. The Puerto Rican people are disenfranchised and have no sense of history….we are not Spanish or Taino or African, but a huge combination of all of these traditions. Yet, if you meet us we have blended all these traditions into a beautiful culture by integrating the best of each one of them.
Perhaps itʼs time to go back in time and get in touch with our roots and find for once a sense of identity.
Note: Borike is a sacred island. Gaia was seen in antiquity by the native people as a turtle and Borike was the head…the highest peak. In the times of Atlantis, before this land sank into the sea, Borike was the center of ceremony since it had the highest elevation on earth.
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