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Seven teachings workshops held at Thunder Bay friendship centre

Friday July 25, 2014
Seven teachings workshops held at Thunder Bay friendship centre

The seven teachings are what many were taught when they were young: love, truth, bravery, honesty, humility, wisdom, and respect.

While children are still being taught these today, many aboriginals have forgotten or don’t care about them as much.

Stella Koostachin, coordinator of the literacy program at the Thunder Bay Indian Friendship Centre, says the teachings are a reminder to many people, including adults, and has started a seven teachings workshop at the friendship centre.

“It helps to ground yourself. Sometimes we’re so busy in our lives that we forget about the teachings,” said Koostachin.

John Walmark, constable with the Thunder Bay Police Services aboriginal liaison, is the man behind these workshops to remind the youth of the seven teachings.

“As an initiative for our youth, we created seven teachings flashcards as a way for Aboriginal youth to connect with their culture and as a doorway to learn more about their culture,” said Walmark.

“It was also created as a bridging tool so other nations could learn about the aboriginal culture as well,” said Walmark.

Each card has an image of the seven teachings, and explains on the back what each teaching means.

The first day was slow, with a total of five people joining in. For Koostachin, that’s the least of her problems.

“It’s not important how many people show up, but for those that are there and they take what they need from the workshops. It’s a good way to review how you apply them in your life, and remind yourself you need those seven teachings from the grandfathers,” said Koostachin.

“It’s always important to have something to motivate you in your life. I find the seven teachings are practical teachings and they pretty much solidify areas that you were doubtful about,” said Koostachin.

The workshop runs on Wednesdays for four weeks from 12 to 2 p.m. with lunch starting first, then moving on to discussions about the teachings, including bullying and leadership.

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