Interim Guiding Principles

In the absence of a formal organizational structure and decision-making process we, the facilitators would like to offer the following interim guiding principles, developed through more 50 years of consultation by Indigenous Peoples across the Americas.  



Starting from within, working in a circle, in a sacred manner,

we heal ourselves, our relationships and our world.




  • Our Community Can Transform our Community and World in a Good Way
    The web of our relationships with others and the natural world, which has given rise to the problems we face as a human family, can be changed.
  • Development Comes From Within
    The process of human and community development unfolds from within each person, relationship, family organization, community or nation.
  • No Vision, No Development
    A vision of who we can become and what a sustainable world would be like, works as a powerful magnet, drawing us to our potential.
  • Healing Is A Necessary Part Of Development
    Healing the past, closing up old wounds and learning healthy habits of thought and action to replace dysfunctional thinking and disruptive patterns of human relations is a necessary part of the process of sustainable development.



  • Interconnectedness
    Everything is connected to everything else; therefore, any aspect of our healing and development is related to all the others (personal, social, cultural, political, economic, etc.).  When we work on any one part, the whole circle is affected.
  • No Unity, No Development
    Unity means oneness. Without unity, the common oneness that makes (seemingly) separate human beings into ‘community’ is impossible. Disunity is the primary disease of community.
  • No Participation, No Development
    Participation is the active engagement of the minds, hearts and energy of the people in the process of their own healing and development.
  • Justice
    Every person (regardless of gender, race, age, culture, religion) must be accorded equal opportunity to participate in the process of healing and development, and to receive a fair share of the benefits



  • Spirit
    Human beings are both material and spiritual in nature. It is therefore inconceivable that the human community could become whole and sustainable without bringing our lives into balance with the requirements of our spiritual nature.
  • Morals And Ethics
    Sustainable human and community development requires a moral foundation centered in the wisdom of the heart. When this foundation is lost, morals and ethical principles decline and development stops.
  • The Hurt Of One Is The Hurt Of All: The Honor Of One Is The Honor Of All
    The basic fact of our oneness as a human family means that development for some at the expense of well being for others is not acceptable or sustainable.
  • Authentic Development Is Culturally Based
    Healing and development must be rooted in the wisdom, knowledge and living processes of the culture of the people.



  • Learning
    Human beings are learning beings. We begin learning while we are still in our mother’s wombs, and unless something happens to close off our minds and paralyze our capacities, we keep learning throughout our entire lives. Learning is at the core of healing and development.
  • Sustainability
    To sustain something means to enable it to continue for a long time. Authentic development does not use up or undermine what it needs to keep on going.
  • Move to the Positive
    Solving the critical problems in our lives and communities is best approached by visualizing and moving into the positive alternative that we wish to create, and by building on the strengths, we already have, rather than on giving away our energy fighting the negative.
  • Be the Change You Want To See
    The most powerful strategies for change always involve positive role modeling and the creation of living examples of the solutions we are proposing. By walking the path, we make the way visible.