Notable Quotes

Define Me

One of the things my parents taught me, and I’ll always be grateful for the gift, is to not ever let anybody else define me. — Wilma Mankiller, first female chief of the Cherokee Nation

We Are Not Myths

We are not myths of the past, ruins in the jungle, or zoo. We are people and we want to be respected, not to be victims of intolerance and racism. — Rigoberta Menchu, Quiche, winner of the Nobel Peace Prize, 1992


We have to educate our young people. We want them to be proud of their heritage. — Principal Chief Leon Jones, Eastern Band of Cherokee

Spiritual Power

That spiritual power I wear is much more beautiful and much greater. We call it wisdom, knowledge, power and gift or love. There are these four parts to that spiritual power. I wear those. When you wear that power it will beautify your mind and spirit. You become beautiful. Everything that Tunkashila creates is beautiful. — Wallace Black Elk, Lakota


We often give our enemies the means to our defeat. Look inside yourself to find the origin of your downfall. — From the film, Crooked Arrows

The Truth

It does not require many words to speak the truth. — Chief Joseph

Skin and Earth

It was good for the skin to touch the earth, and the old people liked to remove their moccasins and walk with bare feet on the sacred earth. The soil was soothing, strengthening, cleansing, and healing. — Chief Luther Standing Bear


The relationship between Native nations and their environment is sacred. It is the foundation of their cultures and world view. — U.S. Sen. Daniel K. Akaka

Land of Winding Waters

I love the land of winding waters more then all the rest of the world. A man who would not love his father's grave is worse then a wild animal. — Chief Joseph

The First Peace

The first peace, which is the most important, is that which comes within the souls of people when they realize their relationship, their oneness with the universe and all its powers, and when they realize that at the center of the universe dwells the Great Spirit, and that this center is really everywhere, it is within each of us. — Black Elk