Photographer:Olly | Stephane Photographer:Olly | Doc Photographer:Olly | Audience from stage left Photographer:Olly | Stephane2 Photographer:Olly | audience close up Photographer:Olly | audience from stage right
13 Feb / 2018Program by:

Is The Land Calling @ Unity Pavillion led by Stephane Lefebvre

Stephane introduced and, as can be heard in the attached recording, concluded by drawing comparisons to the values, spirit and realities of Auroville, this incredibly engrossing documentary. The basic story is told through the building of a traditional canoe together but it soon becomes much more, as the below biography suggests. A short history of the man in question, respectfully referred to as Grandad, is as follows:

William Commanda OC (November 11, 1913 – August 3, 2011) (Algonquin name: Ojigkwanong, meaning “Morning Star”) was an Algonquin elder, spiritual leader, and promoter of environmental stewardship. Commanda served as Band Chief of the Kitigan-zibi Anishinabeg First Nation near Maniwaki, Quebec, from 1951 to 1970. In his life, he worked as a guide, a trapper and woodsman, and was a skilled craftsman and artisan who excelled at constructing birch bark canoes. He was Keeper of several Algonquin wampun shell belts, which held records of prophecies, history, treaties and agreements. In 2008, Commanda was appointed to the rank of officer of the
Commanda was born on November 11, 1913 in River Desert Indian Reserve (now Kitigàn-Zìbì) to Alonzo and Marie Commanda. His Algonquin name came about as his mother looked out the window of the family’s log cabin and saw the morning star shining. Commanda had several notable ancestors, including his grandfather Chief Louizon Commanda, and his great-grandfather Chief Pakinawatik, who in 1854 led his people from Oka, Quebec to Kitigàn-zìbì. Commanda was baptized in a Catholic church eight days after his birth.

Grandfather Commanda was resolved to realize Asinakba, his vision to establish a global healing center at Victoria Island. The Island is a jewel of nature, strategically located in the middle of the river that runs through downtown Ottawa, Canada’s capital city, under the shadow of Parliament Hill, where the government of Canada meets. For countless centuries, Victoria Island was a traditional spiritual meeting ground for the Algonquin peoples.
For the sake of all the land and all the people, Grandfather envisioned returning the island to its spiritual purpose by establishing an International Peace Center at the Sacred Site of Asinabka -Chaudière Falls. The center would host programs and processes for individual, group, and planetary healing, development and peace.