The Doctrine of Discovery
Columbus Claims America for the Spanish Monarchs:
France, the Netherlands & Britain Follow Close Behind
Classrooms teach that Queen Isabella of Castile pawned her precious crown jewels to fund the great expedition of Christopher Columbus during the great Age of Discovery. On August 3, 1492, Christopher Columbus set sail from the port of Palos in southern Spain with his crew on three vessels: the la Santa Clara (Niña), la Pinta (Pinta) and la Santa Gallega (Santa Maria), in search of the western sea passage (the northwest passage) to the East Indies but miscalculated and ended up on the shores of the New World.
Before we go any further, please pause to identify any conscious/sub-conscious biases that you have acquired from your public school education and upbringing on this subject
Identifying pre-conceived bias is central to reconciliation. We all have them, no judgment here, but since it's human nature to view new information from an already established bias or perception, it's important to stop and think about what they are. It's also human nature to view people and their experiences through these same biases. If not recognized and challenged, the reader of new information or just a different perspective will have the unconscious instinct to dismiss or reject this information or another person's experience as false. New information that is contrary to an already established bias/perception may even anger the reader because it challenges foundational teachings already adopted with no question as 'truth'. The reader is then closed off to entertaining new/different views because the new information makes them uncomfortable.
Just remember, what you believe to be true may not be true, what we choose to believe as truth is usually what makes us the most comfortable - remaining in a comfortable and unchallenged mindset is not going to help us advance or help Canada achieve reconciliation on any level.
A wise Métis leader recently told me:
"There is no purely objective position on history because it is told by limited perspectives and not all the perspectives or ways of knowing, doing, or being that might have existed at that time. Thus every story is not the whole story and there is not one truth but rather many truths that need to be understood".
Now let's try the story from a different perspective
Christopher Columbus frantically pitched his plans for his great voyage to officials in Portugal and England but didn't get the support he needed. He then approached King Ferdinand II & Queen Isabella I, the Catholic Monarchs of Spain, in early 1492, which proved successful. Wasting no time, he grabbed his pilot and crew, the Moorish Pinzòn brothers - sons of captured African sailor Nino from Ghana, West Africa and departed from the port of Palos in southern Spain. They left at sunset on August 3, 1492, which just so happened to be the deadline for all Jews and Muslims to leave Spain. It is now commonly accepted that Columbus was Jewish and his pilot and crew were Muslim Moors.
By Alexandre Vigo - Own work, CC BY-SA 3.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=10312430
Stock Vector ID: 1725722485
Port of Palos
They were blown off course in addition to a miscalculation in navigation and landed on the shores of the New World. Christopher Columbus declared ...
because no one was there, or later they corrected the record to reflect that no Christians were there
There was no doubt in their minds
that the New World now belonged to them because they held
a set of 'Pope-ordained' papal bulls and ancient Roman international law concepts in their back pocket.
The effect of this mindset resulted in another hostile and brutal take-over; many have called it genocide.
"Mass enslavement, amputation for sport, and genocide claimed over four million people in four years" (Cramblit, 2006). Christopher Columbus had a legacy of
Lacking modern weaponry, he remarked upon their tactical vulnerability, writing, "I could conquer the whole of them with 50 men, and govern them as I pleased."
King Ferdinand II of Aragon
Queen Isabella I of Castile
Columbus' negotiated contract with the Catholic Spanish monarchy before his departure
10% of whatever riches he found
A noble title
Governorship of any lands he should encounter
He received none of the above
nor did he find the northwest passage so I'm not buying this story either. Something happened that he was brought back to Queen Isabella in chains. He was either the most famous simpleton, or a decoy, or he was doing what he really went there to do. There are other stories out there that seem to hold some element of truth but this sorting out of truth is for another time. Columbus sailed back and forth transporting slaves and perhaps fellow refugees.
They originally left the port at sunset on August 3, 1492, which just so happened to be the deadline for all Jews and Muslims to leave Spain. If you recall, this was the time of the Spanish Inquisition, all Jews and Muslims that chose to convert to Christianity got to stay, but they should have fled.
For a bit of background on the Inquisition, in 1478, under the influence of clergyman Tomas de Torquemada, the monarchs created the Tribunal of Castile to investigate heresy among the Conversos (converted Jews and Muslims). Pope Sixtus IV issued the papal bull "Exigit sinceras devotionis affectus" translated, "Sincere Devotion Is Required." The original intent was for stronger Catholic education, but by 1480, the Inquisition was formed instead bringing in another wave of brutality against Jews and Muslims. A few short months after Christopher Columbus and his crew left Spain, King Ferdinand II took Granada away from the Muslims giving Castile for the first time, access to overseas exploration and trades. There seems to be more to Queen Isabella's support of Columbus than initially meets the eye. "In 1492 Columbus made his landfall in the West Indies, and over the next half-century, the Spaniards conquered huge empires in the Americas and made their first settlements in East Asia."
Getting Closer to the Truth
A few critical theory lenses must be applied to understand the mindset behind the Doctrine of Discovery. First, we have to sift through the many different versions of Columbus' life before he claimed Terra Nullius on Turtle Island. No one really knows the motivation behind his strong actions or why he decided to dedicate his life to finding the Northwest passage, but we can entertain a few of the more recent theories above and beyond his published journals to try to get to the bigger picture.
After Columbus declared Terra Nullius on Paria Peninsula (present-day Venezuela), all land first conquered or settled was renamed in order as follows:
The Spanish Monarchy took Mexico City and other surrounding areas before making their way up to Flordia in 1513.
Canada already had a seasonal fishing colony since 1496 at St. John's, Newfoundland - although sources present different perspectives, it seems to have been a mixture of British, Portuguese and French occupation and may or may not have been related to Italian navigator/explorer John Cabot's landing/driveby of the area in 1497. Or when João Fernandes sights Labrador in 1498 and the Corte-Real brothers explored it in 1501, but it was seasonally active until 1630.
In 1524 Giovanni da Verrazzano explored the Atlantic coast
Founding of Port Royal/Acadia, Nova Scotia - 1605
The French King Henry IV, House of Bourbon, branch of the Capetian dynasty & Queen Marie Medici, niece of the grand duke of Tuscany, claimed New France (Quebec City) via Samuel de Champlain in 1608
Virginia/Jamestown was founded in 1607, New Netherland/Manhattan was settled in 1625. The Mayflower arrived in New England in 1620, and Boston was founded shortly after in 1630. These formed the 13 Colonies until the American Revolution.
After a short British take over of Port Royal (1654-1670) in Acadia/Nova Scotia, the Mi'kmaq allied with France (King Louis XIV) against the English (King Charles II) to gain back the land. The British brutally expelled many targeted French families who were either killed or split up by deportation. After they were defeated, the English turned their sights on the Great Plains and established the Hudson Bay Company (HBC) in 1670. It was named after Henry Hudson III, the explorer who reached that area in 1610/11. The HBC was a fur trading business as of 1670, a past that is entwined with the colonization of British North America
However, it's since come to light that Columbus wasn't the first European to step foot on the new land, not by a long shot. The proven and documented first contact was 500 and some years earlier at L'Anse aux Meadows, in what is now called Newfoundland, a land said to have been inhabited by the Miꞌkmaq peoples. More and more information holders are slowly rewriting history. I'm proud to say that Leif Eriksson, my fourth cousin 33 times removed through my father's maternal line, was the first European to step foot on and explore North America. His father, Eric the Red, was my third cousin 34 times removed through my father's paternal line as well. The stories and historical accounts vary, some say that Lief was on a grand ole Christain conversion expedition by the order of my 27th great uncle, Olav I Tryggvason, King of Norway while others say that Lief accepted baptism before taking the journey that was allowed by the King. No matter the extreme, Lief was considered a Christian.
As an advocate for truth and justice, Heart of the Nations asks that Leif Eriksson receive a British acknowledgement for the 'discovery' of North America - being that he was the first European Christian not from the British Empire, but rather from Iceland. Lief was historically documented to arrive in Vineland/Kanata c. 1000. The Norsemen/Vikings were the first known Europeans to step foot on and explore the Americas, specifically the Eastern Canadian shores Leif called Vinland. I think it is also worth saying that the Norsemen/Vikings never imposed any rule over the original peoples or the land. There was no DoD theology in Leif's mind. Leif and his crew spent some time in the New World and then returned to Greenland before his father died. Although Leif never returned, many other Norsemen/Vikings did. One such Scottish Scandinavian was Henry Sinclair, also a distant cousin, whose 1398 voyage and relationship are documented by the Mi'kmaq from what we know now as Nova Scotia. Many of Leif's family came from Norway to Iceland to Scotland, where they first settled in Caithness (abt. 850 ca) and then onto the Orkney Isles, before heading back to Norway, where they settled in Hordaland. There are other recorded voyages to explore as well but at a later time. The point is that Columbus was definitely not the first European in the New World.
Stock Illustration ID: 2134854281
Ideas Behind the Doctrine of Discovery
Columbus left some writings (if they are, in fact, his), that explains he didn't need gold for his own sake, he wanted to fund a crusade. Maybe the soldiers were for chopping the ice on his way to Asia - who knows but there are a few theories floating around. He obviously knew that people occupied the New World so this needs to factor into our perception for his motivation to gain the DoD authority. The literature that he was enamoured with surrounded a distinct group of people or treasure that was taken to the New World either in the Roman days and/or by Ralph de Sudley and other Knights of ancient orders along with the original Knights Templar after conquering the Holy Land 393 years earlier. As much as this is still a conspiracy theory (to some extent), there is other literature that points to the possibility of Columbus getting his hands on one of the Knights Templar's missing maps that showed him exactly where to go and how to get there. Coastal travel was very much 'a thing' since the fall of the tower of Babel. Not to digress any further, I'll leave this critical theory perspective for a future education piece.
Stock Illustration ID: 252133984
Stock Illustration ID: 252133984
Another writing says that Columbus was supposedly funded by Alonso de Carvajal, St. Ferdinand IIs brother's line, and three very wealthy Jewish converts, not the monarchy at all. Just a guess, but it seems like he only needed the Catholic monarchy for one reason, to get a document that would give him rights and title to land that was not his. We still don't know the truth about his motivations, but we know that he lied, cheated, stole, schemed, and committed atrocious acts against humanity in the name of God for the land, but we are left to wonder how he actually benefited from his efforts. Was he transporting exiled Jews and Muslims out of Spain after offloading the thousands of slaves? We are only left to our imaginations. What started as the 'stomping out of heresy' continued without challenge nonetheless. Horrendous acts were committed in God's name, wrapped up in an ideological, totalitarian structured government system under and then in partnership with the church's authority - an authority which taught from its induction that salvation was exclusive to Christians. We were taught that "the church" replaced Israel in all parts of the scriptures and was/is the very identity of every Christian. This is on top of all of the doctrine conjured up at Christian councils such as the 4th Lateran Council.
To separate 'church' from 'Christian' meant separating oneself from Christ.
Have you ever stopped to consider if Christian behaviour matches what the Bible says it should?
If you want to be great in God's Kingdom - learn to be the servant of all
Matthew 20: 25-28, Matthew 18:1-5
There are many takes on the slave trade that immediately followed Columbus' landfall. However, we know that 1,389,000 slaves were taken from Angola alone from 1486 to 1641 and that the British Empire was a catalyst for the expansion of the Atlantic slave trade. Columbus never found or obtained what he had set his sights on (that we know), as he was constantly appeasing the greed of his Imperial rulers by capturing and transporting massive amounts of slaves (African Moores and Indigenous) overseas. The transatlantic slave trade is a beast unto itself and deserves its own attention some other time. There wasn't much discussion about how much riches Columbus found in his letters to the monarchy, although new discoveries point to massive amounts of gold found on a shipwreck off of the Bahamas that may be related.
Canadians should be well informed about what happened after the French and then British colonization of North America. Access to this information can be found scattered throughout the pages of this website. But looking to the now, we can understand the true impact that the Doctrine of Discovery had and still has on Indigenous peoples and other marginalized cultures worldwide. Next, we need to understand the content of the document itself. We need to find out how it still holds its imaginary powers, even after it has been rescinded.
Canons from the 4th Lateran Council
The Doctrine of Discovery
& Terra Nullius
If you haven't really understood what reconciliation really means or how it can be achieved, this will be your first bit of reconciliation work. The AFN constructed a comprehensive report titled "Dismantling the Doctrine of Discovery".
Intro to the Doctrine of Discovery
The DoD is a series of papal bulls.
"A Papal Bull is named from the bulla - a round leaden seal with one side having a representation of Peter and Paul, and on the other the name of the reigning Pope, which is attached to the document (by a silken cord, if it be a “Bull of Grace,” and by one of hemp if a “Bull of Justice”) and gives authenticity to it" (McGovern, 1906).
The DoD is a result of a series of papal bulls and further extensions that originated in the 1400s
With the DoD in their back pocket, "Christian" European explorers breached many shores
“claiming” lands in the name of God for their monarchs
These 15th-century monarchs felt they were morally, culturally and spiritually justified to exploit the land and its original inhabitants
A blatant display of racial superiority by "Christian" Europeans
The DoD was used to dehumanize, dispossess, exploit and subjugate Indigenous peoples of their most basic rights
The Doctrine of Discovery mindset is peppered throughout every western-world system today, including the legal system, even though it/the papal bull(s) was rescinded in 1537, back when Canada was still Kanata.
James J. McGovern, ed., Catholic Pocket Dictionary and Cyclopedia (Chicago: Extension Press, 1906), 42.
The Doctrine of Discovery (DoD) justified British European colonial powers' assertion of sovereignty and ownership of land and Indigenous peoples in North America because no other Christian nations had exercised this power.
Called “law of nations,” or jus gentium, it's part of a series of international Roman law concepts common in Europe's 14th and 15th centuries fulled by a series of papal bulls.
It stems from the principle of terra nullius, which simply means empty land. In 1452, Pope Nicholas V issued the papal bull Dum Diversas authorizing Portugal to conquer non-Christian land and consign the lands uncivilized occupants to "perpetual servitude." He did this as a representative of God’s power on Earth and declared that empty lands discovered by explorers could be "claimed" and, as of "right," be given by the power within the papal bulls/papacy to be able to claim, settle, colonize and Christianize the uncivilized inhabitants already there. The 1493 bull, inter caetera formalized the idea and established Spain's right to claim "all lands to the "west and south" of a pole-to-pole line 100 leagues west and south of any of the islands of the Azores or the Cape Verde islands".
Not long after the papal bulls were released, more monarchies joined in. France and England were the main two that also declared land through the “law of nations” and the concept of the Doctrine of Discovery. They used the papal bulls in the same way as Catholic Portugal, but according to the Catholic church, those bulls were rescinded in 1537.
The British government argued that Indigenous peoples were not fully human and did not merit the same legal protections as other people because of this belief. The British maintained that their colonization of the Americas was legal on the grounds that they were responsible for the spread of Christianity throughout the area. According to the idea of "discovery", the British held to the notion that they were within their rights to assert their sovereignty over the Americas because no other 'Christian' nation had previously done so.
So, in reality, looking back at who was on the throne between 1537 and when the first treaty was signed, we will see what monarchs falsely claimed land under a false assumption of sovereignty. This long list of members of the Crown maintained that the Crown was within its right to appropriate land/property from Indigenous communities because the original inhabitants were abusing the area in question and weren't genuinely human so the territory should be theirs along with control of its pagan occupants so to civilize and Christianize them.
The theology of 'discovery' refers to the series of papal bulls that gave Christian European countries permission to stake a claim to the unexplored territory set out within said papal bull(s) in the name of 'the church'.
Justification for Position Taken
The British Empire maintains it's position as the first Christian European state to 'discover' and explore North America in 1492. It has been historically proven that Lief Eriksson and his crew were the first Christian Europeans to 'discover' and explore North America in c. 1000 on orders from the Norwegian Monarchy.
The House of Tudor
King Henry VIII 1509 - 1547
King Edward VI 1547 - 1553
Jane Grey 1554
Queen Mary I (Bloody Mary) 1553 - 1558
Queen Elizabeth I 1558 - 1603
King James I 1603-1625
King Charles I 1625-1649
King Charles II 1660-1685
Queen Anne 1702-1704
King George I 1714 - 1727
King George II 1727 - 1760
King George III 1760 - 1820
Queen Victoria 1837-1901
King Edward VII 1901 - 1910
King George V 1910 - 1936
King Edward VIII June 1936
King George VI 1936 - 1952
Queen Elizabeth II 1952 - present day
Columbus assumed that these 'Indian' people (from Asia) were unintelligent due to their simple lives. These notions, coupled with the European superiority complex, led to a highly paternalistic dictatorship that still affects everyone except privileged white males.
The idea that the land's original inhabitants somehow needed Europeans to improve their lives was deep in the newcomers' psyche and still exists today.
When challenged to rescind the DoD during the Pope's pilgrimage of forgiveness to Canada from July 24 to 29, 2022, a spokesmen priest made it very clear that the papal bull that allowed this to happen was already rescinded in 1537, so done deal, right? Not so quickly...
The Spanish implemented this doctrine during their Catholic/Christian Inquisition, which was actually a judicial institution that lasted for 356 years from 1478 to 1834. Sixtus IV brought it into force. Its main purpose, as all subsequent councils were thereafter, to combat "heresy" and to establish dominance and control. This is not an anti-Christian statement but rather a retelling of history: when one with power (real or perceived) attempts to convert/win over another to a set of 'pre-determined rules by force, not only are they committing treason against the Scriptures, they are enforcing a rule that God hates. If God wanted to, he could have made us all robots, but He didn't. We were given free choice and told to decide. This doctrine and the power given to it consolidated power in the monarchy as religious and imperial powers. King Ferdinand II and Queen Isabella I wanted a united country under one religion and one culture. If you fast-forward to about 16 mins in, you'll see how this ultra power was obtained.
Brutal torture methods were used to force the 'true' conversion of Jews and Muslims to Catholicism/Christianity.
Maybe not so obvious to some, but these atrocious acts were and are not Biblical. Nonetheless, Christian creeds enforced and defended the un-Biblical actions of the Monarchs throughout history. "Empires need creeds to sustain their expansionist energies and provide them with a justification for domination." That's a whole lot of legalistic doctrine. Here's the downfall of following a legalistic doctrine. When "moral qualities of right and wrong are determined by legal rules, which are applicable at all times, in all places, and in all circumstances", there is no emphasis left on someone's personal decision to choose what is the right or wrong way. The people group that is in power gets to set these standards which are governed by their law. This way is not working out so well, we have lost humanity.
The best example of this concept lies with the Fourth Lateran Council of 1215, which took anti-Semitic teachings to a new level, one with dangerous repercussions that have lasted until this year. I'd like to think that there are no more excuses to keep on with the status quo. The Christian religion (as we know it today) was created in 325 AD at the first ecumenical Council of Nicaea. The reason for this council was to combat heresy and gain back control. They generally assembled to determine 'the Biblical truth' related to a particular matter and to drive religious imperial power. What's most confusing is that the Christian religion is supposed to be based on Yeshua's (Jesus) teachings and mindset. In other words, one that takes on the name of Yeshua as their Messiah is supposed to produce the good fruit that God had already planned out for them to carry out. It's in their decisions/free will to carry out these 'things' that they will be judged and that you should be able to tell by their actions if they are genuine or not. It's not what we can do to gain entry into this future Kingdom (not by works), we only have to decide to call Yeshua our Messiah (have faith) then He does the rest. It's in our daily decisions here-on-out that we are accountable.
His new way was to be left up to the individual's decision - free will, not an Institution's ability to control. The scriptures are to be our guide. People who chose to carry His name would be known by how they act, how they treat others, and how they live their lives in balance. They would have an outward selfless focus on life (what can I do to contribute) vs. the regular inward selfish focus (what's in it for me). There are many books that can teach us who He was/is and what He wanted for mankind but the scriptures also lay it all out pretty simply:
"‘Hear, O Israel! The Lord our God is one Lord; and you shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your mind, and with all your strength.’ The second is this, ‘You shall love your neighbour as yourself.’
Put into force well after the death of Jesus and all of his disciples, early Christian creeds were instated to combat heresy. In 325, the Nicene creed was implemented at the council of Nicaea to regain control. There seems to be a common element among various ecumenical councils of the Christian church, which are still enforced today. "Imperial religions are those which accept and promote the power structures of empire." There are Christian churches today that do not..
"The insane constancy shown by them and their wives is amazing. While Jews were being burnt, others would throw their own children into the flames rather than risk them being baptized and would hurl themselves into the fire after them, to burn with their husbands and children" ~Heights of medieval world genocide
Rejecting all doctrines of superiority means rejecting the mindset behind its origin. But the qualities and attributes behind this mindset seem quite similar to Narcissism. If you know anything about Psychology, you'll know that any change by choice, (an active decision to humble oneself) may be to a Narcissist, an unrealistic expectation. Even though legislation states that Indigenous peoples have sovereignty over the land and are not claimants, the current Canadian law system won't give up the ghost regarding the usage of old rulings as guidance for new rulings and no one is doing anything about this. Receiving royal assent on June 21, 2021, Bill C-15 (by law) seeks to align Canadian law with the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples (the Declaration) - Not much has been produced from this Bill by the Federal government who are really the only ones required to do anything.
What is being lost in translation however is the fact that Bill C-15 does not actually enforce or even implement the Declaration’s various articles into Canadian law. It's a framework for the implementation. The action that the new bill demands by law is that the Government of Canada (not provincial or territorial) must take all measures necessary to ensure that the laws of Canada are consistent with the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples. Through a loose law, it serves as a starting point for the Federal government to create and implement an action plan to achieve the objectives of the Declaration. It's been over a year and the only action plan I've seen is from one of the provinces I live in - British Columbia has already produced one by their own accord ... where is everyone else at?
What's being lost in understanding by the masses here was brought forward by AFN National Chief RoseAnne Archibald of Taykwa Tagamou Nation - "It's not just a document that needs to be torn up and thrown away ... it's a construct that needs to be dismantled ... it's a larger issue that really must be revoked".
The DoD was responsible for the theft and colonization of lands worldwide. The intent and mindset behind the DoD must be fully exposed and publically rejected. Rescinding the papal bull(s) behind closed doors did nothing to the European mindsets that took the land under a false presumption of sovereignty - this would also fall under the narcissistic personality type.
These ingrained 'Christian' mindsets went on to create the residential school system, also with religious authority.
Can you see a pattern? God is not on trial here; humans are when they use God's name to gain authority, an upper hand, or any advantage over another person/group of people.
So here we should be at a crossroads. It is hard not to see that history cannot keep on repeating itself. This mindset has been the mastermind behind an invisible but very real construct of domination and oppression - narcissism and the inability to separate one's will from God's will. From a narcissistic perspective, the "God wills it!!" thought process never stops to consider the possibility that God didn't and would not 'will' that at all. Their ideas of what was/is right in the sight of God were implemented into policy, spread at the pulpit, and upheld by creeds that placed religious Europeans at the top of the food chain.
The visual bread crumbs of purposefully planted dominant ideology can be seen across Canada on government infrastructure and property and are still felt within the Canadian Justice System.
Acts 4:12 - Way to go
Forced Religious Conversions
Indigenous Rights & Title
a Legal Fact
An explanation of Terminology Used:
Aboriginal - Used exclusively for Legislation & Law (the language of the legislation)
Indigenous - Umbrella title for First Nation, Inuit and Métis peoples
Since 1492, Indigenous peoples were stripped of their land, rights, culture, language, freedom, and dignity. Two hundred seventy-one years later, the Royal Proclamation of 1763 was issued, establishing and recognizing Aboriginal Title - all land is Aboriginal unless ceded by Treaty (purchased by Crown). This Royal Proclamation was a defeat of the British claim on the land on the surface but held very subtle safeguards. On the outside, the following was declared:
* First Nation rights to their territory * * Take care of themselves within their territories *
* No colonial entity, no private individual, nobody was to interfere *
Peculural Wording - Why Legal Text Matters
In addition to a presumptuous act of sovereignty, King George III issued the Proclamation and stated that he, Sovereign of England, was the only one that the Indigenous people must deal with regarding their territory and that he was now their protector, stripping Indigenous peoples from any say in who they "had to deal with". Giving a bit of context, the Proclamation was declared right after the Seven Years' War (1756–1763) - the first global war, fought in Europe, India, and America, and at sea - the French and Indian War. Within this time period was the war across the Plains of Abraham, also known as the Battle of Quebec - September 13, 1759. Indigenous peoples were vital in every battle. Both sides sought their skills, and they were respected as highly skilled warriors. Indeed the 1763 Proclamation held words of Indigenous endorsement, but it was still made
under a false assumption of sovereignty and unfortunately didn't end up defending First Nations at all. In fact, it did the opposite and has been used by the governments of Canada, the United States and England ever since as a means by which they COULD interfere. It also became the vehicle in which the Crown exercised its (spiritual authority? Is this line of the House of David?) sovereignty by occupation - how is that even "a thing?"
Nonetheless, the authority to take lands away was carried out with as much haste as was legislatively possible. However, forced assimilation would have occurred much faster without this piece of paper. The Proclamation forbade settlers from claiming land from the Aboriginal occupants unless it was first bought by the Crown and then sold to the settlers, and only the Crown could buy land from First Nations.
In a nutshell - you can only give your lands to us, and we are the only ones that can take your lands from you.
The question remains:
How did a shady 'land claim' give the British power over all the tribes of peoples? It was an assumption that took away the power of choice. This goes against the ancient scriptures, as free will and choice are foundational teachings. France, Spain, and Portugal all backed away for some reason and said they would not deal with the Indigenous peoples in the 1763 Treaty of Paris. They recognized British sovereignty in North America and did not regard Indigenous peoples enough to reserve a seat for even one Indigenous leader at this decision table.
Covenant Chain, Royal Proclamation & Treaty of Niagara – A Treaty of Friendship and Peace
Pontiac's War (1763-66) - Pontiac's forces sought to prove that they were still masters of their ancestral lands, despite the British victory over the French army. Have you ever wondered what would have happened if all Nations had joined when Pontiac was rallying support to drive out the white man? Because this was fresh in the government's minds, it was imperative that the First Nations leaders accept the relationship as stated in the Proclamation - receive/accept the Crown as their head and that the Crown could act as they wished. It was very important to the government that Indigenous leaders believe the promises given to them so they would agree not to wage war against the Crown.
Remember - this gathering was at the time that a relationship of respect was newly formed between the Crown and the Indigenous warriors and leaders.
The person that the government sent to negotiate was Irish Sir William Johnson, a trusted companion and partner to Mohawk clan mother Konwatsi'tsiaienni, also known as Mary (Molly) Brant, who married into my paternal line. So in 1764 - Indigenous leaders of the Great Lakes area were invited to come and discuss the Proclamation at Niagara. About 2,000 showed up, representing approximately 24 First Nations. The document was read out in basic terms in their languages. Wampum belts were given, promising that the terms of the Proclamation would become the terms of the relationship between Indigenous Nations, North America, and the Crown. The terms were accepted with an assumption that the government was acting in honesty because their trusted friend, William Johnson, was presenting.
Intentions became clear 94 years later when the Gradual Civilization Act of 1857 was implemented. It sought to assimilate 'Indians' into the settler society by encouraging enfranchisement (by choice). Enfranchisement was a legal process for terminating a person's Indian status and conferring full Canadian citizenship. 12 years later, the Gradual Enfranchisement Act of 1869 was implemented, which stripped Indigenous women and children of status as Indian status now only flowed through men. Seven years later, the Indian Act was implemented, which consolidated the Gradual Civilizations Act and the Gradual Enfranchisement Act. (see full timeline)
In 1953 Queen Elizabeth II was the first of Canada's sovereigns to be proclaimed Queen of Canada (separate from her original title). A Canadian law, the Royal Style and Titles Act, formally conferred upon Elizabeth II the title of "Queen of Canada," a title never needed before; why the sudden change? So, what title is the Crown's neglectful Indigenous relationship associated with?
Three generations of First Nations, Inuit and Métis peoples were deprived of their oral history, language, possessions, culture, wealth, resources, political and social systems, and so much more. This abrupt and prolonged list of depravities was seasoned with abuses of every kind, creating a collective soul wound that is still very present today. It is, therefore, not hard to understand why First Nations, Inuit, Métis and allies from all over the world are demanding that the Doctrine of Discovery be formally rescinded by the seat of power that implemented it and the government that benefited from it. This mindset must be dismantled for Government, Parlament & the Legal System to fully recognize and act on the publically declared and legal fact that
In 1982, the Rights of Indigenous Peoples were once again Recognized
Canada's Constitution Act specifies in section 35:
(1) Existing rights are recognized and affirmed
(2) Recognizes Métis rights
(3) Recognizes Treaty rights
(4) Recognizes that women and men have equal rights
This was reclaimed 490 years after Columbus didn't find America. The first attempt was in 1763.
Indigenous land and rights encompass relationships and culture regarding ecosystems, social systems, spirituality and law. I will save this for another time but just remember that Indigenous Law and Common Law are not homogeneous.
The Courts say that Indigenous laws are only effective under Canadian common law if they are first recognized through treaties, court declarations or statutory provisions. For those who think it best to get rid of treaties, it should be easy to understand why Indigenous peoples cling to them and fight so hard to settle their treaties/divorce cases.
Courts and the Federal Government Must Recognize Aboriginal Title.
The Treaty signed in Paris was a major limitation for Indigenous peoples.
Title - Rights to land and territory (title to the land and access to it). Different from settlers who are entitled to "Canadian Citizen" rights under common law. This means that even when unproven in the common law sense, Indigenous land rights must be respected by Governments and consultations/engagement must occur with Nations when there is an impact on the land/natural resources.
Just three weeks ago, I learned that an old 1940s court case is still the basis for denying Aboriginal land title in today's court cases, disregarding Bill C-15. This case is how the Government has falsely claimed sovereignty as well. Heart of the Nations is dedicated to advocating for the complete dismissal of every ruling that the court system currently uses in its decisions that is contrary to section 35 of the 1982 Constitution.
St Catharines Milling and Lumber Co v R has been the leading case on Aboriginal title in Canada for more than 80 years. "This case, involving Ojibway Treaty No. 3, which had never been previously litigated before any court, is a leading decision in Canada on the differences between the division of legislative powers and property rights under the Constitution of Canada." I was told that a Judicial Committee of the Privy Council affirmed a ruling by the Supreme Court of Canada, which held that
Aboriginal title over land was allowed only at the Crown's pleasure and could be taken away at any time.
Rights - Recognizing Indigenous rights to hunt, fish, gather plants for traditional medicines, spiritual ceremonies, sell resources and harvest timber for houses (still limited by current legislation).
Learn the two-part Sparrow test for determining
whether an infringement can be justified
The two links above are a few suggested websites to read relating to land relations but a good place to start in order to gain a deeper understanding is on this website by selecting the box below
Today, treaty negotiations are to Indigenous peoples, a divorce, so language is of the utmost importance. For the sake of not losing focus on the main topic, British Columbia is only one province that is still in active treaty negotiations ... 27 years into treaty negotiations.
When the Douglas treaties were being signed, Queen Victoria set aside $$ for the Shumanous tribal groups, which is known as "the failure to treat case"- still tied up in the colonial court system today. At the beginning of these absurdly unfair negotiations, a Chief got into a sea-baring canoe and paddled to England to discuss Indigenous rights and title with the Queen; after all, she was originally presented as their mother... It was a dangerous but valiant effort to get to the person that was supposed to protect them...27 years later, they are still trying to prove that they were on the land first.
One would think that by now, negotiations should be a clear-cut case but they aren't. In fact, I've been taught that the treaty process is the same as it was many years ago.
100% Aboriginal Right & Title
recent historic land settlement
The legislation says that Aboriginal peoples have sovereignty over land that was not ceased. Chiefs going into negotiations are not entering as claimants. The land is theirs, they have sovereignty. All prior court cases regarding Aboriginal land need to be tossed into the history books. Bring out the Federal framework required by Bill C-15, bring forward all parts of the law that affect Indigenous peoples in collaboration with the Nations and go to work. It can't be that hard. It's time to stop wasting time, money and resources on selfish motivations and do the right thing.
Colonization is a structure, not an event. It is not one specific incident in time; its ongoing laws and behaviour form a structure of society that seriously affects Indigenous peoples today. To this day, Indigenous peoples are still negotiating for their already established Nations' rights within this active colonizing system.
The Indian Act made it illegal for First Nations peoples and communities to hire lawyers or bring about land claims against the government without the government’s consent. They must have known what they did was not lawful.
71 years later, court cases and negotiations are still very active due to a way of thinking and deep seeded clauses and subsections within Canadian legislation that was outlawed in 1537. That's 485 years ago...
It's time to reject and repudiate all doctrines of superiority as illegal and immoral and align Canadian laws in accordance with Bill C-15
Canada was founded upon principles that recognize the supremacy of God and the rule of law. The ancient scriptures tell us that rulers were/are to establish Courts of Justice The Scriptures say we are to establish courts of justice, not impose religious and imperial powers.
"Canadian law can be realigned with the United Nations Declaration on the Right of Indigenous Peoples, which came into force on June 21, 2021, after it received Royal Assent." This word does not hold up to the promise of Bill C-15 and is a way for the government to sidestep the accountability necessary for reconciliation - until Indigenous land title and rights are 100% acknowledged, these pieces of legislation that are so cleverly worded will not affect systematic change.
But if you looked at the exact wording of the bill you'd understand that these pieces of new legislation are just slowing down the process and buying time.
"This Act aims to affirm the Declaration as an international human rights instrument that can help interpret and apply Canadian law. It also provides a framework to advance and implement the Declaration at the federal level"
We must do better than this wording
This will require a change of heart and can only occur by facing the truth
this wording is a failure, it's time to do the right thing.
All rulings that hold the opinion that the crown or government can take away/not give back Indigenous land at their pleasure must be dismissed from the ruling books.
This can only be done if the Doctrine of Discovery and the religious superiority that backs it are acknowledged for what they are, unconstitutional and un-Biblical.
Indigenous peoples have been orphaned by the crown and have fought for their rights and land on their own long enough, it's time to do the right thing.
We must take action to have these outdated rulings repealed.
Repeal = the legal term for abolishing, replacing and or reversing outdated laws or rulings that are opposed to new legislation passed and or presented.
The process to repeal certain outdated laws and/or rulings contradicting a new law/ruling and get it/them stricken from the books is through parliament. Parliament will need to pass another legislation that prohibits the use of the outdated law/ruling.