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Preserving the language of First Nations people in Canada
by Global Good News staff writer
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9 June 2010
Mr John Elliot, cofounder of First Voices, the world's first web-based aboriginal language oral archive, was recently featured in a Times Colonist article about preserving First Nations languages. Mr Elliot worked under the guidance of Maharishi Mahesh Yogi to correlate his Mother Tongue with the ancient language of Nature, the Veda.
Dr William Overall, National Director of Canada for the Global Country of World Peace, recently reported on new initiatives to preserve and restore native languages in British Columbia.
Dr Overall presented a recent article in the Times Colonist which reports on a new study showing that many First Nations Languages in British Columbia could be lost in less than six years. There are fewer than 6,000 who are fluent in these languages 'and most of those are between 65 and 90 years old', the article states.
The article highlights efforts to protect traditional languages, including an apprentice programme pairing students with fluent speakers, new efforts 'to document and archive [native] languages', and a school where all students learn their Mother Tongue, Sencoten.
According to 'language instructor John Elliot', the article states, this 'nearly extinct language' is 'critical to teach young people as there are only about 15 elderly fluent speakers remaining'.
Mr Elliot says in the article, 'Sencoten is the voice of the land. The meaning of words connects us to beliefs about how we should live in the world and how we should look after the world.'
John Elliott, whose traditional name is Stolcel, is a leader of the Salish First Nations people, Dr Overall explained.
In collaboration with Maharishi Mahesh Yogi, Dr Overall continued, Mr Elliot found 'a one to one correspondence of both name and meaning between the syllables of the Veda and the sounds of the Sencoten language, showing that what Maharishi calls the ancient and eternal language of Nature, Veda, still exists today in the Mother Tongue of some of the indigenous languages throughout the world,' Dr Overall said.
Maharishi invited Mr Elliot to be the National Director of Religion and Culture for Canada, for the Global Country of World Peace, Dr Overall concluded.
Dr Overall's report was featured on the 2 June 2010 Maharishi Global Family Chat, broadcast daily via Internet webcast on the Maharishi Channel, Channel 3. Podcasts of the daily Global Family Chat (audio track) are also now available for automatic download, via an RSS feed.
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