Tensions explode in the Gamo Highlands of Ethiopia when evangelical Christians interrupt an ancient traditional ceremony and begin building a church in the heart of a sacred meadow.

This scene comes from the Fire and Ice episode of the four-part series, Standing on Sacred Ground. The episode also chronicles the Peruvian Andes where the Q’eros, on a pilgrimage to a revered glacier, are driven from their ritual site by intolerant Catholics. Q’eros potato farmers face a more ominous foe: global warming is melting glaciers, their water source. Andes farmers, scientists and visiting Ethiopians struggle to adapt indigenous agriculture to the changing climate.

Standing on Sacred Ground chronicles indigenous people in eight communities around the world standing up for their traditional sacred lands in defense of cultural survival, human rights and the environment. Watch them stand against industrial mega-projects, consumer culture, resource extraction, competing religions, tourists and climate change.

Standing on Sacred Ground was produced by the Sacred Land Film Project, https://sacredland.org, a project of Earth Island Institute. To deepen public understanding of sacred places, indigenous cultures and environmental justice, the Film Project produces a variety of media and educational materials—films, videos, DVDs, articles, photographs, school curricula and other materials. The Sacred Land Film Project uses journalism, organizing and activism to rekindle reverence for land, increase respect for cultural diversity, stimulate dialogue about connections between nature and culture, and protect sacred lands and diverse spiritual practices.

If you enjoyed this clip, please consider supporting our ongoing work by visiting http://standingonsacredground.org/ and clicking Donate.

 

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