Ancestral Wisdom Teyuna, the Heart of the World

Kogi man standing in the vastness of nature.

The peoples that inhabit the Sierra Nevada de Santa Marta believe that their role on this planet is to defend the Law of the Origin. The Law of the Origin is, simply put, protecting and defending nature to achieve a harmonious existence. The Sierra Nevada peoples apply the principle of reciprocity in their management of their territory. Every time something is taken from Earth, the Mamo, spiritual leader, will make an offering, pagamento, to the Earth, to maintain the delicate equilibrium of the ecosystems. Sierra Nevada de Santa Marta was declared a Biosphere Reserve of Man and Humanity, by UNESCO in 1979.

The Kogi that inhabit the Sierra Nevada, which they call Teyuna, believe that the mountain is the heart of the world, and vital for regulating the planet’s climate. Isolated for many years, the Kogi finally came down from their villages to share an important message with the West: if we are to survive as a species, we must take care of the planet.