In July of 1997, Carol Bedrosian, publisher of Spirit of Change magazine, contacted Jimi and me and asked us to co-coordinate the first Harvest Gathering, scheduled for September of that year. The first coordinator she had hired had quit, and Carol did not at that time have the experience necessary to plan and run such a gathering.
The theme of the gathering had been advertised as "Present Day Shamanism," and due to a letter she received from Abenaki activist Nanatasis Bluto-Delvental, Carol wanted to hold a Council on the Rites and Rights of Indigenous People as part of the gathering.
Because we had a great deal of experience organizing events and facilitating councils, and because we had (and continue to have) a long-standing interest in shamanism as well as the issues of indigenous peoples' rights and questions of who has the right to practice what kinds of spirituality, we were delighted to work with Carol to bring the first Harvest Gathering to manifestation. (Since that time, we have withdrawn from planning additional Harvest Gatherings.) This is an edited version of the article that was published in Spirit of Change magazine articulating our goals for Harvest Gathering 1997.