Tsukuba Wiki

Regular event hosted by the Tsukuba Information Center, usually on the 4th Wednesday of the month.

Current Topic: Vision Quest[]

  • Speaker: Charles R. Garfield (United States)

"Most people in the world, including Americans, know little or nothing about American Indians", according to Charles Garfield, who lived for many years with various Indian tribes in the American Southwest. "Unfortunately, over 90% of what people think they know about American Indians, they learned from Western movies. So most of what they do know is wrong".

Garfield's father was a teacher and principal at Indian schools, and his older brother was a teacher on the Navajo and Paiute Indian Reservations. As a child he went to school with members of the Ute, Paiute, Navajo, Hopi, Goshute, and Zuni tribes. He has "Blood Brothers" in the Navajo and Zuni tribes. "Growing up some of my Navajo friend's fathers were "code talkers" during World War II. Because there are no Navajo dictionaries, and only tribe members know the language, Navajo radio operators communicated military messages and it was the only 'code' that Japanese code-breakers could not solve."

"When I went to Western movies with my Indian friends, we played a game called 'find the real Indians' because most of the Indians in movies were almost every nationality except American Indian", he said. Garfield's mother was a Location Nurse on Western movie sets, so he also visited movie sets with his mother and met almost all of the famous Western movie stars, such as John Wayne, Gary Cooper, Burt Lancaster & Paul Newman. "I realized at a young age that what was written in history books and what I saw on TV and in movies about Indians was incomplete and mostly incorrect".

"I didn't realize it at the time, but many things I learned from my Indian friends over the years have proven to be of more value to me than what I learned at some of the top schools in the world. In fact, what they taught me has saved my life in various situations in different countries", Garfield said. "On a personal level, the American Indian Vision Quest can help you discover your identity and find a better balance in your life and in your relationship with the world."

"Please join me for 'Coffee Time', invites Garfield. "You will learn some of the lost history of very interesting people, and some surprising information about today's American Indians that may change your life".

Charles Garfield is an International Business Consultant and Executive Coach working in Tsukuba.

See also...[]

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