“Respect is not something you earn. It’s not something you aspire to or ask of others. It isn’t your right or what you should expect of people. Respect, in the Ojibway world, is the ability to honour all of Creation. It is something that you offer and something that you carry within you. The spiritual blessing of respect is harmony and the spiritual byproduct is community. When you choose to honour all Creation and, in turn, allow yourself to express it in your actions, you live respectfully, and because all things move in a circle, you will become respected. But it starts with the giving. It starts with the recognition that all things exist on the Sacred Breath of Creation and that because of that we are all related, all kin, all essential to the ongoing energy, the eternal heartbeat, the one song on the one drum that is the story of our time here. When you choose to allow yourself to carry respect for all your relations, you choose to allow yourself to honour Creation and you allow yourself to live honourably. Once you accomplish that, your life itself will have become a ceremony — and that is the point of the Seven Grandfather Teachings.

“A ceremony is energy moving toward the goal of harmony. The three principles we have looked at, Humility, Courage and Respect, have all led us to look beyond ourselves to see the nature of our essential place in the universe and our role in maintaining its balance. Respect, and living respectfully, is the act of bestowing honour on the process of living. It is the principle that makes the continuation of this great circle of Teachings possible. Without respect, without a sense of the inherent value of all things, a spiritual journey becomes a directionless wandering.”