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Heart of Sky Heart of Earth

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Monday February 25, 2013. The remote homelands of the present day Maya in Mexico and Guatemala present a perfect microcosm to show how unhindered globalization is already destroying the Earth and indigenous cultures now under attack for their natural resources from all sides. Beautifully filmed by Eric Black and Frauke Sandig, Heart of Sky, Heart of Earth follows six young Maya into their daily and ceremonial life, revealing their determination to resist the destruction of their culture and environment. Guest speaker Michael Maser will speak about the Canadian mining connection as shown in the film.  Germany/USA, 2011, 98 min.

'Chepita at Day of the Dead' still from Heart of Sky Heart of Earth by Eric Black

"It is quite possible our great corporations will succeed in finishing Nature off and plant genetically modified corn over its burnt out remains. It is quite possible they will intimidate and expel the Indigenous from their lands. On the other hand, resistance is growing. Many young Maya now read their calendar quite differently. They say the world will not go under. It will start anew, but we all have to fight for it, here and now. If one is searching for impressive evidence of this tenacious determination, Heart of Sky, Heart of Earth is it.
It would have been easy for the filmmakers to cross over into mythological-poetic kitsch and confirm the fears of our own demise from some authoritative source. But Heart of Sky, Heart of Earth is a distinctly discrete film far too wise for this, meaning much more political. It asks who is destroying the world? Who is doing the raping, murdering and pillaging?"
--Thomas Assheuer, Die Zeit

Heart of Sky, Heart of Earth has either won awards or opened every single human rights festival in both Central and South America listed by the Human Rights Film Network. But in the North, it is considered to be largely an environmental film: In October it was given the First Prize in North America?s largest environmental festival, Toronto's Planet in Focus and earned the Audience Award in Darsser, Germany's premiere Nature Film Festival.

Still photos by Eric Black from the film 'Heart of Sky Heart of Earth'GUEST SPEAKER

Following the film, there will be a short discussion moderated by Gibsons resident Michael Maser. Michael is a former exploration geologist and he is knowledgable about investigations focusing on contentious mining developments as well as ethical review of mining practices. The discussion will include an opportunity for questions. 

MORE INFO and HELPFUL REFERENCES

More about the film

Official film website. See the trailer below.

The Canadian Mining Connection

Canadian mining companies are actively mining gold in guatamala, and are accused of human rights abuses to gain access to aboriginal lands. Canadian human rights activists have been assisting in attempts to use the Canadian legal system to bring activities of companies like Hudbay to light. Many government and private pension funds support Canadian mining corporations. More details available online below:

The Long Road  [The National | Dec 2, 2012 | 4:37]
An update on a group of indigenous people from Guatemala who are in Canada seeking justice. They say Canadian mining company Hudbay is responsible for horrific crimes and to get the justice they want, they have a long road ahead. 

Lawsuit against mining firm brings Guatemalans to Toronto [Nov 27, 2012. 6:31]
Hudbay Minerals denies involvement in alleged shootings and gang rape.

GUATEMALA IN 2013: More Mining Violence and Impunity
January 16, 2013.

Violent Evictions at El Estor, Guatemala 10:33

BILL C-323 The International Promotion and Protection of Human Rights Act overview by the Mining Injustice Solidarity Network. Updates are available on the Mining Injustice Solidarity Network News Blog.

References from Michael Maser:

Mining Watch Canada: MiningWatch Canada is a pan-Canadian initiative supported by environmental, social justice, Aboriginal and labour organisations from across the country. It addresses the urgent need for a co-ordinated world.

Mining Justice Action Committee (Victoria). "We raise awareness and advocate for change regarding the human and environmental impacts of Canadian mining companies operating around the world."

Socially responsible investing (SRI) Socially Responsible Investing or SRI refers to the practice of screening companies and investment portfolios according to certain criteria to better identify environmentally and socially progressive companies (and their practices) for investors. SRI is not without some criticism as some companies or portfolios may be progressive in some areas and less so in others. Ethical Funds NEI is an example of a suite of investment companies grouped into portfolios, and there are other such SRI fund options in Canada.

United Nations Global Compact:  The UN Global Compact is a strategic policy initiative for businesses that are committed to aligning their operations and strategies with ten universally accepted principles in the areas of human rights, labour,environment and anti-corruption.

Corporate Knights:  Corporate Knights (CK) is a media, research and financial products company focused on quantifying and animating clean capitalism drivers for decision makers. Their vision is to provide information empowering markets to foster a better world.