There is not room in this forum for any kind of lengthy discussion of the effects of colonialism on the Aboriginal people of this land. In basic terms, Traditional Aboriginal People (of whom come from varying nations which are as different as the English and the Irish in terms of cultural perspective) do NOT see their cultural figures as Gods or as Goddesses. Therefore, putting on a Goddess Festival with, for instance White Buffalo Calf Woman as our featured Goddess would be deeply insulting. Both of the women who have started this festival have trained with Elders, and as such are very respectful of the Tradition.
Why then do you use some Aboriginal Traditions in your ceremonies, such as Smudging or Sharing Circles?
Because of the fact the two primary forces creating the Manitoba Goddess Festival (Chris Hammond and Kirsten Brooks) have been trained in the above manner, and have been adopted into that way of life. These Traditions have now become a part of HOW we practise our spirituality in our personal lives and therefore we adapt some of that knowledge when we work externally with others. We also believe that the land on this continent holds these Traditional veins of knowledge, that it responds to this knowledge, and that in order to honour the land here appropriately, using some of that knowledge, WITHIN REASON, is the most respectful route to take.