Richard Wagamese

by World Council from Southern Ontario, Canada


Richard Wagamese

My Passion:

“All that we are is story. From the moment we are born to the time we continue on our spirit journey, we are

involved in the creation of the story of our time here. It is what we arrive with. It is all we leave behind. We

are not the things we accumulate. We are not the things we deem important. We are story. All of us. What

comes to matter then is the creation of the best possible story we can while we’re here; you, me, us,

together. When we can do that and we take the time to share those stories with each other, we get bigger

inside, we see each other, we recognize our kinship – we change the world, one story at a time…” 

144806Richard WagameseImage courtesy of World Council 

In my lifetime I was an Ojibway from Wabaseemoong First Nation in northwestern Ontario.

After surviving the devastation of the ‘60’s Scoop’, I went on to be a writer

and was recognized as one of Canada’s foremost First Nations authors and storytellers.

I used my gift to put a face on both the honour and the issues of Indigenous identity and culture.


Quotations from Richard Wagamese

“I am constantly surrounded by noise: TV, texts, the internet, music, meaningless small talk, my thinking.

All of it blocks my consciousness, my ability to hear the ME that exists beneath the cacophony.

So I cultivate silence every morning. Then, wherever the day takes me, the people I meet are the beneficiaries

of my having taken that time - they get the real me, not someone shaped and altered by the noise around me.  

Silence is the stuff of life.” 

“When your innocence is stripped from you, when your people are denigrated, when the family you came

from is denounced and your tribal ways and rituals are pronounced backward, primitive, savage, you come to

see yourself as less than human. That is hell on earth, that sense of unworthiness.

That's what they inflicted on us.”

The elders say that Creator is perfect loving energy. Within the realm of perfect love there is no judgment.

If there is no judgment then there can be no failure. In turn, if failure does not exist, there is no unworthiness.

We are all one energy. We are worthy and we always were. We never have to qualify.”

“People never ask me where I get the inspiration for my work and I really wish they would. The answer is long

and complicated but shows my motivation to write and create stories. Simply and briefly put, I get my

inspiration from the knowledge that there is someone out there in the world who is just like me — curious and

desiring more and more knowledge of the world and her people. I write so that when they pick up one of my

books there is an instantaneous connection, like we’re collaborating on the story.”

Page created on 7/1/2021 7:42:08 AM

Last edited 7/1/2021 8:24:10 AM

The beliefs, viewpoints and opinions expressed in this hero submission on the website are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the beliefs, viewpoints and opinions of The MY HERO Project and its staff.