First Nations, Métis and Inuit members are represented on the Aboriginal working group of CUPW’s National Human Rights Committee. Each year, the working group directs the creation of a poster for June 21, to express traditional teachings or symbolism from the animals of turtle island.
This year’s poster carries the dragonfly.
Indigenous peoples of the Northwest coast observe the dragonfly to be a creature of the wind and also of the water. The dragonfly represents a symbol of change in the view of self-understanding. This kind of change is rooted in mental and emotional maturity and insight on the deeper meaning of life.
The dragonfly’s swift flight and its ability to move in all six directions radiate a sense of power and poise – something that comes only with age and experience.
The Dragonfly can be seen represented with its stout and brightly colored body with large compound eyes and chewing mouth parts. It has two pair of elongated, membranous, many-veined wings that always remain outstretched.
The qualities expressed in the dragonfly are part of the openness and self-awareness we will need as indigenous and settler populations move ahead together toward reconciliation, to preserve the environment in which we live, and to create a brighter future for us all.