Sustainable Business Shoutout! – Rainforest Chica

Hello everyone! This post is going to be fairly brief. I just wanted to come shout out a small business that I have come across that helps indigenous families and local communities in the Brazilian Amazon.

Things in Brazil have been very scary lately. And as an American, it is horrifying to see what happened here with our election back in 2020, also happening in the same exact way in Brazil with their citizens storming capital buildings. Seeing it play out almost exactly the way it happened here is so heartbreaking and I can’t help but feel a little helpless. We live in strange and dangerous times and I will continue to pray for the safety of myself, my family, and the citizens around me. I do the same for the people of Brazil as well.

Although I am just one singular person, I still try to do things that can help, such as having this blog to get the word out, or supporting people, groups, and businesses who work closely with (or within) the actual communities I am trying to support. In this case, that business is a small online shop called Rainforest Chica.

Rainforest Chica is a business that sells butters and oils from the Brazilian Amazon rainforest in order to support the local and indigenous populations. She and her suppliers only work with non-timber forest products and are completely against the deforestation of the Amazon. Please read her company’s ‘About’ section below.

Rainforest Chica also has a Youtube channel where she uploads occasionally to show where she is getting her products from and ways to use them to better your skin and hair health. If you have a few minutes, please watch the video below about why she chooses wild harvested products and chooses to work with small indigenous farmers instead of huge corporations.

I really appreciate businesses like this and I hope she can continue to remain sustainable and helping local communities. As someone who is still learning how to make my own products, I am doing my best to find businesses like Rainforest Chica so that my money brings relief to the people that need it and aids in the preservation of the earth, instead of having my money go to huge conglomerates that destroy everything and make false alternatives for high prices just to turn a profit.

If you are reading this, I hope you can check out Rainforest Chica and possibly find something you might want to buy or at least spread the word about this sustainable business. Thanks for reading!

~ Na’vi Dreamer 💙 🌎

My Issue With Missionaries & Forced Religion

Ever since I was a little girl, something that has always made me uncomfortable is the idea of missionaries. I grew up in church and had extremely religious and strict parents. My parents are still extremely religious, a bit less strict, however, I no longer go to church myself. As an adult, I have finally realized that what is being taught in church does not align with my own personal beliefs so therefore have chosen not to attend any more.

As a little girl, I could never put into words why missionaries made me so uncomfortable. I could never articulate what it was I didn’t like about them. All I knew was that I didn’t understand why they felt the need to travel all over the world to poor countries or communities in need just to tell people about Jesus and their religion. Especially when there were so many people in their own country who actually were looking for religion, and wanting to attend church and grow in their religious faith. Why fly all over the globe to such remote places to “preach the gospel”? It never made any sense to me.

As an adult, I see it for what it is now: Predatory behavior; preying on the weak. Missionaries will twist reality in any kind of way just so they can say they are doing a good thing. But there is absolutely nothing good about holding food or medicine over the heads of people who need those things greatly. To only offer medicine, food, clothing, and housing only if the people in need accept the Christian faith is predatory. That is preying on vulnerable people to benefit the self and the religion. These are nothing but recruitment tactics. And the fact that people either can’t see that or refuse to believe it is nothing but being blinded by one’s own beliefs.

The world has a multitude of beliefs, a multitude of religions. Why on earth would Christianity be “the one true religion”? Why in all the cosmos would Christianity be the only way to reach God? It’s come to a point now where I don’t even like saying the word ‘God’ because the word is so tightly bonded to the Christian faith and all its many denominations. If you say ‘God’, people automatically think you are religious. I find myself saying “The Creator” more and I feel less heavy when I say it.

I guess I am growing in my own spirituality more apart from organized religion. Religion feels like a straight jacket, preventing me from truly being myself and expressing myself the way I’ve always wanted to. And since my own parents are so deep in the Christian religion, I’ve always felt like I could never be who I wanted to be around them either, for fear of their judgement, disapproval, and scolding. And these fears were not unfounded; they were experienced.

In my opinion, a lot of Christianity is rooted in nothing but fear. Fear and deprivation of what is considered “worldly”, which would be any and everything that isn’t perfect Christianity. Anything “bad” and you’re going to Hell. Any mistakes and you’re going to Hell. Heck, even Adam and Eve and the rest of humanity were punished for the rest of eternity for the very first mistake they ever made in their lives. And to me, this is why so many Christians fear death. They fear they weren’t Christian enough, weren’t holy enough, didn’t repent enough, that they simply couldn’t be perfect enough. And for that, they think they are going to burn in Hell. Christianity is an ultimatum. Believe and accept Christ or burn for eternity in Hell. And to that I say, no! No more!

It’s still very hard for me because this realization is something that has only just come to me within the past year and a half. I stopped attending church regularly in college simply because I was so far from home however, I still joined my school’s gospel choir while I was attending because it was the closest thing to church and church was almost all I knew.

When I graduated, I stopped attending church all together because I did not like the church my family attended and I was tired of being dragged to every service at every church my mother wanted to be a part of. Then some dark and scandalous things started happening within the church and with leaders of the church that made me step away completely. However, I was still calling myself a Christian and telling myself that one day I will go back to church even though I honestly had no desire to.

Then my realization hit that, wow, I actually don’t even believe this stuff…what the heck am I doing? Why am I forcing myself? But even saying that I didn’t believe it automatically sent my mind reeling into thoughts of fear of what if I go to Hell now? Even now, I often catch myself thinking about what if I’m going to Hell, what if I’m making a mistake by admitting that I don’t believe the teachings of the church and that I don’t agree with a lot that is in the bible?

And that, my friends, is what is called programming. I’m still in the process of learning how to stop. It’s hard because I was born into Christianity so it’s been a part of my life from birth until only a year ago which is when I finally moved out on my own. I am no longer under the roof of religious parents. I no longer have the invisible weight of Christianity being thrown in my face every five seconds by family members. I’m no longer constantly being preached at. And now that I have my own space and can explore my own beliefs and spirituality, I now feel the most myself than I have ever felt before.

I think what happened to me is what happens when these missionaries go to these countries, visit these remote communities and feed them their faith mixed with lies while dangling help over the heads of the communities that need it most. Stripping people of the beliefs of their culture, their language, their practices, and telling them that what they do is bad and wrong is just modern-day colonialism. Colonize the mind and you can get whatever you want from people because people will do anything in the name of God and for organized religion. I just can’t help but feel that missionary work is sinister and the people involved are so far gone, in so deep that they can’t see that what they are doing is wrong.

If the bible preaches goodness and giving a helping hand to people in need, why not just offer help with no strings attached? Why must there be an ultimatum? Why go to communities who feel they have no choice but to say yes so they can get necessary medicine to save the life of a child or family member? It’s like dangling a carrot in the face of a horse and it’s disgusting behavior.

I know that this entire post has been nothing but a rant, but what started my rant in the first place are the videos linked below. Faith and spirituality and my departure from organized religion has been weighing on me fairly heavily for the past few months. After seeing this video, it brought a lot of my feelings to the forefront and this rant is the result of it all.

I am glad that the indigenous communities are starting to push back against religious invaders. I’m glad that they are seeing just how wrong and predatory it all really is. Just as Christians would not want anyone else to come to them and tell them that their faith and beliefs are wrong, why do they do this to others? Just as they would not want anyone to march into their churches and tell them that the God they worship is not “the true God”, why do they march into other people’s communities and do it to others? I just don’t get it, and a part of me despises them for it.

I was born into the indoctrination of Christianity and this past year has been mentally difficult trying to deprogram my mind from it. Being a Christian was never a choice for me. My own father has said that “as a child, my religion is your religion. You’re not going to tell me what you do and don’t believe. My God is your God as long as you live under my roof. If you try and tell me that you don’t believe it, then you can get out. When you become an adult and out from under my roof, then you can go do whatever you want and believe whatever you want.” These were actual words that left my father’s lips and I while I didn’t like them when I first heard them, actually typing them out and reading them makes me realize just how harsh and terrible those words were. But I sat and listened, and said nothing.

Well guess what, dad. That’s exactly what I’m doing. I’m doing what I want, and that’s moving away from Christian indoctrination.

Behaving that way and saying those things to your own daughter is really baffling to me. Threatening to take away a home to live in, food to eat, and financial stability if I don’t believe in the same god as you is no different than the work of the missionaries who only offer food, medicine, and clean water to indigenous communities if they agree to believe and abide by the Christian faith. It’s honestly just…evil. I didn’t want to use that word, but I can think of no other.

It’s hard for me because it’s been a part of my life for so long that I feel like I’m engaging in slander, or that I’ll get struck down or something. I’m glad that some of these indigenous communities have each other to lean on in their own process of refusing to accept Christianity. And it’s not just in the Amazon where this is taking place. Even countries in Africa, more and more communities are refusing the Christian faith and returning to the spirituality and beliefs of their ancestors and the videos are making waves online. And to that I say, good for them. Stay strong, and don’t let the colonizers have your mind.

Happy Indigenous People’s Day!

Happy indigenous people’s day to all my lovely indigenous humans out there!! And happy indigenous people’s day to my great great grandmother, a Chahta woman, and my great great grandfather, a Euchee man. Both of whom I’ve never had the pleasure of meeting. I see you. You are remembered. You are loved. Your legacy and descendants live on 💙💚

Exit Amazon Oil & Gas Webinar

Here are some of the speakers from the webinar this morning. I really enjoyed this talk and I wish the Q&A session could have been longer. Many of the viewers had some reeaaally good questions.

I learned a lot from this webinar and I will admit that a lot of what was shared bothered me. Such as learning that there are parts of the Amazon in Ecuador where tribes have been misplaced due to their homes being destroyed and their rivers being so polluted that there are no longer any fish. Because of this, they have had to rely on tourism just to buy canned goods for food.

I also learned that these governments, if they don’t blatantly ignore what’s in their constitutions, they find loopholes. Such as the Ecuadorian government “allowing” indigenous tribes to keep their land, yet claiming ownership over what is BELOW the surface of indigenous land, and therefore displacing tribes because of this. The government is not upholding the parts of the constitution that say to protect the rights of nature. Instead they extract more oil as a way to help meet the country’s financial debt.

There is so much going on, yet the head honchos don’t care. The Ecuadorian government has green lit more oil drilling. The Brazilian government has green lit more burning and illegal logging. And the American government ignores and allows oil drilling coming from companies based in Canada, which violates actual treaties with our Native communities.

The most we can do now is keep speaking out about this. If the head honchos that govern our countries don’t care, we can at least reach out and speak to the corporations that our governments do care about and that’s banks!

Many banks have ongoing relationships with oil companies and traders that operate in the Amazonian region by investing in or completely financing these oil companies. If we can get them to create an Amazon exclusion policy, we can be that much closer to protecting at least 80% of the Amazon by 2025. Many of these banks have Arctic exclusion policies, so why not an Amazon exclusion policy?

We need to start thinking more about how we can strengthen the Amazon and that’s by halting all exploitation or else we won’t have an earth to live on. Don’t wait until Amazonian animals are going extinct! Don’t wait until almost all indigenous tribes are going extinct! This can be stopped now and if you are reading this, I hope you will consider helping in any way you can.

Sign the petition to call on the high risk banks to commit to an Amazon exclusion policy for Amazon oil:

Replay of today’s webinar:

Other links:

Help End Amazon Crude! Exit Amazon Oil & Gas

If you are interested in hearing from indigenous leaders and environmental activists about how banks can help put an end to crude oil and gas from damaging the Amazon rainforest, be sure to watch the webinar. Link to the webinar will be under the photos! 🌴

Tuesday, September 21 @ 11am EST (USA/Canada) & 8am PDT (USA/Canada)

The Amazon Tribe That Inspired Avatar

Although not the only tribe affected with what’s happening in Brazil right now, this is the specific tribe that Avatar was based off of. I’ve only ever seen James Cameron’s documentary on this tribe, but watching this 15-minute video absolutely made my blood boil and by the time it was over, my eyes were stinging with tears.

I am absolutely disgusted and appalled at what Brazilian leadership is doing and the specific things the man said in this video made me want to gag. I am at a complete loss for words.

I have no idea where to ind the full 60-minute episode, but this 15 minutes is more than enough to get the point across.

Trigger warning for pretty much everything pertaining to the destruction of nature and human life.

When learning about stuff like this, it’s easy to want to scream, yell, and curse Brazilian leadership. It’s easy to want to ask how we can donate and write to our own leadership to possibly step in and do something, but what will it do? What will it do when you have environmentalist leaders who aren’t even environmentalist, who’ve never been to the Amazon before, and who is on record saying that “Indians are indolent”?

What will it do when the new environmentalist leadership is filled with nothing but retired police and military officers? What will it do when you have a Brazilian president who is also on record saying that Indians are less than human? (Direct quotes from this article here: )

2021 update on the Amazon:

My heart just feels so heavy. And to know that something similar is going on in my own country with oil pipeline 3 being built to run through the land and treaty territory of the Anishinaabe people. I don’t know what to do or what will help. We are calling on our own president and state officials, and we hear absolutely nothing in return.

So, I post this to get the word out to anyone who might care. Write to your leaders. Repost and spread the voices of the indigenous people strong enough to speak out, brave enough to risk arrest during protests, and those who are sharing their own experiences. Even if you are feeling hopeless like I am feeling right now, do what you can and never back down. Indigenous people deserve to live and they deserve to keep their lands and their homes.

For anyone that is not familiar with Line 3, here is the website and a video breaking down what’s happening in simpler terms: