Common Mystics Podcast
Season 3 Episode 2: More Voices From The Road- Tecumseh’s Message
00:00:09 On this episode of Common Mystics, we revisit one of our past adventures to give voice to another spirit who we believe deserves to be heard. I'm Jennifer James. I’m Jill Stanley. We're psychics. We're sisters. We are Common Mystics. We find extraordinary stories in ordinary places, and today we are talking about the legendary Shawnee warrior and leader, Tecumseh.
00:00:37 I'm fired up. I know you are. I am fired up. I love Tecumseh. Yeah, I know you do. He's kind of been hanging around you for a little bit, huh? Yep. A little bit. He's been firing me up. Inspiring me. Alright, so let's start by, um, talking about how we work.
00:00:59 So, what we do is we get into my car because I'm usually driving because I'm more comfortable. And… I am. I know. Don't you think I am more comfortable? Yeah. You are. Okay, it was the face. It was the face. Okay. So I usually drive. Jennifer’s sitting shotgun and she’s taking notes, and we just let our intuition guide us to a story that was previously unknown to us, that gives voice to the voiceless, and is verifiable. But sometimes Jen, sometimes when we do the research, which in itself is intuitive, we find different voices that correlate with our hits when we're in the field, and that spirit won't leave us alone. They're following us. They're riling us up and inspiring us to give back the land.
00:01:51 So, when we were on the road in South Dakota, That's right. We actually were watching a show and Tecumseh was on the show. Right. So, he was like, on our mind, just a little bit. I mean, we were in South Dakota, but we kind of had a conversation about Tecumseh.
00:02:09 Exactly. We had a conversation about Tecumseh. I was like, I think there's a Tecumseh in Michigan. We had this whole conversation. I researched him when we were in South Dakota because I was intrigued. And on my phone, I have some research notes and a picture of Tecumseh. Okay. So fast forward months later, now we're driving east. We’re driving east. We're going to our sister's house in the creepy little town of McGraw, which is creepy AF.
00:02:34 So as we're driving through Ohio, you start talking about feeling Apocalypto vibes. For sure. Apocalypto. So can you just describe for people who might not know what that reference means? What is Apocalypto?
00:02:50 So, the way I was feeling it, was a movie that Mel Gibson directed in like the early…  Thank you. 2006. And it is about a nation of native warriors that were being encroached upon by others. And they were kidnapped, the lead in the movie was kidnapped and brought to this huge cultural center city, right? Yeah. Right. It was like a culture center or city of these Natives, almost like the way I think about it would be like Chichen Itza. Yeah. Right? And so that was the vibe I was getting. Politics, culture, spirituality, all in like, a city center of Natives.
00:03:36 Right, and so I said, well, you know, we need to talk about Tecumseh because I didn't know a lot about Tecumseh, but I know we were driving through his quote unquote “homeland,” right? That's right. That's exactly right. Do you remember where we were? I do not. Do you? I know.
00:03:52 We were in Maumee. Yes. Maumee. That's pretty exciting because that will come up again. Yeah. Right. So, when we decided to do our “More Voices from the Road'' series, I called you and I said, you need to talk about Tecumseh.
00:04:10 And to tell you the truth. I love Tecumseh and he's amazing, but he wasn't on my mind. So, it was kind of like left field when you brought it up. I was like, I guess I'm researching Tecumseh. Like I totally forgot about it to be honest, and it wasn't until through the research that I was like, oh my God, Tecumseh. Well, it was absolutely meant to be. Do you want me to talk a little bit about Tecumseh now?
00:04:35 I would love it. Okay. Tecumseh was born in 1768 in what is now Green County, Ohio. And I'm going to stop right there for a second because about an hour ago, when I was looking over these notes, I read that in my head and then I was corrected by spirit. I kid you not. Because to say that Tecumseh was born in what is now Green County, Ohio it's like, no, I was born in my homeland.
00:05:11 Damn. You can use whatever political boundaries that are meaningless and arbitrary. Call it what you want, so that your modern day listeners will have a reference, but let's just be clear. That was my home. I was born in my homeland. You know what I'm saying? And so I was, oh shit.
00:05:30 I’m telling you. By the end of this episode, Jennifer, we're all going to be burning things down. I'm telling you, I just have to say that to honor the spirit, Tecumseh, throughout this conversation, I will be referring to modern day political boundaries and names. No disrespect. Just so that people know what we're talking about. Right, but yeah. I get it. You were born, uh, he was born in his homeland, which is modern day Ohio. Anyway, to a Shawnee minor Chief and his mother was known to have quote, “exceptional mental power,” which I find interesting.
00:06:11 I love that quote. What do you think that means that his mother had “exceptional mental power?” I think she was intelligent and intuitive. What do you think?
I agree. Yeah. I definitely think there is a little bit of psychic power that she had for sure.
00:06:27 And what I believe, and I know nothing really about Native cultures, but I think that their spirituality was so up and center, that being smart and being intuitive were one in the same. Yeah. Now that's just my beliefs. I don't really know, but I like to think it that way
00:06:47 Now, Tecumseh was the fifth of eight children, and you will see as we talk about his life that his entire childhood experiences revolved around conflicts with the white settlers. And he would end up having to move with his family and the Shawnee people many times because of the encroachment of white expansion.
00:07:12 Now in October of 1774, Tecumseh’s father and his older brother, whose name looks a lot like Chiksika, participated in a battle in what is now West Virginia. It was called the Battle of Point Pleasant, where forces under the Shawnee Chief Cornstalk, attacked Virginia militiamen in the hopes of halting their advances into the Ohio Valley. Sadly, Tecumseh’s father died in this battle. He was mortally wounded, but before he passed away, he made Chiksika pledge to take responsibility for his younger brothers and sisters, specifically Tecumseh, who was only six years old at the time of his father's death. And so following that Chiksika kept his word and he spent years training Tecumseh to hunt and to fight and to live as a Shawnee warrior.
00:08:22 He was a good older brother, and he fought tirelessly. Chiksika fought tirelessly against American expansion. And unfortunately, really such a loss because in October of 1792, he was killed himself in a battle, Bledsoe Station in Nashville, Tennessee or near Nashville. Yeah.
00:08:45 That's sad to know that he didn't live long, You know what? But he kept his word and he would rather have died fighting then not. To be honest, that's my feeling, but go on. Not that I know them, but that's my intuitive perspective on it. So when Tecumseh was 12 years old, he was again, profoundly affected by an event, which came to be called the Battle of Peckuwe. Now it was about the year 1780 and Kentucky militia forces surrounded a very important settlement to the Shawnee people. It was a settlement of two important villages that together was known as Peckuwe, and it was kind of the Capital of the Shawnees, and it was also Tecumseh’s home. Now remember, it was Tecumseh’s home. So remember he was 12. He was still a child, but he retreated with the women and the children during this attack. And he watched from an overlook, the total destruction of his home by the militia. For two days, they burned the fields and completely destroyed the settlement. So that'll leave a scar.
00:10:04 Oh, absolutely. Very informative. And he doesn't have a home. And now he doesn't have a home. That's insane. Okay. So a few years later, now it's 1783, Tecumseh is 15 years old. He participates in his first war-like movement. That seems kinda young to me.
00:10:25 Uh. You don’t think so? Boys were more mature back then. Especially Native boys? Well, I'm assuming so. Well, this Native boy’s- [Were Native boys fast?] Well, that's going to get cut. That is gonna get cut. This Native boy’s been through a lot in his young 15 years. Yes.
00:10:45 Absolutely. He's already experienced a lot. Okay. So he's 15 years old and the Shawnees attacked some flatboats on the Ohio River, and all the boatmen were killed except one, and he was taken as prisoner and burned to death. Now, what struck Tecumseh about this event was that he himself thought it was a terrible, terrible scene of human destruction. He was not impressed by that behavior. And so he was actually inspired and was resolved, never to treat prisoners in that way. To never burn prisoners. Do you know what I mean?
00:11:25 Yeah, for sure. And usually in history, the victors pretty much did what they wanted and then whitewashed whatever narrative afterwards. Right. But Tecumseh was like, we’re are the victors in this situation, we don't have to act a fool. We don't have to do that.
00:11:42 Right. You see so many times this sort of situation going in the other direction where someone is so vengeful and that the victors take it to that next level of cruelty. Do you know what I mean?
00:11:54 Absolutely. Yeah. To inspire intimidation and fear in their enemies, but Tecumseh actually as a 15 year old was wiser and really just had a kind of a moral and ethical streak that I think we see throughout his life. That's so true. Very fair. So a few years later, Tecumseh is 18 years old. The year is 1786, and he has another run-in with the Kentucky militia. And it turned out to be another formative experience for him. So General Benjamin Logan was leading the militia and raiding the Shawnee towns along the Little Miami and Mad Rivers in Ohio, Ohio country, to be more exact. The Native warriors left the area to defend villages. And so basically they left behind the,elder women and the children. So, the non-fighters. It was said that during this raid, Logan's raid, Tecumseh was overwhelmed by the surprise attack, and he fled. And then afterwards, he was disgusted with himself and he vowed never again to show cowardice in the face of an enemy.
00:13:10 You know what the thing is? During this raid, when the warriors left the woman and children, there was a significant battle going on near the Upper Wabash in the Illinois area. I believe it was the Illinois area. And the warriors, the Native warriors, wiped out an English or American settlement. And it was like this huge victory, and it was vicious. And some historians try to place Tecumseh there, but he wasn't there. He was with the women and children. Oh, really? Yeah, yeah, yeah. Like there are conflicting accounts whether or not he was at the attack at the Wabash and he wasn't. Interesting. Yeah, he wasn't. I'm just going to say that. I checked his day calendar and he was not there.
00:13:59 Okay. So as a young warrior, Tecumseh joined the Shawnee Chief blue jacket in his fight against American expansion. He led his men into many confrontations with the white people, and in the face of battle, he showed remarkable calmness and level-headed judgment.
00:14:21 I have a question. Yeah? Or more of a comment. The adjectives “level-headed judgment command of his warriors” was set again and again. Not only by the Natives, but also by the whites and the Americans. They were like this guy's legit and isn't crazy or sporadic, the way we came to expect fighting different warriors. He seems like, on the level and adopting some of the ways we perform in the field.
00:14:49 Exactly. He was admired and respected, even by whites, who were his enemies at the time. And I think that's saying a lot. That is saying so much. Okay. August, 1794, Tecumseh is 26 years old, and he leads his men into the Battle of Maumee. Is that how you say it? And you already mentioned, we were there. We didn't know at the time, that this was a major battle site, but we were there. Can I just say something about these road trips? It’s that we were in a place and we have no idea the significance until after we leave. And then I want to go back. Then I'm like, oh my God. If I would have only known what was going on when I was there. No kidding.
00:15:40 That is exactly how I feel too. All right. August 1794, Tecumseh leads his men into the Battle of Maumee. The Native forces were defeated, but he and his followers fought with such great valor, that he started to earn a claim among his people. But here's the thing: because the Natives lost land in this area, it led to the signing of the Treaty of Greenville in August, 1795. Now, this was a big deal for Tecumseh because the other quote, unquote “Indians” that belonged to the Indian Confederation, headed by a chief called Little Turtle, who was a Miami Chief. Now under Little Turtle, the Natives seated most of Ohio, and large portions of the land that would become Indiana, Illinois and Michigan. And that really pissed off Tecumseh.
00:16:42 Oh my gosh, Jennifer. I have so much to say about this. Please. Okay. So a couple things are happening. There have been treaties after treaties, after treaties of Native chiefs giving away land or settling land with the Americans. And part of that was really because Thomas Jefferson had a really aggressive strategy to get the land away from the Natives. He went to William Henry Harrison, who was the governor of Indiana at the time, and he's like, this is what you do. You make trades with the Natives and you keep trading them, give them wine, liquor, whatever else they want. They want some fabric for their clothes? Do it, and what's going to happen is they're going to come to rely so much on these trades that eventually they're not going to have anything of value to trade, but the land. And that was Thomas Jefferson's aggressive tactic to get the land in a peaceful way from the Natives. So, when this battle, the Battle of Maumee happened, and Tecumseh’s allies signed away more land Tecumseh literally lost his shit. He went to William Henry Harrison's house the next day. And he was like, what the fuck? He went to his house? He knocked on his door? Literally.
00:18:05 Swear to God. He galloped in. Everyone was like, what is happening right now? And at this time he was developing quite the entourage. So he had all these friends, that were like, these young warriors with him. And so he rides up to William Henry Harrison, and he's like, hey, this is not cool. This land wasn't just Little Turtle’s. He's like this land, everyone owns and everyone participates in living and hunting on it. It's not Little Turtle’s to give to you. No one tribe can be giving you land. We all have to agree on it. And then William Henry Harrison was like, wait a second, bro. He's like, you guys can't say this is all your land. Why would the Great Spirit give you different languages? Why do you speak in different tongues? If you guys are all united?
00:18:53 It's got a good point though. I mean, Harrison was quick on his feet it sounds like because I would've been like, oh, well, okay, you win. You know what I mean?
00:19:00 Tecumseh was like, brother. And this is what he said. He was like, brother, if you keep this up, I'm going to have to fight you. And William Henry Harrison was like, all right. So then Tecumseh took a couple hours, not kidding and comes back and he's like, listen. I don't agree with what you're doing. It's not cool, and I'm going to do everything I can to not provoke a fight with you, but no more of my people's lands are going to you without a fight if I have anything to do with it. And that's how he ends it. Yeah. I think it was the first time they spoke. But then they met in battle a couple times after that and in 1810 and 1811, but I'm getting ahead of myself. Please continue.
00:19:43 So it sounds to me that Tecumseh believed himself to be a Native first and a Shawnee second. That's a hundred percent right. Right. And that was a major theme in the rest of his life as well. Absolutely. Right. His allegiance was to all Native Americans. They are one people, not to his Shawnee tribe.
00:20:05 Yes, and I'm so glad you brought this up because something life-changing is going to happen within their family. And he's going to use that life-changing event to solidify that message. Okay. Let's talk about that life changing event because we have to introduce now his little brother. His fabulous little brother. His fabulous little brother. So, he was born with the name Lalawethika. It's kind of a burn. His name Lalawethika means “the one who makes noise.” He's a whiner. So they're like, oh, Lalawethika.
00:20:38 He was actually born a triplet, but he was the only one of the three children to survive the birth. That's so sad. It is sad. He was also known as a lazy kid. Here's a fact: he lost his right eye in a hunting accident.
00:20:56 He shot his eye out. Did he really shoot his eye out? No. For sure, he did.
Like Ralphie and “The Christmas story?” You’ll shoot your eye out. Yes, but with a bow and arrow, not with a Red Ryder BB gun. Okay. Well, that sucks. And you forgot to mention he was born after his dad died. So really, Tecumseh’s older sister and his older siblings helped raise him and his mom got the hell out of town when they were giving away land. When Natives were giving away land, his mom was like, oh, I'm off to Missouri because shit's going down here, and I just want to live on land elsewhere. So really he was like a scrawny kid. He was a lazy kid. He didn't have parenting. You can't blame him. Where are the parents? Jennifer? Where are the parents?
00:21:44 So Lalawethika, Tecumseh's little brother is lazy. He shoots his eye out. He doesn't really have any parents, but um, his older siblings are raising him. That's pretty much- it sounds really familiar, by the way. But he grows up, and as a young adult, he's depressive and he relies heavily on alcohol.
00:22:05 That does sound familiar. I mean, no judgment here. You know, those who live in glass houses and everything. I'm just saying. So he liked to drink. Who doesn’t? I chill. I chill and I drink. Right, exactly. Um, this is interesting. Apparently he quote unquote ”tried his hand at being a medicine man,” but the people that he treated would fall seriously ill. And so he became humiliated and even more depressed. How do you try your hand at medicine? Like that is not- that's a calling. Isn't it a calling? Like don't you need years of practice and mentorship to do something like that than just be a medicine man?
00:22:53 I don't know, but what I am concerned about- It's kind of like me saying, I'm going to try my hand at brain surgery. Don't. I’m gonna try my hand at being a pilot. Please don’t. Like you can just try your hand at something like that. Well, I think the bigger case for me in this situation is that people are like, ha ha your patient died. Like that's so rude. Like, yeah, but you're going to kick a man when he's down? At least he's trying, you know what I mean? He could just be drinking, but no, he's like, let me try medicine.
00:23:24 Let me try to cure people. Oh, I killed you. Sorry. That's a burn. I hope it was like, I hope that people were already on their way out. You know what I mean? Like I hope they weren't like, oh, I have a leg cramp. And then he bled them and it was like, oh, I lost another one. Like that would be really bad. I hope they were already like, headed that way.
00:23:44 So, his people do not think much of him. By the early 1800s, he was a notorious drunk, and amongst all the Shawnee living along the white river, he had a terrible reputation. Then something happened, Jill. Something life-changing.
00:24:03 What happened? In 1805, Lalawethika experienced a vision from the Great Spirit. Tell me everything. So what his friends’ said is that he got drunk in his wigwam, fell into the fire and his friends thought he was dead. Wow. I know. That's just like another Saturday night on your lake. Dude, you died, bro. You died. Oh my God, dude. Don't do that! You’re bringing me down, man. Don’t do that. . Who's going to take you to the ambulance? Who’s gonna bring you in?
00:24:47 Okay. But when he woke up, he declared that he had seen the Great Spirit and the Great Spirit had given him instructions on how to ensure the survival of their tribe. First of all, if someone said that to me, I would be like, yeah, that checks out because your ass was dead. You straight up were dead.
00:25:07 He is like the Moses of the Shawnee people. He wakes up. He’s seen the Great Spirit and the Great Spirit has given him four Commandments. Okay. All right. Are you ready? I'm ready. Number one. The First Nations must reject the things that came with a white man, most notably alcohol and Christianity. That's Commandment number one. Okay.
00:25:34 I mean, that's reasonable. Yeah. But how many times did you wake up after drinking and was like, I ain't going to drink again. I am not going to drink again. Yeah, like every weekend. Okay. Number two, the First Nation’s women should not marry or breed with a white man.
00:25:51 Now, that's just none of his business, to be honest. It really isn't. That's yeah, true. I see where he's coming from, but honestly, yeah, not your business. Number three, by abandoning traditional tribal rivalries and uniting, the First Nations can resist the white man's incursions into their lands.
00:26:14 Okay. That's a great point. Great point, but his brother Tecumseh has been saying this for years already. Actually, there's a little disagreement about it. Oh really? All right. Well, I mean kind of common sense, great point. It came from the Great Spirit. Alright, let's accept it.
00:26:35 Yeah, but to be honest with you, to be honest, completely honest, back in those days, there were warring tribes, right? Like think of the Sioux. So that is kind of revolutionary to be like, we just got to not fight each other. We need to unite to fight our own enemy.
00:26:51 I don't think it's revolutionary. I think it's common sense. I think it's easy to say, hard to put into practice. I agree with that. That I agree with. Okay. And here comes number four. For me, this is a curveball. What do you mean? Number four, according to the Great Spirit, it’s the sorcerers who are responsible for the illnesses killing the first people and they need to coordinate witch hunts to seek them out and kill the sorcerers. So he's still salty about killing people when he was a medicine man is what I'm hearing. Exactly, and now he's trying to save face. He's saying-
00:27:29 Now that I have all your attention, it was not me. The Great Spirit said it wasn't my fault. Great Spirit said to go fuck yourself. Wait a minute. I have never heard this before. Is this a real thing? Witch hunts? Absolutely, it's a real thing. Get out of here. Get out of here.
Who would be considered a quote unquote “sourcer” in, like 1806 Ohio? Honestly.
00:27:55 Missionaries coming to preach Jesus Christ, making water into wine or wine into blood. Shut up. Yes. So, how would you see this go down? How would I see this go down? Oh my, well, what I read was that like a lonely Native would walk up to a missionary and be like, tell me, tell me, I hear that you guys have some good news for me? And then they'd be like, sure, Jesus Christ, and here's the Eucharist. And then they would be like sorcery. And then they would be like- [shut up] For real. Shut up. That is one way. Wow. And then, also another way is that in the same way as in the witch trials. If they didn't like someone, their life, then this mofo was a witch, yo. Then, go after him in a lot of different ways.
00:28:45 Wow. Okay. Okay. Yeah, but the reality is that after Lalawethika woke up, he changed his name to Tenskwatawa. And so from after his great vision on, he was like, everyone my name is Tenskwatawa. I am a prophet. It means “open doors.” I am letting the information from the Great Spirit flow through me. Come follow me. Now, I am not privy to the ongoings of Native Americans, especially not in the 1800s, but however, as a white, modern American, I can tell you if someone wakes up and says, the Great Spirit has spoken to me, I am now a prophet and follow me? A hundred percent, do not do it. That is a red flag. A hundred percent.
00:29:46 I do not disagree with that. Good tip. I know. That is my hot take. If Kevin from Pasadena wakes up saying that I am a prophet, I am Messiah or whatever the hell he wants to call himself. Do not. Don't give him money. Don't don't leave your family. Don't raise exotic pets. Do not follow his diet plan. Do not alter your body in any way. It's going to lead to trouble.
Well, I think that's a really good PSA right there, Jill. Thank you. So, people started calling him “The Prophet,” after that. I know he changed his name to Tenskwatawa, but he became known as “The Prophet.”
00:30:24 A hundred percent. A hundred percent. And so Tecumseh and his brother, The Prophet, had two main concerns. One was preserving the identity and culture of their people and two was keeping the lands west of the Ohio river in the hands of all Native tribes.
00:30:45 Okay. So, earlier we were addressing the fact that Tecumseh was saying this all along. Yes, that's what I said. That's what you said. So Tecumseh believed this all along. That these are our lands and we need to unite as a people, but after Tenskwatawa had his spiritual awakening, what have you, and people were really a buzz about Tenskwatawa, it was Tecumseh who use that message of The Prophet to evangelicalize the different tribes in the area, to bring about a real political and spiritual movement.
00:31:23 He kind of capitalized on this situation. Absolutely. All Tecumseh’s life, he was charismatic. People were drawn to him just naturally, and so people were already inspired by him, by him being a fighter and his fighting and him being a warrior, but it was his brother who put gasoline on it and it just exploded.
00:31:46 And so Tecumseh started giving powerful speeches and rallying people to his cause. Yes, he did. He was actually successful uniting many tribes together to resist the American way of life and American expansion out west.
00:32:04 They called the Great Lakes region of the United States at the time, the Great Northwest and all the tribes of the Great Northwest around the Great Lakes were a part of Tecumseh’s Confederation. Good for him. Yeah, he really did some work.
00:32:21 So, but then, Henry Harrison started talking smack about The Prophet. William Henry Harrison was all like this silly, motherfucker- he used to drink. He was like, you gonna let this silly drunk, tell you what? Yeah. He called him a fraud publicly.
00:32:36 He must have been scared, right? I mean, of course. I mean not only is that guy that gallops into this house being like, you're full of shit, not only is his vision gaining momentum, but now he has his brother with a spiritual message that's uniting the Natives.
And Thomas Jefferson's aggressive mission to get the trading going, so that the Natives will give the land away without fighting. That's going to put a stop to it because all the Northwest, all the Great Lake regions are like, no, we're with Tecumseh and The Prophet now. Eat it.
00:33:12 Right. He adds religious fervor to this whole movement. So Henry Harrison is talking smack and trying to deter the profits notoriety, and then something incredible happens. In response, The Prophet, Tenskwatawa, actually correctly predicts a solar eclipse. Like shut up.
00:33:39 That's impressive. I’m still working on names. What? I'm still working on getting names from spirits. Oh, as a psychic. Yeah. As a psychic, the fact that he was like, oh, and like pulled out his notebook and was like, I correctly predict, that's insane. That's really impressive. Yeah.
00:33:58 It is really impressive. And that act cemented his follower’s beliefs and attracted even more followers. Oh, I’m sure. So, that's insane. Take it, William Henry Harrison. So eventually, Tecumseh and The Prophet would establish a headquarters for the United Indian Confederation, and it was located on the banks of the Tippecanoe River at a place that they called Prophetstown, named after of course, The Prophet.
00:34:31 You know, Tenskwatwa really came up. You know what I'm saying? Like, he was a drunk. Oh, yeah. He really came up on the ranks. He was a drunk. He was a nobody. He was a whiny child. He was a failed medicine man. And now, all of a sudden, there's a town named after him. Right. And his brother's on board.
00:34:46 Right, but hold on. Hold onto that thought cause there's a fall coming. Uh oh.
Oh, Jennifer. So, everybody's at Prophetstown. It is the center of the Indian Confederation, but there is a problem though. The problem is that there are the south's “five civilized tribes.” Those aren't my words. That's what they call them. “Five civilized tribes” who were friendly still to the Americans and would not join Tecumseh and Tecumseh’s cause. Okay. So, Tecumseh is going to travel. He's going to go down south and he's going to talk to the five tribes and try to win them over. But before he leaves–
00:35:34 You know what? A little projecting. Before he leaves, he sits, The Prophet Tenskwatwa down and he says, look, I'm going to be out of town for a little while. Don't do anything. I don't care who comes over here, don't fight anyone. Don't talk to anyone. Don't look at anyone. Just, you know, do your business, keep to yourself and everything will be fine. And then I'll come back and we'll resume, but don't fight anybody, okay?
00:36:09 It sounds like Tecumseh was a little controlling. I'm just saying. It’s like, that's very specific, Tecumseh. I'm just going to be my Prophet in my Prophetstown. Okay. He left these instructions and he goes down south to talk to the tribes down south. By the way, that didn't turn out. They were like, Tecumseh, just go back north. Like, we're fine. We're going to do us. You do you.
00:36:32 He was like, rejected. Like legit rejected. But there was like, young warriors that followed him anyway. They're like, these people are old. They don't understand anything. I am going to follow Tecumseh because he's where it's at. So he did get some of the Creek’s warriors to follow him back.
00:36:51 All right. So he was partially successful. But while he's gone, with The Prophet in charge, William Henry Harrison shows up. And again he has his militia and he is marching towards Prophetstown with the intent on attacking the village. But when he finds out that Tecumseh's out of town, there's actually a ceasefire. They agree to a ceasefire. Because what happened was– this is what had happened, Henry– William Henry Harrison came up because he heard Tecumseh was out of town. Right. And so when Tenskwatawa saw him coming, he sent a man up and he was like, look, dude’s brothers out of town. Dude, like his brother was like, don't touch anything. Don't look at anything. So he can't mess with you right now. Right. He can't mess with you right now.
00:37:48 Yeah. So we're just going to have to, we're going to have to just lay low and no fighting until Tecumseh comes back. Right. But The Prophet ignored his brother's direction, [I could not imagine] and attacked Harrison's army, despite the cease fire that had been agreed upon. So he was all like, he stood, like he got up on this rock ledge and he was like, the Great Spirit will protect us from the bullets. Let's attack. No, he really did. Don't laugh ,like that shit happened.
00:38:26 I know. It’s so bad. He did that. I believe you. So, at dawn, he led the warriors to surround the Americans and attack. Shots were fired alerting Harrison’s sleeping force, and after two hours of combat Harrison's 1000 men were victorious and the Natives had to flee Prophetstown, leaving it open for Harrison's force to ransack and burn it all down. Harrison's campaign against the Prophetstown is referred to as the Battle of Tippecanoe. And then Tecumseh returns home, three months later, to find that everything has literally gone to shit. There is no more Prophetstown. It's just burning ruins.
00:39:24 I am sweating. Gone. I'm sweating thinking about how frigging scared Tenskwawa was. Gone is his dream of the Native American Confederacy. So, yeah.
There is an account, first of all. Okay. First things first, there's an account that when Tecumseh finally caught up with Tenskwawa, he pulled his hair and went like ape shit on him.
00:39:52 Like he was like, what the fuck did I tell you? No kidding. Like yeah he did. Yeah, he did. That does not surprise me at all. All I can think about is that if you like went on vacation with Dennis, and like you came home and your house was gone and your puppies were like, kidnapped.
00:40:11 Oh my God, don’t. Oh my God. There would not be a force on this earth that would propel me to talk to you or come out from under the rock that I'm hiding under. There would be no way. No way. So, that happened in 1811, in retaliation Tecumseh’s warriors struck back at Harrison. They attacked forts and white settlements causing Americans to flee backwards towards the Ohio river. And then Tecumsmeh joins up with British forces in Canada because now it's like, The War of 1812, right? And The War of 1812 is between the British and the Americans and Tecumseh is siding with the British. The enemy... your enemy is also my enemy. How does it go? What's that saying?
00:40:58 The enemy of my enemy is also my friend. There you go. According to the Smithsonian, the final stand came near Moraviantown on October 5th, 1813. The Indian and British forces set up two miles west of Moraviantown on the north side of the river Thames. It was an area full of swampy thickets. The American forces realized that the Natives were entrenched in the thickets and Harrison decided to attack the British first. His thinking was if they attack the British first, they'll scare the Natives and they'll flee, but that's not what happened. When the Americans attacked, it was the British who ended up retreating. And this left only Tecumseh’s warriors undefended, by themselves, to face this American force. Intense fighting ensued.
00:41:57 So apparently what was happening for like days, this new commander of the section of the British army was assigned toTecumseh and his men and he kept retreating and kept retreating for days. And so at one point, Tecumseh’s like, hey bro, we're here to fight not to run. So no more. We're not doing this anymore. So we're staying. If they advance, we're going to meet them. So you need to get a backbone. And the guy was like, okay, I think his name was Proctor. I'm not sure. He was like, all right. All right. I hear you. I hear you. Right.
00:42:31 And then that's when the American forces advanced. And once again, under William Henry Harrison and Jill, what did the British do? They booked. They left Tecumseh there, and Tecumseh’s men looked at him and Tecumseh said, “Don't you move!” He's like, we're fighting here. This is what we're doing.
00:42:53 And that's where Tecumseh died. No, it's true. No, I know. At that battle, he was shot and killed. It;s just a funny transition. Sorry. No known. And then Harrison became a national hero for his actions in battle and later in his bid for the American presidency, Harrison would run with John Tyler and use the campaign slogan: “Tippecanoe and Tyler, too” referencing his days as an Indian fighter during the Battle of Tippecanoe.
00:43:27 Okay. So, Tecumseh’s legacy, I have to tell you, I have been listening to speeches of just Tecumseh that he gave to the “Five Civilized Tribes of the South.” They are so– what do you think? Oh my gosh, I am like, so literally fired up. Like I want to join up. I don't know where to sign up, but I would like to. I would like to be a part of this movement. And what's chilling about it is that he is a hundred percent right.
00:43:55 He warned them. He's like, by no means, are these people going to stop here. He's like, he basically is like, this is genocide, and they're not going to be satisfied until we're completely wiped out or significantly weakened, not only our bodies, our numbers, but also our spirits. So I was like, I was like listening to this. I was on a long walk with Bug and I was looking around and I was like, who's going to come at me. I was like, ready. I was sincerely ready. I was like, none of this belongs to us.
00:44:28 Yeah. Well, his death destroyed any hope of achieving a Native Alliance. There were fighters after him. There were warriors after him that tried to take up the mantle, but no one had the charisma or the valor.
00:44:44 Courage or the respect. The respect, that's a great point. See what happens when we engage? Yes. And without his leadership, most remaining Native American ceded their land and were ultimately moved to reservations.
00:45:03 Oh gosh. And we know how that story ends. General Isaac Brock was a commanding officer that worked with Tecumseh before Proctor came about in Canada. And he said that a more sagacious or gallant warrior does not I believe exist.
00:45:24 Wow. So here's my question though. Why are we talking about Tecumseh? Certainly someone like Tecumseh doesn't need a voice. No, he doesn’t need a voice. He was famous, legendary even, in his time and ours. Why are we talking about Tecumseh? You’re not going to like it. Well, tell me. I think he's warning us.
00:45:45 What do you mean? He's warning us? What is he warning us? Oh, Jennifer. I think he's warning us because his whole deal was, we are stronger and undefeatable united. Don't let people, or don't let politics or whatever, selfish or [tribalism] trivial cause, right, whatever trivial cause divide us. We need to be united. And he's looking back- he's looking down and us being like, hey, y'all. Y'all are divided. He's like, I see what's happening. More now than ever. I think Gallup did a poll about what Americans think about whether or not there's going to be another Civil War in their lifetime, and like 65% of Americans were like, I can see it. That's unfathomable. Unfathomable.
00:46:33 Fathomable? Fathomable. That’s how you say it. Well, Tecumseh’s whole thing was that he was a Native first and Shawnee second. And how many of us are Americans first and then whatever political slant we are second? I mean, think about it. We're Polish Americans. We’re African-Americans. You know what I mean? Like, no we're Americans. We're Americans. We're Republicans. We’re Democrats. We’re leftists. We’re rightist. I think America-
00:47:08 [We're tribes] Yeah. We're tribes. We really are. I mean, if you look at literally, if you look at the definition of “tribalism” according to being human project.com, they say, “at our core, humans are tribal. Constantly, our subconscious is bombarded with cues that identify who is ‘us’ and who is ‘them’ and the perceived similarities of status and values make it more likely that we will connect and form lasting bonds with people who are like us. And this tendency has tremendous survival value.” So it's not all bad to be tribalistic on some level. Unconscious bias is constantly at play, whether or not we realize it. We're not saying it's bad, like you said. Right. Right. It's necessary for survival on a certain level. However, and here is the big “but,” and here is the danger that I think maybe Tecumseh might be pointing us to. How many about your big butt, Jennifer.
00:48:08 Well, here it comes. When we surround ourselves with only people who agree with us, or only people who are like us or who fit in a narrative that we find agreeable, that's when our beliefs become even more and more extreme. And then we start to de-legitimize anyone who tends to disagree with us because it starts to feel uncomfortable or challenging. Does that make sense?
00:48:36 Yeah, because if you have a strong belief that has been strengthened by a community of others that believe the same thing, then if someone comes along differently, it makes you think, wait a second, am I wrong? No, I can't be wrong. I mean, who likes that feeling? Like, no, it ain't me. It's not us. It's you. So it's them and others.
00:49:03 Right, and again, being human project.org also says, group thinking isn't always bad. It can be very powerful when you are rallying for action against a single idea or around a single idea. Like Tecumseh did.
00:49:21 Right, but it's absolutely terrible when you are faced with a problem that requires novel solutions. And then people become unable to solve complicated problems. Yeah. Because no one wants to budge. No one wants to compromise. And so here we are, in America, surrounded by complicated problems and everyone forming their own little tribes.
00:49:47 So, Tecumseh is saying, y'all fucked. No, there's hope. Okay, it doesn't seem like it. Where's the hope? Tell me about the hope. Tecumseh never gave up. It didn't end well, Jennifer. Who wrote this outline? He's telling us to hold the line and he's reminding us that we need to think of ourselves as Americans, or I would even say as humans. Can I tell you something? What?
00:50:29 I really honestly believe that Tecumseh is saying that in his day, the indigenous people of this continent were the original Americans and they have been significantly weakened in their culture, in their numbers, and in their spirit. And now he's saying that you white folks, you modern Americans are holding that mantle and you are resorting back to the tribalism that you wiped out.
00:51:03 Right. Get it together. Get it together. Learn from the lessons of your past. We should know this. We should know this. We should know this. Wow. Not to mention dividing and conquering as a strategic tactic has been done since Roman times. Right.
So just because we're now doing it on the internet, really. Right? Just because we're sitting behind a computer and we can disagree with someone and be completely vile the same way you can flip someone off in the car cause you're not really engaging with them. There's that space. We are using that space and it's perpetuating our differences over and over and over again until we're fractured as a people,
00:51:48 We need to come together in a big way. And that's the bottom line. Right now, over me? So, thank you Tecumseh for coming through. What would you like to say to Tecumseh? I'm going to miss him. I'm going to miss out. Thank you, Tecumseh. Honestly, you guys, if you have the opportunity to research and read any of his speeches, it is chilling because it is so accurate. His predictions of what the world would look like if they did not unite. And it is upsetting to me, Jen, we wouldn't be here. We would not be here if Tecumseh’s vision came into fruition, and yet I am still so inspired by his voice and his vision. And I really wish there could have been a pan Native American nation. I really, really do. I think we would be better as a people on this continent and in this world. I really believe it. Why are you laughing at me? Stop laughing at me. Rude.
00:52:48 It's cute when you're all fired up. Jill, tell the people where they can find us. I don't know. Check out our website commonmystics.net. Find us wherever you're listening to your favorite podcasts, but if you happen to be at Apple, leave us a positive review, so other people can find us.
00:53:07 Thank you so much for listening. Thank you. Goodnight.