The ultimate demonstration of love is to serve. Setting aside our own agendas, in service we live out our commitment to the well being of others, often to our own discomfort. Watch Adventist Help's Story. Seventh-day Adventist beliefs are meant to permeate your whole life. Growing out of scriptures that paint a compelling portrait of God, you are invited to explore, experience and know the One who desires to make us whole.
Service Helping others in need. Spirituality Prophecy - God's continuing conversation Our human nature made it impossible to for us to see God face-to-face. My God loves without restraint The famous Iroquois Indians, or Six Nations, which at the discovery of America held sway from the great lakes to the Tombigbee river, from the Hudson to the Ohio, and of whom it has been said that another century would have found them master of all tribes to the Gulf of Mexico on the south, and the [Pg 10] Mississippi on the west, showed alike in form of government, and in social life, reminiscences of the Matriarchate.
The line of descent, feminine, was especially notable in all tribal relations such as the election of Chiefs, and the Council of Matrons, to which all disputed questions were referred for final adjudication. Sir William Johnston mentions an instance of Mohawk squaws forbidding the war-path to young braves. When an Indian husband brought the products of the chase to the wigwam, his control over it ceased. In the home, the wife was absolute; the sale of the skins was regulated by her, the price was paid to her. If for any cause the Iroquois husband and wife separated, the wife took with her all the property she had brought into the wigwam; the children also accompanied the mother, whose right to them was recognized as supreme.
So fully to this day is descent reckoned through the mother, that blue-eyed, fair-haired children of white fathers are numbered in the tribe and receive both from state and nation their portion of the yearly dole paid to Indian tribes. The veriest pagan among the Iroquois, the renowned and important Keeper of the Wampum, and present sole interpreter of the Belts which give the most ancient and secret history of this confederation, is Ephraim Webster, descended from a white man, who, a hundred or more years since, became affiliated through marriage with an Indian woman, as a member of the principal nation of the Iroquois, the Onondagas.
Not alone the Iroquois but most Indians of North America trace descent in the female line; among some tribes woman enjoys almost the whole legislative authority and in others a prominent share. George Bancroft that the form of government of the United States, was borrowed from that of the Six Nations.
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Although the reputation of the Iroquois as warriors appears most prominent in history, we nevertheless find their real principles to have been the true Matriarchal one of peace and industry. Driven from the northern portion of America by vindictive foes, compelled to take up arms in self-protection, yet the more peaceful occupations of hunting and agriculture were continually followed. Their history was preserved by means of wampum, while under their women the science of government reached the highest form known to the world.
Among the Zunis of New Mexico, woman still preserves supreme religious and political authority; the Paramount Council consisting of six priests under control of a supreme priestess who is the most important functionary of the tribe. While male priests ruled over the six primal cities the central and superior seventh was presided over by a priestess who not alone officiated at the central temple, but to whom the male priests of the six cities and six inferior temples were subservient. Monogamy was a marked feature of the Matriarchate.
Under the Matriarchal family and tribal system even long after its partial supersedence by the incoming Patriarchate, the marriage relation was less oppressive to woman than it has been under most centuries of christian civilization. Daughters were free in their choice of husbands, no form of a force or sale existing. One of the most brilliant modern examples of the Matriarchate was found in Malabar at the time of its discovery by the Portuguese in the XV century.
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Of Malabar it has been said, that when the Portuguese became acquainted with the country and the people, they were not so much surprised by the opulence of their cities, the splendor of all their habits of living, the great perfection of their navy, the high state of the arts, as they were to find all this under the entire control and government of women. The difference in civilization between christian Europe and pagan Malabar at the time of its discovery was indeed great. While Europe with its new art of printing, was struggling against the church for permission to use type, its institutions of learning few, its opportunities for education meagre; its terrible inquisition crushing free thought and sending thousands each year to a most painful death, the uncleanliness of its cities and the country such as to bring frequent visits of the plague; its armies and its navies with but one exception, imperfect; its women forbidden the right of inheritance, religious, political, or household authority;—the feminine principle entirely eliminated from the divinity—a purely masculine God the universal object of worship, all was directly the opposite in Malabar.
Cleanliness, peace, the arts, a just form of government, the recognition of the feminine both in humanity and in the divinity were found in Malabar. To the question of a Danish missionary concerning their opinion of a Supreme Being, this beautiful answer was given. The Supreme Being has a Form and yet has no Form; he can be likened to nothing; we cannot define him and say that he is this or that; he is neither Man or Woman; neither Heaven or Earth, and yet he is all; subject to no corruption, no mortality and with neither sleep nor rest, he is Almighty and Omnipotent without Beginning and without End.
Under the Missionaries sent by England to introduce her own barbaric ideas of God and man, this beautiful Matriarchal civilization of Malabar soon retrograded and was lost. The ancient Mound Builders of America, of whom history is silent and science profoundly ignorant, are proven by means of symbolism to have been under Matriarchal rule, and Motherhood religion.
Anciently motherhood was represented by a sphere or circle. The circle, like the mundane egg, which is but an elongated circle, contains everything in itself and is the true microcosm. It is eternity, it is feminine, the creative force, representing spirit. Through its union with matter in the form of the nine digits it is likewise capable of representing all natural things. It is a remarkable fact—its significance not recognized,—that the roughly sketched diameter within the circle, found wherever boys congregate, is an ancient mystic sign  signifying the male and female, or the double-sexed deity.
It is the union of all numbers, the one within the zero mark comprising ten, and as part of the ancient mysteries signifying God, the creative power, and eternal life; it was an emblem of The All.
In many old religions, the generative principle was regarded as the mother of both gods and men. In the Christian religion we find tendency to a similar recognition in Catholic worship of the Virgin Mary. The most ancient Aryans were under the Matriarchate, the feminine recognized as the creative power. The word ma from which all descendants of those peoples derive their names for mother, was synonymous with Creator.
In these, the woman is represented as having descended to man from association with divine beings in whose custody and care she has been, and who give her up with reluctance. In Sanscrit mythology,  the feminine is represented by Swrya, the Sun, the source of life, while the masculine is described as Soma, a body. Soma, a beverage of the gods especially sacred to Indra, was the price paid by him for the assistance of Vayu, the swiftest of the gods, in his battle against the demon Vritra. A curious line of thought is suggested. The marriage of the man to the woman was symbolized as his union with the gods.
Soma, a drink devoted to Indra, the highest god, signified his use of a body, or the union of spirit and body.
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In the same manner, woman representing spirit, by her marriage to man became united with a body. As during the present dark age, the body has been regarded more highly than the spirit, we find a non-recognition of the woman, although the union of spirit and body is symbolized in the Christian church by the sacrament of bread and wine. During the purest period of Aryan history marriage was entirely optional with woman and when entered into, frequently meant no more than spiritual companionship.
Woman equally with man was entitled to the Brahminical thread; she also possessed the right to study and preach the Vedas, which was in itself a proof of her high position in this race. The Vedas, believed to be the oldest literature extant, were for many ages taught orally requiring years of close application upon part of both teacher and student. Many ages passed before the Vedas were committed to writing.
In the old Aryan Scriptures the right of woman to hold property, and to her children, was much more fully recognized than under the Christian codes of today. Many of the [Pg 13] olden rights of women are still extant in India. The learned Keshub Chunder Sen vigorously protested against the introduction of English law into India, upon the ground that it would destroy the ancient rights of the women of that country.
It was primal Indian law that upon the death of the husband the wife should heir all his property. The property and the children were held as equally belonging to the husband or the wife. In the Veda, in Codes of Law, in sacred ordinances, the wife is held as one person with the husband; both are considered one. When the wife is not dead, half the body remains; how shall another take the property when half the body of the owner lives? After the death of the husband the widow shall take his wealth; this is primeval law. The female property of wives like the property of a stranger, may not be given, for there is want of ownership.
Neither the husband, nor the son, nor the father, nor the brother, have power to use or alien the legal property of a woman.
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The collection of East Indian laws made under authority of the celebrated Warren Hastings, , is of similar character. The kinds of property a wife can hold separate from her husband at her own disposal by will, are specified. During long centuries while under Christian law the Christian wife was not allowed even the control of property her own at the time of marriage, or of that which might afterwards be given her, and her right of the disposition of property at the time of her death was not recognized in Christian lands, the Hindoo wife under immemorial custom could receive property by gift alike from her parents, or from strangers, or acquire it by her own industry, and property thus gained was at her own disposal in case of her death.
Another remarkable feature of Indian law contrasting with that of Christian lands was preference of woman over man in heirship.
afhanoi.wecan-group.com/zox-kenwood-bm250.php Whatever she owns during the Agamini Shadee, i. Days of Marriage; Whatever her husband may at any time have given her; whatever she has received at any time from a brother; and whatever her father and mother may have given her.
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Whatever jewelry or wearing apparel she may have received from any person; also whatever a woman may receive from any person as an acknowledgment or payment for any work performed by her. Whatever she may by accident have found anywhere.
Except from one of the family of her father, one of the family of her mother, or one of the family of her husband, whatever she may receive from any other person. Her right of final disposal by will is also specified. Her effects acquired during marriage go to her daughters in preference to her sons, and possessing no daughters, to her mother. When a woman dies, then whatever effects she acquired during the Agamini Shadee, even though she hath a son living, shall go first to her unmarried daughter; if there is but one unmarried daughter she shall obtain the whole; if there are several unmarried daughters, they all shall have equal share.
The specification of gifts of intention is remarkable in securing property to the wife that was seemingly given by the parents to the husband alone. If a husband neglect to provide his wife necessary food and clothing, the East Indian wife is allowed to procure them by any means in her power. Maine has not failed to recognize the superior authority of the eastern wife in relation to property over that of the Christian wife.
He says:. It is certainly a remarkable fact that the institution seems to have developed among the Hindoos at a period relatively much earlier than among the Romans.