Children’s book shares elder’s teachings


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This article was published 25/03/2022 (196 days ago), so information in it may no longer be current.

When local writer Tarina Parisian heard of her elder’s passing, she knew it was time to share the children’s story that she had written almost 18 years earlier.

“My parents passed away years before my children were born,” Parisian said. “It was my responsibility to share my culture but unfortunately at the time knew little about it. I reached out to a place called Red Willow Lodge and became engulfed in learning through ceremonies and sweat lodges.”

During that time, Tarina received her spirit name, North Summer Wind Woman and first heard the seven sacred teachings.

Tarina Anne Parisian is the author of Nature Lives Within Me, a 24-page children’s book.

“Learning about my culture was an awakening experience,” she said. “It gave me a sense of self I had never really experienced. It was at my first visit to the lodge, where they were having ceremonial fires. The elder, Jules, shared that you can see things in the embers and the flames of the fire. That child, spirit and fire are all one. To be mindful of what that experience was to bring. I had seen the images of the animals in the fire that night and asked what their meaning was. It was then I heard these teaching for the first time and I started to cry.

“I wanted to share what I had learned but was told these stories where only shared verbally.”

With Jules’ approval, Parisian tells the story in a children’s book called Nature Lives Within Me, which she says she wrote to honour him.

“It’s a story about a young girl’s journey through the forest, where she meets different animals that teach her a virtue,” she said. “Every animal that she encounters shares things in the forest that are related to our everyday existence. She grows and learns with each character she visits.”

Her book can be purchased at Preferred Perch, Johnny’s Marion Restaurant, and Teekca’s Aboriginal Boutique. You can also order online through Amazon, Barnes & Noble and Book Depository.

For more information and a sneak peak at the gorgeous illustrations, visit

Carolyne Braid

Carolyne Braid
Crescentwood community correspondent

Carolyne Braid is a community correspondent for Crescentwood. You can reach her at

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