President: Vilma Díaz y Zárate
Team Members in Argentina:
Vilma Díaz y Zárate is an Anthropologist and graduate from Hunter College, City University of New York, Suma Cum Laude (1984). Coauthor of the book “Argentine Indigenous Designs” (EMECE 1999). Founder of the Civil Association Runa Wasi. Her area of expertise is Ethnology, Biomedicine and Indigenous cosmovisions and Spirituality.
Sacha Domenech is a clinical psychologist from the University of Salvador, specializing in dependency treatment and personality disorders. He collaborated as a therapist with the Takiwasi Center in Tarapoto, Peru. Founder and responsible of the Health Are in Runa Wasi.
Lucrecia Seligra is a photographer and assistant to Vilma Día y Zárate, helping in the area of communication of Runa Wasi and CISEI. She was the general coordinator of the CISEI Forum VII “Honoring the Grandfather Fire Spirit”.
The CISEI Argentina was elected in April 2011 to October 2014 for be the Board of Directors. Its members include Vilma Díaz y Zárate (Argentina) as President, Anita Huachi Espín (Ecuador) as Vice President, Sacha Domenech (Argentina) as Treasurer, Milagros Mutti (Argentina) as secretary, and Lucrecia Seligra, Rosina Soto and Maud Farrugia as principal collaborators.
At the start of 2011 the Elder and Honorary Member, Emerson Jackson Sr., along with Ronald Prows and Paul Dalgai, all three of whom are from the Navajo Nation, traveled to Argentina to celebrate the beginning of CISEI Argentina with a blessing in a Tee Pee Ceremony in which the entire team participated.
This Board of Directors, in addition to organizing the VII CISEI International Forum, “Honoring the Spirit of Grandfather Fire,” participated in the development of diverse activities such as the presentation of the video “Uqhamau Ayahuayco” by the Aymara Paco Alanez, which highlights the community work of Ayahuaco, his homeland; the CISEI’s president’s trip to the ‘Primer Encuentro de Curanderos ‘ (First Encounter of Healers) in Trujillo, Peru to establish ties and present the work of CISEI; the trip to the Ceremonial Center El Shinkal (in Catamarca) to participate and document the Ceremony of Intiq Rayamin, which was held with the intention of recuperating the traditional Andean ceremony; the art exhibit of Nyi, Art School of the Peruvian Amazon, and the constant work of spreading information and communicating the CISEI’s activities through social media, our blog and emails.
From the 22nd to the 25th of November, 2012 CISEI held its VII Forum “Honoring the Spirit of Grandfather Fire” in the CMD (Metropolitan Center of Design) in the city of Buenos Aires, to which hundreds of people came to participate in the conferences, workshops, art exhibits, concerts, audiovisual projections and ceremonies. Themes of spirituality, medicine, science, ecology and art were discussed in the meeting between representatives from the indigenous communities and nations of Maya Kakchiquel, Mazateco, Choctaw, Kariña, Kuna, Quechua, Quechua-Lamista, Aymara, Colla, Ava Guaraní, Mapuche from from the countries of Chile, Peru, Bolivia, Paraguay, Brazil, Ecuador, Venezuela, Panama, Mexico, Guatemala, The United States, Canada and Argentina.
New communication ties were established in the Forum along with the conclusion that it is fundamental to establish networks for exchange and connection, not only to preserve and deepen the knowledgesof the indigenous people, but to connect them to new paradigms of current science, while recognizing the major importance of Spirituality in this complex process.
The VII Forum had its closing ceremony in the outskirts of Buenos Aires, directed by Mr. Asencio Nao Sasari, a Quechua from Cusco, and Mr. Alejandro Salas Tuanama from the Lamista Quechua Nation. Members of CISEI and special guests attended. Since the Forum, the CISEI team has continued with its tasks of compiling, transcribing and organizing all the material produced in the VII Forum. They are constantly in communication with national and international members to support and spread these gatherings that make it possible for indigenous peoples around the world to become more closely connected. In this context the CISEI gave institutional sponsorship to the first symposium Anadenanthera: uses and visions from 4000 years in Cusco, Peru; invited the Sister Mapuche Sofia Painiqueo to participate in the Twelfth Liberation of Condors in Paileman, Rio Negro, by the Foundation Bioandina of the Buenos Aires Zoo.