In 2001 I began a quest fueled by my mid-life crisis of faith. In order to somehow find a new direction for myself, I set out to uncover the story of my Mexican-born grandfather Emilio’s migration to California in 1904, and to fulfill a vow made to him at his deathbed to find his long-lost family of origin in Mexico. This undertaking became the basis for a documentary feature film, “Weaving the Past: Journey of Discovery” which I produced, directed and wrote. What I uncovered and learned during my fourteen-year journey astonished me, changed my life and ultimately gave me the spiritual renewal that I desperately needed. When I began, I had no idea where I would go or who I would meet, as there was so little information to go on. But at every step I received help and encouragement, from the people living on this side of the veil of life, and much more from those in the unseen world, from the “ancestors”, the spirits. Thankfully, I had opened my mind and heart to them long before and so they could guide and help me. This was largely due to the powerful spirituality and wisdom of teachers who were present in my life from early on. They taught me to understand that there is a world beyond this physical realm, and that what we need flows to us when we humble ourselves and come to truly know that we are sustained not only from our own ego-centered self, but from a vast infinity of love and support freely available to each of us. My grandfather Emilio was the first of my teachers, a man of tremendous and unshakeable faith in the power of the divine, and with a great love of and connection with people, animals and nature. Looking back, I believe that so much of his wisdom and connectedness came from his indigenous roots in Mexico. When he died, I was devastated, felt lost and drifting without a guide and anchor. But the universe is generous and wonderful, and into this void came another great teacher, Marcellus Bear Heart Williams. How we cross paths with people who change the course of our lives – deep friends, life partners, spiritual teachers – is another instance of miraculous manifestations in our existence. And Bear Heart was a beautiful manifestation who stood like an oak tree in the midst of my life for more than two decades. Having the most brilliant mind I have ever encountered, Bear Heart, as his name suggests, was also a powerfully loving individual. He took me in as a son and shared so much with me of himself as a human being, and as one of the great spiritual teachers of his time. His passing, like the passing of my grandfather Emilio, rocked me in many ways I did not understand at the time. But like my grandfather, he reached through the veil separating this life and the eternal life, and he was there for me to guide, suggest, motivate and support me throughout my own life’s epic of discovery. At so many junctures in this journey I was at dead ends, stumped, stalled, and ready to give up. But I had something to fall back upon that these great men had shown me: how to pray, ask for help, and remain open in faith for the response to come from the great Unseen. And sure enough, a new person or place, an unexpected turn of events or unforeseen opportunity came my way, that led me to yet another discovery. All this is chronicled in my documentary feature film, released in 2014, which is also a story of the soul. Thank you Grandpa, and thank you Bear Heart, and those others in spirit who took me by the hand and led me. My film was a labor of love and it is dedicated to you! You are always close to me and I thank you with the deepest of love in my heart.
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It took one hundred years for the wish of Walter Dominguez’s maternal grandfather to come to fruition. On a journey to re-kindle the sense of a mission and purpose in his life, Walter shares the history of the struggle for social emancipation of ethnic Mexican people and the indigenous people in his award-winning film “Weaving the Past: Journey of Discovery.” To read Reginah's full review of the film and for more information, please visit "Weaving the Past" on Amazon.com.