The Squamish Language is nearly extinct. The Squamish Nation’s population grows to past 4000 people soon, yet only 0.02% speak the language fluently. The causes for its decline are numerous; assimilation policies by Canadian governments, disruption of traditional ways of being by Settler domination in our lands, and the embracing of Western-style education methods. Even though the situation is severe, we are committed, dedicated, and will be successful at learning our languages so we can share it with future generations.
The Squamish language is the traditional language of the Squamish people. Our people have had presence in our homelands since time immemorial. We come from powerful ancestors who gained inspirational, even supernatural, gifts. For the entire existence as a people stretching back generations, we have been speakers of Skwxwú7mesh sníchim (Squamish language). Only recently has this been altered.
In our language carries the knowledge, wisdom, and guidance of our ancestors. It defines whats important, and what is good. It shows us what our culture says about learning and acquiring knowledge. It describes things in such detail and beauty, we cannot help by feel the strength of our ancestors by the more we learn of our language. Our language is like an old-growth forrest of the mind.
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