Friday, May 31, 2013

people of the Jaguar

Excerpt from the book The Wayfinders by Wade Davis

Barasana see the earth as potent, the forest as being alive with spiritual beings and ancestral powers. To live off the land is to embrace both its creative and destructive potential. Human beings, plants, and animals share the same cosmic origins, and in a profound sense are seen as essentially identical, responsive to the same principles, obligated by the same duties, responsible for the collective well-being of creation. There is no separation between nature and culture. Without the forest and the rivers, humans would perish. But without people, the natural world would have no order or meaning. All would be chaos. Thus the norms that drive social behavior also define the manner in which human beings interact with the wild, the plants and animals, the multiple phenomena of the natural world, lightning and thunder, the sun and the moon, the scent of a blossom, the sour odour of death. Everything is related, everything connected, a single integrated whole. Mythology infuses land and life with meaning, encoding expectations and behaviors essential to survival in the forest, anchoring each community, every maloca, to a profound spirit of place. 

We are all subset of nature and we cannot stay without being connected to nature. We are always connected  with nature in many more ways than we think. For the people living today in the forests, the entire natural world is saturated with meaning and cosmological significance. Every rock and waterfall embodies a story. Plants and animals are but distinct physical manifestations of the same essential significance. 

For those living in the forests, nature is god. They worship, pray and protect it. They believe if they protect nature, nature will take good care of them. Their lives are embedded in every story in the woods. 

Barasana are a group located in the Eastern part of Amazon basin. 

"I believe in God, only I spell it Nature." ~ Frank Lloyd Wright


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