Indigenous Teachings for a Sustainable Future
Edited by Melissa K. Nelson, published by Bear & Company, 2008 (paperback 9781591430797)
Original Instructions presents the ancient teachings for sustainable living that are safeguarded and maintained by indigenous peoples. With contributions from John Mohawk, Winona LaDuke, Chief Oren Lyons, and others, these voices tell us how to live with a light footprint--in gratitude and with reverence for community and all creation.
For millennia the world’s Indigenous Peoples have acted as guardians of the web of life for the following seven generations. They have successfully managed complex reciprocal relationships between diverse biological ecosystems and multitudinous human cultures. Awareness of Indigenous Knowledge is reemerging at the eleventh hour to help avert global ecological and social collapse. Indigenous cultural wisdom shows us how to live in peace--with the earth and one another.
Original Instructions evokes the rich Indigenous storytelling tradition in this collection of presentations gathered from the annual Bioneers conference, a yearly meeting of some of the world’s most seminal environmentalists and social vision-aries. The book depicts how the world’s native leaders and scholars are safeguarding the Original Instructions, reminding us about gratitude, kinship, and a reverence for community and creation. Included are more than thirty contemporary Indigenous leaders--such as Chief Oren Lyons, John Mohawk, Winona LaDuke, and John Trudell. These beautiful, wise voices remind us where hope lies.
MELISSA K. NELSON, Ph.D., is an ecologist, writer, educator, and social activist whose work is dedicated to Indigenous revitalization and cross-cultural reconciliation. She is a professor of American Indian studies at San Francisco State University and president of The Cultural Conservancy, a nonprofit Indigenous rights organization. She also coproduced the award-winning documentary short film The Salt Song Trail: Bringing Creation Back Together. She is a member of the Turtle Mountain Chippewa Indians and lives in the San Francisco Bay Area.