Ecological Fabric


On Seasonal Round Activities
of the
Schitsu'umsh and the Nimíipuu Communities


With the landscape prepared by the First Peoples, embedded with the "gifts" (mi'yep and súumesh  = "the bones") and with Animal and Plant Peoples, and we the Human Peoples, in our baaéechichiwaau, perpetuating the health of the "the family," of landscape for all Peoples, how do we understand and apply those teachings and powers to help the Plant and Animal Peoples, the landscape itself?  

How are we to relate to our Animal and Plant Kinsmen?       How do we relate to the "natural world"?
What is a healthy environment?
What accounts for an affluent society?



Videos: Makuna Consent (23 min., notes on Makuna Consent) and Gabra Finn (15 min., notes on Gabra Finn) are part of the Millennium series.  (Compare with story of Sedna and Schitsu'umsh camas gathering and deer hunting)



    Deer 1



Domestication, Horticulture and Agriculture:

the contrast with Gatherer - Hunter ecology

Story of Jericho - 9,400 years ago: a metaphor of domestication and its long-range implications, and demarcation from the Indigenous.  
 Why were the
walls and tower of Jericho built?   And what where their long-term implications?

reflective write




Thus, the ultimate success of an agricultural ecology is measured in terms of its ability to technologically control, manipulate and modify the natural environment, with far reaching implications for all of humanity     

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The "Walls" and "Tower" of Jericho, and the Abrahamic Traditions of Judaism, Christianity and Islam

"Eye Juggle" the Abrahamic Story Text in light of Jericho.




As a member of an Indigenous community and given your mi'yep teachings, what structural, behavioral and ideological frameworks and components define a successful relationship with your landscape?    What do you need to make it work for you and others?  


Schitsu'umsh Seasonal Round - landscape

Nimíipuu Seasonal Round - seasons

Videos: Celilo Falls (10 min) and Seasons of the Salish (28 min)


Spring into Summer and into Fall

Lodges (and Plains Indian Tipi)


Cedar Baskets and Beaded Bags


Canoes and Horses

Fall into Winter into Spring




Closing thoughts on Indigenous seasonal round:

knowledge, mobility and "home territories"

kinship partnership and prayer requests: balance

"live by endanger the souls others"

"live by consent of others"




The "Original Affluent Society" (reading)

Given your ecological relationship with the landscape, what is the Quality of Life among Indigenous communities?

The social philosopher Thomas Hobbes in his Leviathan (1651) had characterized the life of "primitive peoples" as with "no knowledge of the face of the earth; no account of time; no arts; no letters; no society; and which is worst of all, continual fear, and danger of violent death; and the life of man, solitary, poor, nasty, brutish, and short."   reflective write

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First:    Indigenous communities are characterized as "walking lightly"  --  maintaining an ecological balance -- receive only what the kinship-based "natural" landscape provides -      - a minimal "carbon footprint" 

Low levels of work output needed and high level of leisure and social time afforded.    Average "work-week" (yearly average weekly hours per capita) is 20-25 hours of labor, with most time devoted to social/family relationships and aesthetic and ceremonial expressions.     After the agricultural revolution, a radical swift from social and ceremonial to economic-based labor output hours.

Historic and contemporary gatherer-hunter society need a low level of energy consumption, an estimated equivalent of 5,000 kilocalories daily per capita per day to maintain their way of life, compared with technological society of the 21st century, with its equivalent of from 280,000 to 323,000 kilocalories needed per individual each day.

Maintaining appropriate population density for ecological carrying capacity.    Example of a pre-contact, 5,000 Schitsu'umsh population in a ecological aboriginal territorial range of 4 million acres.     With agricultural revolution, there came a rapid and accelerating population growth.

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Second:     To "walk lightly," live in "Kinship"  and "Partnership," live in inclusivity and with equality with landscape

-- with the landscape, e.g., address and relate to a deer as a "brother" -        -   with the animals and plants of the landscape, i.e., the "animal peoples" having the same rights - same souls as "human peoples,"      KEY: "live by endangering the souls of others," "living by consent of others" -         

--  as with the health and healing of the human physical body, so with the health and healing of the landscape's physical body, i.e., when the spiritual and behavioral are in balance, so the spirit manifests itself in the physical phenomenal world  -         

--  and what applies to the animal and plant peoples, so too with fellow humans, with social equality among groups and with gender  -- a s u

No "Walls and Towers of Jericho" separating and having dominion over animal/plant peoples,  nor separating and having dominion (stratification) other humans peoples.    No "domestic" vs. "wild demarcations," and "purging" of  the "wild."  No "animal and plant kinsmen" becoming "Natural Resources" and "Commodities."     And socially, no class structures and differential access and reward to resources, of rich and poor, of political elite and powerful.   And no "ecological crisis," no "global warming."  No "exclusivity."

Expressive of the following mi'yp - "the bones":     . ?. ?. ?. ?. ?.

Expressive of the following mi'yp - "the bones":    . ?. ?. ?. ?. ?.

Expressive of the following mi'yp - "the bones":    . ?. ?. ?. ?. ?.

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Third:    To "walk lightly," live in Reciprocity.    An "ethic of sharing" characterizes the relationships among and between all the human and animal kinsmen, i.e., universal and equitable distribution of "gifts" based on need -      - one's status measured in terms of what he or she gives away to help others -        - "A poor man shames us all" (Gabra) --  t

No "Walls and Towers of Jericho" separating and having dominion over animal/plant peoples,  nor separating and having dominion (stratification) other humans peoples.   No class structures and differential access and reward to resources.  No redistribution based upon status and privilege, and no rich or poor.     No individual's seeking to "maximize one’s gains and minimize one’s losses."     No systematic, institutionalized incarceration;  no systematic, institutionalized warfare on other humans.

 Expressive of the following mi'yp - "the bones":        . ?. ?. ?. ?.  

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Fourth:    Resulting in a healthy diet, including calorie, fiber, calcium and protein intake, and low fat and sodium consumption.     The gatherer-hunter dietary consumption levels per day per capita include:

An estimated 3,000 calories (these levels of calorie consumption are compared with the United States Department of Agriculture recommended minimum of 1,975 calories).

250 grams of protein (these levels are comparable or exceed the actual U.S. average consumption which ranges from 50-125 grams)

Fat consumption was at 71 grams (30 g. animal and 41 g. plant), representing 21% of the total daily dietary energy source. The U.S. average consumption represents 42% of the diet, with 30% a U.S.D.A. recommended.   A significant portion of the U.S. fat consumption is of saturated fats)

Sodium levels were at 690 milligrams (compared with the U.S. average consumption of 2,300-6,900 mg. per day)

Calcium intake levels were at 1,580 milligrams (compared with an average 740 mg. per day in the U.S. Of note, this calcium level was reached without dairy products, e.g., cheese or milk, but was a result of the way animal foods are prepared and consumed, i.e., inclusion of animal bone)

Ascorbic acid was at 392 milligrams per day (compared with an average U.S. consumption of 88 mg.)

Fiber intake was at 46 grams per day ( compared with an average U.S. of 20 grams)

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Fifth:     Resulting in few infectious and stress-related diseases and, if survive infancy, great longevity.    In Schitsu'umsh instance, 60 to 70 years of age was norm.  

After the agriculture, the over-health within these communities declined, with the average physical height of people shrinking and with an increase in communicable diseases and resulting deaths.    It took centuries of improvement on the agricultural diet for the average height of people to return to its former self, only within the last century.

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Sixth:  given changing seasonal round, hunter-gatherer communities linked to cultural competencies in “curiosity,”  “risk taking,” taste for novelty and avoidance of routine.

In contrast, sedentary communities linked with cultural competencies in regularity and structure, avoidance of the novel, lack of risk taking and curiosity.

                How is better adapted to the changing dynamics of 21st century life?

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Note: extension and replication of the same mi'yp - "the bones" that characterizes how Indigenous gatherer-hunters relate to "animal and plant peoples" also characterizes how they relate socially to "human peoples."

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"Affluence" --  a measure of the ratio of the means and products available, i.e., the technological knowledge and goods produced, relative to the desired wants, i.e., the expectations.   For Indigenous gatherer-hunters, what is desired is obtained.   And given the "ethic of sharing," no one or group goes without.          Indigenous Communities = Original Affluent Society! 

Anything but "nasty, brutish and short-lived."     "A poor man shames us all."




To what extent have the "walls and tower of Jericho" continued into our own lives?  

as a reflection, comparison with the United States?

as a contributor to climate warming?


To what extent can we learn from and apply TEK, predicated on Heart Knowledge, to help science, predicated on Head Knowledge, address current climatic change issues?  

Can the two ways of knowing be integrated, to address a shared issue?




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