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i am a very nomadic person. i haven't lived anywhere for more than a few years, and i do not know where i will end up if i manage to reach 100 years of age. however, i have a love of learning, and have tried to pick up indigenous skills and knowledge in my travels. some are unique to a region; others i have observed in several places.


1) global secrets: secrets that are independent of any particular location.

a) 6 years growth, one year fallow - this is a theory of farming that appears in a number of texts and locations around the world. almost nobody follows this tried and true method anymore, but i know for a fact that it works. essentially, a farmer should split their land into 7 parts. within in a 7 year cycle, every portion of land will be allowed to grow over completely for a full year once a cycle.

b) 'simple' and 'natural' has benefits - many things can be simplified without losing function or information. simple ideas and objects are easier to learn and less likely to break down. simplifying processes and plans also improves speed. ideas and objects that are designed in accordance with natural processes and the environment will be less detrimental and harmful to the earth. in addition, they are often easier to understand and use.


2) local secrets

a) South Korea - yearly cleansing fasting. it is a common practice to go on a water-only diet for 3-7 days once or twice a year. it clears the body of toxins and has a host of other benefits as well. if one feels hunger pains, chewing on a few grains of uncooked rice will help.

b) Cherokee - 'going to water' is a morning cleansing ceremony for the mind, body and spirit. this is performed in running water, such as a river or stream. while the exact particulars are somewhat complex, it generally consists of walking to running water, facing the sun, and submersing oneself in water 4-7 times.

c) Japan - Iaido (居合道) is the traditional sword art of Japan, far less popular than Kendo. unlike Kendo, Iaido students practice with metal blades; iaito have unsharpened blades and live blades are used by advanced practitioners. the essential philosophy is readiness and awareness.

d) China - Tao (道) is one of the three great teachings of China. the name simply means 'the way', and it teaches following nature, compassion, moderation and humility. Chi Kung (气功) is traditional Chinese medicine. it's time-tested practices are increasingly being adopted by western medicine.

e) Celtic - fire festivals and solar celebrations. there are 4 seasonal fire festivals: Samhain, Imbolc, Beltaine and Lughnasadh. the solar celebration are based on light/dark of the day: Alban Arthuan (winter solstice), Alban Eiler (spring equinox), Alban Heruin (summer solstice) and Alban Elued (autumn equinox).


i hope to continue being taught indigenous knowledge and skills as i continue my travels.

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Tags: health, imagine8, indigenous, medicine, native

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