Mothers of Nations

Mothers of the Nations: Indigenous Mothering as Global Resistance, Reclaiming and Recovery
Edited by D. Memee Lavell-Harvard and Kim Anderson

I: Healthy Beginnings
1. The Meaning of Motherhood Among the Kabyle Berber, Indigenous People of North Africa

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In Europe, for example, we refer to the theory of the Greek philosopher Plato (428/427-348/347 B.C.), which describes man and woman as two parts that originally formed a whole Sphere. This concept of two parts that are complementary has many regrettable consequences on all levels. With this theory of complementarity, a man is incomplete without a woman and a woman is incomplete without a man. In this way, a human being is incomplete or “unfinished” and he always searches for the other half (Makilam 137-138). This theory of complementarity is inherent to patriarchy, and is strange to the Kabyle understanding of gender. Kabyle women and men are seen as complete entities in their own rights, though of the same nature. This explains why a Kabyle woman is never compared to a man. She feels as a part of the female community, which is distinguished from the men’s community. The representation of the human society in the Kabyle mind consists of two communities, but not with complementary gender logic.
Indeed, it is typical for the mother-centered Berber society that women and men work in different fields at different tasks. Like in Native and Mesoamerican societies, the genders in Kabylia have their separate economic sphere and authority–and these do not interfere with one another. Each group works separately, but for the same goal: the continuity of the mother’s line.
Women in Berber society do not want to be men or to take over masculine values, as in patriarchal western societies. A Kabyle woman does not want to be complementary to a man and, we will see later–as a mother–she teaches their daughters an artistic secret script, which is the proof of the honor to be born as a woman. Continue reading “Mothers of Nations”

Indigenous Healing

Very brief notes from the book (I was too engaged to extract much, as the book works more as a whole – appropriately enough)

Indigenous Healing – Exploring Traditional Paths by Rupert Ross

Contents
Part One Stumbling into a World of Right Relations
Ch 1 Learning to See Relationally
Ch 2 Seeing Justice Relationally
Ch 3 Moving into Right Relations
The Embedded Indigenous Soul
Ethical Responsibilities toward All of Creation
Languages Built on Spiritual Connections
Place, Space and the Medicine Wheel
the Centrality of the Circle and Ceremony
the Fundamental Posture of Thankfulness
the Notion that Humans are Fundamentally Good
Right Relations and True Knowledge Continue reading “Indigenous Healing”