Tree of knowledge spawns a canoe to keep an Aboriginal tradition afloat
MAJOR Sumner is philosophical about his attempt to cut and shape a bark canoe from a mighty red gum. ''It's been a long time since anyone has built a bark canoe so we're just going to have to figure it out as we go," he says.
The tree is on a property on the outskirts of the town of Kalangadoo in south-eastern South Australia.
GOTHENBURG, Sweden—In the early 20th century, human remains from all over the world were collected in the name of “racial biology,” which was in fashion at the time.
Uppsala University, Sweden's oldest university, housed Sweden's foremost center for this kind of research. Now, the university wants to make amends for its past transgressions.
Human remains have ended up in many different places in the name of research. In 1990, the Native American Graves Protection and Repatriation Act was passed in the United States in order to help native people recover these remains.
It takes three days for Winnie Nsimbi to concoct her secret potion from herbs, plants, crocodile and cobra parts, and the fat of a lion. But it could be the hidden weapon that helps an African soccer team to beat its competitors.
“It makes you strong,” she says. “It makes the other players tired, and it lets you run stronger.”
She points to another favourite ingredient: the ostrich bones that hang from the ceiling of her small shop at the Mai Mai market, Johannesburg’s leading purveyor of traditional medicine and spiritualism. “Ostrich gives you speed and helps you run faster,” she explains.
On a Saturday night in May, 15 middle-aged teachers, doctors, and artists — dressed in matching white garb — enter a South Miami home. A cloud of sage smoke makes the tidy suburban townhouse smell like a head shop. They pay $96, climb a set of stairs, and sit in a circle in a roomful of pillows. Then they turn off the lights.
In minutes, a Chilean shaman appears with a mystical healing brew. He sits in front of an altar and whistles as each person drinks from an eight-ounce cup. After a half-hour, they launch into a powerful hallucinogenic trip. For these 15 people, the all-night ceremony is a deeply religious experience.
Pipe ceremonies, teepee raisings, fiddle music — it sounds like Southern Plains Métis Local 160 is planning another National Aboriginal Day celebration in the Friendly City.
On June 20, all Moose Javians are invited and encouraged to attend the second annual local celebration of First Nations, Métis and Inuit people, starting at 10 a.m. Last year, Moose Jaw’s National Aboriginal Day was held in Happy Valley Park. This year, the Métis Local 160 decided to locate the event city centre.