The Wayfinders: Why Ancient Wisdom Matters in the Modern by Wade Davis

By Wade Davis

Each tradition is a different solution to a primary query: What does it suggest to be human and alive? Anthropologist and nationwide Geographic Explorer-in-Residence Wade Davis leads us on an exciting trip to have fun the knowledge of the world’s indigenous cultures.
In Polynesia we set sail with navigators whose ancestors settled the Pacific ten centuries sooner than Christ. within the Amazon we meet the descendants of a real misplaced Civilization, the folk of the Anaconda. within the Andes we find that the Earth fairly is alive, whereas within the some distance reaches of Australia we adventure Dreamtime, the all-embracing philosophy of the 1st people to stroll out of Africa. We then shuttle to Nepal, the place we stumble upon a knowledge hero, a Bodhisattva, who emerges from forty-five years of Buddhist retreat and solitude. and eventually we settle in Borneo, the place the final rainforest nomads fight to survive.
Understanding the teachings of this trip may be our undertaking for the following century. For in danger is the human legacy — an enormous archive of data and services, a listing of the mind's eye. Rediscovering a brand new appreciation for the variety of the human spirit, as expressed through tradition, is likely one of the important demanding situations of our time.

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Additional resources for The Wayfinders: Why Ancient Wisdom Matters in the Modern World (CBC Massey Lecture)

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The house is the image of the universe and consequently of the microcosm represented by man; but it reflects at the same time all the phases of the cosmogonic myth. In other words, the house is not a static construction but has a "movement" corresponding to the different stages of the cosmogonic process. The orientation of the separate units (the central pole, the walls, the roof), as well as the position of the tools and furniture, is related to the movements of the inhabitants and their location in the house.

The same thing can be said of any experience of mountaineering, flying, swimming under water, or any long journey, discovery of an unknown country, or even a meaningful 44 Chapter 3 encounter with strangers . Every one of these experiences recalls and reactualizes a landscape, a figure, or an event from one of those imaginary universes known from mythologies or folklore or from one's own dreams and fantasies. It is needless to add that we are seldom aware of the symbolic meaning of such experiences.

The wailing of women, the gashing of one's head to draw blood, and other manifestations of grief and despair reach a real frenzy . " 15 The Paradoxical Multilocation of the Departed Soul Most of these contradictory ideas and behaviors are occasioned by the problem of the soul's localization. There is a widespread belief that the departed ones haunt their familiar surroundings, although Mythologies of Death 41 they are supposed to be concurrently present in their tombs and in the netherworld. Such paradoxical multi location of the soul is explained in different ways according to the different religious systerns.

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