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Weaving Wisdom: Lessons from 'Braiding Sweetgrass


"Braiding Sweetgrass" by Robin Wall Kimmerer is a profound blend of indigenous wisdom, scientific knowledge, and the teachings of plants. It is one of my favorite books and I have gifted many a copy to friends and family.


I find the blend of personal stories, woven with the interaction of science and indigenous knowledge to be humbling, comforting, and inspiring. The two stories that remained with me, even after a year of reading it the first time (the pond rehabilitation, and the maple sugar making) both are great at showing that some things are hard, time consuming, sweet, and important to experience for your soul and as a connection to your place in the world.


Overall Kimmerer’s storytelling bridges the gap between modern scientific understanding and ancient Indigenous wisdom, making the latter more accessible and relatable to a broader audience. The book promotes sustainable practices and mindful consumption, influencing readers to consider the environmental impact of their daily actions. Overall, "Braiding Sweetgrass" has made a lasting impact by bridging cultural divides, inspiring environmental consciousness, and advocating for a harmonious relationship between humans and the natural world.


I believe the lasting impact that book has is to revive the questions that have always been central to native wisdom: how do we live in balance with the world, how can we learn to take only what we need and leave habitats and environments enough to replenish and renew? And most importantly, how can we incorporate new (old) ideas to create a better future.


“I don’t have the power to dismantle Monsanto. But what I do have is the capacity to change how I live on a daily basis and how I think about the world. I just have to have faith that when we change how we think, we suddenly change how we act and how those around us act, and that’s how the world changes. It’s by changing hearts and changing minds. And it’s contagious. I became an environmental scientist and a writer because of what I witnessed growing up within a world of gratitude and gifts.” - Kimmerer - theguardian.com/books/2020/may/23

I believe the lasting impact that book has is to revive the questions that have always been central to native wisdom: how do we live in balance with the world, how can we learn to take only what we need and leave habitats and environments enough to replenish and renew? And most importantly, how can we incorporate new (old) ideas to create a better future.

 
For those looking for products that use the botanical power of native plants, please see our collection of bar soap from A Wild Soap Bar, including Sweetgrass and Oak Moss infused soaps.

 
Next meeting is Wednesday, July 17th 7:00-8:30pm



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