"Walking the Talk"


#1

I have noticed a lot of newer folks making judgements about people here not “walking the talk.” I’d like to clarify for them what rewilding refers to and how it encompasses so many elements that though one may not yet ‘walk’ all of the elements, it does not mean they need to, nor does it mean they do not ‘walk the talk.’ Nor does it mean they do not live up to some rewilding standard.

[b][size=10pt]What does rewild mean?[/size][/b]

As a verb

The term "rewild" acts as a verb which implies an action, a motion. It does not symbolize point A (Civilized) or point B (Wild) but the space between. As a verb, it symbolizes a process of undoing domestication, not the endpoint. It may look like a woman breast-feeding her child. It may look like a group of people collecting wild edibles. It may look like someone turning off their TV for an hour a day. It may look like hanging out with your friends. It may look like refusing to pay rent or buy food. It may look like killing a deer for the first time, using a rifle. And it may look like using a bow & arrow. It may look like reading a book and changing the way you see Civilization. It may look like refusing to send your children to school. It may look like stealing from the cash register at your wage slave job. It may look like tearing up the streets with a sledge-hammer to plant crops. It may look like investing in "green" technology. It may look like taking down civilization. It may look like frustration at the current state of the world. Everyone has various comfort zones, social networks or friends who can show them things. Rewilding does not exist just for the small elite class of purists who band together and head for the woods to live a 100% primitive life. It serves as an umbrella term for all those who strive to undomesticate themselves, [b][i]even if only in the smallest way they can[/b]. 

As a life project

For most green/anti-civilization/primitivist anarchists, rewilding and reconnecting with the earth is a [b][i]life project[/b]. It is not limited to intellectual comprehension or the practice of primitive skills, but instead, it is a deep understanding of the pervasive ways in which we are domesticated, fractured, and dislocated from our selves, each other, and the world, and the enormous and daily undertaking to be whole again. Rewilding has a physical component which involves reclaiming skills and developing methods for a sustainable co-existence, including how to feed, shelter, and heal ourselves with the plants, animals, and materials occurring naturally in our bioregion. It also includes the dismantling of the physical manifestations, apparatus, and infrastructure of civilization. Rewilding has an emotional component, which involves healing ourselves and each other from the 10,000 year-old wounds which run deep, learning how to live together in non-hierarchical and non-oppressive communities, and deconstructing the domesticating mindset in our social patterns. Rewilding involves prioritizing direct experience and passion over mediation and alienation, re-thinking every dynamic and aspect of our reality, connecting with our feral fury to defend our lives and to fight for a liberated existence, developing more trust in our intuition and being more connected to our instincts, and regaining the balance that has been virtually destroyed after thousands of years of patriarchal control and domestication. Rewilding is the process of becoming uncivilized.[2]</blockquote>

Rewilding for some looks like incremental change, for others it may look sudden.


#2
I have noticed a lot of newer folks making judgements about people here not "walking the talk."

On one of my posts on this forum I mentioned the importance of “walking the walk” or in other words, going out and applying skills and learning hands-on and so on, but that is just my opinion from my personal experience. I wasn’t making judgements about anyone on this site, it was more of a general statement.

Personally I don’t see a rewilding standard, is there one? Choose your own adventure…


#3
Personally I don't see a rewilding standard, is there one? Choose your own adventure...

Everyone does have to “choose their own adventure” and find their own path. The site does need a “standard” of sorts in terms of what rewilding mean when we use the term. In order to fully undomesticate, you need to take a lot of things into account: visible skills as well as invisible ones. I think Scout’s post sums it up really well.

It may look like a lot of different things. It may look like talking for some. It may look like hunting for others, or friction fires, or storytelling, or wildcrafting plants. But the end goal involves untangling the chains of civilization. And doing that in whatever way (and at whatever speed) works best for you.


#4

One thing that I see in what rewild means as a verb is that it creates a responsibility to act. If you realize that something is true, say that you are a wage slave, then to remain as such puts a person in a position of being responsible for being a wage slave, thus your saying “yep, I want to be a wage slave”.

Just as realizing that where your food comes from is critically important on a whole bunch of different levels puts you in a position of being responsible for where it comes from, thus to talk about it means very little, in fact it is energy wasted in what one could be doing, even if only baby step to provide for that food.

Am I making any sense?

The bitch of putting the pieces of the puzzle together is that it makes you responsible for the truth you’ve come to. It sets one up to be a hypocrite. (crash raises his hand as to who is a hypocrite)


#5
Am I making any sense?

Yea that makes sense, I think “taking the baby step” is the most important thing to do if you haven’t already done so. When you realize certain things you feel “compelled” to act, or at least I do so, yet it’s not like you can go from wage-slave to homesteader/living out on the land right away unless circumstances allow for it. It takes time and effort (and money) but I think if one is at least taking a few initial steps then it’s more productive overall as they will be on the path and can go from there, no matter how slow or fast they are walking the fact is they are walking rather than waiting or debating whether they should be walking at all.


#6

I don’t think it translates that directly, Crash. Acknowledging that you live the life of a wage slave and not immediately removing yourself from that position does not mean that you want that position.

For me, I’m using my position of slavery to keep food in my family’s mouth and keep my marriage together while I find a better way to do both. So to remain in that position for me translates as “yep, I acknowledge that I’m a wage slave right now, and I’m willing to put up with it while I try to find something better.”

The bitch of putting the pieces of the puzzle together is that it makes you responsible for the truth you’ve come to. It sets one up to be a hypocrite. (crash raises his hand as to who is a hypocrite)

It certainly does. I like how Andrew Jensen put it, though, over in the “Rewilding vs. Primitive Skills and Survivalism” thread.

For anyone trying to become something else while they live in the other situation, they will look like hypocrites. I’m cool with that because I feel like I’m doing the most right thing I can do for the moment I live in. As each moment progresses to the next, hopefully, the things I can do differently will progress too.


#7

(crash raises his hand as to who is a hypocrite)

Welcome to Takers Anonymous.


#8

I’ve always disliked the terms “taker” and “leaver.” Everyone takes from the land. It’s just that we don’t give back anymore. Sustainability nuts are all about reducing how much we take, but even that means nothing unless we start to give back. Sometimes I think that taking less is not that important if we can learn to give back more. I think giving back should be the focus.


#9

Well, Quinn didn’t intend the terms to refer to those who take from the land vs those who don’t. He uses the terms to describe how the takers have taken the power of the gods upon themselves in determining who should live and who should die, whereas the leavers simply leave such decisions in the hands of the gods.

Personally, I dislike the terms because they don’t express things clearly enough outside of the esoteric circle. Your assumptions about their meaning make perfect sense, and indicate the kind of confusion inherent in the terms.

But I definitely agree with your rant on the misunderstanding that sustainability nuts make when thinking that it only comes down to taking less and don’t focus on the fact that real sustainability relies on giving back more than you take.


#10
Rewilding for some looks like incremental change, for others it may look sudden.

Or it may look hardly different at all (on the outside). A lot of rewilding happens within the shape of the mind.


#11

I agree, or “trading” for things that are needed. Other animals do this as they live in nature, so why shouldn’t we? It’s all about a balance.


#12

this is probably redundant, but as a newbie to rewilding, though not to certain circles like this, i think it important that we all appreciate the efforts each person is making here and be mutually supportive and encouraging. pushing others to go further can be beneficial when in the appropriate relationship and context, but i have also seen a lot of infighting in circles not unlike this and it is always disheartening. i think the tendency of infighting is one of the wounds inflicted on us by this culture (or, at the least, i often feel the urge to criticize too much), so i hope part of rewilding can involve finding better ways to provide support to each other.

be well,
Evan


#13
He uses the terms to describe how the takers have taken the power of the gods upon themselves in determining who should live and who should die, whereas the leavers simply leave such decisions in the hands of the gods.

I think there was also mention of the terms relating to the phrase “Take it or leave it” in regards to civilization.


#14

I agree with this totally. With the global reach of Western civ today, it isn’t possible for people to just “opt out” of the system. Just try to roam the countryside living off the land anywhere where other people are, and you’d probably quickly find yourself arrested for trespassing.

Also, I personally wouldn’t want to live by myself out in the wilderness permanently (with no others to share in the gathering, hunting, clothes-making, tool-making, etc, I think it would be extremely difficult, not to mention extremely lonely). From what I’ve heard of the fate of various past communes/“utopias” that have attempted to live apart from society, the dominant culture just will not allow it.

So, in order to become truly, completely, totally wild and free, civ has to be dismantled (not just avoided). This is especially true when considering the entire population, as opposed to just a few people here and there.

Also, I question the ethics of staying focused only on oneself (heading out to the woods to live a personal wild life) while ignoring the destruction that is happening to the natural world (The Wild), all over the globe at an ever-increasing pace, and at a scale that rivals the handful of catastrophic extinction events in Earth’s history.

Today, there still exists a natural world that is healthy enough to support our lives (in various places, at least). But it is increasingly unlikely that this land will continue to exist to support our children, or our children’s children. I think a fundamental part of the rewilding process needs to be preserving The Wild for not only ourselves, but future generations - and for non-humans as well as humans. This is a crucial question because more of The Wild disappears each day, and this process is only accelerating. :’( >:(


#15

And this is what keeps me sane and motivated.


#16

I was wrong about this. You can tell how much someone is walking the talk with this new amazing tool!


#17

Haha that’s awesome…


#18

Hilarious! Will order :grin:


#19

Oh my. I almost missed this one Peter. Fantastical! Hysterical!! What a deal!!!