Building a tribe

Not long ago, my friend Mike breezed into town on his way to deployment in Iraq.  Mike used to live here in Fayetteville before I moved here, and he was one of my many roommates back during the college years.  In the short time that he was here, Luke and I spent quite a few nights picking his brain over his specialized knowledge of military tactics and martial arts.  He showed us quite a few Aikido moves and told us about Ranger tactics.

Of course, I wish Mike could stick around and really help us learn more.  Luke and I have a great dynamic with sharing knowledge, and I hope to grow that to include more friends.  Thinking on these things prompted me to wonder what other ways we could work on rewilding ourselves and how we can go about accomplishing it.

This year, on both the east and west coasts, some rewidling camps will happen.  Urban Scout send out the call for a REWILD camp in Portland, and Jason Godesky from Anthropik has done the same for their Mountain Festival.  I have toyed with the idea of tyring to do something in the Ozarks this year, but of course the fear of the unknown tends to cloud my mind.  I have started talking with some friends like Richard (who helped me with my garden) about our different skill sets and how we could make use of Open Space Technology to get ourselves together and share those skills.

In thinking about the kinds of things I would like to learn before “the crash”, I put together the following list of ideas, which I submit to you, Gentle Readers, for your feedback.  If you live around here and think you could contribute your knowledge in any of these areas, please let me know.  Likewise, if you think of something I left out–whether you know anything about it or not–don’t hesitate to mention it.  And thanks in advance for your help.

  • Body and Movement skills
    • Aikido
    • Fox-walking
    • Parkour
    • Listening
    • Standing/sitting/crouching for long periods of time
  • Wild plant skills
    • Foraging edible plants
      • identification
      • harvesting
      • preserving
        • drying
        • canning
        • freezing
        • fermenting
      • recipes
    • Wildcrafting medicinal plants
      • identification
      • harvesting
      • preserving
        • drying
        • tinctures
      • treatment
    • Utilizing practical plants
      • Making shelters
      • Obtaining and treating water
      • Starting and maintaining fire
      • Weaving basketry and mats
      • Twining cordage
      • Bio-remediation
  • Horticulture Skills
    • Organic gardening principles
    • Phenological planting
    • Permaculture design
  • Spiritual Technology
    • Developing an animistic relationship with our bioregion
    • Recognizing and communicating with local spirits
    • Drumming
    • Trance
    • Entheogens
    • “Seeing”
  • Tracking Skills
    • Bird language
    • Signs
    • Prints
    • Observation
    • Listening
  • Weaponry
    • Knapping
    • Hafting
    • Shafting
    • Slinging
  • Animal skills
    • Hunt
      • Identifying 
      • Tracking 
      • Killing
      • Butchering
    • Hide-related skills
      • Skinning
      • Tanning
      • Making Glue
      • Leather crafting
      • Making clothes
    • Animals as Food
      • Drying/Preserving
      • Cooking
    • Animals as Tools
      • Antlers
      • Bones
      • Sinew

Edit: Added “Animal skills” on 8/1/07


5 responses to this post.

  1. You titled this post “Building a Tribe.” Now, that’s a mighty fine list you have there, but the most important one is the one you titled the post: “Building a Tribe.” That’s a deeply personal thing, and it takes a lot of effort and commitment, but in the end, it’s the only thing that really matters, eh?


  2. Posted by Rix on 07/27/2007 at 7:47 am

    Building a Tribe … in the end, it’s the only thing that really matters, eh?

    too true, my friend.


  3. Posted by Andrew Jensen on 07/30/2007 at 5:00 pm

    I’d be interested in a ozark meet. I live in st. Louis, so It would be a lot easier to attend.

    I train parkour, and could share the basics.


  4. My good friend is an ex-Marine who knows multiple martial arts as well as a lot about weaponry. I have him teach me Jujitsu when we’re together which is similar to Aikido. I think it will be a good practical skill to have since most fights end up on the ground sooner or later.

    Combining tracking and weaponry together, I would add hunting to the list. The season is coming up soon. Even if you don’t want to harvest an animal, you can practice the whole experience with a camera.


  5. Posted by Rix on 08/02/2007 at 7:58 am

    Thanks Andrew and Sassmouth for your comments.

    Andrew, I’m afraid St. Louis, MO, and Fayetteville, AR, are just too far apart. But if I’m ever up that way, I’ll drop you a line.

    Sassmouth, thanks for pointing out a very obvious hole in my planning. I need to add some Animal-related skills to the list.


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