My love of the hunt, and it’s need in our lives today.

There was a cool snap to the air. Shades of green giving way to the golds and rusts of fall. It was the time of football, people bundled in sweaters, campfires, roasted marshmallows and pumpkin spice in abundance.

But for some these were the signs of something else. Something with a far deeper meaning. A tradition that carries back through time. Hunting season. Some of you may  recoil is disgust. But that is ok. While some people embrace technology I relish the simpler things in life. A time when the world worked harder, where respect was earned. Where age and wisdom was honored.

What does any of that have to do with hunting season? Well let me explain. The world is a vast and glorious place. But as human beings we live in small spaces. We think of this moment in time and are encouraged to look ever forward. But sometimes it is the depth of the past that we need to draw wisdom from.

Our food did not always come in foam trays, wrapped in plastic and sitting in neat little rows with no connection to its origin. Vegetables were not already cleanly washed to remove the chemicals because they did not need to be. They were pulled directly from the ground and taken into homes with dirt floors and corner fire places.

Life was honored and valued and cherished because it did not come easy. It came on the blood sweat and tears of  those who came before you. It was taught to you in time honored lessons by your elders. Respect for life was learned because to survive you had to take another life.

The woods  are a vast place, and men with sticks and strings with arrows tipped in carved rocks took down game to feed their families.  Not just their own blood but the entire tribe because things were shared. We were a community not separate individuals.

You may say that we no longer live in those times, and you are right, but I say that is a sad thing because we have lost those lessons. We live in a world where people expect you to respect them,but they do not respect you. Respect was something earned back them. We do not always live in a world were things are earned. They are expected without effort.

We no longer live as communities that give to others with no hope of something in return. We lack respect for our elders. We do not protect our own young, but rather cause harm upon them for selfish gain. We do not loving protect those among us with physical and mental challenges, but send them off for someone else to care for. We shame others if their body type does not match your idea of the ideal.We loot and riot and destroy the property of others in the name of justice.

In days past the elders were revered. Children were protected as gifts from god. The mentally and physically handicapped where not seen as a deficit but as the special ones among us blessed by the lord. A full figure was seen a prosperity and the abundance of life. Justice was swift and clear. An eye for an eye.

When i go out into the woods i give praise and thanks to the one who created this earth and the life i am going to take. I spend that time with my elders learning ways of respect for all life. I do not take more than my share. And that is given with love to those who can no longer hunt on their own. I am taught the gift of silence. And how to be at peace within myself. I know that the life i take is a gift and i do not waste it. Gods gifts are not to be taken lightly. Without them life would be harder.  I learn not just to listen but to hear. Both are needed with animals and mankind.

I am grateful for my ability to feed my family. I am honored to still know and use and teach the old ways. And i know that if the world takes a turn towards deeper sorrow i will be able to care for those i hold most dear. This is my life, this is my history, this is my legacy. Onward to the hunt we go.

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