Weaving the Basket

Here are the prepared strips of “river cane” that are individual pages whose hypertext cross-links can weave enough relational complexity between key concepts and ideas that the paradigm you’ve been trying to comprehend will spontaneously emerge. Because the process goal of the cross-links is to weave relationships between different kinds of things, sometimes links take you to a page that may seem unrelated to the linked concept. If so, it may be worth thinking about what emerges if you put the information on these two pages in contact. So please don’t be too quick to close a linked page because “I already read that one.” Pause and think about it for a moment, and look at the pattern you might see.

The pages in each general subject area are listed simply in alphabetical order, so there’s no inherent value in going through them in the order they’re listed. You may start anywhere you wish and go in any direction that suits you. Some pages have higher-level material or questions for written reflection, whereas others are more introductory and therefore more suitable for someone who knows fairly little about that particular subject. If you tackle a harder bit before you’re personally ready for it, use the hypertext links on that page to lead you to the information you (might) need to deal with new concepts or higher-level questions. Several pages have embedded videos, most of them only a few minutes long. These are indicated in the list below with the designation (V) after the page title.

If a given page should ideally be read only after another page, an alert to that effect appears on the top of the page. In those few cases, the page that should be read “after” will simply have more meaning and impact if it’s read after whatever should be read first.

A few of the pages in this exercise are main Tapestry pages from the part of our website that’s available to the general public. Such pages are all indicated. They open in a new browser window that you may simply close when you’re finished. There are no links on those pages that come back to this exercise.

You can download and print a one-page PDF listing all the pages in the Weaving section here if you’d like to use it to mark off the ones you’ve done as you complete pages.  Because it is a PDF, somehow the links to the pages don’t seem to work but at least it permits you to have the tabled list to print off. The same pages are listed with links that permit easy site navigation in this Word document.

If you find any links in these pages that do not work, or that work improperly, please let me know (dawn at tapestry institute domain). We are a small organization so I do all my own webwork and sometimes make mistakes. I can correct them if someone lets me know they’re there.

Key Western Concepts:
My Indigenous Scientist View

These pages all explain key concepts from Western science and philosophy of science that impact environmental interventions and their evaluation. Hypertext links on these pages cross-weave them into basic principles of Indigenous philosophy (listed below) to help you start to see these ideas through the lens of Indigenous worldview. In each case, I lay out the fundamental concepts as I see them through my own perspective as an Indigenous woman with advanced degrees and research experience in ecology and evolutionary theory.

Paradigm Shift: These pages explore the nature and impact of a paradigm shift as big as the one people in environmental evaluation are trying to make right now, and help you take the first steps into a paradigm of Indigenous worldview. Because Indigenous people have to live in a way that straddles both worldviews (so we can function in both), we have a better idea than you do about the size of the wall you’re trying to tear down and how it will feel if you’re successful. Once you know this, you can be more open to the kinds of change you’ll have to make in order to really begin to understand authentic sustainability and resilience.

Evolutionary Ecology: Environmental intervention deals with extremely important ecological and evolutionary concepts such as adaptation. These concepts are easy to misunderstand and misapply. Such misunderstandings invalidate the ideas that get built on the faulty foundations and lead to unexpected deleterious outcomes when actions are taken on the basis of the faulty premises on which those actions are grounded.

Complexity and Ecosystems: Ecosystems are now seen as complex adaptive systems, but the field of environmental evaluation is hampered by a poor understanding of complexity theory and by discussions that don’t focus on the issues most relevant to ecosystems. This has led to confusion that obscures the most meaningful ways in which ecosystems are complex. The pages in this section explain basic processes of complex systems and the most significant ways these apply to ecosystems.

Basic Elements of Indigenous Worldview

These pages all explain key concepts from Indigenous scholarship that impact environmental evaluation and ecology itself, citing key Indigenous authors and attempting to help Western evaluators really understand the points they’ve made. Hypertext links on these pages cross-weave them into Western concepts of evolutionary ecology and complexity theory to help you start seeing these ideas through the lens of Indigenous worldview. In each case, I focus on fundamental concepts as I understand them from my own experience as a Choctaw woman.

Indigenous Ways of Knowing: These pages help you experience Indigenous ways of knowing for yourself and then apply them to important concepts of environmental intervention and evaluation.

Indigenous Reality: These pages help you begin to understand the Reality that Indigenous people and ecosystems experience, and then consider how this impacts the way you look at environmental intervention and evaluation.

Indigenous Values: These pages help you begin to understand how the natural value system of Indigenous people changes perceptions of environmental, social, business, and legal actions that impact the natural world.

Return to the exercise Home page to continue on to Part 3, Final Steps.