k̓úl̓tsam̓: This harvest time, learn the Ucwalmictws word

In Ucwalmictws, the language of the St’atl’imc Nations, the word for harvest is k̓úl̓tsam̓

Beautifully, it isn’t just a noun, it’s a way of being: meaning also – “Take only what you need and use what you take.” It’s not just the “what”, it’s the “how.”

I love the way this makes me reframe what it is to be a consumer, living in a world of things, there for my taking/buying/desiring/needing/wanting, and back into relationship, where everything demands a certain method of approach, an attitude, respect. When we allow ourselves just to be consumers, we are stripped of so much of our agency and power in the world. If we approach “things”, with an idea that how we approach things is really important, we might be liberated of a lot of our desires, and realise we don’t need as much as we thought we did, to be happy, or to feel safe and satisfied.

It makes me think of the Honourable Harvest ethic that I learned about through Robin Wall Kimmerer.

Watch also Saopalaz Lucille Joseph speaking a little about what it means to be of the land and with the land.

May we take this word, and ethic, to heart.



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