In seeing you, I find my own face. In knowing you, I become myself.
Commentary: In some ways, this is an appropriate understanding of our great inheritance and debt to what are often called, primal cultures. Another way would be to consider them to be, “First People.” Or, the original inhabitants of their native land be it in North America (Amerindians) or the aboriginal people of Australia, or anywhere else that people lived before the great migrations of mostly European people who explored other lands in the inhabit other lands for their resources. This is not a good way to start a relationship (conquest and exploitation).
We live in a period of time when this pattern of conquest and exploitation is seen for what it was. However, following the conquest comes the soft cultural change which is more subtle and may last centuries. This will include the economic paradigm (based upon paper currency as money) of the conquering nation as well as their religions and other foundations. The result is the ‘diminishment’ of the host culture to which many primal cultures have simply vanished, or, at best, lost their vitality. This tragic outcome is being reversed with the recognition of the huge cultural and natural wisdom of many of these primal peoples.
They lived lives that were uncluttered, They had time to think, to follow natural rhythms of weather, of animal, of vegetation. They lived in accord with their environment that points to a wisdom that modern cultures have yet to learn. We have much to learn from them. This requires an open mind that is willing and able to see and learn from a very different mode of thought, or religious foundation and see the wisdom, value and meaning within it.
In essence, we say to them: “In seeing you, I find my own face. In knowing you, I become myself.”