The relevance of Wayfinders to the current society

The relevance of Wayfinders to the current society

The loss of flora and fauna due to lack of proper human management and cultural erosion has been the most issues affecting the global sphere. Various anthropogenic activities have contribute to the deterioration of the environment; activities such as deforestation, forest firing, and game hunting have resulted to the reduction of animal species as well as extinction of endangered lives. Deforestation also results to the loss of habitat for wildlife as well as reduced variation of many plant species; this has overly led to the loss of biodiversity. Cultural erosion is regarded to as a major societal problem; most people are always forced to abandon their native language as soon as they venture in new economic and social activities, they forget their mother tongue through assimilation; cultural erosion thus occurs in various circumstances. In the video, Wade Davis acknowledges that culture cultural existence has been affected by various factors, especially technology, political controversy, and power. The author (speaker) relates this calamity through colonization; majority of colonies lost their cultural perspectives, and this resulted to deaths of many people.


There are various ways through which humans can ensure proper environmental management and cultural conservation. First, there is a need to link the existence of the natural resources with human pride; the respect that is extended to flora and fauna can determine their existence. Davis narrates that most indigenous culture regarded the forest as their worship areas and shrines; they, therefore honored the places and in turn conserved them. Technology can also be used to conserve the natural resources; monitoring tools can be placed within different ecosystems to prevent anthropogenic activities such as poaching and deforestation. Cultural preservation, on the other hand, can be achieved if people become aware of the importance of culture. It is thus significant that cultural education be introduced in the curricular to help the younger generation embraced their varying cultures.

Wayfinders managed to keep the environment a safe place for both flora and fauna for over 1000 years. Davis provides various case scenarios where the wayfinders engage in the protection of culture and environment. First, he identifies Polynesians who had discovered and mastered the Pacific Ocean; they identified 220 stars by names and associated different clouds and wave patterns; their interest in the ocean enabled them to perceive it as an important resource to conserve rather than for exploitation. The author also reveals the practices of the Anaconda people who are engage in almost five-day ritual activities among groups of 250 people; the groups identify themselves with cultural rules such as marriage being done outside the language sphere. In West Africa, Davis narrates the experience of the voodo in which the people relate the existence of the living and the dead; the rituals are conducted to create an interaction between the supernatural, gods, and humans. These social activities help in conserving culture.

The current generation can learn about the practices of conserving natural resources and culture from the wayfinders. There is a need to place value on the resources; Davis narrates that in South America, the Elder Brothers such as the Arwakos give the mountains a social value as they conduct their rituals and gatherings on these areas. With the social significance associated with such natural habitat, people are able to promote conservation. The present generation can also link the existence of culture with the value of ancestors; with rituals like voodoo, the celebration of ancestors and spirits results to the promotion of cultural conservation.

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