Thursday, April 7, 2016
All Wisdom Is Not New Wisdom
All wisdom is not new wisdom is a Winston Churchill quote. He also said when you're going through hell keep going. I have that as a magnet on my fridge and I refer to with frequency because I suffer from small hells like
hey, morons, we're out of coffee!
There is intelligence in all kinds of life according to Robin Wall Kimmerer's Braiding Sweetgrass: Indigenous Wisdom, Scientific Knowledge, and the Teachings of Plants. I learned the origin story of Skywoman (that's her, above). It's a very beautiful story. There's no Western canon to it.
"A pregnant woman drops through a hole in the sky created by an uprooted tree. The birds catch her and gently guide her down onto the back of Great Turtle," and the world begins with all the animals, and this woman.
The Way I was brought up was Eve royally screwing up, being kicked out of the garden, and scared of snakes. It's a feminist bummer.
I haven't told the Christian origin story to my daughter because: Why do that to a girl? She's already worked up about hairdos. She's only 8. I'm not going to lay the screwup on her. I don't want to give her the Madonna Whore complex that I have, and besides, it is such a boring and predictable tall tale. It's not about women, it's about men. What we used to call in college when we were giving everything the Bechtel movie test, "the male gaze."
I'm going to tell my daughter that Mama dropped out of a hole in the sky.
You can't prove that it didn't happen, or that it did. It's not new wisdom, all wisdom is not new, but it's news to me.