Sister-Cousin

Last night, I got the chance to learn that a family tree of the aboriginal tradition looks significantly different than anything I’ve ever encountered before.

The person who gave birth to you is your mother, but every single sister she has is also your mother. Your father is your father, but so, too are every single one of his brothers.

The children belong to everyone. There are not cousins in the way that I’ve grown up with, there are only brothers and sisters.

Your family has a skin name, and you know that anyone else with the same skin name is related to you.

If anything happens to one member of your family…the rest of your family is still there. Your support network is exponentially larger.

 

Maybe it’s just because it’s not something I’ve seen before, but I can’t help but think…that it just seems like such a better way to do things.

I feel like there’s a lot of isolation, in most of the places I’ve ever lived…and I feel like a lot of it…doesn’t need to exist.

 

Then again…I think the isolation just comes back to fear. When you’re taught that your neighbours are dangerous, it’s hard to build a community.

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