Geronimo and the Survivalist Spectrum.......

Discussion in 'Blogs' started by Hispeedal2, Apr 11, 2010.

  1. Hispeedal2

    Hispeedal2 Nay Sayer

    Another one of the books that I found in the MWR here is "Geronimo: An American Legend" (thank you books for troops program). I was a big fan of the movie (minus Matt Damon).

    I think I am drawn to this period of time becasue 1) I have lived/walked/hunted the very grounds that the Chirachuan Apache did and 2) the use of cav scouts (having served with them in 1-1 CAV, 2-1 CAV, and 1-1 AD even though I am not a CAV trooper...stetsons don't look good on me).

    In the book there is the below passage:
    "Nantan Lupan wants the Apaches to learn to be farmers. It's their only chance.........He didn't want to hear the general talk about the need for Apaches to learn to be farmers. They had always been farmers..."

    The other part of this blog I will refrence is the "Survivalist Spectrum" here:
    The Survivalist Spectrum

    That passage and the survivalist spectrum got me to thinking in regards to my own push to self reliance.

    Most of us would fall in the middle of the survival spectrum. Being from a modern world, we would collect enough "stuff" to survive while maintaining our current lifestyle (or as close to it as possible). The other side of the spectrum is the People that would take our "stuff" by force to save their own. I am not sure why there is a venn diagram on the webpage, but I view this as a line spectrum more than a venn. I also believe that there is a group unaccounted for on this spectrum. This group is the group that practice more aboriginal skills.

    By aboriginal I'm not talking about the Aussie natives which Americans typically think of. I am talking about "original or earliest known". Here in the US, we are talking about Native Americans. These schools have popped up about everywhere. They are usually called primitive schools, wilderness survival schools, or bushcraft. Serious preppers turn their noses up at this group. I think that is a grevious mistake. We think about Indians (that's what we call them, screw PC) as living a nomadic life as hunters. A hard life that is unfit for a person of the civilized world. Well, a little research proves otherwise. Just as General Crook (and most Americans at the time) we misjudge them. Even the warrior-like Apache was a farmer before Europeans started encroaching on their world.

    Where am I going with this? I don't really know.... it is a blog. I think what I mean is that in the movement towards self-reliance, the ultimate self-reliance is the way of life of the aborignial people of an area. They are not affected by what happens in the modern world one bit. It's not a skill that is lost. There are aboriginal people on every continent (except Antartica) that still do it their way. When everything runs out, when your tools break, all the lead is shot, and everything is gone, these people will still be alive and happy.

    What am I suggesting? Well, I don't think that everyone should ditch their MREs and military style weapons for buckskin clothing and a bow. I do think that having a working knowledge of those skills will teach you how little you actually need. I think these skills can compliment your current philosophy and allow you to depend on less.

    What did the natives in your area eat? What are the wild plants that can supplement your diet? Where are the geological faults that make it easy to find important items like flint? How did the aboriginal people in your area live? Where did they move for seasons? What were their native shelters? Is there a meat they ate that we wouldn't consider? Where are the native springs in your area? Canning is nice but how did the locals preserve food? What did they use the local trees for?

    We tend to seperate wilderness survival and prepping. I like the idea of merging them full force. That is really what drove me to read that book. From that book I can learn how Geronimo was able to evade capture from the largest military force of the day. He was only "captured" when he surrendered. It is perhaps the most useful military strategy for the land I plan to hold out in.

    Knowledge tremendously lightens your load. You really start to realize it when you GHB is a knife, ferro rod, 5 fishing hooks in your hat, and a bit of 550 cord. That's why I am glad we have the new Bushcraft forum.

    Now, what did the Apaches farm in the desert...............
  2. RightHand

    RightHand Been There, Done That RIP 4/15/21 Moderator Moderator Emeritus Founding Member

    Great blog entry. I share your interest in the primitive arts. Another of our members, monkeyman, has shared many of his skills with us and when he has a chance to stop back in, I know he will have contributions to make to the Bushcraft forum.
  3. melbo

    melbo Hunter Gatherer Administrator Founding Member

    Interesting reference to The Survivalist Spectrum as I just commented to that blog a few days ago. I've also been in contact lately with Duncan Long, author of Backpack Fever, regarding the bugout mentality, fallacy and the choices of technology over hard skills. Now add the new guys in our forum and their Bushcraft skills and I think this is not a coincidence.

    We have to learn to do more with less or none at all.

    We have to get back to the roots of those who came before us. For Dark Tower fans: We cannot forget the face of our fathers.

    Good stuff and I'd like the opportunity to discuss this further over a fire sometime.
  4. Hispeedal2

    Hispeedal2 Nay Sayer

    I am really pumped about the Bushcraft forum. I used to frequent another bushcraft forum, but I stopped because it seems that they were always selling something to their members. That is the fallacy with a lot of the primitive school types...... they all seem to be out to make a buck. It also takes away from the material. It makes the skills seemed like an over-hyped money scheme. The best course I went to wouldn't take any money from me. I tried. They called it a gift and sent me on my way.

    I agree a bit with Duncan Long on backpack mentality. While you can survive like that, it's not living like we know it. I think simply writing off the skills along with the backpack mentality isn't right. Like I mentioned in the blog, there will come a day when the last of the last is gone and if you can't make a friction fire or spark metal with flint, you are going to be eating fresh meat uncooked. It doesn't stop there. It applies to all "things". We need the skills to improvise these "things" and use our "improvised things". The skill set is building and using.

    I like this discussion. The only thing missing is the campfire and a cold one. [beer]
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