Te Mauri - Pimatisiwin

Myth and the Unconscious: Speaking the Unspoken

 

 

Abstract

 

Storytelling was once a time worn tradition in Aboriginal communities across Canada. It is time to renew the places of warmth and welcome by the fires and at the knees of our Elders. Some stories, like the one that follows, are for the older generation and remind us that there is strong purpose behind the words that teach, entertain, and warn against certain behaviours. Our communities continue to struggle with the residue of colonialism, missions, and Indian Residential Schools, and too many have forgotten how our stories and tricksters illuminated Pimatisiwin in our lives. Our old stories have been sanitized by the Church and have lost their ability to reach our unconscious and correct “crooked” thoughts and behaviours. The story “How it came about that Some People are Small and Some Large” is one of the few that have been left relatively intact. The message is a powerful reminder that our behaviour can sometimes speak louder than our words, and therefore we must listen with our entire selves to be truly well. It is time she said, “Hold up your lives so we can see, we have strayed too far from the path and we long to go home” (Cynthia Wesley-Esquimaux, 2010).

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