the grateful and the dead

The embrace of hunter and hunted is a sacred institution mirrored by indigenous cultures that span the globe from America to Australia. The deep link with life we take from the land has largely broken in the western world. Without this close, intense experience how can we place any sort of perspective on the sacrifice made?

There is an echo down through the centuries, around the Earth, that share a similar voice.  A voice of gratitude for an animal’s life taken. It is this moment, when a few quiet words of respect are uttered from the hunter to their fallen prey: “I am truly grateful for the life you have given me. You will feed my family with your flesh. You will clothe us with your hide. You will provide light from your fat. You will give me sinew for my bow. You will provide tools for my hands.  You will give over your stomach to carry our water. I am grateful for your gift: of giving me life.”

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