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Topic 1: Indigenous Philosophy and Different Ways of Seeing and Knowing

Sand Talk - Tyson Yunkaporta

This remarkable book is about everything from echidnas to evolution, cosmology to cooking, sex and science and spirits to Schrödinger’s cat.


Tyson Yunkaporta looks at global systems from an Indigenous perspective. He asks how contemporary life diverges from the pattern of creation. How does this affect us? How can we do things differently?


Note : On audiobook, the author reads this himself which is very engaging, but the written copy also has diagrams to aid understanding of his thinking.


Great for a different perspective on our place in the ecology, on systems thinking generally and includes some activities




Braiding Sweetgrass - Robin Wall Kemmerer

As a botanist, Robin Wall Kimmerer has been trained to ask questions of nature with the tools of science. As a member of the Citizen Potawatomi Nation, she embraces the notion that plants and animals are our oldest teachers. In Braiding Sweetgrass, Kimmerer brings these lenses of knowledge together to show that the awakening of a wider ecological consciousness requires the acknowledgment and celebration of our reciprocal relationship with the rest of the living world. For only when we can hear the languages of other beings are we capable of understanding the generosity of the earth, and learning to give our own gifts in return


Note: Beautifully written poetic read.




Sensuous Knowledge - Minna Salami

Sensuous Knowledge inspires reflection and challenges us to formulate or own views. Using ancestral knowledge to steer us toward freedom, Salami reveals the ways that women have protested over the years in large and small ways—models that inspire and empower us to define our own sense of womanhood today.


Note: Thought provoking essays from award winning author of the blog Msafropolitan- easy to dip into




Small Arcs of Larger Circles - Nora Bateson

Building on (her father) Gregory Bateson’s famous book Towards an Ecology of Mind and her own film on the subject, Nora Bateson here updates our thinking on systems and ecosystems, applying her own insights and those of her team at IBI to education, organisations, complexity, academia, and the way that society organises itself.


Note: Essays, lectures, poems and remembrances - another one that can be dipped into rather than read cover to cover




The spell of the sensuous - David Abram


Animal tracks, word magic, the speech of stones, the power of letters, and the taste of the wind all figure prominently in this intellectual tour de force that returns us to our senses and to the sensuous terrain that sustains us. This major work of ecological philosophy startles the senses out of habitual ways of perception.


Note: a difficult to categorise book which is ultimately about perception and ways of seeing

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