Tuesday, November 25, 2014

What the People and the Medicinal Plants of the Amazon Know That You Don't

Mark Plotkin is an ethnobotanist who was cured of an ailment by an Amazonian Shaman and has been fascinated by the medicinal plants of the Amazon ever since. In this TED talk he informs us on the knowledge that the tribes in the Amazon have on the forest and the medicinal plants within it. These tribes are slowly disappearing and with it, so too will the knowledge. Threats are coming from all sides: Trade and transport, illegal gold mining, commercial hunting and fishing, illegal logging, narcotrafficking, and many more. At the root of all these threats, as you can see, is profit. Profit is destroying our world and is a disease within the minds of the people. But what these plants tell us is that we are fundamentally connected with the Earth and each other and we have a duty to take care of both. 

These tribes are truly living in harmony with nature and are actually listening to what it has to say, something us Westerners lack greatly. We have a lot to learn, but so too do the tribes. Together, we can merge our ideas and technology to help better our world and by the use of modern technology help protect the contacted and uncontacted tribes of the Amazon who hold a wealth of knowledge that can lead us into a better and more harmonious world we all know is possible.  

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