Most of us are disconnected from the food on our plates. This is what I see when YOU eat meat.

1. Those few slices of bacon forced an innocent pig to live a life behind bars.

2. A juicy burger came from a gentle cow who was severely abused.

3. Your breaded catfish came from a helpless animal who just wanted to live.

4. Those chicken nuggets were once an intelligent and kind being who wanted only love.

5. Your duck dinner came from an animal who knew nothing but cruelty.

6. The ham on the table was once a sweet baby who lived a tortured life.

7. The hot dog on the grill is made of the remains of several animals who suffered their entire lives.

8. Those lamb chops came from a gentle baby who just wanted to be with her mom.

9. That roasted chicken was a bird who never saw the sun or felt the grass beneath her feet.

10. Your Thanksgiving turkey was once a bird who simply wanted to be free.

11. Your veal chop came from a calf who was taken away from his mother moments after being born.

The meat on your plate was once a living, breathing animal who didn’t want to die. Make the connection. Have compassion.


Wabeno a Mystic or Shaman- both?

The wabeno is an ancient Mystic-shamanic personality that was formally found among several Algonquian groups. The wabeno shamanic art is performed singly or in a society composed of both men and women. The Ojibway wabeno is first described in Jesuit relations as healing by means of fire manipulations and erotic dances. Named by the French as “jugglers”, these wabeno handled live coals and then rubbed their heated hands over the patient while chanting their vision songs. Another wabeno specialty is divining, which they accomplish by gazing into glowing coals until inspiration moves them to respond to questions. In addition, the earlier wabeno held a healing ritual in which naked shaman danced around the ailing patient. These wabeno practices where at time condemned by European observers which often led to conflict between tribal shamans and European missionaries. By exhibiting his pyrotechnics, the wabeno evokes the hypnotic mystery of fire and the mood necessary to his passage into trance. Herbal preparations are used to protect wabeno from the coals that they handle. “By the use of plants, he is alleged to be enabled to take up and handle with impunity red hot stones and burning brands and without evincing the slightest discomfort it is said that he will bathe his hands in boiling water or even boiling maple syrup. These protective practices are openly known. The wabeno skills lies not merely in herbal preparations but also in the effect he or she creates on the patient to be healed, in his or her own movement into trance and in the dramatic spectacle that the audience witnesses.
By means of sustained concentration on the glowing embers the wabeno evokes his manido patron. The patron who bestows the wabeno vocation is described as a fiery figure with radiant horns. The whole complex of the wabeno ceremony, including the fire handling, naked dance, drumming, rattling and chanting is devoted to the frenzied encounter with the horned manido. After summoning the manido and passing into an altered psychic state the wabeno conveys the manido presence by rubbing the patient with his heated hands. The fire’s juggling seems to demonstrate his authentic contact with the spirit world. Mastery over fire, insensibility to heat enhance the mystical heat that renders both extreme cold and the temperature of burning coals supportable is a magical virtue that translates in sensible terms the fact that he has passed beyond the human condition (and is already in spirit condition). Thus, the Ojibway wabeno passes into the other world by virtue of his pyrotechnics. His techniques using fire help to create a mood in which his vision can structure a healing rite.
Like fire manipulation, the wabeno erotic dance mediates the healings energies given him/her in dreams or vision. The psychic techniques of naked dancing practiced by the wabeno also harks back to the ithyphallic pictographs found throughout Ojibway territory. These rock paintings and carvings depict the Ojibway understanding of the manido force inherent in the male sex (opposite ?). More than mere graphic arts, these image render visible the hidden meanings in nature whose significance it has been the wabeno task to conjure up and capture on stone. Just as Ojibway visionaries conjured up their power dreams to execute this phallic art, so also the wabeno channels a vital healing force through his or her nacked ritual dance.
The major wabeno ceremonials are usually performed by a group of them. In many respect, the development of the wabeno shamanic groups paralleled the formation of the mide society responded to the tribal need by structuring ancient shamanic trance techniques into a community experience of the manido presence. Thus, the wabeno trance not only healed individual patients but also revitalized individual participants.
The wabeno cult did not gain a lasting position in the Ojibway tribe, partially because of its frenetic trance techniques. The cult did not have the wide appeal to the various Ojibway bands that the more mythologized midewiwin did. It also focused too exclusively on the trance as an end in itself. Spirit possession is not an acceptable technique among the Ojibway (wrong understanding/accusation).Such loss of control because of the spirit possession is comparable to the most deadly illness conceived by the Ojibway, namely : the Windigo.
Wabeno dancing2
The following contemporary account of a wabeno reflects the later, subdued practice of this cult. Although the practice of fire manipulation and frenzied dance are not mentioned, the trance experience via dream evocation is still evident. The name of this female wabeno is Eternal Man. The wabeno practice had become suspect among the Ojibway bands because they had developed into cultic-spirit possession performances by both men and women. Changes during the 19 and 20 centuries in the wabeno trance state reasserted both the norm of traditional “shamanic” activity and variations in accordance with the shift in Ojibway societal values.
This practice it still going on  in isolation, away from the contemporary norms of the assimilated indigenous society – those who have embraced industrial society and fashioned their spirituality after the influences of western cultural oppression.
Morningstar at the lodge of the Midewiwin Society


» 12 Signs That Something Big Is Happening To The Earth’s Crust Under North And South America Alex Jones’ Infowars: There’s a war on for your mind!

» 12 Signs That Something Big Is Happening To The Earth’s Crust Under North And South America Alex Jones’ Infowars: There’s a war on for your mind!.


#1 The 5.1 earthquake that shook Los Angeles on Friday was the worst earthquake that the city had seen in many years.

#2 Following that earthquake, there were more than 100 aftershocks.

#3 A 4.1 earthquake shook Los Angeles on Saturday.  Scientists are hoping that this earthquake swarm in southern California will end soon.

#4 Earlier this month, a 4.4 earthquake rattled Los Angeles so badly that it caused news anchors to dive under their desks.

#5 A 6.9 earthquake just off the coast of northern California in early March was the largest earthquake to hit the west coast of the United States since 2010.

#6 Up in Oregon, Mt. Hood recently experienced more than 100 earthquakes over the course of just a few days.

#7 During the past month, there have also been some other very unusual geologic events that have been happening up in Oregon

  • Two large landslides – one in the Columbia River Gorge dumped about 2,000 cubic yards of rock and debris on highway I84 just 3 miles west of the Hood River, and another blocked US30 near Portland.
  • Loud booms and ground shaking reported by people from Lincoln to Tillamook Counties; some reported hearing a rumble, as well (No earthquakes recorded by the USGS in the area at the time.)
  • A 20 ft. deep sinkhole swallowed a woman and her dog in her Portland backyard.

#8 A 4.8 earthquake rattled Yellowstone National Park on Sunday, and there have been at least 25 earthquakes at Yellowstone since Thursday.

#9 Scientists recently discovered that the Yellowstone supervolcano is now releasing far more helium gas than they had anticipated.

#10 Over the past month, there have been more than 130 earthquakes in the state of Oklahoma.  This is highly unusual.

#11 There have been several dozen earthquakes in Peru over the past month, including a 6.3 earthquake that made headlines all over the globe.

#12 Earlier this month, the northern coast of Chile was hit by more than 300 earthquakes in a seven day stretch.  41 of those earthquakes were stronger than magnitude 4.5.

Fortunately, the quake that hit Los Angeles on Friday did not cause too much lasting injury.  But it sure did shake people up.  The following is how the Los Angeles Times described the damage…

“What Is Civilization?” by Aric McBay


If some people hear that people want to “end civilization” they automatically respond in various negative ways because of their positive associations with the word “civilization.” This piece is an attempt to clarify, define and describe what I (and many others) mean by “civilization..”

The source: http://www.sodahead.com/living/what-is-civilization-by-aric-mcbay/blog-282673/

If I look in the dictionary to find out what the commonly used definition of civilization is, here’s what it says:


1: a society in an advanced state of social development (e.g.,
with complex legal and political and religious organizations); “the
people slowly progressed from barbarism to civilization” [syn:

2: the social process whereby societies achieve civilization [syn: civilization]

3: a particular society at a particular time and place; “early Mayan civilization” [syn: culture, civilization]

4: the quality of excellence in thought and manners and taste;
“a man of intellectual refinement”; “he is remembered for his
generosity and civilization” [syn: refinement, civilisation] [i]

The synonyms include “advancement, breeding, civility, cultivation,
culture, development, edification, education, elevation, enlightenment,
illumination, polish, progress” and “refinement..”

It goes without saying that the writers of dictionaries are “civilized”
people – it certainly helps explain why they define themselves in such
glowing terms. As Derrick Jensen asks, “can you imagine writers of
dictionaries willingly classifying themselves as members of ‘a low,
undeveloped, or backward state of human society’?” [1]

In contrast, the antonyms of “civilization” include: “barbarism,
savagery, wilderness, wildness.” These are the words that civilized
people use to refer to those they view as being outside of civilization
– in particular, indigenous peoples. “Barbarous”, as in “barbarian”,
comes from a Greek word, meaning “non-Greek, foreign.” The word
“savage” comes from the Latin “silvaticus” meaning “of the woods.” The
origins seem harmless enough, but it’s very instructive to see how
civilized people have used these words:


1: the quality of being shockingly cruel and inhumane [syn: atrocity, atrociousness, barbarousness, heinousness]

2: a brutal barbarous savage act [syn: brutality, barbarism, savagery] [ii]


1. The quality or condition of being savage.

2. An act of violent cruelty.

3. Savage behavior or nature; barbarity.. [iii]

These associations of cruelty with the uncivilized are, however, in
glaring opposition to the historical record of interactions between
civilized and indigenous peoples..

For example, let us take one of the most famous examples of “contact”
between civilized and indigenous peoples. When Christopher Columbus
first arrived in the “Americas” he noted that he was impressed by the
indigenous peoples, writing in his journal that they had a “naked
innocence. … They are very gentle without knowing what evil is,
without killing, without stealing..”

And so he decided “they will make excellent servants..”

In 1493, with the permission of the Spanish Crown, he appointed himself
“viceroy and governor” of the Caribbean and the Americas. He installed
himself on the island now divided between Haiti and the Dominican
republic and began to systematically enslave and exterminate the
indigenous population. (The Taino population of the island was not
civilized, in contrast to the civilized Inca who the conquistadors also
invaded in Central America.) Within three years he had managed to
reduce the indigenous population from 8 million to 3 million. By 1514
only 22,000 of the indigenous population remained, and after 1542 they
were considered extinct.. [2]

The tribute system, instituted by [Columbus] sometime in 1495, was a
simple and brutal way of fulfilling the Spanish lust for gold while
acknowledging the Spanish distaste for labor. Every Taino over the age
of fourteen had to supply the rulers with a hawk’s bell of gold every
three months (or, in gold-deficient areas, twenty-five pounds of spun
cotton; those who did were given a token to wear around their necks as
proof that they had made their payment; those did not were . “punished”
– by having their hands cut off . and [being] left to bleed to death.. [3]

More than 10,000 people were killed this way during Columbus’ time as
governor. On countless occasions, these civilized invaders engaged in
torture, rape, and massacres. The Spaniards made bets as to who would slit a man in two, or cut off his head at one blow; or they opened up his bowels. They tore the babes from their mother’s breast by their feet and dashed their heads against the rocks . . . They spitted the bodies of other babes, together with their mothers and all who were before them, on their swords.. [4]

On another occasion:

A Spaniard . . . suddenly drew his sword. Then the whole hundred
drew theirs and began to rip open the bellies, to cut and kill – men,
women, children and old folk, all of whom were seated off guard and
frightened . . . And within two credos, not a man of them there remains
alive. The Spaniards enter the large house nearby, for this was
happening at its door, and in the same way, with cuts and stabs, began
to kill as many as were found there, so that a stream of blood was
running, as if a number of cows had perished.. [5]

This pattern of one-way, unprovoked, inexcusable cruelty and
viciousness occurred in countless interactions between civilized and
indigenous people through history..

This phenomena is well-documented in excellent books including Ward Churchill’s A Little Matter of Genocide: Holocaust and Denial in the Americas, 1492 to the Present, Kirkpatrick Sale’s The Conquest of Paradise: Christopher Columbus and the Columbian Legacy, and Dee Brown’s Bury My Heart at Wounded Knee: An Indian History of the American West. Farley Mowat’s books, especially Walking on the Land, The Deer People, and The Desperate People
document this as well with an emphasis on the northern and arctic
regions of North America. There is also good information in Howard
Zinn’s A People’s History of the United States: 1492-Present and Voices of a People’s History of the United States. Eduardo Galeando’s incredible Memory of Fire
trilogy covers this topic as well, with an emphasis on Latin America
(this epic trilogy as reviews numerous related injustices and revolts).
Jack D. Forbes’ book Columbus and Other Cannibals: The Wétiko Disease of Exploitation, Imperialism and Terrorism is highly recommended. You can also find information in Jared Diamond’s Guns, Germs and Steel: The Fates of Human Societies, although I often disagree with the author’s premises and approach..

The same kind of attacks civilized people committed against indigenous
peoples were also consistently perpetrated against non-human animal and
plant species, who were wiped out (often deliberately) even when
civilized people didn’t need them for food; simply as blood-sport. For
futher readings on this, check out great books like Farley Mowat’s
extensive and crushing Sea of Slaughter, or Clive Ponting’s A Green History of the World: The Environment and the Collapse of Great Civilizations (which also examines precivilized history and European colonialism)..

With this history of atrocity in mind, we should (if we haven’t
already) cease using the propaganda definitions of civilized as “good”
and uncivilized as “bad” and seek a more accurate and useful
definition. Anthropologists and other thinkers have come up with a
number of somewhat less biased definitions of civilization..

Nineteenth century English anthropologist E.B. Tylor defined
civilization as life in cities that is organized by government and
facilitated by scribes (which means the use of writing). In these
societies, he noted, there is a resource “surplus”, which can be traded
or taken (though war or exploitation) which allows for specialization
in the cities..

The wonderful contemporary writer and activist Derrick Jensen, having
recognized the serious flaws in the popular, dictionary definition of
civilization, writes:

“I would define a civilization much
more precisely, and I believe more usefully, as a culture-that is, a
complex of stories, institutions, and artifacts-that both leads to and
emerges from the growth of cities (civilization, see civil: from civis,
meaning citizen, from latin civitatis, meaning state or city), with
cities being defined-so as to distinguish them from camps, villages,
and so on-as people living more or less permanently in one place in
densities high enough to require the routine importation of food and
other necessities of life..” [6]

Jensen also observes that because cities need to import these
necessities of life and to grow, they must also create systems for the
perpetual centralization of resources, yielding “an increasing region
of unsustainability surrounded by an increasingly exploited

Contemporary anthropologist John H. Bodley writes: “The principle
function of civilization is to organize overlapping social networks of
ideological, political, economic, and military power that
differentially benefit privileged households..” [7] In other words, in
civilization institutions like churches, corporations and militaries
exist and are used to funnel resources and power to the rulers and the

The twentieth century historian and sociologist Lewis Mumford wrote one
of my favourite and most cutting and succinct definitions of
civilization. He uses the term civilization

.to denote the group of institutions
that first took form under kingship. Its chief features, constant in
varying proportions throughout history, are the centralization of
political power, the separation of classes, the lifetime division of
labor, the mechanization of production, the magnification of military
power, the economic exploitation of the weak, and the universal
introduction of slavery and forced labor for both industrial and
military purposes.. [8]

Taking various anthropological and historical definitions into account,
we can come up with some common properties of civilizations (as opposed
to indigenous groups)..

* People live in permanent settlements, and a significant number of them in cities..

* The society depends on large-scale agriculture (which is needed to support dense, non-food-growing urban populations)..

* The society has rulers and some form of “aristocracy” with
centralized political, economic, and military power, who exist by
exploiting the mass of people..

* The elite (and possibly others) use writing and numbers to keep track of commodities, the spoils of war, and so on..

* There is slavery and forced labour either by the direct use of
physical violence, or by economic coercion and violence (through which
people are systematically deprived of choices outside the wage

* There are large armies and institutionalized warfare..

* Production is mechanized, either through physical machines or the use
of humans as though they were machines (this point will be expanded on
in other writings here soon)..

* Large, complex institutions exist to mediate and control the
behaviour of people, through as their learning and worldview (schools
and churches), as well as their relationships with each other, with the
unknown, and with the nature world (churches and organized religion)..

Anthropologist Stanley Diamond recognized the common thread in all of
these attributes when he wrote; “Civilization originates in conquest
abroad and repression at home..” [9]

This common thread is control. Civilization is a culture of control. In
civilizations, a small group of people controls a large group of people
through the institutions of civilization. If they are beyond the
frontier of that civilization, then that control will come in the form
of armies and missionaries (be they religious or technical
specialists). If the people to be controlled are inside of the cities,
inside of civilization, then the control may come through domestic
militaries (i.e., police). However, it is likely cheaper and less
overtly violent to condition of certain types of behaviour through
religion, schools or media, and related means, than through the use of
outright force (which requires a substantial investment in weapons,
surveillance and labour)..

That works very effectively in combination with economic and
agricultural control. If you control the supply of food and other
essentials of life, people have to do what you say or they die. People
inside of cities inherently depend on food systems controlled by the
rulers to survive, since the (commonly accepted) definition of a city
is that the population dense enough to require the importation of food..

For a higher degree of control, rulers have combined control of food
and agriculture with conditioning that reinforces their supremacy. In
the dominant, capitalist society, the rich control the supply of food
and essentials, and the content of the media and the schools. The
schools and workplaces act as a selection process: those who
demonstrate their ability to cooperate with those in power by behaving
properly and doing what they’re told at work and school have access to
higher paying jobs involving less labour. Those who cannot or will not
do what they’re told are excluded from easy access to food and
essentials (by having access only to menial jobs), and must work very
hard to survive, or become poor and/or homeless. People higher on this
hierarchy are mostly spared the economic and physical violence imposed
on those lower on the hierarchy. A highly rationalized system of
exploitation like this helps to increase the efficiency of the system
by reducing the chance of resistance or outright rebellion of the

The media’s propaganda systems have most people convinced that this
system is somehow “natural” or “necessary” – but of course, it is both
completely artificial and a direct result of the actions of those in
power (and the inactions of those who believe that they benefit from
it, or are prevented from acting through violence or the threat of

In contradiction to the idea that the dominant culture’s way of living
is “natural”, human beings lived as small, ecological, participatory,
equitable groups for more than 99% of human history. There are a number
of excellent books and articles comparing indigenous societies to

Chellis Glendinning’s My name is Chellis and I’m in recovery from western civilization
is an amazing and readable book, and it’s one of my favourites. You can
also read an excerpt of the chapter “A Lesson in Earth Civics” online.
See http://www. eco-action. org/dt/civics. html. She has also written several related books, including When Technology Wounds: The Human Consequences of Progress..

John Zerzan’s Against Civilization: Readings and Reflections composed of excerpts from the works of a wide range of authors..

The Culture of Make Believe by Derrick Jensen chronicles the
violent hatreds that have been overwhelming our planet, tracing them
back through their sources in imperialism, slavery, the rise of global
capitalism, and the ideologies of possessiveness and consumerism..

Marshall Sahlin’s Stone Age Economics is a detailed classic in
that same vein. You can read his essay “The Original Affluent Society”
online at numerous places, including: http://www. primitivism. com/original-affluent. htm

Anthropologist Stanley Diamond’s book In Search of the Primitive: A Critique of Civilization

Richard Heinberg’s essay “The Primitivist Critique of Civilization” is
also highly readable, and available online in many places including http://www. eco-action. org/dt/critique. html. Other good reading is at http://www.primitivism.com and http://eco-action.org/

What these sources show is there were healthy, equitable and ecological communities in the past, and that they were the norm for countless generations. It is civilization that is monstrous and aberrant..

Living inside of the controlling environment of civilization is an inherently traumatic experience, although the degree of trauma varies with personal circumstance and the amounts of privilege different people have in society. Derrick Jensen makes this point very well in his incredible book A Language Older than Words, and Chellis Glendinning covers it as well in My name is Chellis..

The inherent ecological unsustainability of civilization is another

important point. That issue will be expanded on in writings here, in
particular in the writings on the city and industry..

Related: See Ran Prieur’s Critique

of Civilization FAQ for related information and critiques.

[1] Jensen, Derrick, Unpublished manuscript..

[2] I owe many of the sources in this section to the research of Ward

Churchill. The figure of 8 million is from chapter 6 of Essays in
Population History, Vol.I by Sherburn F. Cook and Woodrow Borah
(Berkeley: University of California Press, 1971). The figure of 3
million is from is from a survey at the time by Bartolomé de Las Casas
covered in J.B. Thatcher, Christopher Columbus, 2 vols. (New York:
Putnam’s, 1903-1904) Vol. 2, p. 384ff. They were considered extinct by
the Spanish census at the time, which is summarized in Lewis Hanke’s
The Spanish Struggle for Justice in the Conquest of America
(Philapelphia: University of Pennsylvania Press, 1947) p. 200ff.

[3] Sale, Kirkpatrick. The Conquest of Paradise: Christopher Columbus

and the Columbian Legacy (New York: Alfred A. Knopf, 1990) p. 155.

[4] de Las Casas, Bartolomé. The Spanish Colonie: Brevísima revacíon (New York: University Microfilms Reprint, 1966).

[5] de Las Casas, Bartolomé. Historia de las Indias, Vol. 3, (Mexico City: Fondo Cultura Económica, 1951) chapter 29.

[6] Jensen, Derrick, Unpublished manuscript.

[7] Bodley, John H., Cultural Anthropology: Tribes, States and the Global System. Mayfield, Mountain View, California, 2000.

[8] Mumford, Lewis. Technics and Human Development, Harcourt Brace Jovanovich, New York, 1966. p. 186.

[9] Diamond, Stanley, In Search of the Primitive: A Critique of

Civilization, Transaction Publishers, New Brunswick, 1993. p. 1.

[i] WordNet ® 2.0, 2003, Princeton University

[ii] The American Heritage Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition, 2000, Houghton Mifflin Company.

[iii] Ibid.

Participating in the disaster…

The Earth will save her self, To believe that a consumer or a group of… can save an entity more powerful then the motives of a political movement is egocentric, it is evident that the superior and highly evolved civilizations are responsible for the disaster, abducting and then coercing the natural peoples, who are now assisting in the disaster, how can the Occidental-consumer save the earth when it is them who are the disaster.

We, who take ourselves to be the most intelligent form of life…

The Earth is now the seemingly helpless victim of a feeding frenzy motivated by the greed and arrogant stupidity of one species, the civilized man. We, who take ourselves to be the most intelligent form of life so we beLIEve? are in fact committing acts of spiciesism and multiple genocide against those who are no threat whatsoever to our undeniably obscene and perverse  strength. Often this killing is the thoughtless by-product of a multiplicity of actions that we see as being in our best interest, or providing us with what we want and which we regard as ours by right.



About Deep Green Resistance


Why Deep Green Resistance?

  • Industrial civilization is killing all life on our planet, driving to extinction 200 species per day, and it won’t stop voluntarily.
  • Global warming is happening now, at an astounding speed. The only honest solution is to stop industrial civilization from burning fossil fuels.
  • Most consumption is based on violence against people (human and non-human) and on degrading landbases across the planet.
  • Life on Earth is more important than this insane, temporary culture based on hyper-exploitation of finite resources. This culture needs to be destroyed before it consumes all life on this planet.
  • Humanity is not the same as civilization. Humans have developed many sane and sustainable cultures, themselves at risk from civilization.
  • Most people know this culture is insane and needs radical change, but don’t see any way to bring the change about.
  • Unlike most environmental and social justice organizations, Deep Green Resistance questions the existence and necessity of civilization itself. DGR asks “What if we do away with civilization altogether?”
  • Unlike most environmental and social justice organizations, DGR asks “What must we do to be effective?”, not “What will those in power allow us to do?”
  • DGR offers organized, reliable ways to promote sane ways of living and surviving the ongoing crisis.
  • DGR has a realistic plan to stop the insanity,

Treating Water in a Survival Situation


Your body is 75% water by weight. This water is needed for circulation and other bodily processes including respiration and converting food to energy. Your body loses water through sweating, urinating. defecating and breathing. The fluid your body loses must be replaced for you to function properly. So, one of your first objectives is to obtain an adequate supply of water in a survival situation. You can’t live long without it, especially in hot areas where you lose so much through sweating. Even in cold areas, you need a sufficient amount of water a day to maintain efficiency. People can survive without food for weeks or even a month, but go without water for even just one day and it will decrease your ability in doing even the simplest task. A lack of water causes dehydration, which may result in lethargy, headaches, dizziness and confusion. Insufficient water will also increase your susceptibility to severe shock if you get injured. You will easily be vulnerable to the effects of cold or heat. Morale will drop and a host of other problems ensue.

Thirst is no indication of how much water you need. Even when you are not thirsty, drink small amounts of water regularly to prevent dehydration. Dark yellow or brown urine is a diagnostic indicator of dehydration. If you are exerting a lot of energy or are under severe conditions, increase your water intake. You should be drinking 2 to 3 quarts of water daily or 1.90 to 2.83 liters .

If water rations are insufficient, then movement should be reduced to the cool times of the day or night. Stay in the shade as much as possible. This will reduce the water lost by excessive sweating. Move slowly to conserve energy. In very hot areas, it is better to take smaller quantities of water more frequently. To maximize your water intake, drink slowly and in sips. Don’t eat anything if you don’t have water to drink with it. By consuming food you’ll burn up your body’s supply of the vital fluid all the quicker. Do not remove your clothing, even in the sun. Loose layers of clothing help to control sweating by keeping the humidity near the skin to maximize the cooling effect.

The best place to keep water is in your stomach. When you get to a water source, start treating your water. Keep hydrated and drink as much water as needed. Fill your water containers and drink your fill of water before departing.

Basic filtering is the first step in removing particulate matter in the water. Three sticks can be lashed together near the end of the sticks to form a tripod. Tie a piece of cloth or your T-shirt under the lashed area of the sticks. If you have four corners on your cloth, bind two of the corners together. You will now have three corners. Tie each corner to one of the three sticks. The cloth should not slide downwards on the stick. Use cordage if necessary to secure the cloth to the sticks. Water from a stream, pond or any water source is poured into the cloth to filter out any debris or mud in the water. Additional pieces of cloth can be tied under the first cloth to create a multi-layered filter. A container is placed under the last cloth layer to catch the dripping water.

A plastic water or soda bottle can be made into another filter system. Cut off the upper top portion of the plastic bottle. Perforate the bottom of the plastic bottle with small holes. Place a layer of grass in the bottom, followed by a layer of sand, layered with many pieces of very small charcoal, another layer of sand and a final layer of grass on top. The five separate layers should fill up your plastic bottle. Water is poured into the plastic bottle filter and allowed to drain out of the small holes at the bottom of the plastic bottle into a water container. Take the water from the container and filter the water as many times through the plastic bottle until it comes out clear.

Filtering water doesn’t purify it, but it reduce particles, sediment and makes the water taste better.

Consider water from any source as contaminated with pathogens, like Giardia lamblia or Escherichia coli, that can cause an upset stomach, dysentery or even worst. The danger from these disease causing organisms is fluid loss due to diarrhea and vomiting. To be on the safe side, boil your water or use purification tablets before drinking.

Two methods for boiling water:
1. If you have an Army canteen metal cup or a soup can, you can use it to boil water and cook your food over a fire. The metal container is light and has more than one use.

2. In a wilderness situation, hot rocks can be used to boil water in a container. A plastic tarp can line a deep depression in the ground to provide a container for boiling water with heated rocks. Place some unheated stones in the bottom of the plastic container to keep the hot rock from touching the plastic surface. The water will quickly heat up as the hot rock transfers its heat to the water. When the hot stone begins to cool off, take it out with green sticks and replace the stone with another hot rock. Continue the process until the water is at a rolling boil.

You can also create a wooden bowl with a knife and coals for a container. Peck out a sandstone cup with a small, harder rock. Heated pebbles can be placed in the rock cup to boil water. Hollowing out a wooden bowl or sandstone cup takes a lot of your energy and time to make the container. Take this into consideration and your immediate situation when thinking of ways to boil your water.

Water temperatures above 160° F (70° C) will kill all pathogens within 30 minutes and above 185° F (85° C) within a few minutes. So, in the time it takes for the water to reach the boiling point (212° F or 100° C) from 160° F (70° C), all pathogens will be killed. Let the water boil rapidly for one minute at higher altitudes, since water boils at a lower temperature. At sea level, the boiling point of water is 212° F. For every 500 feet increase in elevation, the boiling point drops one degree. For example, if your campsite is 5,000 feet above sea level, then water boils at 202° F. The only reason you typically get water up to the boiling point is you probably do not have a thermometer handy to measure the water temperature. When the water is boiling, you know it is hot enough and the disease causing organisms in your water were killed quite some time earlier. When the water has reached a full rolling boil, you do not have to boil it any further. Water temperature cannot get any higher than its boiling point no matter how much heat is applied. You will gain nothing by boiling the water longer. You’ll be wasting fuel and evaporate more water. After you remove the water from the heat source, it will take another period of time for the water to cool down enough for you to be able to drink it, during which it continues to remain hot enough to eliminate pathogens.

Boiling only kills living contaminants like parasites, bacteria and viruses. Chemical contaminants (e.g. heavy metals, toxins produced by rotting material, sewage, etc.) will not be affected. If possible, it’s better to spend a little bit of time finding a clean water source (running water) than trying to purify a dirty one (stagnant water).

Three techniques for obtaining water (if a creek, river, lake or any major water source is not available):
1. A solar still can be constructed with a plastic tarp. This is a system to extract water from the soil. A hole is dug where there might be moisture in the soil. A water collecting container is placed in the middle of the pit. The plastic tarp covers the hole and is lined with heavy rocks to seal the perimeter of the pit. A small stone is placed in the center of the tarp over the container in the hole to create a funnel. Create an angle of about 45-degrees from the edge of the hole to the center on the tarp. Water condenses into droplets on the underside of the tarp and gradually drips into the container. Crushed herbaceous plants can also be placed in the pit to increase the still’s output. Be careful to use only edible plants as many poisons will evaporate from toxic plants and drip down into your water container. You can also pour impure or filtered water into the solar still pit and allow it to evaporate and condense into your container.
2. A branch with foliage or a small shrub enclosed in a plastic bag can be used to obtain water. Plants loose water vapor into the atmosphere through a process called transpiration. The water vapor will condense on the inner surface of the bag and slowly flow towards the lowest part of the bag. Angle the bottom of the bag to capture the water droplets. This installation should work for a few days as long as the plant is not too exposed to the sun. Avoid killing the plant from overheating in the bag. Never use plants that may be poisonous. It takes a long time to collect liquid from a plant. This method is best used to stay the pains of thirst or to obtain temporary, “quick relief” emergency water.

3. Water can be collected from early morning dew. Also, a depression in a rock or the nook of a tree or a stump may contain water. Soak up the water from the catch with a piece of cloth or some dried grasses, wring it into a container, then filter and boil the fluid.

A Large oven bag  purchased from the grocery store makes an ideal plastic bag for boiling water with hot rocks, for enclosing plants using the transpiration/condensation method and making a small solar still. The oven bags are made to withstand heat (not to exceed 400° Fahrenheit). Store an oven bag in your emergency kit.

Source of knowledge come from Primitive Ways and my own experience of spending time in the bush.

Three Sisters: Corn, Beans and Squash

According to Iroquois legend, corn, beans, and squash are three inseparable sisters who only grow and thrive together. This tradition of interplanting corn, beans and squash in the same mounds, widespread among Native American farming societies, is a sophisticated, sustainable system that provided long-term soil fertility and a healthy diet to generations. Growing a Three Sisters garden is a wonderful way to feel more connected to the history of this land.

Corn, beans and squash were among the first important crops domesticated by ancient Mesoamerican societies. Corn was the primary crop, providing more calories or energy  than any other. According to Three Sisters legends corn must grow in community with other crops rather than on its own – it needs the beneficial company and aide of its companions.

Three sisters garden corn

The Iroquois believe corn, beans and squash are precious gifts from the Earth Mother, each watched over by one of three sisters spirits, called the De-o-ha-ko, or Our Sustainers”. The planting season is marked by ceremonies to honor them, and a festival commemorates the first harvest of green corn on the cob. By retelling the stories and performing annual rituals, Tribal peoples passed down the knowledge of growing, using and preserving the Three Sisters through generations.

Corn provides a natural pole for bean vines to climb. Beans fix nitrogen on their roots, improving the overall fertility of the plot by providing nitrogen to the following years corn. Bean vines also help stabilize the corn plants, making them less vulnerable to blowing over in the wind. Shallow-rooted squash vines become a living mulch, shading emerging weeds and preventing soil moisture from evaporating, thereby improving the overall crops chances of survival in dry years. Spiny squash plants also help discourage predators from approaching the corn and beans. The large amount of crop residue from this planting combination can be incorporated back into the soil at the end of the season, to build up the organic matter and improve its structure.


three sisters garden squasgh

Corn, beans and squash also complement each other nutritionally. Corn provides carbohydrates, the dried beans are rich in protein, balancing the lack of necessary amino acids found in corn. Finally, squash yields both vitamins from the fruit and healthful, delicious oil from the seeds.

Indigenous peoples kept this system in practice for centuries without the modern conceptual vocabulary we use today, i.e. soil nitrogen, vitamins, etc. They often look for signs in their environment that indicate the right soil temperature and weather for planting corn, i.e. when the Canada geese return or the dogwood leaves reach the size of a squirrels ear. You may wish to record such signs as you observe in your garden and neighborhood so that, depending on how well you judged the timing, you can watch for them again next season!

Early European settlers would certainly never have survived without the gift of the Three Sisters from the Tribal peoples.

Success with a Three Sisters garden involves careful attention to timing, seed spacing, and varieties. In many areas, if you simply plant all three in the same hole at the same time, the result will be a snarl of vines in which the corn gets overwhelmed!

Instructions for Planting Your Own Three Sisters Garden in a 10 x 10 square

When to plant:
Sow seeds any time after spring night temperatures are in the 50 degree range, up through June.

What to plant:
Corn must be planted in several rows rather than one long row to ensure adequate pollination. Choose pole beans or runner beans and a squash or pumpkin variety with trailing vines, rather than a compact bush. At Renee’s Garden, we have created our Three Sisters Garden Bonus Pack, which contains three inner packets of multi-colored Indian Corn, Rattlesnake Beans to twine up the corn stalks and Sugar Pie Pumpkins to cover the ground.

Note: A 10 x 10 foot square of space for your Three Sisters garden is the minimum area needed to ensure good corn pollination. If you have a small garden, you can plant fewer mounds, but be aware that you may not get good full corn ears as a result.

How to plant:
Please refer to the diagrams below and to individual seed packets for additional growing information.

1. Choose a site in full sun (minimum 6-8 hours/day of direct sunlight throughout the growing season). Amend the soil with plenty of compost or aged manure, since corn is a heavy feeder and the nitrogen from your beans will not be available to the corn during the first year. With string, mark off three ten-foot rows, five feet apart.

2. In each row, make your corn/bean mounds. The center of each mound should be 5 feet apart from the center of the next. Each mound should be 18 across with flattened tops. The mounds should be staggered in adjacent rows. See Diagram #1

Note: The Iroquois and others planted the three sisters in raised mounds about 4 inches high, in order to improve drainage and soil warmth; to help conserve water, you can make a small crater at the top of your mounds so the water doesn’t drain off the plants quickly. Raised mounds were not built in dry, sandy areas where soil moisture conservation was a priority, for example in parts of the southwest. There, the three sisters were planted in beds with soil raised around the edges, so that water would collect in the beds (See reference 2 below for more information). In other words, adjust the design of your bed according to your climate and soil type.

3. Plant 4 corn seeds in each mound in a 6 in square. See Diagram #2

4. When the corn is 4 inches tall, its time to plant the beans and squash. First, weed the entire patch. Then plant 4 bean seeds in each corn mound. They should be 3 in apart from the corn plants, completing the square as shown in Diagram #3.

5. Build your squash mounds in each row between each corn/bean mound. Make them the same size as the corn/bean mounds. Plant 3 squash seeds, 4 in. apart in a triangle in the middle of each mound as shown in Diagram #4.

6. When the squash seedlings emerge, thin them to 2 plants per mound. You may have to weed the area several times until the squash take over and shade new weeds.

Diagram showing Three Sisters Garden spacing


Links to Legends about the Three Sisters:

1. Bird Clan of E. Central Alabama: The Three Sisters

2. Cornell University Garden Based Learning: Three Sisters Garden- A Legend

3.Three Sisters (agriculture) From Wikipedia, the free encyclopediaReferences and Further Reading;  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Three_Sisters_(agriculture)1. Creasy, Rosalind, “Cooking from the Garden”, Sierra Club Books, San Francisco, 1988

2. Dodson, Mardi, “An Appendix to Companion Planting: Basic Concepts & Resources – Ancient Companions. ATTRA: National Center for Appropriate Technology, 2002. Available at http://www.attra.org/attra-pub/complant.html#appCultivation.
3. Eames-Sheavly, Marcia, “The Three Sisters, Exploring an Iroquois Garden”, Cornell Cooperative Extension, Cornell U., 1993
4. Hays, Wilma and R. Vernon, “Foods the Indians Gave Us”, Ives Washburn, Inc. NY, 1973

The dark (disgusting) side of Brazil: Congressman receives Survival’s ‘Racist of the year’ award – Survival International

Deputy Luis Carlos Heinze made racist comments about Brazilian Indians, homosexuals and black people.

The dark side of Brazil: Congressman receives Survival’s ‘Racist of the year’ award 20 March 2014

Continue reading “The dark (disgusting) side of Brazil: Congressman receives Survival’s ‘Racist of the year’ award – Survival International”


Based on a true story of my people

 A young man named Watakwuna sorrowed because of the  repressions  his people were suffering at the hands of their more powerful enemy. So sad was he that he blackened his face with charcoal and retired to an isolated spot to fast and pray. His entreaties reached the ears of the sun and his relation the Morningstar. According to their instructions, the Inamaki- wuk, or Thunderers, took pity on him, and sent him word to come to them.


 He was told to take a straight course westward across the ocean until he came to an island of rock projecting high above the surrounding waters. (this would be the time of the inland sea of what is now called North Amerca and the island of rock would be the Rocky Mountains)

Here the vision told him he would find the Thunderers. When Watakwuna awoke from his vision he was overjoyed, but yet afraid. He made a sacrifice to the Thunderbirds and to the offering he invited seven pure young men who had never used a vision quest to seek truth or never journeyed or struggled. When these youths were gathered in his medicine lodge Watakwuna burnt an offering to the Thunderers as a preliminary service and then explained the purpose of the ceremony to his guests, relating his dream and his subsequent fears. The revelation made a profound impression upon the young men, who believed his words, and after some discussion, they resolved to accompany Watakwuna on his westward journey to the home of the Thunderbirds. Accordingly, the little party, headed by Watakwuna, set forth for the west. The journey was toilsome and the way beset with perils. Often the adventurers were tempted to turn back, but always, when it seemed as Watakwuna, Club-in-his-hand, a “brave name,” one of the type bestowed on valiant warriors. though human strength and courage could hold out no longer, spirits would appear to them and lure them on, until at length they reached the shore of the Western Ocean. Here they paused, unable to proceed, for they did not know how to go across the water. At this point the Thunderers appeared again to Watakwuna in a vision and instructed him to build an elm bark canoe, the first one ever known to man, and the prototype from which all subsequent canoes were modelled.

When the boat was built by Watakwnua and his seven helpers, they launched it and paddled out to sea. They soon passed beyond sight of land, and for days they were frightened because they could see nothing. Yet invisible spirits accompanied and encouraged them until at last they reached their goal. Here were gathered a great number of Thunderbirds in human form, waiting for them. As soon as Watakwuna had landed, accompanied by his followers, the chief of the Thunderers who was greater and handsomer than all the others, came forward and addressed him as follows:

No’se (grandchild) you have come to me according to my command.

I was troubled in my heart when I saw you fasting and suffering, growing light in flesh and thin in body. Now you have gained great honour,  I have taken pity on you. I am going to give you this protector bundle to use upon the earth. You shall feed it, and give sacrifices to it for my sake and in my behalf. You shall be empowered to use this thing at your need. It shall empower you, and your children and grandchildren, so that you and they shall live to see your gray hairs. I command you to use it in the way which I shall make clear to you, and if you obey me, it shall grant  you the protection you need.

Bear-berry smoke shall be the chief thing to please it, and when you give the Bear-berry smoke you will delight us. You shall take these things which I have here back to your land again, and when you reach your home, you shall make some others according to my instructions.

Here is an egg (flint in the shape of an egg), put that in the bundle. Here is a powder, put that in the bundle. These two articles shall enable you to set fire to the earth at your desire. Here is a little bow so that you can preform the Crazy Animal Dance as to release the spirits to take form, the image of an arrow, and a scabbard to carry. Here are all the birds of the air, that are like my kind. They will lend their assistance when trouble overtakes you. Take this red paint along, that you may apply it to your men who accompany you when you battle, and the sight of it will please me. It will put new life into you and your men. Through my spiritual power I gave you the dream that called you here to see me, through it you shall be able to protect yourself and other from the oppressors that intend to harm or kill you. You shall conquer, and victory will always be yours. The enemies that you shall slay will be food for me and for the bundle.

When you return you shall carve my image upon a board and place it in the bundle, in order to please me. You must take two plain  blocks, and upon each of these outline my figure in sacred red paint, one shall represent me as a Great Powered Bird, and one shall represent me as a man with a great lighting-bolt in my hand.

“I am of dual nature. I can change myself into either a bird or a man at will.”

  And indeed the Thunder-bird-beings have been known to come to earth in human form. They have appeared as homely men, short and thick-set, with heavy muscles in their arms and legs, and bearing a bow and arrows and or a club in their hands. Ordinary persons can scarcely recognize them as Thunderers, but those who have received power from them in their dreams, know them at once for what they are.

I give you the power to know and see me in your night dances. You shall be forewarned of your enemies plans. You shall know beforehand whether you shall win or lose your battles. You shall do all your fighting at night, and you shall destroy your enemies during their sweet sleep.

Before you go out to battle you shall first prepare and give feasts to the bundle. You shall sacrifice to it in behalf of the Thunderbirds. You shall receive that for which you ask us, for I shall assist you. Call on me through those sacred things which I have given you, and you shall have the thick fog settle down and hide you from the enemy so that you may escape under its cover. You shall have the lightning and hail to cripple the wicked foe when he troubles you.

You shall seek your enemy in the night through this bundle. You shall approach him with the stealth of the Underwater Serpent in pursuit of its prey, and encircle his village. Let each fighter carry the image of one of the medicine birds with him, with a single quill feather fastened in his hair, and as the Humming bird is so small in flight that none can hit, so shall each fighter be. As it is impossible to strike the edge of a knife blade ground sharp and held off edgewise from the body, so shall you and your fighters be.  These things I say to you that you may understand the power of the spirit medicines that I have placed in the protectors bundle.

You shall make incense of a portion of each of the sacred roots that I have included, and you shall purify yourselves with the fumes. You shall carry a little of each in your mouth, and you shall chew some of them and spray yourselves and your fighters with your saliva, that they may elude the keen vision of the oppressor, for the eyesight of the enemy shall be destroyed when they approach.

When you have drawn near and surrounded the village, you shall signal on the battle whistle, and you and your fighters shall rush to attack. You shall destroy the sleeping enemy with knifes and battle clubs that have been kept in the powerful spirit-medicine until they are saturated. Those who awake shall try to escape, but cannot, for the spirit medicines which I have given shall zap their strength and benumb their minds. When a fighter takes a scalp he shall swig it about so that the fresh blood from it shall splatter every where, this he must do as a sign that the oppressors are devoured in behalf of us, the Thunderers.

When the fighting is over, then you shall make a great ceremony with dancing, for the war bundle and for us, the Thunderbirds, or Thunderers. You shall thank us for the assistance which we have rendered you. Then you shall sing  for the scalps that have been taken with valor.

Always respect the Protectors bundle which we have given you, commanded the Thunderbird-beings. Be careful to keep it tied with a string, and keep it hung in a place by itself, outside of the house, away from the young, and the maidens who are just arrived at the threshold of womanhood. Especially keep it concealed from those women who are having their monthly courses for those women are far to powerful as they are. The bundle must never be opened or nothing, as that would be a serious offense to it, and to us, the Thunderbirds. It may only be opened in time of peril, or when you sacrifice to it in the spring or in the fall of the year for our sake. Yet this I say, in case of an accident, even in peace it may be opened and the roots it contains may be used to stop the bleeding, but you shall not forget to pay us in Bear-berry smoke for our help.

“And this is not yet all that I have to say,” said the chief of the Thunderbird- beings to Watakwuna. “One thing that you must make when you get home, or which the women may make for you, is a pack strap (or belt),’ This you shall make of course long beads, It shall be put in the bundle to be kept as a reward for the brave fighter who kills a chief or leader among your oppressors. It shall be given to him as a great honor.

When the Thunderer had finished speaking, he called to his warriors to fetch food, prepare it, and place it before Watakwuna and his fighter. The warriors departed immediately and soon returned bringing a quantity of sturgeon which they cooked and set before their guests.

“Now, eat and depart,” said the chief of the Thunderers. “This is the only food we can offer you. For ourselves, we may not touch it, for we feed upon the horned snakes/underwater serpents and the pale and translucent animals of the under world, which in their turn cannot be food for you.”

So Watakwuna and his fighters obeyed and when they were filled they took their leave of the islet and its enchanted inhabitants. As they entered their canoe the water lay still as glass, the sun shone brightly, and they soon reached the shore from whence they started. The overland journey from that point was equally devoid of its former perils. Food was abundant and they had never need to draw their bows, the four-legged that they met offered them selves before them, so powerful was the spell cast by their protector bundle. So at length they arrived among their own people again and imparted to them the story of their successful venture and from that day to this, the bundle has been on earth among men and its powers are granted to the worthy in the tellings of their dreams.


▶ Did Animal Planet Mistreat Its Stars to Fake Reality Drama? – YouTube

via ▶ Did Animal Planet Mistreat Its Stars to Fake Reality Drama? – YouTube.

James West’s reporting reveals “numerous cases of alleged animal mistreatment and possible infringement of state and federal law,” and “evidence of a production culture that tolerated legally and ethically dubious activities, including using an animal that had been drugged with sedatives, in contravention of federal rules; directing trappers to procure wild animals to be ‘caught’ again as part of a script, and wrongly filling out legal documents detailing the crew’s wildlife activities for Kentucky officials.”

You can read the investigation in full here:http://www.motherjones.com/environmen…


Water is one of your most urgent needs in a survival situation. You can’ t live long without it, especially in hot areas where you lose water rapidly through perspiration. Even in cold areas, you need a minimum of 2 liters of water each day to maintain efficiency.

More than three-fourths of your body is composed of fluids. Your body loses fluid as a result of heat, cold, stress, and exertion. To function effectively, you must replace the fluid your body loses. So, one of your first goals is to obtain an adequate supply of water.


Almost any environment has water present to some degree. Figure 6-1 lists possible sources of water in various environments. It also provides information on how to make the water potable.

Note: If you do not have a canteen, a cup, a can, or other type of container, improvise one from plastic or water-resistant cloth. Shape the plastic or cloth into a bowl by pleating it. Use pins or other suitable items—even your hands—to hold the pleats.

If you do not have a reliable source to replenish your water supply, stay alert for ways in which your environment can help you.


Do not substitute the fluids listed in Figure 6-2 for water.

Heavy dew can provide water. Tie rags or tufts of fine grass around your ankles and walk through dew-covered grass before sunrise. As the rags or grass tufts absorb the dew, wring the water into a container. Repeat the process until you have a supply of water or until the dew is gone. Australian natives sometimes mop up as much as a liter an hour this way.

Bees or ants going into a hole in a tree may point to a water-filled hole. Siphon the water with plastic tubing or scoop it up with an improvised dipper. You can also stuff cloth in the hole to absorb the water and then wring it from the cloth.

Water sometimes gathers in tree crotches or rock crevices. Use the above procedures to get the water. In arid areas, bird droppings around a crack in the rocks may indicate water in or near the crack.

Green bamboo thickets are an excellent source of fresh water. Water from green bamboo is clear and odorless. To get the water, bend a green bamboo stalk, tie it down, and cut off the top (Figure 6-3). The water will drip freely during the night. Old, cracked bamboo may contain water.


Purify the water before drinking it.

Wherever you find banana or plantain trees, you can get water. Cut down the tree, leaving about a 30-centimeter stump, and scoop out the center of the stump so that the hollow is bowl-shaped. Water from the roots will immediately start to fill the hollow. The first three fillings of water will be bitter, but succeeding fillings will be palatable. The stump (Figure 6-4) will supply water for up to four days. Be sure to cover it to keep out insects.

Some tropical vines can give you water. Cut a notch in the vine as high as you can reach, then cut the vine off close to the ground. Catch the dropping liquid in a container or in your mouth (Figure 6-5).


Do not drink the liquid if it is sticky, milky, or bitter tasting.

The milk from green (unripe) coconuts is a good thirst quencher. However, the milk from mature coconuts contains an oil that acts as a laxative. Drink in moderation only.

In the American tropics you may find large trees whose branches support air plants. These air plants may hold a considerable amount of rainwater in their overlapping, thickly growing leaves. Strain the water through a cloth to remove insects and debris.

You can get water from plants with moist pulpy centers. Cut off a section of the plant and squeeze or smash the pulp so that the moisture runs out. Catch the liquid in a container.

Plant roots may provide water. Dig or pry the roots out of the ground, cut them into short pieces, and smash the pulp so that the moisture runs out. Catch the liquid in a container.

Fleshy leaves, stems, or stalks, such as bamboo, contain water. Cut or notch the stalks at the base of a joint to drain out the liquid.

The following trees can also provide water:

  • Palms. Palms, such as the buri, coconut, sugar, rattan, and nips, contain liquid. Bruise a lower frond and pull it down so the tree will “bleed” at the injury.
  • Traveler’s tree. Found in Madagascar, this tree has a cuplike sheath at the base of its leaves in which water collects.
  • Umbrella tree. The leaf bases and roots of this tree of western tropical Africa can provide water.
  • Baobab tree. This tree of the sandy plains of northern Australia and Africa collects water in its bottlelike trunk during the wet season. Frequently, you can find clear, fresh water in these trees after weeks of dry weather.


Do not keep the sap from plants longer than 24 hours. It begins fermenting, becoming dangerous as a water source.



You can use stills in various areas of the world. They draw moisture from the ground and from plant material. You need certain materials to build a still, and you need time to let it collect the water. It takes about 24 hours to get 0.5 to 1 liter of water.

Aboveground Still

To make the aboveground still, you need a sunny slope on which to place the still, a clear plastic bag, green leafy vegetation, and a small rock (Figure 6-6).

To make the still—

    • Fill the bag with air by turning the opening into the breeze or by “scooping” air into the bag.
  • Fill the plastic bag half to three-fourths full of green leafy vegetation. Be sure to remove all hard sticks or sharp spines that might puncture the bag.


Do not use poisonous vegetation. It will provide poisonous liquid.

    • Place a small rock or similar item in the bag.
    • Close the bag and tie the mouth securely as close to the end of the bag as possible to keep the maximum amount of air space. If you have a piece of tubing, a small straw, or a hollow reed, insert one end in the mouth of the bag before you tie it securely. Then tie off or plug the tubing so that air will not escape. This tubing will allow you to drain out condensed water without untying the bag.
    • Place the bag, mouth downhill, on a slope in full sunlight. Position the mouth of the bag slightly higher than the low point in the bag.
  • Settle the bag in place so that the rock works itself into the low point in the bag.

To get the condensed water from the still, loosen the tie around the bag’s mouth and tip the bag so that the water collected around the rock will drain out. Then retie the mouth securely and reposition the still to allow further condensation.

Change the vegetation in the bag after extracting most of the water from it. This will ensure maximum output of water.

Belowground Still

To make a belowground still, you need a digging tool, a container, a clear plastic sheet, a drinking tube, and a rock (Figure 6-7).

Select a site where you believe the soil will contain moisture (such as a dry stream bed or a low spot where rainwater has collected). The soil at this site should be easy to dig, and sunlight must hit the site most of the day.

To construct the still—

    • Dig a bowl-shaped hole about 1 meter across and 60 centimeters deep.
    • Dig a sump in the center of the hole. The sump’s depth and perimeter will depend on the size of the container that you have to place in it. The bottom of the sump should allow the container to stand upright.
    • Anchor the tubing to the container’s bottom by forming a loose overhand knot in the tubing.
    • Place the container upright in the sump.
    • Extend the unanchored end of the tubing up, over, and beyond the lip of the hole.
    • Place the plastic sheet over the hole, covering its edges with soil to hold it in place.
    • Place a rock in the center of the plastic sheet.
    • Lower the plastic sheet into the hole until it is about 40 centimeters below ground level. It now forms an inverted cone with the rock at its apex. Make sure that the cone’s apex is directly over your container. Also make sure the plastic cone does not touch the sides of the hole because the earth will absorb the condensed water.
    • Put more soil on the edges of the plastic to hold it securely in place and to prevent the loss of moisture.
  • Plug the tube when not in use so that the moisture will not evaporate.

You can drink water without disturbing the still by using the tube as a straw.

You may want to use plants in the hole as a moisture source. If so, dig out additional soil from the sides of the hole to form a slope on which to place the plants. Then proceed as above.

If polluted water is your only moisture source, dig a small trough outside the hole about 25 centimeters from the still’s lip (Figure 6-8). Dig the trough about 25 centimeters deep and 8 centimeters wide. Pour the polluted water in the trough. Be sure you do not spill any polluted water around the rim of the hole where the plastic sheet touches the soil. The trough holds the polluted water and the soil filters it as the still draws it. The water then condenses on the plastic and drains into the container. This process works extremely well when your only water source is salt water.

You will need at least three stills to meet your individual daily water intake needs.


Rainwater collected in clean containers or in plants is usually safe for drinking. However, purify water from lakes, ponds, swamps, springs, or streams, especially the water near human settlements or in the tropics.

When possible, purify all water you got from vegetation or from the ground by using iodine or chlorine, or by boiling.

Purify water by—

    • Using water purification tablets. (Follow the directions provided.)
    • Placing 5 drops of 2 percent tincture of iodine in a canteen full of clear water. If the canteen is full of cloudy or cold water, use 10 drops. (Let the canteen of water stand for 30 minutes before drinking.)
  • Boiling water for 1 minute at sea level, adding 1 minute for each additional 300 meters above sea level, or boil for 10 minutes no matter where you are.

By drinking nonpotable water you may contract diseases or swallow organisms that can harm you. Examples of such diseases or organisms are—

  • Dysentery.Severe, prolonged diarrhea with bloody stools, fever, and weakness.
  • Cholera and typhoid.You may be susceptible to these diseases regardless of inoculations.
  • Flukes. Stagnant, polluted water—especially in tropical areas—often contains blood flukes. If you swallow flukes, they will bore into the bloodstream, live as parasites, and cause disease.
  • Leeches.If you swallow a leech, it can hook onto the throat passage or inside the nose. It will suck blood, create a wound, and move to another area. Each bleeding wound may become infected.


If the water you find is also muddy, stagnant, and foul smelling, you can clear the water—

    • By placing it in a container and letting it stand for 12 hours.
  • By pouring it through a filtering system.

Note: These procedures only clear the water and make it more palatable. You will have to purify it.

To make a filtering system, place several centimeters or layers of filtering material such as sand, crushed rock, charcoal, or cloth in bamboo, a hollow log, or an article of clothing (Figure 6-9).

Remove the odor from water by adding charcoal from your fire. Let the water stand for 45 minutes before drinking it.