Interdependence vs Independence

Further, in her book, Ensouling Our Schools, Katz clarifies the difference between Western society’s self-actualization and the Indigenous culture’s self-actualization. In Western society, self-actualization is at the top of the triangle, stressing independence. In Indigenous culture, “The triangle, shaped like a teepee was meant to have self-actualization as the foundation, with communityy actualization in the middle, and cultural perpetuity at the top. In other words, development of the self led to, and was aimed at, the strength and development of the collective. By contributing in this way, one’s life contributes to a legacy that continues long after death – cultural perpetuity.” Since we as educators and parents continue to stress the importance of team, we can learn much from the traditional Indigenous culture of the collective interdependent community values and lifestyle expectations.

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