Special Screening of “Nature’s Wisdom Thru Native Eyes” at Walnut Creek Preserve

Published 12:32 pm Friday, April 12, 2024

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MILL SPRING—Conserving Carolina is inviting the public to a free special screening of the new, local documentary about the Cherokee connection to nature, “Nature’s Wisdom Thru Native Eyes,” by award-winning documentary filmmaker David Weintraub and the Center for Cultural Preservation.

The screening will take place on Saturday, April 20, at 10:30 a.m. at the Anne Elizabeth Suratt Nature Center at Walnut Creek Preserve in Mill Spring. After the film is shown, David Weintraub and Nancy Basket, who are featured in the movie, will be available for a discussion about the documentary.

When storytelling, native wisdom, and nature’s intelligence converge, something beautiful can arise. That’s the theme of this new film, which documents the Cherokee’s connection to nature.

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According to Cherokee elder, storyteller and mask-maker Davy Arch, “We were trying to stay connected to the natural world because we realized that everything that was connected to it thrived, so we understood that if we would stay connected to it, we would be prosperous as well.” Arch is one of several native elders featured in the film discussing how for over 10,000 years storytelling connected the tribe to nature and to each other, the use of medicinal plants, and how the native approach that focuses finding connections can help all of us heal our broken relationship with the living world.

Weintraub elaborates that what struck him most of all while working with the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians and half a dozen other native tribes is their sophisticated approach to seeing the connections between history, culture and nature.  

“In the Western tradition, humans are considered to be at the top of the hierarchy, with animals and plants far below. But native people instead believe that since humans were the last to come and have the least experience on how to live, they must turn to plants and animals as their teachers. By looking at the living world that way, it transforms us and how we view the living world. Instead of nature being our conquest, it becomes our partner,” he says.

This lecture is part of Conserving Carolina’s monthly Speaker Series at Walnut Creek Preserve. Pre-registration is required. To register and for more information, visit Conserving Carolina’s website and “calendar” tab, conservingcarolina.org/calendar.

Walnut Creek Preserve’s Nature Center is located at 179 Conservatory Lane in Mill Spring. Please note that Walnut Creek Preserve is private property and guests are only allowed on the property by invitation (a planned event or scheduled group).  

For more information about Walnut Creek Preserve, visit www.walnutcreekpreserve.com.  


Submitted by Pam Torlina