Becoming Wild and Go Wild

My quest for information on a feral woodsman lifestyle has led me down many paths. From websites to Youtube to books, interviews and secondhand stories

Today I am covering a few books I have unearthed. These are two of the best in my opinion. I have read books on hermits, loners and misfits, books on being in the wilderness alone or in groups. The wide personalities and myriad, all over the world, places is astounding. Some are just sad, some are heartwarming, some are because of circumstance,or accidental.

The best are on purpose and planned. in the book “Becoming Wild ” living the primitive life on a west coast island, by Nikki Van Schyndel is one who planned and schemed to achieve a personal quest. As she states, sometimes predator sometimes prey in this isolated rain forest. She was a young woman from a family of money and lots of comfort, applied herself to learning primitive skills she felt she would need to live as a wild person. The book is written in a very transparent manner. She struggles with awakening ancient instincts, sensibilities and perceptions that are mostly lost for most of us.

As preps she graduated from Dominion Herbal College, in British Columbia. She has studied with and taught under some of North Americas leading survivalists, trackers and primitive artisans.

Self discovery, reconciliation and renegotiation with self is a thing to grab a hold of with her. Her goal? To forsake almost all technology known to modern man. She hooks up a kindred soul, Micah, who shares her vision. Together, they build a remote shelter and learn to trap bears. The bear scenes are heartbreaking because of what they dont know, but resolve themselves with learning by doing. Endless deprivation, starvation and extreme discomfort, but shows what you can do and what you can do to improve your condition. They stayed for two years before returning to the modern world. But that is even harder for her. She now has gone from wild woman to forest dweller where she conducts Echo Bay ecoVentures. She now lives in Echo Bay, a remote very small community where she built a log cabin. This is just one of the better books I have found.

The second book ” Go Wild” by John J. Ratey, MD, and Richard Manning. takes a far more academic point of view. It, in essence, supports much of my reasoning for a feral life. This book was brought to my attention by a Dirttime forum member. He thought I might find it interesting and I sure did. This book is very hard to do a review on, as the depth is wide and deep. Each page is loaded with information and investigates the power of evolutionary forces in our lives, and how it relates to a life in the wild… even on a part time basis. It points out some things that we already are aware of, like how much of our current distress is the product of how the activities of our regimented modern life estrange us from our biological needs along with contributing factors that make us ill.

Go wild to break free from the restrictions, from what we eat to where and when and how we exercise to keep healthy. For instance, a gym is a joyless place, all flat and no real air, etc. Running on a treadmill is not natural and your brain goes dead firing blanks. Where as running on a trail, where you have to pay attention, so you don’t trip, is a more natural way to run. This is what your brain needs to keep firing. The uneven terrain and bushes or tree limbs you have to dodge is a feral run that enlivens your brain and creates better muscle and balance. It engages your brain to work with your muscles. If you can go barefoot, do so, but any minimum sandal or mocs will work also. Do what works for you. Even a fast walk over uneven terrain will work. Since before the last Dirttime14, I have been wearing mocs. I find the difference to be invigorating. You learn to walk in a new manner that is for the better. Better than wearing those coffins we call boots.

Sleep is a big deal, more so than we know. This book goes into the why of sleep and how most of us do not utilize it in a proper manner. I have changed my sleep patterns for the better. The book deals with nutrition in a way that is fresh clear and makes sense, much more so than what most of us have been led to believe.

This is not a book for the masses, but they should be made aware of it it could change your life in a very positive way. The importance of just being in a wild place, even if you only have time to drive through it for a few minutes. But the more time you can spend in the wilderness, the better.Use the wild as your gym. Pick up rocks and lift them. Stretch out using limbs and trees. Pull yourself up and down. The research is impressive and enlightening. I feel it is a must read. I cannot begin to cover the contents of this book and this review does not give the book the justice it deserves.

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