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Junguiana vol.38 no.2 São Paulo July/Dec. 2020


'The Falling Sky': Jungian reflections on the shamanic alert by Davi Kopenawa



Zara Lyrio

Doutoranda em História e Filosofia da Psicologia na Universidade Federal de Juiz de Fora. Mestre e Ciências da Religião pela Universidade Federal de Juiz de Fora. Especialista em Ciência da Religião - UFJF, Especialista em Psicologia Junguiana - IBMR. Pós Graduada em Interdisciplinaridade entre Educação, Ecologia e Espiritualidade - ITF. Membro analista Sociedade Brasileira de Psicologia Junguiana (SBPA - IAAP). Editora Assistente e Membro do Conselho Editorial Revista Junguiana. E-mail: <>




This study brings some Jungian considerations on the ethnographic narrative entitled "The Falling Sky" that will be presented seeking to demonstrate through a comparative-reflective analysis of similarities between the views of the Yanomami shaman, Davi Kopenawa and the ideas of the Swiss Psychiatrist, Carl Gustav Jung. To this end, it is necessary to present some points of indigenous criticism about the way in which technological societies relate to nature - marked by the exploitation of natural resources and disrespect for indigenous culture, reflecting on the similarities between this native view, described in this study and in Complex Psychology, mainly due to the bias Jung called the psychoid archetype, in which the body-mind-world relationship is in resonance and in an intimate interdependent relationship. Thus, the main objective of this study is to elaborate a dialogue between original thinking and Jungian thinking, in the sense of observing how both perspectives point to intrinsic connections between nature and culture.

Keywords: Keywords "The Falling Sky", Davi Kopenawa, Yanomami culture, interdependence, anima mundi, psychoid, culture-nature.



1. Introduction

"The Falling Sky" is a book that was written to be the evidence of a people's culture, a shamanic manifesto, and a wake-up call from the Amazon heart. Its sources are reports from Davi Kopenawa's native language, the Yanomami shaman, by the ethnologist Bruce Albert.

It is the indigenous activist leader's biography in its reflections facing the predatory contact with the white people in the 1960s. From the perspective of his, often dramatical, personal experience, he reports the memories of such interference's progress. Groups of gold diggers, road workers, and missionaries - together with its meshed epidemies, violence and destruction, not to mention the respect to his culture - break into the forest to explore his territory aiming at natural goods and services.

It describes the shamanic vocation of Davi Kopenawa, fruit of the richness of a cosmological knowledge, coming from his native experiences close to nature, to his tribe's shamans and shamans; together with the use of substances considered as "power plants", from childhood until his initiation into adulthood. One of the main tonics of his protagonist, Davi Kopenawa, narrates the passionate defense of the right to the existence of a native people who, over the years, has been devoured by an immeasurably devastating machine of civilization from the technological point of view.

It also appears as a reverse anthropology1, mirroring an elucidation of the world, according to an original knowledge distinct from civilizational and the description of the colonizer. It presents an ethnographic shamanic analysis, in a critical cut of the political economy of nature on those whom it calls "the people of merchandise"2. Davi Kopenawa considers that this adjective is linked to Western civilization, which values profit for economic capital (consumer goods) to the contrary of human value. By distorting the subjective sense of relationships, it subverts the place of subjects in such a way that they become means, mere "tools" for the purpose of material enrichment.

Throughout the text we observe the articulation of knowledge about a culture's customs; the political declaration of traditional knowledge and a cosmological and spiritual vision of the world, which is almost suppressed nowadays. What results from this description and analysis is the message, in a prophetic tone, that "when the Amazon succumbs to unbridled devastation and the last shaman dies, the sky will fall on everyone and it will be the end of the world" (ALBERT, KOPENAWA, 2010, p. 489). In other words, the myth expresses the following idea:

The forest is alive. It can only die if the white people persist in destroying it. If they succeed, the rivers will disappear underground, the soil will crumble, the trees will shrivel up, and the stones will crack in the heat. The dried-up earth will become empty and silent. The xapiri spirits who come down from the mountains to play on their mirrors in the forest will escape far away. Their shaman fathers will no longer be able to call them and make them dance to protect us. They will be powerless to repel the epidemic fumes which devour us. They will no longer be able to hold back the evil beings who will turn the forest to chaos. We will die one after the other, the white people as well as us. All the shamans will finally perish. Then, if none of them survive to hold it up, the sky will fall (p. 6).

This myth supports a cultural vision of which Davi Kopenawa is the representative and indicates that the sustainability of life on Earth is directly connected with the preservation of the forest and this is intrinsically linked to the life of its original inhabitants. Since "while the shamans are still alive, they will be able to avoid the fall of the sky, even if it gets very sick" (ALBERT, KOPENAWA, 2010, p. 489).

This understanding means that the shamans "drive away dangerous things" (ALBERT, KOPENAWA, 2010) in order to defend the inhabitants of the forest, but not only, they "work in defense of the white people who live under the same sky" (p. 492), so that, by this view, even if we do not realize, this shaman-forest-sustainability connection, intervenes to all and, even in urban centres, remains indelible.

As a literary work, "The Falling Sky" is a four-handed narrative and is among the most significant contributions to the research of the Amazonian peoples. It is the "biographical" meeting and the result of such work, friendship and observation between Davi Kopenawa and Bruce Albert that lasted around 30 years, combining the history of a political project that made the paths of an indigenous thinker converge with the ideals of an anthropologist. Both had a long and painful background in their joint effort to defend the Yanomami from the most diverse violence to which they have been subjected since their first contacts with the so-called civilized - napë (outsider, enemy) (ALBERT, KOPENAWA, 2010).

The Yanomami peoples form a hunter-farmer society in the northern Amazon rainforest. They form a cultural and linguistic contiguous complex of at least four adjacent subsystems that speak their own family languages (Yanomae, Yanõmami, Sanima and Ninam). Their territory covers approximately 192,000 km2, located on both sides of the border between Brazil and Venezuela, in the region of the Orinoco - Amazon interfluvial (tributaries of the right bank of the Branco river and the left bank of the Negro river). In 2010, the total population of the Yanomami was estimated at about 26,000 members (ALBERT, KOPENAWA, 2010).

His contact with urban society is relatively recent. It happened between 1910 and 1940 (ALBERT, MILIKEN, 2009). At first, it was accidental, there were occasional meetings and the first ones they contacted were "collectors of forest products such as piaçaba, soldiers working on borders expansion, Indigenous Protection Service (SPI - Serviço de Proteção Indígena) sertanists or travelers" (p. 14).

However, from that moment on, the records in government programs and evangelization missions show that several subsequent events did not prove to be at all favorable to peaceful coexistence between the indigenous and the whites. Above all, it is important to consider the indiscriminate and direct physical violence. "Stimulated not only by greed, which gold in large quantities has always provoked throughout history, but also by the presence of numerous brothels in the Yanomami area, where alcohol consumption was very high" (LEONARDI, 2000, p. 84). The arrival of the roads and the mining caused, besides the damage to nature, a great moral and physical massacre that cost the lives of more than one thousand two hundred Yanomami.

The indigenous people lived with this for years, and this coexistence changed ancestral habits and left sequels. Right at the beginning of the garimpeira invasion, in August 1987, four Paapiú Indians "were murdered by bullets and their bodies butchered by the garimpeiros". In 1994, indigenous leader Davi Kopenawa reported on the action of garimpeiros to the United Nations (UN), claiming that they were prostituting women, spreading diseases, fomenting fights between Yanomami groups with distribution of weapons and cachaça. Many Indians were raped by miners in the fields where they worked. There was a case of rape and murder of mother and daughter on the same farm [...] Where the Perimetral went [...] On these roadsides some Indians were seduced by whites in exchange for beads (p. 84).

Davi Kopenawa, who was born in 19563, grew up experiencing such violence against his people and, already at the beginning of his youth, engaged in a tireless struggle against the destruction of his tribe and the forest. From then on, he became the main spokesman for the Yanomami cause, in Brazil and worldwide. In the 80s and 90s, he visited several countries in Europe and the United States (US), where he is regarded as one of the most exponent Amazon defenders. In 1988, he won the Global 500 Award by the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) and, in 1989, the Right Livelihood Award, classified as an alternative Nobel prize. In 1999, he was awarded the Order of Rio Branco by the President of the Brazilian Republic, Fernando Henrique Cardoso. In 2008, he received a special mention from the prestigious Bartolomé de Las Casas Award, granted by the Spanish government, for his action in defense of the rights of the indigenous peoples of the Americas.

Bruce Albert, born in Morocco in 1952, became PhD in Anthropology at the University of Paris and research director of the Institut de Recherche pour le Développement - IRD (Paris). He has worked since 1975 as an advocate for the rights and culture of the Yanomami in Brazil. He is the co-founder of the non-governmental organization, created in 1978, called the Commission for the Creation of the Yanomami Park (Comissão pela Criação do Parque Yanomami - CCPY), through which he assisted Davi in the battle to obtain the legal recognition of the right of exclusive occupation of the current territory.

This cooperation and interaction have revealed itself in a remarkable political-symbolic force, in which the Amazon has become an icon of the planetary ecological crisis for the collective imagination. Since the releasing of this book, participations with researchers from Hutukara Socio-Environmental Institute (Instituto Socioambiental Hutukara, ISA) and the Yanomami Association (Associação Yanomami - HAY) have disseminated several projects and publications on multiple topics with Yanomami intellectuals. The topics included food, medicinal plants, history, shamanism, mythology, etc. Initiatives like this are multiplying throughout Brazil, and not only in the field of writing, but also in the plastic arts and native music.


2. The Self-and-the-Other dialog and the Soul of the World

We do not possess our Self. It blows from outside upon us, Runs from us for a long time, and returns us in a sigh (HOFMANNSTHAL apud, BORTEN, 2001, p. 5).

Jung carefully observed the history of human psychic development and demonstrated at various times in his work that adaptation to the environment and advances in scientific and technological knowledge have required the enhancement of the state of rational, discriminatory consciousness and, consequently, a strangeness to the magical aura of "représentation collective"4. The term was originally described by Lévy-Bruhl and used by Jung to designate certain general representations of the original systems, in addition to the dynamics and development of the psyche.

A greater tendency to detach from the contact of the consciousness with instinctive aspects marks the modus operandi of individuals inhabiting non-indigenous societies. However, according to the Jungian view, the unconscious is not only a repository of rejected aspects based on the adaptive interest of the consciousness. The symbolic perception is part of the psyche as a whole and is an important soul function that compensates and amplifies the rational attitude of the consciousness. Thus, "the more we are able to move away from the unconscious through directed functioning, the greater the possibility of a strong opposition arising, which, when it erupts, can have unpleasant consequences" (JUNG, 1993, par. 139).

In "Civilization in Transition", Jung (1993) points out the need for self-knowledge and how the influence of dialogue with one's own instincts makes the awareness of the place and responsibility of individuals in the world clearer. As "what is perfect does not need others" (JUNG, 1993, par. 579), the greater the recognition of unconscious aspects of personality, the greater the integration of one's own imperfections. Therefore, greater transformation in attitudes, in the sense of modesty, perception of finitude, impermanence, self-insignificance and perception of the importance of interdependence.

This kind of reflection should not be considered a superficial sentimentalism. The question of human relationships and inner connection is urgent in our society, given the atomization of men, who pile up on each other and whose personal relationships move in the widespread mistrust [...] The lack of understanding generated by projections compromises precisely love for other men [...] Where love ends, power, violence and terror begin. [...] We do not intend here to appeal to an idealism but only to convey an awareness of the psychological situation (JUNG, 1993, par. 580).

The Jungian theory shows that the defense against the relationship with one's own interiority happens for fear of the loss of the false ideal of self-control in relation to the forces of the unconscious. However, the relationship with one's own soul is what gets lost in essence, the most valuable source of existential sense.

In this way, because of the fear of submerging in the relationship with their own instinctive nature, human beings have lost contact with the deep psyche - in both aspects, as instinctive internal forces and as an anima mundi. "That special spark of soul, that seminal image that presents itself in each thing through its visible form [...] Not only animals and plants that are souls, as in the romantic vision, but the soul that is given in each thing" (HILLMAN, 1993, p. 14).

For Jung, our unconscious roots are plunged and spread to all of nature. We are in the psyche and not it inside us. By conceiving that the soul of the world is an organic whole, a living system, unitary, not dual, in which every individual being is immersed, permeating and animating all life. "When we accept this point of view we have to assume that life is really a "continuum" and destined to be as it is, that is, a whole tessitura in which things live with or through each other" (JUNG, 1976, par. 180).

Without this experience of meaning of this "continuum", the individual becomes isolated and does not perceive the natural self-regulatory principle present in the intrinsic interconnection of existence. Feeling alone, a being relates to the external world in an impoverished and unilateral communication, aiming only at immediate self-satisfaction. Therefore, causing catastrophic results against the sustainability of life itself: unbridled devastation of natural resources, extensive deforestation, extinction of various species, pollution, pandemics, hunger, and food shortages, etc.

Then, empty of meaning, he searches in the goods of material consume to soften the anxiety that the lack of this communication with the energies of the unconscious causes. In this way, to the extent that the human being "managed to dominate nature, the more he rose the pride of his knowledge and power, and the deeper his contempt for everything that is only casual and natural, that is, for the irrational data, including the objective psyche itself (JUNG, 1993, par. 562).

In alchemical terms, without the soul there is no "vinculum". It is Eros himself and, according to Jung, its function is to "unite what the Logos has separated" (JUNG, 1993, par. 132). Both in the internal and external sense, with other beings in nature. It is precisely about this antithesis between love and power that Davi Kopenawa is calling our attention - the love of the forest, the love of nature; the non-domination, superposition, or disrespect towards it and its mysteries.

According to Jung, for a balanced relationship to take place, it is necessary that it be experienced in a dialectic way, that is, with proper respect for the diversity to horizontality relationships, in which opposites are considered. Both in the individual sphere, of the subjects with themselves, and in the collective sphere, that is, of the subjects among themselves and with nature. Such an attitude would fulfil one of the great contemporary aspirations, in individual and collective terms.

The archetype of otherness is the archetype that propitiates to the consciousness the dialectic encounter with the opposites, through which the symbolic elaboration can reach its full capacity. Dialectics here means that the poles of all polarities can relate in opposition, but also in harmony, depending on the context. It is the relationship of a full encounter between the Ego and the Other, in which the symbols can be elaborated to the maximum of their metaphorical potential, and therefore need the full extension of the symbolic elaboration allowed by the principle of synchronicity (BYINGTON, 2002, p. 26).

On the one hand, Davi Kopenawa brings the example of this imaginative look in his narrative when he highlights the original indigenous experience of mythical-affective connection with the natural world and with life. He affirms in many parts how much they "love the forest and want to defend it so much" (ALBERT, KOPENAWA, 2010, p. 468). On the other hand, he criticizes how disconnected urban subjects are from nature and how this detachment blinds the creative forces of the psyche. In an interview with F. Watson in 1992, published in this book, he draws our attention to an imaginative thought: "I think you should dream about the Earth, because it has heart and breath" (p. 468).

Jung (1997) says that without the bond of love the elements do not connect and do not transform. One must let oneself be touched by the experience of this symbolic thinking. On a visit to the Pueblo Indian tribe, he registers a conversation in which one of them tells him about "thinking with the stomach" or with the head, that they "thought with their stomachs". And they said more: "only a madman thinks he is the only one who has thoughts in his head. We do not think" (JUNG, 1975, p. 219).

Jung understood what goes on in the exclusively rational thinking dynamics of contemporary technological civilizations from this and numerous other researches: the loss of the soul, that is, the loss of this mythical-imaginative thinking and, consequently, the inability to hear and integrate the deep voice of the non-I psychic symbolically projected into the elements of nature. Because "these projections are what makes the sorcerer mana, and they make animals, trees and even stones able to speak, and demand - precisely because they are parts of the soul - absolute obedience from the individual" (JUNG, 1993, par. 138).

Jung studies show that this native peoples' magical way of thinking "is no more logical or illogical" (JUNG, 1993, par. 107) than ours, what changes are the assumptions. There is still no "separation" produced by culture between those peoples and nature, as is the case of contemporary technological civilizations.

The shamans' thought spreads everywhere under the ground and under the water, beyond the sky and in the most distant regions. They know the innumerable words of these places and those of the beings from the beginning of time [] But on the contrary, the minds of the white people's great men only contain the drawing of the tangled words they stare at on their paper skins (ALBERTO, KOPENAWA, 2013, p. 468).

It is clear that it is not very difficult to see the effect of losing this bond and of the existential sense in big cities nowadays, since the maximum progress has been declared as a cornerstone today: the colonization, the eradication of traditional customs, together with the sense of land as a living being, the mockery of beliefs and works of entire indigenous nations, based essentially on the most arrogant lack of discernment.

Ailton Krenak, a critical Indian thinker of modernity, says that this current state "has thrown these people from the countryside and the forest to live in slums and peripheries, to become laborers in urban centers. These people were torn from their collectives, from their places of origin, and thrown into this blender called humanity" (KRENAK, 2019, p. 9). Life values and reasons for traditional communities have been and continue to be denied indefinitely. Finally, "the promise of wealth and fraternity becomes concretely indigence, uprooting, abandonment, and this, not in a provisional way, but in an increasingly definitive way" (LATOUCHE, 1996, p. 78).

The emptiness that the loss of a sense of life causes in large urban centers has also reached the woods, since "deprived of their wealth - their cultural identity and their territory - the Indians have become beggars" (GAMBINI: 2000, p.149). The once hunter warriors of the forests are now the alcoholics, depressed and mendicants in the metropolis or in the extensive cattle farms, soybean, etc. Lands that most of times came from illegal demarcations and became the promise of housing and food for hundreds of indigenous people, but in fact, they dominate and enslave them.

Consequently, "the loss of cultural identity implies the end of a group: a few individuals can survive, but their vegetative existence no longer has any trace of strength, pride, creativity or will" (p. 146). Thus, the "destruction of indigenous cultures as a result of conquest, colonization or contact has been one of the central topics of ethnological studies in recent decades" (Idem), studies which include "The Falling Sky" (ALBERTO, KOPENAWA, 2010).

We understand that it is necessary for contemporary civilization to develop an inclusive and even generous gaze in which it brings back the anima mundi to the relationships of human beings with themselves and the cosmos. May it reflect the image of the Indian mirror, that is, the look at the whole, where otherness has guaranteed its place of belonging. So that the symbols, the daily life, the base nature for living to all forms of life, are the reflection of the Self. So that finally, love for the world may develop in its broadest and most inclusive manifestation.

Furthermore, by reading Jung's theory, we understand that it is in line with his postulates to affirm that we need to integrate the indigenous gaze and allow its original gesture to echo in us: "We generously exchange goods among ourselves to extend our friendship. If it were not so, we would be like white people, who mistreat each other nonstop because of their goods" (ALBERT, KOPENAWA, 2010, p. 414). What to intellectual criticism seems like a naive, romantic, or idealized look, in fact reveals itself to be the highest and most sophisticated way to make life sustainable.

In a time marked by the growth of ethnocentrism, xenophobia and fundamentalism, the provocation of dialogue and acceptance of the other urges with a unique meaning. Dialogue and hospitality are expressions that interact and complement each other. Faced with the current picture, marked by the call of interconnection, it is necessary to broaden the meshes of this acceptance, involving not only humans, but opening the range to the broader dimension of all creation. The human being is related, is linked in the larger network that weaves the universe. Inhabiting the Earth thus gains a new meaning, of insertion of the human into the world of life (TEIXEIRA, 2017, p. 1).

It is urgent, increasingly clear the irremediable need to evoke, find and develop the dynamics of functioning governed by the archetype of the fraternal5, both individually and collectively. It is the idea of how to establish a new way of being in the world, starting from this "'impact of the brother' more deeply and precisely in the experience of assimilation and appreciation of diversity. The first and founding experience of similarity in difference, established by the entry of the brother on the scene" (BARCELLOS, 2006, p. 142).

In this sense, asymmetric, hierarchical relations, in which one side has the supposed knowledge, power and the other, inferior, submits itself by feeling improper, inferior, or inadequate, are transformed into more equalized dialogues. According to a horizontal perspective of giving and receiving, mutual, shared. In which both are served and develop themselves.

This Other-brother that I am talking about - the one who is not the same, but is a pair (and will later be the pairs, the many Others) - is another one who precisely shares the same origin with me. Those, or that (as principles), who paternalize and materialize this other, are the same ones who paternalize and materialize me. And yet he is different. Wouldn't this be, for the soul, an initiation into diversity in its closest form? This initiation unfolds, I believe, in the commitments among peers, the agreement among brothers, the civilization pact; that is, perhaps in what we call ethics (BARCELLOS, 2006, p. 142-43).

Without experience, the integration of this dynamic has no familiarity, dialogue, exchange. Because it allows the encounter with one's fellow man and the diverse. It is the relationships that in their positive aspect have the potential to provide reparation for traumas, to develop maturity, that make the individual leave their small circle and spread out into the world, dialoguing with nature in an equitable way: "there are many things that fill me: plants, animals, clouds, day and night, and the eternal that exists in man. The more it accentuates uncertainty about myself, the more my feeling of kinship with all things increases" (JUNG, 1975, p. 310). Herein lies both individual and collective health, precisely because the more one isolates himself from the world, the more infertile he becomes. As a tireless explorer of psychic phenomena, Jung understood that the soul is not contained but extends into the world. "It only scintillates here and there6, each time it is awakened by external and internal events, instincts and emotions" (JUNG, 1998, par. 79).

Consequently, Jung observed that there is a pattern of psychoid psychic functioning, that is, that there is a reciprocal interweaving between matter and psyche, consequently synchronistic, which integrates all phenomena. He founded that the "psyche is not individual, but derives from the nation, the collectiveness, even from humanity. In some way we are part of a unique and comprehensive psyche, of a singular and immense man - using the words of SWEDENBORG" (JUNG, 1993, par. 175). In other terms, it can be said that it is not the soul that is in us, but we who are in the soul, with the breadth of this in anima's ontology" (BARCELLOS, 2006, p. 99).

For Jung, there is a special role in the individual psyche to play in the universe. Paradoxically, the more the individual internalizes, the closer he comes to the whole. He also realized that "the soul of the world is a natural force, responsible for all phenomena of life and the psyche" (JUNG, 1985a, par. 393).

Psyche and matter "are permanently in contact with each other, and are based on irrepressible factors in the final analysis [...] closed in one and the same world" (JUNG, 1985a, par. 418), according to the idea of unus mundus. Thus, "there is not only the possibility, but even a certain probability that matter and psyche are two different aspects of one and the same thing" (JUNG, 1985a, par. 418). Therefore, Jung called this correspondence between psyche and matter, expressed in an essentially unknown but experienceable connection, the psychoid archetype.

In the Yanomami vision, this psychophysical unit is not conceptual, but projected into everyday life, into the elements of nature.

We are guided by the bright mirror paths of the xapiri, images of the yarori animal ancestors who were transformed in the first time [...] and that work as auxiliaries to shamans. They spread throughout the forest and extend to the ends of the earth, where white people live and there are trees from which the xapiri obtain their infinite corners and whose "trunks are covered in constantly moving lips, ranged one above the other" (ALBERT, KOPENAWA, 2010, p. 314).

From this mythical perspective: the world - as a fertile forest, overflowing with life; the earth - as a being that "has heart and breath"; and the body - its "social skin", which relates externally as the shaman Orowam7 said: "The jaguar is my true relative. My real body is jaguar. There is hair in my true body" (VILAÇA, 2000, p. 62).

As in the constitution of the relations of consubstantiality, the commensality is fundamental in the definition of the shaman as a member of a certain species, so that a shaman can "change" species if he starts to accompany other animals, which means that, besides walking next to these animals, he will eat like them and along with them (VILAÇA, 2000, p. 63).

Thus, both in Jung's theory about psychophysical processes and for the indigenous in their relationship with the environment, there is a correspondence between nature and psyche. For Davi Kopenawa's vision, there is no distinction between him and the world, his "ontology is entirely relational, in which substances are not the ultimate reality" (CASTRO, 2004, p. 244).

Jung who sees the split between nature and culture as alienating and the source of the crisis of human meaning. For understanding that "the world, both outside and inside, is sustained by transcendental bases, something as certain as our own existence" (JUNG, 1989, par. 442). Although, according to him, it is "very difficult for our consciousness to construct the intellectual models that should illustrate the "thing itself" of our perceptions. Our hypotheses are uncertain and tactical" (JUNG, 1989 par. 442). Yet, he insists that,

As long as we don't understand its assumptions, it will remain an enigma for us, an enigma difficult to solve, but which will become relatively easy from the moment we come to understand it. We could also say it this way: the primitive ceases to be an enigma to us as long as we know our own assumptions (JUNG, 1993, par. 112).

Within this reflective field, some current propositions urgently need to be revised in fact in the way of being in the world: the current modus operandi in big cities that comprises acceleration as a means of efficiency, increasingly linked to capitalist production. "With the advance of capitalism, the instruments of letting live and making die were created: when the individual stops producing, it becomes an expense. Either you produce the conditions to stay alive or you produce the conditions to die" (KRENAK, 2020a, p. 8).

It is crucial that an ethical dialogue be instituted as a principle in the relationship between nature and culture, because it is fundamental to develop proposals within a dynamic that contemplates fraternity, within a planetary ethical thinking in which the means must be in accordance with the ends. In which justice and equity come to be part of the basic guidelines of socio-political-scientific projects, whose objective is the long-term sustainability of life on Earth, considering future generations. We need to find a way to transform history: "the fear of planetary destruction could save us from the worst, but this threat will continue to hover like a sinister cloud over our existence if we do not find a bridge capable of overcoming the psychic and political division of the world" (JUNG, 1993, par. 575).

It is essential to observe and take a self-examination of the extent to which we are relating based on the perception of the interdependence of all things. Do we notice, at some point, that there is a cosmic ballet in which humanity is inserted and remains in continuous resonance with nature, with the whole?

What we emit in the relationship with the reverberating world comes back, reflecting above all in the dialogue with the objective psyche, with the archetypal instinctive roots. In other words, our actions and omissions reflect in this "psychoid process" (JUNG, par. 367), both the medium interferes with the psyche and the psyche interferes with the medium, as Jung already said in the text "Soul and Earth" in the volume "Civilization in Transition" (1993). Moreover, the voice of the consciousness is only one of the chants, one of the talks, and one of the sounds and manifestations. There are other languages in the universe that need to be integrated so that life can follow in search of plenitude. This is a goal, and that is precisely the idea: the integration of opposites.

Thus, there is a reciprocity between the perspectives brought in this text: on one hand, Davi Kopenawa and the shaman, who in their set of beliefs, see themselves in the skin of the jaguar, in an apprehension of the reality that is established as myth. On the other hand, Jung, who in his researches on psychic processes and mythical manifestations, observes about the "significant cross connection" (JUNG, 1985b, par. 8276) and affirms, through the psychoid archetype, that psyche and nature are psychophysical units. In a direct language, Jung, in an interview with Hull and MaGuire (1982, p. 119), states: "we need to project ourselves into the things that surround us. My self is not confined in my body. It extends to all the things I've done and all the things surrounding me."

This text says that there is an alert coming from the inhabitants of the forest, as well as from the instinctive nature of the human, both can be interpreted symbolically, as coming from the unconscious, from the soul of the world. They are expressed in environmental, social, and psychic signs. Their importance has been confirmed by Jung's thought. However, as Davi Kopenawa says, "whites continue to ignore our words [...] [for] they think they are lies" (ALBERT, KOPENAWA, 2010, p. 486-94). Who knows, Complex Psychology may help us to understand this language and realize its gravity in time.

The image is constellated. How will we treat it?

If you destroy the forest, the sky will break and it will fall on the earth again [...] They do not seem to worry about disappearing either, probably because they are so very many. But if we peoples of the forest are no longer, the white people will never be able to replace us there, living on the old traces of our houses and abandoned gardens. They will perish in their turn, crushed by the falling sky. Nothing will remain. It is so. As long as there are shamans alive, their xapiri will be able to quiet the sky when it threatens to come apart and hold back its fall. [...] what the white people call "future" is to protect the sky from the xawara8 epidemic fumes to keep it healthy and strongly fastened above us (ALBERT, KOPENAWA, 2013, p. 406).


3. Conclusion

Due to its importance within the current scenario, this work makes it profoundly complex and limited to talk about it, since there are several knowledges that interweave the theme. At the same time, it is important to register and multiply this Davi Kopenawa's speech about the look of the Indian towards contemporary society about the world; about the soul of the world and about the future, as a reflection of the now to whomever knows how to listen.

We can see that Jung understood and gave therapeutic value status to mythical-symbolic thinking. The possible dialogue of his theory with Davi Kopenawa's narrative is an example of this. As we can undoubtedly see, his arguments go far beyond a strictly academic-scientific knowledge of the subject. In fact, this is one of the attributes of the strength of his ideas, the inner experience in what he communicated.

Once in an interview with McGuire and Hull (1982) on the theme "Man and His Environment", Jung brought a simple and fundamental speech to those who wish to understand his vision regarding the human-nature relationship:

We all need food for the psyche, it is impossible to find this food in urban dwellings without a single patch of green or blossoming tree; we need a relationship with nature; we need to project ourselves into the things around us; my self is not confined in the body; it extends to all the things I have done and all the things around me, without these things I would not be myself, I would not be a human being. All that surrounds me is part of me (p. 189).

Considering all that has been said so far, from Jung's theory, we can affirm that Davi Kopenawa's vision diverges far from the unilateral anthropocentric understanding in which the human being is the centre of the universe. We can say in synthesis that both indicate the awakening of a new existential sense, by a sensitive perception of nature, by the enchantment that perceives the interconnection of the psyche with the Earth and the Cosmos, giving birth to "this feeling that arouses beauty and truth, creates art and science. If someone does not know this feeling or can't experience the amazement or surprise, he is already a living dead and his eyes have been blinded" (EINSTEIN, 1981, 12).

The message remains: the necessary construction of a new language, a less rational and exclusively analytical perception, in the Cartesian sense of the term, which isolates the part of the whole. Forgetting that the sum of the parts in operation makes the dynamics of life. It is the integrated systems and not their isolated parts that make us understand the meaning and the purpose of existence.

Moreover, as sine qua non condition and consequence of its principles, this integrative vision of life, both proposed by the indigenous vision and the Jungian interpretation of it, finally brings us to the collective commitment to ethical-political renewal, as well as to the rebirth of the symbolic value of the sacredness of the Earth and of life, from its minimal manifestation to the great universal phenomena.

Humanity is currently going through unprecedented conflicts in the history of civilization. This disorder has shown that societies are more interdependent and fragile. The global collapse faced nowadays is strikingly rooted in the complexity of reconciling the antithesis of nature and culture. It puts the place and meaning of human life on Earth in check. It questions how we dialogue with each phenomenon, with each species and with ourselves. In fact, from time to time, it is ascertained whether we are in fact dialoguing or imposing on nature that it satisfies our selfish desires.

It is precisely at this point of crisis that there is an inevitable danger: the illusion that we can control natural phenomena so that problems such as hunger, food shortages, overpopulation, and epidemics can be solved, because one must not forget that "no matter how much we throw nature away through force, it always returns" (JUNG, 1993, par. 514). Evidence of this can be perceived in collective natural phenomena, whether through environmental disasters or through pandemic outbreaks.

However, as the cultural historian and eco-theologian Thomas Berry, quoted in "The Tao of Liberation" comments, "we do not lack dynamic energies that can create a future. We live in an ocean of energies that goes beyond our understanding. Today we take them over by domination, but it is necessary to learn that we must invoke them" (BERRY apud BOFF, HATHAWAY, 2012, p. 11). Both internally and externally, the propulsion of the chthonic (original, creative) forces of life is unstoppable, and therefore the only way to avoid the fll of the sky is to continue with the shamanic work, that is, to place oneself at the service of oneself.

However, the work resides in the personal sphere, through the personal relationship with the Shadow, by means of accessing the affective contents of great emotional charge, linked to individual history. Integrating this Other stranger into us, so that we can receive and recognize the integrity of the other in the world. To amplify the personality in this way and make it easier for the consciousness to communicate with the deep energies of the objective psyche, from which the universal symbols manifest themselves. In the case of shamans, they are in direct contact with these energies formed in nature. An example of this is what Davi Kopenawa calls "xapiris - forest spirits" (ALBERT, KPPENAWA, 2010).

It is time to recognize ourselves as intrinsic units of a larger whole, the planet Earth, the Solar System, the universe. We revere the majesty of the starry sky, the immense complexity and biodiversity of nature. It is now the opportunity to follow the thread of Ariadne that brings us out of the darkness in the labyrinth, individualistic, of petrified reason, when one-sided and find a sense to live more complete, in community.

Nature, which is always able to teach through the lesson of respect and harmony with its biodiversity, unites and gathers all things, in creative arrangements so that they are not disconnected, but interconnected, forming an immense dynamic web of symphonic harmony. We are part of this nature. May we awaken to desire to learn from it.

This Davi Kopenawa testimony, as well as Jung's ideas regarding the subjects' relationship with nature, concern the deep and integral dimension of Human Ecology, which invites to the new paradigm of civilization, complex and interdependent, integrating, and impermanent. It promotes the reconnection with the community of life from which the anthropocentric vision has exiled us. It awakens reverence and devotion before the mystery of all things. It indicates that "if we had acquired an equally planetary consciousness that all separation rests on the psychic division between opposites, then we would have discovered a point of support" (JUNG, 1993, par. 575).

This religious attitude makes possible the experience of unity, "of communion of meaning" (JUNG, 2003, p. 227). The emergence of a universal unity, in which polarities are reconciled. Taming the inexorable conflict between human and nature, subject and object, individual and collective, personal and supra-personal.

"According to the ancient opinion, the word religio comes from religere [...] means 'to consider or observe carefully'. This derivation gives religion the correct empirical basis, that is, the religious conduct of life" (JUNG, 2003, p. 227). It makes it possible to recognize oneself, to reconnect with oneself by looking at the psyche, at the same time contemplating the lumen naturae that is within all living things. He understands, through observation, that what happens to him internally and externally is part of the same symbolic fabric.

Thus, in view of this study, we reflect that it is necessary to develop the imagination of commensality, inclusion, communion, and interdependence. Like the shaman who "eats with the jaguar", we become companions of our own instincts. Let ourselves be touched by our own pain and the pain of the world. Whether in caring for our own soul or when we look at the world. Reimagining the coniunctio and the sense of encounter with alterity, reawakening the healing dimension so that we can finally ask ourselves: how can I contribute for the shaman to sustain the sky?




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Received on: 09/13/2020
Revised on: 12/05/2020



1 By Roy Wagner, mentioned by Viveiros de Castro (2010, p. 25), in the preface of the book "The Falling Sky". "That would apply quite well to Kopenawa's 'shamanic ecology' (CASTRO, 2009, p. 61). It is linked to the idea of "ethnographic recognition of procedures that institutes a symmetrical treatment, in the sense of Bruno Latour (1994), and, therefore, works to boldly overcome the great "we/they" divisor. His daring refers to the fact that he does not propose that "we are all natives", but that "we are all anthropologists" and, therefore, the ethnography that we practice must be open to the creativity of those we study" (BENITES, 2007, p.123).
2 "All the white people's goods will never be enough in exchange for all the trees, fruits, animals and fish. The burned trees, their parched soil, and their muddy waters. None of this will ever be able to reimburse the value of the dead alligators and the missing peccaries [...] Nothing is strong enough to restore the value of the sick forest. No merchandise can buy all the Yanomami devoured by the smoke of the epidemic. No money can give back to the spirits the value of their dead parents" (idem, p. 355).
3 Near the Brazil-Venezuela border, in the northern part of the state of Amazon, in the Piemonte rainforest of the upper Toototobi River, in Marakana.
4 In this regard, it is worth mentioning some considerations of Jung: "We cannot admit that every new-born animal acquires and develops its instincts individually, just as we cannot believe that people invent or produce, at each new birth, their typically human behaviour and reactions. Just as instincts, also the collective thinking models of the human mind, are innate and inherited and, depending on the circumstances, work everywhere more or less equally" (JUNG, 2013, par. 539).
5 (Missing note in comparison to the Portuguese version). "Fraternity: fraternities [...] Communities, Thiasos. In the dictionary, fraternity is a feminine noun and means 1. kinship of siblings, brotherhood; 2. love of neighbor, fraternization; 3. union or coexistence as siblings (my emphasis). The adjective fraternal brings the sense of affection, which is to say, full of affection. Fraternal: brother, friend, partner, associate, 'brother', fellow, colleague, alike". (BARCELLOS, 2006, p. 137).
6 Author's emphasis added.
7 (Missing note in comparison to the Portuguese version). Wari' Tribe, located in the north of Rondônia State.
8 Author's emphasis added.

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