Indigene Livelihood University of Community & Life Service towards integrating generations, mutual-aid, inter-action and complementing each other and the economic fires of community.
Apprentice (c.1300, from O.Fr. aprentiz "someone learning" (13c.), from aprendre (Mod.Fr. apprendre) "to learn, teach," contracted from Latin. apprehendere Education (L = 'to lead forth from within'). The Production Societies & Guild systems are based on lifelong learning from apprentice to elder. Traditionally in indigenous practice, youth are asked to consider their callings or gifts for community. The youth may undertake a 'Vision-Quest' both within the community or outside through self-directed prac-tices of self-discipline (eg. fasting, meditation, walking, immersion, devo-tion, service etc.) in order to understand their inner calling or spirit. The youth could then join an existing Production-Society according to their affiliation or desire for service and/or create work of various kinds. Inner self is the core of each person's education. Socrates: "An education obtained with money is worse than no education at all"
By contributing labours and abilities as investment to existing economic production, youth create value and sovereignty in the Production-Society, which then elders receive as support for his or her mentoring efforts. Because of Domestic organisation of the economy in Multi-home Longhouses (apartment-like) or Pueblo (townhouse-like), domestic labours were collectivised including all traditional women labours and community service. The youth could choose between a wide range of services within the multi-home structure, the community or the region, which he or she had already been part of as a child for a decade. Adults mentor youth often in one-to-one situations, guiding, encouraging and leading forth in its truest sense.
Adults and elders benefit from the physical agility, imagination and reconceptualisation of youth. Youth benefit from the wisdom and maturity of elders. By contributing economically, youth finance the attention and wisdom of elders and masters in their fields of study. Adults benefit from having the creativity of youth. These learning and teaching relationships are reciprocal with both giving energy, the youth enthusiasm and agility and the elder knowledge, direction and overseeing the increasing productive and decisional capacity of youth. On this foundation adults mentor youth in the specialised profession of their choosing. Youth work is accounted for first at a baseline rate (inexperienced introductory level), but with time, training, study and experience this rate increases, as a combination of investment and allowances for needs of food, shelter, clothing, warmth, health etc., slowly growing in ownership shares or string-shell over the course of a life-time. With growing share or string-shell accreditation came voting rights. Thus experience, training and study were recognised progressively as expertise in 'capital' (Latin 'cap' = 'head') decision-making ownership and acumen from apprenticeship to elder over the lifetime.
Student or worker rights, responsibility and decision-making involvement in hierarchal institu-tional education, are not systematically accounted-for, substantiated and empowered as they are during apprentice processes. Today 'education' (Latin = 'to lead forth from within') is considered more as filling empty vessels, rather than empowering each youth to find his or her purpose and calling in life. Thousands of books dominate student time and mind, without proper experimentation or experiential knowledge develop-ment. Ownership is essential for the youth and elder to fully interact with responsibility for the knowledge they are building and transmitting together. Knowledge without responsibility is only status derived from fear and false privilege. The dialogues and experience needed for true knowledge are not found by sitting in rows in specially constructed classrooms, but by engaging and encountering life with a mission to help those in need help themselves and to support nature's abundance. Socrates: “Education is the kindling of a flame, not the filling of a vessel” "A multitude of books distracts the mind."
Socrates founded 'Academia' (Athens' garden Gk. Akademeia "grove of Akademos," a legendary Athenian of the Trojan War tales (his name apparently means "of a silent district") learning 2,500 years ago in Athens, Greece in response to the Sophists of that time who commanded the accreditation of youth using the same military hierarchal institutional methods as schools today. Quotes from Socrates are used throughout this website because of the integrity he brought to intellectual pursuit and culture. Socrates established education as dialogues between mentors and learners with each having the dialectic right to challenge teachers and the academia structure of that time. This work was carried forward by Plato and Aristotle however subsequently the checks and balances academia represented were abandoned and the human mind of students, teachers and administrators became enslaved as Sophists before to hierarchy and lack of intellectual discipline. QUOTES from Socrates:"Whom do I call educated? First, those who manage well the circumstances they encounter day by day. Next, those who are decent and honorable in their intercourse with all men, bearing easily and good naturedly what is offensive in others and being as agreeable and reasonable to their associates as is humanly possible to be... those who hold their pleasures always under control and are not ultimately overcome by their misfortunes... those who are not spoiled by their successes, who do not desert their true selves but hold their ground steadfastly as wise and sober -- minded men."
APPRENTICESHIP PROCESS When a young person, sometimes as young as 10 years old, has decided to contribute their gifts to a Production Society or a Guild, they begin a process of knowledge & skill integration:
- 1. The young person is introduced to other Guild members. Health and safety aspects of the work place are introduced first and precautions are instructed to the youth as a necessary condition for participation. Because of Multi-home (Longhouse apartments & Pueblo townhouse) dwelling and Domestic Economy whereby most work is within large dwelling clusters, the youth already knows all of the people involved and has probably made a choice of Guild based on affiliations with various personalities who are as well often relatives. Typically, given no particular skill or knowledge background, the apprentice-youth is started out at a basic wage package (the Person Hour Share is equivalent to the Quebec Minimum Wage), investing part of this package into ownership shares (invested interest) and responsibility as well as a salary portion which allows him or her to fulfill livelihood essentials such as food, shelter, clothing, warmth and health.
- The youth is paired with a mentor in the group who takes responsibility for the youth's education and well-being. Remember that in a system where everyone including the youth are invested and investing, they all have 'invested interest' in the productive activities or mission of each guild including the youth whose livelihood depends on the Guild's performance.
- The youth will be introduced to the whole production process including social-economic mission for society, material feeds and product distribution from other Guilds. The youth is walked through many of these 'shop-floors', production sites and flows being introduced to the people and professional positions involved, learning chains of responsibility and decision-making. Part of this context laying will include the Guild library where various books and materials are shared so the youth knows where overviews, theory, history and instruction may be found within each trade-discipline.
- The first active role is for the youth to watch and listen. The mentor considers task analysis for each job the youth is to perform when asking the youth to undertake various tasks. In apprentice education 'kinetics' or the movement / involvement of the physical body in tasks plays a complementary role to intellectual understanding. The youth undertakes various simple tasks, all the while observing their integration into the active workplace and other roles. This is called 'learning by osmosis', whereby the youth is absorbing a great amount of information particularly on 'L'esprit du corps' or the spiritual and physical well-being of each participant within the mission of the Guild. The composition of this knowledge is individual depending upon the youth and on the professional culture which the adults have developed. Theoretical insights are important but modified by the human relations of the workplace.
- The youth then begins to understand patterns of production through which Guild members sequence each activity. The youth follows sequences, which have often been established for generations. The learning of these sequences takes time because the stories behind the sequences are important to the youth's understanding of why and how patterns have been developed. The youth is introduced to the discussion processes held within each 'shop-floor' or grouping within the Guild.
- The Guild members are interested in the youth's 'Vision-quest' because they want to understand this youth's particular motivations and goals for being part of the Guild. Mentors and friends within the Guild may share their own 'vision-quest' as these are lifelong missions which often change and transform. It is in the collective sharing and forming of affiliations that understanding of individual and group mission are cultivated and implemented. Guilds not only cultivated their particular essential service for community but as well individual and group mission of gifts for self and society. The guild is interested in the youth's capacity to carry out their mission, supporting their livelihoods and 'economy' (Greek = 'care and nurture of the home and family') and the youth is interested as well in livelihood fulfillment.
- As the youth apprentice fulfills each component of each sequence and eventually patterns of production, they are becoming an autonomous or interdependent resource for the guild who can be entrusted to various tasks. Depending upon the business age of the Guid, these patterns of production and acquisition are established with various status of authority and rates of compensation in addition to the minimum wage and share accreditation. The youth is expected to learn and demonstrate this knowledge, skill and responsibility and is then given increased rates of compensation and authority over the course of their career.
- The apprentices of a Guild or a Kanata (village) being often of the same age, frequently associate, compare and discuss their growing Guild involvement. In these 'apprentice-affiliations', the youth consider the 'justice' of their involvement and if need be may present a united voice to the guilds or village councils for any grievances or improvements they may wish to have implemented or implement themselves in collaboration. Dialectic rights meant that apprentices would formally compose their understandings first among themselves as a group and then challenge or offer 'debate' with their Guild organisations and mentors. Please see section on Both-Sides-Now, Equal Time Recorded Dialogues.
- As apprentices grew in experience, share holding and understanding they were traditionally grouped into intermediate associations such as Journeymen, reflecting greater responsibility and intermediate status and interests (eg. family forming and child-bearing age) to be represented.
- When unique innovative visions or methodologies aroze among Guild members, they would discuss implementation or adoption of these, however given a Guild's Economic Democracy may or may not decide to implement or adopt these procedures. String shell or shares are apportioned according to the lifetime contributions of each member and collectively this 'expertise' represented is decisional. Each person in society and among the Guilds has a particular set of knowledges which is their prime 'democratic' (Greek = 'demos' = 'people' + 'cratic' = 'power-of') value in life, more important than political power, which serves more often as a quick indication of a community's direction or will.
- Groups and individuals with unique innovative visions or methodologies within Guilds, Production-Societies and Village-Councils were able to 'caucuss' (Iroquois = 'grouping of like-interests') their vision, knowledge and production methods and still maintain their string-shell / share economic recognition. Each caucus may implement a unique or divergent production method or process in parallel with the main Guild. Diversity of production methods is seen among indigenous societies as a strength. Hence we have such as 'peacemaker' or 'war-defence' societies. Using this 'caucussing' principle, when the Dutch arrived in the northeast of Turtle Island and the 'men' of these imperial and trading expeditions began building forts and storehouses, the Rotinosaunee (People of the Longhouse) welcomed them as part of the Two Row Wampum treaty that; each society would live according to their own traditions (European forts, ships and Rotinosaunee Longhouses and canoes) learning and respecting each other's growth in parallel.
- The choice between enhancing a youth/adult's inner spirit or mind-control is easy.
Please refer to section A. HOME & INTRODUCTION, subsection 1) the Indigenous Circle of Life for the chart of various 'Checks and Balances' within this participatory economic system.