Nature of verticality

Nature of vertical carrying

Ethnographer Mnislav Zelený Atapana (* 1943)

He has been a freelance cultural anthropologist all his life. Thanks to his stay among the Amazon Indians, he has become not only a recognized expert on the life and culture of the indigenous Amazonian ethos, but above all their friends.

Transcript from an interview, since about minute 19 to the upbringing of children:

„Their life is natural, our life is unnatural – whether  it’s dressing, walking – in everything. We should be walking barefoot at least so the body behaves differently. The children should be properly carried on their mothers so that their psyche is better. And in a vertical position. Of course the prams are harmful, it’s a complete madness. We put kids somewhere aside, this is just putting  them aside. Just sleep and leave us alone. Prams, cots – all this is bad, it is against the psychic of the child. There is also evident that we have learned already something and many mothers are already carrying kids in baby wraps now. A specialist simply says that the connection, as long as possible connection with the maternal body strengthens the child’s psyche to be balanced and strong. Once we put him aside he just goes around and cries. Why do the children wail? Because they lack contact, maternal touch. We put them aside.

Their (Indian) upbringing fascinates. Vertical position is important, not horizontal. We have everything in the vertical – underground, earth, heavens. We just look up to the heavens, whether to the deity or to anything else. Therefore, the body also grows upward. When we start to crouch, it’s bad. We walk badly, we have shoes. All of this is related. We have orthopedic inserts, because we are destroying by the asphalt, by this all. We do not run through the jungle, barefoot. Their children are beautifully straight, they have no problem with the spine, they do not know the civilization diseases. The vertical helps them mottionally – when I see  how a child climbs the tree, how he  jumps – it’s just a beast. We are animals, we forget about it. Our children are wearing cottondress, using bedclothes and this and that for so called well beeing, to have welfare, comfort. And this comfort destroys our physical and mental body. „