Life on the Land

Caribou DryingTo Inuit, life on the land is and was an everyday adventure. Surviving one of the harshest environments on the planet is no small task.  Every part of the land offers a key to surviving and thriving.  The land itself offered shelter as shelters were built from snow and ice.  The stones from the earth were carved into tools, the Qulliq (lamp) and offer a variety of stones from which to build navigational, communication and hunting aids (i.e. Inuksuit) The ground vegetation in the summer months offer berries, herbs for tea and medicinal aids.  Animals offer more than the obvious sources of food. Animals offered clothing, blankets and padding for sleeping, bones for tools and games, and so forth. All of the tools for hunting and survival even the tools for building transportation all came from the surrouding land.  Inuit are indeed ingenious masters of the land.  

The skills for life on the land are still taught to children from birth. Young children accompany their parents as they go out on the land to learn everything from traditional hunting and tracking methods to berry picking and clam digging.  Sewing skills are also taught early as it is still a root part of Inuit culture born out of surviving on the land.

When out on the land many stories were taught to children in order to pass on knowledge. Many were in the form of Inuit legends designed to keep children away from the many possible dangers that accompanied living on the land.

You can learn more about Inuit legends here http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Inuit_mythology and here http://deliceboreal.com/en/nunavik/legends/.

You can learn more about some of the other aspects of life on the land from watching some of our video podcasts.