I recently read an article on how Maslow got it wrong when he developed his hierarchy of needs. Learning that Maslow spent time with the Blackfoot tribe was a new discovery for me.
The Blackfoot belief is not a triangle. It is a tipi where they believe tipis reach to the sky.
Self-actualization is at the base of the tipi, not at the top, and is the foundation on which community actualization is built. The highest form that a Blackfoot can attain is called “cultural perpetuity.”
The world Hierarchy means: SACRED RULER. The earliest sense was ‘system of orders of angels and heavenly beings’. This idea of a system or organization in which people or groups are ranked one above the other according to status or authority.
The word sacred means connected with God (or the gods)… it comes from the root word for consecrate, which is dedicated or devoted. So hierarchy truly means a system devoted to God that organizes an arrangement or classification of things according to relative importance or inclusiveness.
What if we envisioned a hierarchy of our individual needs as as sacred way to connect with the divine! That is how the indigenous cultures saw it.
The Siksika tribe perceived existence in fluid way. They viewed time as cyclical and saw how each aspect of life was related… aiming to restore balance through their actions.
The idea of community actualization being based off of the fact that we are already born with everything, already divinely ourselves… is so powerful. It speaks to the idea of how important a creative, explorative, supportive and imaginative community actually is to self awareness!
In order to flow in the cycle of duality it is important to see that we must return to self awareness in order to remember the importance of self actualization. This can be done through cultural awareness. Once we have that cultural awareness, we can then start to have more self actualization, which will perpetuate our basic needs and safety, and cultural actualization. So it was important for Maslow to get it wrong in order for us to be clear on the entirety of the topic.
The way indigenous spiritual leaders took care of their tribe makes so much sense for the survival of their people. To create a safe space for the tribe members to be be their best selves. This relates so much to the Celtic tradition of the king marrying the land! The king married the land which showed his loyalty and allegiance to the land that supports his people and his life.
Another thing about this article that is interesting is the idea of wealth and how it was not about accumulating property and possessions. Sometimes I think people forget that money is simply a physical representation of their own current.
Money is not the root of all evil but rather the flow of the current of self actualization. If we stop connecting the idea of wealth to money, and allow money to be a manifestation of the wealth of our own energy… then we open ourselves up to receiving that which is divinely ours.
The word WEALTH comes from the root word for WELL or HEALTH. It has nothing to do with the idea possessions or money, though our current definition is simply that…. an abundance of valuable possessions or money.
What if we saw our will and our health as our most valuable possessions? When we hold that perspective we receive the flow of “money” as a physical manifestation of that awareness.
We are sacred rulers of our own design, our own life. We have the ability to create a hierarchy that resonates with who we truly are. Perhaps its time for a new hierarchy to be envisioned. <3