"Traditional Chipewyan apprehension of reality is based upon
the felt need to maintain reciprocal communication with each
other and with other-than-human-beings, especially with the
animal people, upon whom they were (and, for some, are)
dependent" (Smith, World As Event 73).
"As an old man succinctly and eloquently told me, ‘By inkoze the people helped each other to live before. It’s the
animals that give inkoze to the people. Animals are always
the best medicine people" (Smith, World as Event 74).
"Just as dreams are not dualistically distinct from
waking life, the animal’s spiritual aspect is never
separated from the material aspect. When someone goes to the
roots it is to a real place in the bush, and the person is
fully awake, although experiencing heightened awareness. The
experience might thus be labeled an epiphany. The animal
appears – not the animal’s vaporous spirit but the entire
animal – and communicates with the person, giving
instructions on the use of power roots, power songs,
decorations for one’s tambourine drum, or other such
teachings as may be associated with one’s particular gift of
power" (Smith, World as Event 83).