• Deconstructing the western worldview: toward the repatriation and indigenization of wellness

      Rahm, Jacqueline Marie; Koskey, Michael; Lewis, Jordan; John, Theresa; Leonard, Beth (2014-12)
      As Indigenous peoples and scholars advance Native histories, cultures, and languages, there is a critical need to support these efforts by deconstructing the western worldview in a concerted effort to learn from indigenous knowledge and ways of knowing for humanity's future wellbeing. Toward that imperative, this research brings together and examines pieces of the western story as they intersect with Indigenous peoples of the lands that now comprise the United States of America. Through indigenous frameworks and methodologies, it explores a forgotten epistemology of the pre-Socratic and Pythagorean Archaic and Classical Greek eras that is far more similar to indigenous worldviews than it is to the western paradigm today. It traces how the West left behind this timeless wisdom for the "new learning" and the European colonial settlers arrived in the old "New World" with a fragmented, materialistic, and dualistic worldview that was the antithesis to those of Indigenous peoples. An imbalanced and privileged worldview not only justified an unacknowledged genocide in world history, it is characteristic of a psycho-spiritual disease that plays out across our global society. This dissertation suggests that the healing of the western mind rests with shifting the dominant paradigm toward a fundamental axiom of holism found within the life-ways of American Indigenous peoples and also buried within the West's own ancestry, particularly within a misunderstood ancient Greek tradition at the cornerstone of the western world.