Mnaadendiwin (Respect) is one of the Seven Grandfather Teachings, sometimes referred to as the seven sacred gifts. According to Benton-Banai (1988), when one demonstrates Mnaadendiwin (Respect) one honours all of creation. According to Anishinaabe teachings, each person is gifted with ‘vision’ to be able to see the world from an Indigenous perspective and to see with ‘total’ vision (having the capacity to view life from a holistic perspective) (Dumont, 1993). Vision recognizes that all life is interconnected and inter-related and because of this vision, generates respect. Respect comes from this circular vision. Respect includes respect for creation, knowledge and wisdom, dignity and freedom of others, quality of life and for spirit (in all things) (Dumont, 1993). According to Dumont (1993), respect is a prerequisite to other values such as wisdom, honesty, humility, kindness and strength. Anishinaabe values are unique because of the perception and understanding that comes from realizing the primal gift of vision (wholeness) and the primary motivator – respect.
How does the teaching on respect relate to the Anishinaabe culture?
Do you think it is important to be respectful? If so, why?
What do you think it means to show respect?
How do you show respect for yourself and your family?
Expanding Your Knowledge
Seek out knowledge about the teaching of respect from an Elder for your community. If you are not from an Indigenous community, you can visit a Friendship Centre or other Indigenous organization in your area and ask to speak with an Elder. Be sure to present tobacco when asking for teachings.
Geographical Setting and sources of information
The image below is a snapshot of many of the locations throughout Greater Sudbury that have been discussed in this open textbook. Individually, they are just plots on a map. Comprehensively, they represent the historical, traditional, and cultural significance of the lands encompassing the district of Greater Sudbury and area.
Click on the image of the map below for a more detailed geographic context.