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Thanksgiving – Resourcefulness

As an exercise in almsgiving over the next 40 days, this webpage will joyfully give up its praise and thanks for one aspect of life, and not always necessarily a religious one.

The popularity of the TV show Man versus Wild has made Bear Grylls a household name but well before he happened along there were others picking themselves out of predicaments, scrounging for solutions or wielding everyday items with unnatural utility.

The ability to be self-reliant should be becoming easier these days, what with the explosion of mega hardware stores the size of orchards and the availability of “how to” videos on the internet. Once again, however, we seem to be undermined by a disposable society mentality. China’s manufacturing skill has made things so much cheaper that it is inexorably easier to replace something with new than repair the old. Such a notion slowly eats away our life skills, which is a shame given Australia has had such a proud history of resourcefulness.

The diggers at ANZAC Cove and on the Western Front were very creative in bringing what little comfort they could to their trenches and foxholes, fashioned out of whatever surplus materials came to hand.

Then there was a whole generation of women from the depression era who, in their housebound and dutybound fashion, helped get the nation through incredibly tough times by their thrift, economy and makeshift inventions.

Well into the 1970s and 80s the TV show The Inventors showcased the genius of backyard dreamers and tinkerers alike. As a nation the Hills Hoist, the Electronic pacemaker for the heart, the Bionic Ear and the Blackbox Flight Recorder are among a host of our internationally recognised and relied upon inventions.

When it comes to original flagbearer for self-reliance, however, you would find it hard to go past the Bush Tucker man. Major Les Hiddins is a retired Australian Army officer with two tours of duty of Vietnam on his service record. After receiving a scholarship that allowed him to embed himself in the remote northern parts of Australia for months he went on to pen the army’s survival manual in the 1980s. By virtue of the documentary series, which showcased his respect for country and the survival skills of the indigenous peoples of the Arnhem land, he opened up the eyes of many Australians to a culture they had formerly dismissed.

Major Les Hiddins

To all those people who have an innate resourcefulness and make do with what they have on hand, we say thank you for showing us how to look to within for the answers and also how to tread a little bit more lightly on the earth.

Previous thanksgiving article: Has Beens

The season of Lent asks of us for sacrifice and the foregoing of many things, but an attitude of joy and gratitude should not be amongst them.

As an exercise in almsgiving over the next 40 days, this webpage will joyfully give up its praise and thanks for one aspect of life, and not always necessarily a religious one.

At the outset it should be made clear the viewpoints expressed here are a matter of individual opinion. If any one item doesn’t coincide with your own personal tastes then why not seek to better it with some thanksgiving of your own rather than a critique? You are always welcome to do so at the Archdiocesan website feedback mechanism.

So we invite you to come, walk with us awhile, and be thankful as we journey together to Calvary and beyond to Easter.

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