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Kamloops, British Columbia
April 30, 2016
by:Michael Townsend
The current problem in Attawapisskat is suicide.

Most cases of suicide (or attempted suicide) are undertaken out of a feeling of meaninglessness in one’s life. It may well be that an individual’s impulse to take his life would have been overcome had he been aware of some meaning and purpose worth living for.

I believe that meaning and purpose for living in First Nations communities will come from understanding their own language, understanding and living a culture that can be supported by Elders and other significant people in the community. There are many examples of successful First Nations communities throughout Canada. My main criticism is that connections between those First Nations that have found great success have not been sharing enough with those that currently struggle. 

Life is meaningful and one must learn to see life as meaningful despite your circumstances. This can be learned through reconnecting with the importance of language and culture, something that was brutally ripped from the lives of every First Nations Person living in an isolated community.

One can survive even the worst conditions with the knowledge that there is meaning in one’s life. I think it was
Nietzsche who said something like: “He who has a why to live can bear almost any how.”