In Dr. Gary's words (slightly edited for length):
The hunter gathering societies of the Amazon Rainforest have, for centuries, lived in a controlled harmony with the ecosystem surrounding their lives.
Tribal resilience is characterized by the ability to:
1. Constantly evolve within the cycles of nature.
2. Readjust traditional practices to adapt to nontraditional stressors.
3. Implement strategies to take advantage of individual and family strengths.
4. Continually adapt to the current situation.
5. Protect traditional practices that have remained essential for quality of life issues.
The ability to extract a living from the world which engulfed them gave a living history of forest lore that has continued unbroken for thousands of years. Today’s indigenous people of the Brazilian Rainforest have accumulated the most complete understanding of living in harmony in one of the most complex ecosystems in the world. Surprise interactions with creatures, plants and natural phenomena are unavoidable and the timing and length of crises cannot always be predicted. Thus, people who intend to stay around need to be able to cope with surprises and adapt to stressors with their intelligence and resourcefulness.
From food to medicine to magic, the ancient people of the rainforest have adopted a non-destructive approach to obtaining what they need. Animals, plants and the very land itself are allowed to regenerate soon after the tribes gather their share of the habitat. Small-scale disturbances in the forests ecosystem caused by the needs for daily life are monitored by the elder members and the leaders to be certain that harmony in the forest is maintained. Environmental management among forest people has been passed down by their descendants through the generations. Today, the few traditional forest people who remain may hold the secrets to healing common diseases and injuries.