It is important to note this is opinion.

Sustainability is difficult to understand without a background. 

As mentioned previously, there is no definitive definition of sustainability. This means people's understanding of the subject varies from person to person, community to community. 

For the most part, sustainability is viewed as an extension of environmentalism. Reduce, reuse, recylce, right? Right! But, we can also do more and need to dive deeper to create effective solutions. The adoption of economic and social factors was a good next step. It incorporates important perspectives that society factors into decision making. However, it doesn't yet go far enough, incorporating all important factors that directly affects a community's ability to sustain. 

Additionally, sometimes focusing narrowly on a topic will in itself promote the asustainable- that which is without the ability to sustainan for people and planet. For example, focusing specifically through an environmental lens will block out the political, cultural, social, and economic influences that are most likely also at play. And without understanding additional factors such as the cultural and political elements and activism, we are only prolonging a negative repercussion.

Indigenous Knowledge

I would also like to address the mindset that Indigenous knowledge is reserved for the past and we should all modernize to assimilate to live within capitalism. The idea that learning about Native technologies, societal systems, and ways of understanding life result in us moving backwards.

First of all, we need to be able to live amongst different cultures and people respectfully because we are sophisticated enough to not fear everything that we aren’t accustomed to. This is going to take a while, but that doesn’t make it not worthy of working towards.

Secondly, lets be really honest right now and make it clear that Indigenous people have survived and in many cases thrived thousands of years until foreign disease, genocide, law and regulation, resource exploitation, and alcohol disrupted the way of life for many people. After all that pain and torture there are still Native traditions that could greatly help modern society learn balance and achieve sustainability. For a small example, the three sister’s farming is a successful practice people use today learned from Native American knowledge.

Understanding the ecology of an area is really important to ensure the regrowth speed is at a positive rate for enough extraction to sustain a community, which is a key component to sustainability. We will be successful when we listen and support Native intelligence as well as other cultures. We make smarter decisions when we learn from history and some cultures have longer histories with more to share. We need to be open-minded and listen without judgement to many information sources to create the most ideal inclusive solutions.