PHILIP KAI MORRE
KUNDIAWA – Papua New Guinea has been open to western culture for well over 100 years but, here in the Highlands, we are only now marking our third generation of contact with westerners.
As such maladaptation is occurring and a spectrum of disorders has arisen - cargo cults, political manipulation, economic frustration and social disorder.
As we try to adapt to a money-based society, increasingly we become its slaves and victims.
Truly we are regressing as Chris Overland has stated, and this is taking different forms.
They include the decline of moral values and norms, disappearance of customary laws, loss of our good customs and celebrations, diminished problem-solving skills and knowledge, poorly functioning gender roles and responsibilities, forgotten land cultivation method and more.
We are in a transitional phase in a confused world and we are disoriented.
Somehow we need to acquire a culture of morality, social mobility and empowerment to work towards holistic human development in this new domain.
We need to have a proper political system that respects the aspirations of common people and which is capable of promoting sustainable development.
Our mode of production must be culturally appropriate and kin-based and at the same time we must embrace contemporary changes and development to compete with the rest of world.
This is a considerable challenge life has set for us and that we need to get on top of.