Feral Crust is a community based autonomous space in the slum area of Taguig, Philippines. Since March 2014 the Feral Crust space is located on Mabato Road Brgy, a squatted public road near cement and other industrial factories. Although by next year we are planning to move on the edges of Davao City aiming to setup a small permaculture land project, an anarchist infoshop and a social center based in the countryside, much closer to nature.
In relation to our land project, we are starting to edit a handbook about natural healing for common illnesses using herbal remedies that are locally grown. Furthermore, we also want to include a bit of political perspective and other vital information related to do-it-yourself healing.
Few of the sources that inspired us to make the handbook are radical and informative publications such as Rina Nissim’s Natural Healing in Gynecology: A Manual For Women, Yeast of your worries: A Yeast Infection Survival Handbook by Erica Zelfand, and Threads: Changes During the Menstrual Cycle; Feminism and Anatomy; Medical Model of Menstruation; Politics of so-called PMS by Lisa. Such important materials are quiet rare to find out here. And we think it is very useful and helpful to publish ourselves one about reclaiming health and well-being, socially and ecologically. We wish to publish a handbook which gives an information that’s relevant to our local context and we need your support for its printing and distribution. If you think you can help us about this matter, please get in touch (contacts below). We would be happy to make friends, to make connection in an intimate and mutual way, hoping to deepen further solidarity across borders. We hope to make the handbook circulate to our friends in the city and countryside, to our family, to our neighbourhood, to autonomous activists and immediate network such as local infoshops and autonomous spaces.
Lately, we travelled to North Luzon area of the Philippines meeting friends in the upland, lowland and coastal areas. We went to a few remote places and had been able to meet old and new friends who live in tribal/indigenous communities, farmers, fisher-folks, etc. We travelled to learn more about people’s way of living when it’s directly connected to the land and still hold regaining their autonomous subsistence. We travelled for about a month and got to see beautiful natural landscape and tried to understand each place’s political, cultural, ecological and social situation. We’ve made friends, had additional contacts in remote and isolated areas. In contrast, we’d also faced interrogation by checkpoint authorities, including military who waged war with Maoist/communist guerrilla insurgents (known here as New Peoples Army) in the forest areas. This includes places where there is no war happening at all. We can’t escape being tipped by snitches in the rural communities too. Some people, we assume, were completely shocked of our appearance, especially when it comes to the time we were being stranded on the road waiting for a truck or any car to transport us to our next destination. We travelled via hitchhiking. In the end, we were OK after authorities found out that we were just a bunch of local tourists, when they see our residential identities, camping gears and so on. Legally, we answered them in an honest tone in a straight forward way. We don’t speak much but just gave them direct answers.
Few weeks ago we came back to our space, now we are back in the city and will continue working on the plant medicine handbook project, filling out the important information that we need. We gathered some useful information after communicating with rural folks about plant medicine. We are happy to publish the handbook and give it away to people, to all walks of life, not only limited to autonomous activist or the anarchist scene. We aim to finish the handbook in 1-2 months which includes local translations of texts regarding how to make/prepare herbal medicine. The rest is information about identified plants that could heal specific illnesses, a brief political statement against the medical or pharmaceutical industry and information regarding autonomous healing.
We are looking forward to finish the handbook. Onwards!
Much love and solidarity,