September 10, 2010
The Heluk River separated conflicting Yali tribes. A raid is only possible with the crossing of the river at one of it’s more shallow points. But even at the shallower points, the river has the strength to sweep the thinner men away. Thus a vine is secured at one bank and brought to the other side by the heavier warriors. Once the line is secure on the other side, the rest of the raiding party crosses.
I won’t tell you how the raid goes, but some valuable information in this chapter includes an osuwa (sacred place). In the Yali world, no matter how greatly you hate the enemy standing before you, you cannot shed his blood in an osuwa. Even in the middle of a battle, you would not dare attack him when he’s within the sacred place, even if he’s from an opposing tribe and that’s your tribe’s osuwa, he cannot be touched.
It is a part of the Yali culture that Don uses as a redemptive analogy to teach them Christ. How exactly he goes about that we’ll find out as the book continues.