Native American Religions

Added on 12/01/2003
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36 Reviews

ayn
07/10/2010

Native American Religions 4

Most followers of Native American spirituality do not consider their beliefs a religion. For that I dropped a star. Since the maker of this list lumped all of the Native Americans and their beliefs together, I'm going to do the same and try to keep it as simple as possible.
When the Europeans first came to what is now the U.S. and Canada there were about 12 million Native Americans. There is now only a quarter of a million. Europeans killed them through disease and out right murder. Some who survived were raped or married (by choice) to the Europeans, thus reducing the gene pool. Many of the survivors converted to Christianity. Their religion was largely left to die. If not for concentrated efforts by some of its adherents, it would likely not have survived into the 21st century. There are many similarities and differences in the culture of Native Americans and in the areas of their beliefs.
Native American spirituality, like that of many aboriginal peoples, are influenced largely by the method used to aquire food. The result is that many rituals promote hunting. The Inuit believe that all animals and people have souls. Individuals and tribes must perform complex rituals to ensure that animals continue to make themselves available to humans. The underwater goddess Sedna is in charge of releasing marine animals to people for food. Many rituals are designed to keep her happy.
Some belief systems include an afterlife, others believe that souls come back as ghosts and some are agnostic. Many Natives blend their spirituality with other religions, mainly Christianity.
It has become a fad for new agers, trendos and others to try to incorporate Native American Spirituality into their own spiritual paths. Since Native American spirituality is tribal, this is considered highly offensive to many Native Americans. When non- Native "shamans" hold ceremonies, hold sweat lodges or vision quests, or sell their peace pipes and other sacred artifacts for commercial purposes, the meaning gets lost. If you are going to study Native American spirituality, do so for intellectual or acedemic purposes. You can not convert to this, it is tribal, cultural and personal to them. If someone tells you that you can 'join,' watch out; they are after your money.

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Votes on this review: 3 Helpful / 0 Funny / 0 Agree / 0 Disagree

Jester002
07/09/2010

Native American Religions 4

Native American Religions and religious practices are diverse in nature and tribal mores vary significantly by location. However, most Native Americans feel very connected to the land in a supernatural and symbiotic way. For example, in the early seventies, because of their connection to the earth, Native Americans began to suffer from a disease called “Crying Indian Syndrome” which occurs shortly after Native Americans paddle a canoe past chemical plants on the Potomac River. After paddling for several miles through raw sewage and unknown toxic shit, natives finally land on shorelines only to discover them covered in Styrofoam cups, tires, and used condoms. Perhaps the worst case scenario takes place while Native American stands near interstate 80 only to have some moron throw out a bag full of McDonalds left over’s and trash that explodes on their moccasins spilling fries, a half eaten quarter pounder, and cigarette butts.

Some Native Americans practice various religions including Christianity, brought about by military conquest and the plundering of the land for economic gain. The Longhouse religion (a.k.a. the Bonghouse Religion), which involves the practice of teaching proper joint rolling and hookah building. The Waashat Religion (a.k.a. the Wash-it Religion) based on the arrival of the white man giving away blankets infected with small pox. The Drum Religion a.k.a the Drum Circle, Drum Sickle, or Dream Cycle included playing drums, eating salmon, drinking firewater, and chasing loose squaws until the neighboring tribe called in a noise complaint to the local cavalry. Additionally, the Ghost Dance Religion based its practices on the belief that contact with dead is possible. Former tribal member, ballroom dance instructor, and self-proclaimed ghost whisperer John “Runs with Cash” Edwards proclaimed he could channel dead Indian elders. However, in reality, he actually only channeled the spirits of dead buffalo, chipmunks, eagles, and prairie dogs

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Liltookie17
07/01/2009

Native American Religions 5

whoa man i cant beleive what im seeing ... this is depressing i just saw a guy who said he was indian and then said that natives should grow up or sumthin like wtf ? ... aright im native and im like tuscarora ... we eleive in the creation story and all that ... now me personally i beleive in about half of it because im not completley educated on it yet ... but to see that guy saying "its time to grow up" thats jus messed up man ... you gotta want our culture to continure growing and staying alive ... cmon man

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fitman
07/26/2008

Native American Religions 3

  Honkies tend to lump all native Americans into one culture, but the fact is (was) there were as many different cultures in the Americas as there are (were) in Europe, Africa and/or Asia.

Native American religions range from the sublime (Hopi) to the grotesque (Aztec).

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Votes on this review: 4 Helpful / 0 Funny / 0 Agree / 0 Disagree

ChildOfSatan
07/26/2008

Native American Religions 3

Don't know how to rate this one because I adore Native American culture but don't believe in religion.  I tell you what though, blacks, hispanics, gays and all special interest group crybabys that get what they want how come it's ok to defecate all over Indians and they don't have any Jesse Jackson types defending their rights marching in their honor? Maybe it's because the United States of America was founded upon the near genocide of this proud people and the govt. just figures why stop now? This is why when I hear Barack Obama doesn't put his hand on his heart in the prescence of the flag I think it's a good thing and he's got my vote.  The American flag is to Native Americans what the Swastika is to Jews.

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Votes on this review: 2 Helpful / 1 Funny / 1 Agree / 0 Disagree

Ridgewalker
05/18/2008

Native American Religions 5

True story. Stark and I befriended an elder from the Badger Clan at Hopi and lived with them for a few months up on the Second Mesa. We were invited to their holiest of ceremonies, Niman, which ends six months of dancing for rain. After the big dance, the Kachinas...their benign gods...head back to their home inside of the San Francisco Mountains, southwest of the Mesas, near Flagstaff. That night, we were sitting in the RV, relaxing, when we heard a tap at the window. We pulled back the curtains and there were several young Hopi children with their faces pressed against the glass.

"Don't come outside tonight!" they whispered.

"Why?" we asked.

"Because the Ogres are out!"

In Hopi culture, the parents do not discipline their children. The Uncles have this privilege. Hopi are known for their long memories and this is one of the reasons why. When a child misbehaves, the Uncles are told about it and they keep a list...all year long.  On this particular night, an Uncle dresses up as the Kachina Ogre and pays the family a visit. Hopi are short people, but when they dress as Kachinas, they get up near the 7-foot range. The Ogre mask dons a large, fanged, wolf-like mouth and they carry vicious weapons like cleavers, knives and axes.

Meanwhile, Mom has been cooking up a storm for the last few days, which comes into play a little later on. On the night the Katchina Ogres are out...there comes a pounding at the door. Mom answers and there looms the Ogre.

"Where's the boy!" he growls.

Mom brings the child to the door and puts him, or her in front of the Ogre.

"You've been BAD! You hit your sister! You stole a ball! You lied to your mother! I'M GOING TO EAT YOU!"

The child has no idea who this is and is, most likely, standing in a puddle by now, as the Ogre growls and wields his weapons. Mother begs for mercy. The child cries in mortal terror. All in vain. The Ogre makes his move and Mom steps in...begging him to spare her child's life. The Ogre won't relent and Mom keeps bargaining until they believe that they have made their point and the Ogre, eventually, walks away with all of the food that Mom has been preparing and somewhere, the Ogres gather for a nice feast and won't be seen for another year.

I knew about this beforehand and on a previous visit one of our bicycle tires was missing. And I knew that our friend's son had something to do with it. But, I didn't want to get him into trouble, so I sat down with the Mother (she is from the Half Moon Forehead Rising Clan) and told her that we hade a problem...that a very mischevious bicycle tire had decided to go off on an adventure. It turned out that the tire had been thrown into an aunt's pickup truck, had made a 140 mile round trip and was waiting for us the next morning. No one got in trouble.

If you ever want to feel out of your element, go up to the Mesas for the end of Niman...where Hopi dogs own the night and you can see the silhouettes of Ogres lurking around. Stay inside.

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Votes on this review: 11 Helpful / 0 Funny / 0 Agree / 0 Disagree

GenghisTheHun
02/24/2007

Native American Religions 2

Some tribes in the Southwest, namely the Hopi and some of the Pueblos, have been able to keep an unbroken chain with the past. Most other Indian religions sunk to superstition and have been only imperfectly revived because no person was left who knew of the old ways.

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Votes on this review: 5 Helpful / 0 Funny / 0 Agree / 0 Disagree

MattShizzle
05/22/2006

Native American Religions 3

Basically about nature. More or less as silly as every religion, but they certainly don't try to force their beliefs on others.

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Votes on this review: 3 Helpful / 0 Funny / 0 Agree / 0 Disagree

Drummond
12/19/2005

Native American Religions 3

This is a very mixed bag, and those who tend to romanticize what they don't understand might consider that some of the American Indian (the term preferred by most of that ethnicity) myths are on the gory side - not unlike raw Norse mythology.

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Votes on this review: 3 Helpful / 0 Funny / 0 Agree / 0 Disagree

numbah16tdhaha
12/12/2005

Native American Religions 4

These haven't been tainted by powerful rulers like most of the major religions. The major knock on them is a lack of scriptures, but the oral tradition makes up for it, I think. The thing that impresses me is that this is not something just done on Sunday like some of the phonies that give Christianity a bad name, it is really a way of living.

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Votes on this review: 4 Helpful / 0 Funny / 0 Agree / 0 Disagree

magick13
09/14/2005

Native American Religions 5

It's good to see Native Americans returning to the religions of their ancestors.

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Votes on this review: 1 Helpful / 0 Funny / 0 Agree / 0 Disagree

Djahuti
06/29/2005

Native American Religions 4

There is a very wide spectrum of Native American Religions,and lumping them all together is even more unfair than lumping all Christians (from Jews for Jesus to Christian Scientists to Right Wing Extremists to Quakers) into one single meaningless category.That said, most of the Native Indian Religions that I've learned about at least had a Deep Reverence for the Earth and saw ALL creatures as sacred- a healthy belief that Modern day Americans could surely learn from,since we,as a whole,are quickly speeding towards Environmental Disaster and eventual Oblivion from our ill treatment of the Planet and it's creatures.(Mad Cow,Hoof and Mouth,and rising Cancer rates are only the tip of the iceberg!)

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Votes on this review: 4 Helpful / 0 Funny / 0 Agree / 0 Disagree

dpostoskie
05/02/2005

Native American Religions 4

At least there is a harmony with other living things that can be seen.

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Votes on this review: 1 Helpful / 0 Funny / 0 Agree / 0 Disagree

caligula
04/15/2005

Native American Religions 3

Don't know squat about them, but I feel sorry for native americans, so I gave it a three.

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Votes on this review: 2 Helpful / 0 Funny / 0 Agree / 0 Disagree

Miles Teg
01/12/2005

Native American Religions 4

I'll always vote on the side of primative religions (but aren't they all?) And most Natives did not have a tree-hugging rligion, that is myth passed from white to white, back to the red, and to the white again. They were a very noble warlike people who constantly fought wars over hunting grounds and tribal territory. And if you think the natives couldnt evolve and adapt you should see who helped america and canada win many of their wars for independance.

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BirdEgal202
12/30/2004

Native American Religions 5

The Naitive Americans had great religions. They respected the enviroment and all of nature, believing that everthing has a soul. A dstep forward compared to the corrupt religious systems of europe.

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Darkness302
08/07/2004

Native American Religions 2

Well, my decendent of mine is native american , so i'll give this relegion SOME credit.

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CanadaSucks
06/30/2004

Native American Religions 1

Cutesy nature-loving cults that are now extinct becuase of disease, murder, and a painful cultural inability to evolve and adapt to a changing world. Count me out of the obligatory-sympathy-for-all-things-Indian club.

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Votes on this review: 1 Helpful / 0 Funny / 0 Agree / 1 Disagree

warrior4thelor d
06/26/2004

Native American Religions 1

You need Jesus Christ.

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Votes on this review: 2 Helpful / 0 Funny / 0 Agree / 0 Disagree

Creamy Goodness
11/21/2003

Native American Religions 5

Respect Native Americans, for they wouldn't have nearley any of the problems that we all have today, if it were up to them.

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Votes on this review: 5 Helpful / 0 Funny / 0 Agree / 0 Disagree

dsmith58
11/21/2003

Native American Religions 1

More of the same humanistic works religion. What can I do to get into heaven? Whatever happened to God's plan? Didn't He already make provisions for us through His Son Jesus?

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Eagle Scout
11/20/2003

Native American Religions 3

I'm not sure what to think on this one. There are some weird links to Christianity (flood stories, symbols) that are a little too coincidental. I like to think of the Great Spirit as God and the other spirits as angels. Think of it, they all do things that the Great spirit approves of, except for a few that are evil spirits. Maybe God (If you beleive in him) had a hand in the religion learned by the Native Americans and they interpretted his teachings differently then the Judeo-Christians did. If you do the research you will find that many different tribes told a story of a flood where only one family survived. Also there were multiple tribes who taught that the symbol of one representing the Great Spirit is a cross. That kind of messed up stuff for the Aztecs though, cuz Cortez carried a cross too. Another symbol was that an evil man would come who carried a bent cross, in other words a swastica. Maybe, just maybe we are worshipping the same God. I kind of like the idea of using religion to unify people, not repulse them.

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Votes on this review: 2 Helpful / 0 Funny / 0 Agree / 0 Disagree

kurst
08/19/2003

Native American Religions 5

Many of you are claiming that the Native American religion's are far too bizarre, too weird, ....What religion isn't? Buddist, Christian, Hindu most faiths have some element of absurdism involved. Many fear what they don't know or what they can't wrap their heads around...but when it comes to creativity Native American religions take the cake! and there are more than one religion in Native american cultures. There gods...like the coyote, raven and other animals aren't to be taken litteraly. they are stories to teach morals, ethics and family values. Spirits do reside in the animals but not always as the tales say. Many other cultures find it crazy that we some religions have only one god!

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LadyHawk
06/19/2003

Native American Religions 5

To Anmalone and Yushimura, First Yushimura...our religion is still VERY RELEVEVANT as it is OURS! As for you Anmalone, you are a simply minded, narrow minded, selfish, ignorant individual! Each nation of which there were over 500, had their own practices and beliefs which made up our "religion" the SW nationas had their gods and etc....but some of us....the Woodland tribes believed and still do believe in the Creator/Great Spirit and the fact that we were put here as keepers and caretakers of all that was placed here...plant, animal, mother earth, the waters and so forth. You speak from an obvious ignorant "white man's" / European mindset which is truly sad for you. Not all nations were nomadic, none of us practiced "ritual torture" and let me enlighten you YOU into who taught our ancestors some of these deeds that the history books of the white man and his government tag to us....SCALPING was taught to us by the French....disembowlment and other physical horrid torture techniques came from the English and Spainards....Learn your history...the Church used to TORTURE men to death to "purify" them. Native Americans were put through these tortures and we were good students...we used them against your people...too bad we did not start SOONER! But our day will come again for it has been written and passed down....and when that day comes..Watch your backside dear sweet ignorant FOOL. Dohiya!

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Votes on this review: 4 Helpful / 0 Funny / 0 Agree / 0 Disagree

Ghost Dancer
05/04/2003

Native American Religions 3

Well I suppose most of your comments are just meant to be insulting. (poor ignorant people most of you are) Well, I don't really get where you guys get your thoeries of "Native American Religion". Excpecially since there is no such thing. There where many different nations that had different practices and beliefs. As for all the comments let me correct some misinterpretations. Not all Natives where polytheists. In fact most living in North America where monotheists. As for the Nomadic technologically backward civilizations, I'm supposing your just a hateful person, or really stupid. Nevermind being hateful is really stupid. So I guess your just a really stupid person. Alot of Natives in western U.S. where nomadic. Everywhere else all had towns or cities and stayed in one place. Well if you consider holding military technology as a priority since that is one thing that was lacked, (due too far less warfare then Europe and Asia) Your a sad individual, and a shame you hold violence as such a high standard. In fact anmalone your whole post was based on false information. Except for human sacrafice in some places. Also they where by far outnumbered by Europeans due to horrible effects from diseases. And for the record even though outnumbered and outgunned and not continuously slaughtering women and children. In combat even in battles lost they killed far more Europeans then warriors they lost. (Except in South America) Also this religion is about as man made as any other. BEFORE YOU ALL GO CRITICIZING SOMETHING YOU DON'T KNOW YOU SHOULD LEARN FACTS, REAL FACTS.

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Votes on this review: 4 Helpful / 0 Funny / 0 Agree / 0 Disagree

samson42284
04/25/2003

Native American Religions 1

i don't know much about it but it probably aint right

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BIGBABY
03/08/2003

Native American Religions 1

Cosmo is correct. Im about 10% native American. These "religions" are the most bizarre and almost impossible to believe.

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anmalone
02/18/2003

Native American Religions 1

Human sacrifice (In some parts of the America- Cannibalism), ritual torture, constant warfare and nomadic irresponsibility are among the more useful attributes of Native American religion. The fact that they were largely backward Neolithic cultures is not a good recommendation for their applicability to the 21st century. The facts that they had no cultural cohesion nor scientific prowess when facing the more technologically advanced but numerically inferior Europeans that allowed them to be easily subjugated and therefore irrelevant. Much like the Helots of Sparta.

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Votes on this review: 4 Helpful / 0 Funny / 0 Agree / 0 Disagree

Cosmo Renfro
09/30/2002

Native American Religions 1

Even though I am a Native American I don't believe in what they do. Their beliefs are just too outrageous and it's time they all wake up.

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Votes on this review: 5 Helpful / 0 Funny / 0 Agree / 0 Disagree

Mikimoto
09/12/2002

Native American Religions 1

ha ha ha ha why you are all so stupid by upgrading this religion. hey it's man made! man made! man made! I myself can create a religion and spread it and say that this religion is the perfect compared to others. lol... this religion sucks!

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Yushimura
07/30/2002

Native American Religions 1

it's no longer relevant.

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saiful
07/30/2002

Native American Religions 1

Too many Gods

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CastleBee
01/05/2002

Native American Religions 1

I appreciate many of the things about Native American philosophy, much of which was no doubt derived from their spiritual faiths. For instance, the very wise way they appreciated and used the land and the respect they had for the animals they had to kill in order to survive. That doesn’t seem like the basic crux of things when it comes to belief in God though; you can find some good points to nearly any human culture (well, maybe Nazi Germany would be an exception). However, as with all other faiths on this list – aside from Judaism - the many gods and goddesses of Native American religions do not make up the one God I worship. Therefore I believe this is simply another form of well-meaning, but still pagan, worship.

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T_Rex
11/25/2001

Native American Religions 3

I don't know about that much about their culture. But its quite saddening that alot of their religion have been destroyed by European invasion, just go look at Mexico and various parts of South America.

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Votes on this review: 6 Helpful / 0 Funny / 0 Agree / 0 Disagree

MedgarEvers
11/02/2001

Native American Religions 4

Polytheistic, but I get the idea that they believed all their little gods and godesses made up one great force above all (kind of like Hinduism). Native Americans had the land well-managed: you didn't own the land, the Great Spirit owned the land and everyone could share it. Too bad my European ancestors had to come to America and upset their perfect system. Now we're sticking them in resource-lacking reserves where they don't get to practice their religion because it was so based on the beauty of nature.

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Votes on this review: 4 Helpful / 0 Funny / 0 Agree / 0 Disagree

jazzpurrr
05/13/2001

Native American Religions 1

This rating is meant ONLY to reflect that I am Too Ignorant to say one word about Native American Religions.And I wouldn't want to insult anyone talking/discussing something I know Nothing about.Ever.

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Votes on this review: 3 Helpful / 0 Funny / 0 Agree / 0 Disagree

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3.57
average based on 245 ratings