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Forum Home - Go Back > General > Native Life > Native Issues Native Strength and forgiveness Native Strength and forgiveness

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Old 04-23-2019, 09:44 AM   #1
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Native Strength and forgiveness

Hello,
My name is Andreas and i am seeking to find out about The spirit of the Native American people.
I am a white british male and have only been interested in your culture from a far.
On my own spiritual quest I understand the Spiritual Dharma (Teachings) for the world are in transition from tibet
and to the red man. So in my own quest for understanding, I see you all as the people to ask for guidance.
What I wish to try to comprehend (and forgive me for touching on what must be a very painful matter) how you as a nation
forgave or are still trying to forgive the white man for his actions against you and most importantly the cesation in
practicing your ways. Basically what is the wisdom you are applying as a people to something so wrong.... where is your strngth,
courage, power and focus to continue come from?
My sincere thanks
Andreas Demetriou
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Old 04-23-2019, 10:58 AM   #2
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Hello Andreas. Welcome to powwows.com.


You have asked a very complex question. And you have asked it in a way that -- I suspect unintentionally -- comes off as a bit acquisitive. And after reading your post, I think you have several misconceptions that will prevent you from understanding a little about our various cultures. Please listen as I try for a teachable moment.


1) There is enormous cultural variation in Native America. We are many nations, many languages, many worldviews, and many lifestyles.

The religious and philosophical range of the New World is as large or larger than the Old World. There are many sets of original instructions from the Creator. Often the differences between various tribes teachings is as great as the differences between Catholicism and Shinto. There is no unifying practice or dogma.


2) The Eastern religions of the Old World have naught to do with these original instructions. Daharma and the ideas of Buddhism, Hinduism, etc may have analogs among some tribes. But, most tribes' origin stories have the People arising here and centering their spiritual ways in this land.

A very quick way to get on the wrong side of many Native people is to cling to Bering land bridge and spout a lot of Eastern mysticism.


3) Native people are hugely resilient. Languages are battered and bruised, in some cases silent, but Native people are still here. Traditional ways maybe damaged but are not gone. The wasicu did not crush the People.

Is there damage -- yes. Is there loss -- yes. But, don't make Indian people victims.


4) Dominant culture understandings of intellectual property and cultural patrimony are very different from those of all the Native peoples I know. Indians have different modes of sharing and transmission of knowledge. There is some knowledge that cannot be shared with the unauthorized without physical and metaphysical consequences. So, within many Native communities it is considered inappropriate or unwise to discuss spiritual matters with outsiders and/or the uninitiated.

In my over a half century on this planet, I have not encountered any Native religion that provides a pathway to conversion. The Great Commission is not an Indian thing. Native beliefs are tied to community, kinship, and geography. They do not translate or transplant.

Many Native communities have been besieged by seekers. They have had to battle the culture vultures who steal pieces of their religions and lifeways, twist them into grotesque shapes, then sell the battered fragments to make themselves rich. This has left many individuals and communities wary, weary and sometimes less than patient.


That said. In my opinion, Native people rebuild for the same reason people in the dominant culture persevere -- children. They want to give their children a better life, to pass on their ways, to keep a future alive. Hecel lena oyate ki nipi kte.
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Old 04-23-2019, 06:35 PM   #3
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OLChemist, I thank you for your time and enegry in your reply.
Please forgive me for my lack of snesitivity and tack in my original message if I caused offence in anyway, this was not my intent.
I only hope I truly understand what you have imparted for me.
Sincerest thanks
Andreas
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