The Indigenous people of America are called Native Americans or often referred to as “Indians”. They make up about two percent of the population in the United States and some of them still live in reservations. They once lived freely in the wilderness without any sort of influence or exposure from the Europeans who later came in the year of 1492, and therefore their culture is very different from ours. The Iroquois are northeastern Native Americans who are historically important and powerful. In the following essay we will discover some differences between the religious beliefs of the Native American Iroquois and Christianity to see if culture and ways of living have an effect on the view of religion, but we will also get to know some similarities. I am going to be focusing on the Iroquois, which are the northeastern Native Americans in North America. One of the first differences between the Iroquois’ beliefs and Christianity is the theory on “the creation of life”. The Iroquois believe in a creator God called ‘Hahgwehdiyu’, which was the good spirit of the twin Gods of Wind Breath. He shaped the world with the palm of his hands and recycled the corpse of his dead mother to create the sky, moon and the sun. He planted a grain of corn in her to give the world fertility. It is believed that when the Sky Woman, or the mother, fell from the sky she would fertilize the earth so her granddaughters could grow and harvest many things. They also believe in a current God called
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Native American religion and Christianity can be similar too. The Native American tribe the Chelan's Believe “that there was a creator called the great chief and he made the world, the Chelan’s also believe that the Great spirit made all animals and birds and gave them all names. Then after he left coyote in charge, latter coyote tried to change the great spirit's law, after that coyote was in charge of summer and winter. After that three wolves killed a beaver and split into 11 parts and used it's blood to make 12 tribes which was the first humans to be on earth.” Christians however believe that “Jesus made a human man out of dust and his name was Adam and then Jesus took one of Adam's ribs and made it through woman her name is Eve and Adam was in charge of naming all the animals” (gen, 2:5-7). Even though Native Americans and Christians have different stories they are similar because They both believe that a God created
The Indian culture was negatively changed because the Indians’ religion was based upon believing many gods controlled their way of being, while Christianity was based on one supreme being who controls the universe. Common Indian gods included a god for the Sun, Moon, land or the Earth, the creator, and water (Nature). In the Cherokee tribe, the Creator is named Unetlanvhi (oo-nay-hla-nuh-hee or oo-net-la-nuh-hee) (“Legendary”). Some of the other “Creators” in other tribes include Maheu in the Cheyenne tribe, Gitchie Manitou in the Ojibway tribe, and Ahone in the Powhatan tribe (“Legendary”). With all the different types of gods in Indian cultures, the Indians used many spiritual rituals to worship these gods (Religion). Some of the rituals included feasts, music, dances, and other performances. The relationship of the Indian to nature (spirits, land, weather) was tantamount (Religion).
The Native American religion was very different from the Christian religion of the Europeans. The Native American’s didn’t pray to a god, they prayed to something in nature such as the sky or the sun. “O our Mother the Earth, O our Father the Sky” (Tewa Indian). The colonists thought that it was barbaric that the Native American’s didn’t believe in a God. The colonists thought that there was only one correct way to be religious and that the way that the Native American’s practiced religion was ‘the wrong way’.
Throughout the course of history there have been numerous accounts regarding Native American and European interaction. From first contact to Indian removal, the interaction was somewhat of a roller coaster ride, leading from times of peace to mini wars and rebellions staged by the Native American tribes. The first part of this essay will briefly discuss the pre-Columbian Indian civilizations in North America and provide simple awareness of their cultures, while the second part of this essay will explore all major Native American contact leading up to, and through, the American Revolution while emphasizing the impact of Spanish, French, and English explorers and colonies on Native American culture and vice versa. The third, and final, part of this essay will explore Native American interaction after the American Revolution with emphasis on westward expansion and the Jacksonian Era leading into Indian removal. Furthermore, this essay will attempt to provide insight into aspects of Native American/European interaction that are often ignored such as: gender relations between European men and Native American women, slavery and captivity of native peoples, trade between Native Americans and European colonists, and the effects of religion on Native American tribes.
When most western people think about Native American or African religions there is a certain stigma that comes with the topic. This is in part because there is a lot of misinformation in the world about Native American and African religions. When most westerners think of African religions they think of voodoo and black magic. Likewise, the view of Native American religions is still looked at through the lens of the pilgrims who wrote about Native Americans as being savages and less than human. These stereotypes were all formed from a lack of accurate information. African and Native American religions are very similar. It is difficult to find a lot of accurate information on African and Native American indigenous religions because of the lack of written history but there is a lot of oral history that has been passed down from generation to generation. From this information, it is clear that Native American and African religions have many more similarities than they do differences. Three of these similarities will be discussed in this paper. The first topic of discussion is the similarity between African and Native American people when it comes to their perception of the spirit world. Following this topic are the similarities between Native American and African views on the afterlife and finally, the diversity of beliefs within African and Native American religions.
To make sense of this world, you must possess your own viewpoints, perspectives, or beliefs because every individual is different. Some people ask,” why do we exist on Earth?” Others ask, ”Is there intelligent life in our solar system?” No matter what religion or belief you have, no one will really know the true answer to this question.
David Cusic’s, “The Iroquois Creation Story,” was published at the height of tensions between the Native Americans and the expansion of the United States into their territory, and illustrates how the Iroquois creation beliefs are actually similar in some comparison to that of Christianity. The story is about how The Iroquois Confederacy believed the world was created and their views of good and evil. This writing by David Cusic was extremely significant at the time because it was now the only written account of this orally told story on paper written by a native of the Iroquois. Now by saying that, there was already a version of the story written down before David Cusic, but it was by Frenchmen, Gabriel Sagard, therefore his story did not have necessarily as much authentication and reliability behind it.
Native Americans have had a long history of resistance to the social and cultural assimilation into white culture. By employing various creative strategies, Native Americans have attempted to cope with the changes stemming from the European colonial movement into the Americas. There are fundamental differences in world views and cultural and social orders between Indians and Europeans, which contributed to conservatism in Native American cultures. In this paper, two aspects of such cultural and institutional differences of Native American societies will be examined: holistic Native American beliefs versus dualistic world views and harmony versus domination. These two aspects are important in terms of explaining changes (or lack thereof) in
One attitude towards the Native American that quickly emerged was that the natives were fully human. They were perceived as beings that could reap the benefits of European civilization which included Christian doctrine and salvation. It was shown
In sum, this chapter from Native American Religion (1999) helps explain some of the current relationships between the Native Americans that still survive today and how they often
The work reveals even though the Iroquois people were not Christians by all means they still realized that there is still good and evil in the world. They also believe that all evil souls will sink into eternal doom (hell) and all good souls will “retire” from earth and live in the heavens overlooking earth. “at last the good mind gained the victory by using the horns, as mentioned the instrument of death, which he succeeded in deceiving his brother and he crushed him in the earth; and the last words uttered from the bad mind were, that he would have equal power over the souls of mankind after death and he sinks down to eternal doom and became the Evil Spirit.” (Cusick, The Iroquois Creations Story. Pg 21)
This primary source explains the Huron Indian was trying not to be influenced in a religious way by the Jesuit missionary, because the beliefs, lifestyles, and areas are totally different between the Indians and Europeans. Therefore, the Indians wanted to be save their own culture. The Jesuit missionary was the biggest intended audience from the Indians, because the Indians’ purpose was to keep their religious independence in the area. The Indians also tried to show their pride by refusing the missionaries’ ideas and suggestions. This document demonstrates that the relationship between the Indians and Europeans were not ideal since there was a conflict which the Indians avoided to take the belief of the Jesuit into the area, although the missionaries
The nature of spirituality may be difficult for someone outside of their culture to understand. Many Native Americans are visionary, dreamers, and mystic in animated worlds of spirits. Indians have encouraged the seeking of visions and dreams through various practices and beliefs. The Iroquois Nation of the eastern woodlands was one of the most highly organized civilizations that developed among Native American tribes in North America. Their religion was based off on an all power known as “The Great Spirit” or Ha-wen-ne-yu. “The Great Spirit” ruled and administered the world and its affairs. His power was administered to the material world through a class of inferior spiritual existences, which were given names and identified by the object they were classified as. For example, He-no, which is the most important spirits, was given the thunderbolt and controlled the weather. The Iroquois Nation also had an evil spirit, known as the “Evil Minded” or “Ha-ne-go-ate-geh”.
One of the most significant differences that inflicted this conflicts and tensions was their religious attitudes or their belief in “God”. The Native Americans viewed “God” as
In the Iroquois creation myth, Sky Woman understood that she was pregnant with twins and was pushed by her husband into the Earth’s waters below the above world. Little Toad was able to bring up mud to spread on Big Turtle’s back, and it grew to become the size of North America where Sky Woman created the Iroquois world. Her children, Sapling and Flint, were important in creating the details of the land such as rivers, fish, plants, and even the seasons. The Sky People, Demi-gods of the Iroquois, were critical to the Iroquois people as it helped to define who they were and what they believed. The Iroquois people were happy and peaceful. There was little to no violence within their tribes just as in their myth of creation that tells of the Sky People living on an island floating above the “earth” where there was no sadness, violence, or negativity. This shows the ways the Iroquois applied their myth to their everyday lives and their religion. The myth also explains how the Sky Women’s evil son, Flint, was beaten by his good brother, Sapling, and was required to live on the Big Turtle’s back. North America was carried upon Big Turtle’s back and according to the the myth, bones in fish, thorns on bushes, and volcanos erupting symbolized Flint’s anger. The myth of Sky Woman and her sons is the explanation of how all nature came to be.