Native American Spirituality

Native American Spirituality – Since there are hundreds of distinct Native American Nations, many containing more than one distinctive traditional religious practice, it should be clear that the phrase “Native American spirituality” refers to a fictional conglomeration. Most often it privileges a version of Lakota spirituality, appropriating elements such as the sweat lodge and vision quest from their cultural context to make them available in non-Native cultures. Far from aiding an appreciation of Native American religious traditions, this piecemeal approach generates misunderstanding of the role medicine people and ceremonies play. The phrase is often used in whiteshamanism and by those accused of being “plastic medicine people” or frauds.


Historical Dictionary of Shamanism by Graham Harvey and Robert J. Wallis 2007


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