Essay on Native American Religions

Essay on Native American Religions

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Over the century Native American religions have been repressed and misunderstood. There has been little room for them to actually be able to explain their rituals and why it is important to them as a society. This ignorance’s has resulted in the loss of land, false practices with sacred objects, and a lack of education within the rituals of indigenous religions. The indigenous population deserves support to preserve their practices and language. Since most of these religions have been repressed for so long many elders do not wish to teach their kin about their religion in fear of rejection from the modern society. The 21st century has started to transition to a more sympathetic society and I believe if there is more awareness directed towards indigenous religions it would greatly benefit them and their society.
Policies have evolved over the century to tend to the concerns of the indigenous population. Originally they were indirect and ambiguous stating, “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof ”(Sacred Space and Religious Freedom In Native American Religions). This could be applied to most religions but in the case of Native American religions it did not enforce enough authority to promote a better lifestyle. Change started to rise through the persecutions of other religions within the century. A major sacred site within Native American religions is Devil’s Tower, which is sacred ground that belongs to the Lakota (Christopher McLeod, Director, In The Light of Reverence, 2001). The name that the Lakota give Devil’s Tower is Mato Tipila or “Lodge of the Bear”. The Lakota gather around the black hills in June to practice their sacred rituals. One of the them inv...


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...ck of opportunity and money because the majority of it is stolen from them through their ideas and culture. There should be a more respectful approach towards these tribes because it is rightfully their sacred grounds/objects to gain profit if they chose to. Outsiders should understand that not everything that indigenous populations practice is supposed to be shared. For their sense of community they practice these rituals and use sacred objects to preserve their culture that is constantly taken away from them.



Works Cited

-In The Light of Reverence. VHS. Directed by Christopher McLeod. Berkeley, CA: Sacred Land Film Project, 2001.
-Proirier, Lisa “Religious Appropriation Tinker” Class Lecture, Depaul University, Chicago, Il, 2013
-Proirer, Lisa “Sacred Space and Religious Freedom In Native American Religions” Class Lecture, Depaul University, Chicago, Il, 2013

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