April 14, 2009
January 10, 2010
By Dennis Gaffney
“Is the term Indian anachronistic, even offensive? What about American Indian? Is the more recent term Native American preferable, or simply more politically correct than proper”?
“…Moreover, a large number of Indians actually strongly object to the term Native American for political reasons. In his 1998 essay “I Am An American Indian, Not a Native American!”, Russell Means, a Lakota activist and a founder of the American Indian Movement (AIM), stated unequivocally, “I abhor the term ‘Native American.’” He continues:
It is a generic government term used to describe all the indigenous prisoners of the United States. These are the American Samoans, the Micronesians, the Aleuts, the original Hawaiians, and the erroneously termed Eskimos, who are actually Upiks and Inupiaqs. And, of course, the American Indian.
December 2, 2009
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There was another world before this one. But the people of that world did not behave themselves. Displeased, the Creating Power set out to make a new world. He sang several songs to bring rain, which poured stronger with each song. As he sang the fourth song, the earth split apart and water gushed up through the many cracks, causing a flood. By the time the rain stopped, all of the people and nearly all of the animals had drowned. Only Kangi the crow survived.
November 14, 2009
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The Apaches were nomadic hunter-gatherers – hunting of wild game and gathering of cactus fruits and other wild plant foods. . They chased any wild game located within their territory, especially deer and rabbits. When necessary, they lived off the land by gathering wild berries, roots, cactus fruit and seeds of the mesquite tree. They planted some corn, beans, and squash as crops. They were extremely hardy prior to the arrival of European diseases, and could live practically naked in zero temperature.
August 31, 2009
A totem can be the symbol of a tribe, clan, family or individual. Native American tradition provides that each individual is connected with nine different animals that will accompany each person through life, acting as guides. Different animal guides come in and out of our lives depending on the direction that we are headed and the tasks that need to be completed along our journey.
Native beliefs further explain that a totem animal is one that is with you for life, both in the physical and spiritual world. Though people may identify with different animal guides throughout their lifetimes, it is this one totem animal that acts as the main guardian spirit. (more…)
August 28, 2009
“The Morning Star”
It was a warm summer’s night and many of the Indians had forsaken their airless tipis to sleep under the open sky among the cool, sweet smelling prairie grass. One, a young girl called Feather Woman, awoke early. It was not yet dawn and the morning star had just begun to rise above the distant horizon. The girl propped herself on one elbow and watched the star as it climbed steadily into the dark sky. She thought that she had never seen anything quite so beautiful.
‘I love the morning star,’ she whispered to herself. ‘How clear and bright it is! If only I could find a husband half as handsome as that star, how happy I should be!’ Her loving gaze followed the star until it faded into the paler light of the coming day. (more…)
August 25, 2009
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Don’t be afraid to cry. It will free your mind of sorrowful thoughts. – Hopi
Day and night cannot dwell together. – Duwamish
It is better to have less thunder in the mouth and more lightning in the hand. – Apache
They are not dead who live in the hearts they leave behind. – Tuscarora
All plants are our brothers and sisters. They talk to us and if we listen, we can hear them. – Arapaho
Tell me and I’ll forget. Show me, and I may not remember. Involve me, and I’ll understand. – Tribe Unknown.
Before eating, always take time to thank the food. – Arapaho