This is a faithful transcription by Joseph Epes Brown of the words of Black Elk, a Sioux
holy man. At the time that he told his stories to Brown, Black Elk was one of the few if not
the only remaining man of his tribe to know his peoples religious rights and their meanings.
Brown lived for a time with Black Elk on the Sioux reservation in order to preserve these
rites for the sioux people and for for future generations of people everywhere.
The deep connection and reverence felt by Black Elk's people for the Earth and all of its
creatures shines forth on every page. People of all cultures and backgrounds will benefit from
the wisdom and the spirituality to be found here. This is an important book that deserves a
place in every seeker's library.
In this book, Tom Brown shares the philosophy and the teachings of a Native
American elder, Stalking Wolf, who he called Grandfather. He taught the
young Tom Brown to connect with and become part of the natural world that
surrounded him. From his connection to the natural world, he discovered
profound truths of spirit. Grandfather taught him a practical spirituality
that remains unseen by most modern Americans. This is the spirituality of
This book tells how Grandfather learned this philosophy of living. It tells
how Tom Brown learned this philosophy from Grandfather. and finally, it
tells readers how to discover this philosophy for themselves. This book is
very readable and the philosophy is both practical and profound. I
recommend this book to anyone interested in Native American spirituality.
In Native American Traditions Athur Versluis gives us a brief, but lucid and
concise introduction to a wide range of Native American traditions. He draws material
from cultures as diverse as the Inuit of the Polar regions, the Aztecs and Incas of
South America, tribes of the Eastern forestlands, and tribes of the Plains and the
Drawing on his years of experiences with Native American peoples and the wisdom of
well known healers and holy men such as Black Elk, he organizes the material into
concise and easy to read chapters. Topics include: The main features of Native American
cultures, their understanding of nature, fascinating ceremonies and rituals, warrior
traditions, shamanic and medical practices, religious beliefs and practices, sacred
sites and symbols, and much more.
The Theft of the Spirit has a message for our modern technological society. This is a message
of hope. The author teaches us through several moving stories of the Hopi struggle for
survival that we can use our own sense of community and tradition to conquor the emotional
pain and loss that result in the death of our spiritual lives. Community is strengthened
through the use of rituals, symbols, and myths.
Hammerschlag makes masterful use of the Hopi people as a mirror for the larger society to
show what happens when we lose our faith in our government, our church, and our family. We
become vulnerable and dispirited. Hammerschlag also uses the Hopi to show us that this does
not have to defeat us. In his own words at the close of his book:
No one can steal your spirit. You have to give it away. You can also take it
back. Find yours.
More than a hundred legends from over sixty North American tribes are represented here in
this fascinating book. The authors traveled to every region of the continent collecting
these stories. The profound respect the authors had for the people they met and their dedication
to their task really shows in this book. Here is a quote from the introduction to their book:
To help us learn and understand more about the life of the North American Indians, their
myths and legends are a rich source of their oral tradition, comparable to reading European
folklore and fairy tales. So superbly trained were the North American Indian tribal historians
that their acting and the mimicry of sounds portraying human and animal characters were limited
only by the imagination of the storytellers . . .
You will discover here how tribal traditions and cultures have been preserved from generation
to generation from their earliest beginnings in Alaska during the last Ice Age. From these, we
can gather greater understanding of the long heritage of Indian tribal life.
In The Book of the Hopi, elders of the ancient Hopi tribe of northern Arizona
reveal for the first time in written form the Hopi world-view of life. The Hopi have
kept this view a secret for countless generations, and this book was made possible only
as a result of their desire to record for future generations the principles of their
Road of Life.
The breaking of the Hopi silence is significant and fascinating because for the first
time, anthropologists, ethnologists, and anyone interested in the field of Native American
research have been given rich material showing the Hopi legends, th meaning of their religious
rituals and ceremonies, and the beauty of a conception of life within the natural world that
is completely untouched by the excesses of the materialistic world.
Tunkashila, a little stone, relates all the stories he has witnessed from the creation of
the Earth to the coming of white people and the end of the Indian peoples dream. In one
sweeping narrative, eighty Native American legends in fairy tale form tell the story of
Native Americans. The stories are lyrical and speak to the heart. They deserve to be read
slowly and with respect. You will hear the voices of grandfathers and elders as they pass on
their legends from one generation to the next. This passage is found on a flyleaf at the
beginning of the story:
A Sioux medicine man once stopped in a field of grass
to talk to a stone. Addressing it reverently, he called
it Tunkashila, which means grandfather.
"Oh, Grandfather, tell me how the world began".
And the stone spoke.
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