Presentation on theme: "By Sera, Taylah and Tara. Youtube The Native Americans (also known as the Indians or the American Indians) are the original inhabitants of the Americas."— Presentation transcript:
By Sera, Taylah and Tara
The Native Americans (also known as the Indians or the American Indians) are the original inhabitants of the Americas (North, South and Central America including the Caribbean / West Indies Islands; all of which is also called the New World or the Western Hemisphere).
Native North Americans were the people that inhabited North America before the arrival of the Europeans in the fifteenth century. The North Americans have been known as Indians for a long time because of their ongoing belief that nature was sacred and that it had to be shared.
It is mainly agreed that North Americans came into the Western Hemisphere from Asia. From Asia they travelled through Baring Strait or the North Pacific Coast into a sequence of migrations. They crossed a land bridge into Alaska, from there they spread east and south (refer to map).
HOUSING: There were various types of American Indian homes - they adapted according to the climate and lifestyle of the particular tribe and their location. Different tribes had different weather to deal with, since the weather was so varied. For example, in the Arizona deserts, temperatures were known to hit 120 degrees Fahrenheit, and the Alaskan tundra, -50 was not uncommon. The Native Americans adapted their dwellings in order to survive these harsh climates.
Also, the assorted American Indian tribes had different traditional lifestyles. Some tribes were agricultural which meant they lived in settled villages and farmed the land for corn and vegetables. They wanted houses that would last a long time. Other tribes were more nomadic, moving frequently from place to place as they hunted and gathered food and resources. They needed houses that were portable or easy to build.
This type of housing is called a wikiup.
RELIGION/SPIRITUAL BELIEFS: Many followers of Native American spirituality, do not regard their spiritual beliefs and practices as a "religion" in the way in which many Christians do. Their beliefs and practices form a integral and seamless part of their very being. Estimates of the numbers of Native North Americans at the time of the European arrival/invasion in what is now the United States and Canada vary between 1.2 million.
Each group of people worshipped their own gods. All of these faiths did have some things in common though. All of them were polytheistic (they worshipped many gods). All of them thought of some of their gods as being representatives of natural things like rain or the sky or the earth. In these ways, these religions were like Chinese religion, Hinduism, African traditional religion, Greek or Roman religion.
They believed in: - the existence of spirit power in everything, which referred to by some Native Americans as wakan - the unity between the human world, nature, and the spirit world - the view of nature as the place where humans and spirits interact - an emphasis on living in balance and harmony with nature and with the spirit world - an interdependence of life forms
- an emphasis on society, communal harmony, kinship, a - an emphasis on society, communal harmony, kinship, and cooperation - the sacredness and spiritual significance of nature and the earth; particularly objects in nature such as mountains, rivers, rocks, stars, and plants; as well as many animals, such as eagles, hawks, crow, owls, and deer. - the view of everything in its physical sense, its subtle sense, and its spiritual sense
- an emphasis on self-discipline, and performing various tests of physical ordeals - purification practices, fasting, and vision-seeking - an emphasis on warrior culture - rituals, stories, dancing, art, chants, and music (mainly singing & drumming), - shamans - symbols such as the circle and the number four - the existence of a Great Power or Great Mystery, and various other gods - an emphasis on health
Death and Burial: Because they lived so close to nature, all Native American peoples from the Stone Age to the modern era knew that death from hunger, disease, or enemies was never far away. The various death customs and beliefs, which first evolved during the invasions of Asians from Siberia to Alaska across a land bridge during the last Ice Age at least 12,000 years ago, gave them the means to cope with that experience.
Individual tribes maintained their own death customs and adapted them to their regional environments into which they migrated, although such rituals and beliefs could pass from one group to the other through trade and intermarriage. Most Native American tribes believed that the souls of the dead passed into a spirit world and became part of the spiritual forces that influenced every aspect of their lives. Many tribes believed in two souls: one that died when the body died and one that might wander on and eventually die.
CLOTHING AND REGALIA: Originally, there were many different traditional clothing styles in North America. Nearly every Native American tribe had its own distinctive style of dress, and the people could often tell each other's tribal identities by looking at their clothes, headdresses, and ornamentation.
In most tribes, Native American men wore breechclouts or breechcloths (a long rectangular piece of hide or cloth tucked over a belt, so that the flaps fell down in front and behind), sometimes with leather leggings attached in colder climates.
Assiniboine tribe, circa 1885 From the Sioux tribe, circa 1875.
Most Native American women wore skirts and leggings, though the length, design, and material of the skirts differed from tribe to tribe. In some Indian cultures women's shirts were optional and were usually treated more like coats, while in others, women always wore tunics or mantles in public. And in other tribes women usually wore one-piece dresses instead, like this Cheyenne buckskin dress.
Nearly all Native Americans had some form of moccasin (a sturdy leather shoe) or mukluk (heavier boot), with the styles of footwear differing from tribe to tribe (as you can see from these mocasin pictures). Most tribes used cloaks in colder weather, but some of the northern tribes wore Inuit-style fur parkas instead.
Handmade beaded moccasins A Cheyenne buckskin dress
The Native Americans were in a near constant state of warfare with one another. Many tribes disappeared even before Columbus arrived in America, as a result of tribal conflict. Basically as cultures of nomadic hunter gatherers they were in constant competition over hunting grounds, with the stronger tribes exercising their control over the more fertile areas.
Not only did these tribes compete for food but also it became common practice to raid one another for women and slaves. Inbreeding in many tribes was a severe problem and child mortality rates were extremely high. When Lewis a Clark explored through North America many of the tribes welcomed the alliance with the "Americans" for the purpose of weapons to extract vengeance upon the various tribes that have harassed them in the pass.
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languages.org/clothing.htm 18 April 2011 Native American facts for kids 2011Native American clothing and Regalia om/Me-Nu/Native-American- Religion.html 18 April 2011 Encyclopedi a of Death and Dying 2011Native American Religion y-honor-tradition/preview- beadwork.html 18 April 2011 The Minneapoli s Institute of Arts Shared Beadwork Styles