American Indian belief in Reincarnation

Discussion in 'Reincarnation, Religion and Spirituality' started by Deborah, Jun 21, 2005.

  1. Deborah

    Deborah Executive Director Staff Member

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    You might want to check out the two books I saw at Barne's and Noble. I almost bought one - but am deep into Freke's books at the moment. They were both about Cherokee spirituality, belief's and rituals.

    Julie sent me a wondferul video about American Indian belief's and Dance. In it is the following -

    The Prelude to rebirth

    "Grandson, you have heard the voice of other generations.
    Strong as the North wind, soft as the whisper of a willow tree.

    You have traveled through the shadows of the past,
    And you walk into the Light of a new day.


    I also liked this -

    A man must look beyond the circle that is his life - the circle that never ends.
     
  2. Tinkerman

    Tinkerman Administrator Staff Member Super Moderator

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    Deborah, I've not found anything yet. But I want to share with you some interesting things I did this past month.

    First, I was researching museums for a civic project I am apart of. My task was researching museums through the Wind River Valley of Wyoming. Specifically looking for reminants of the Kansas Tribes that went west to avoid the white man's encroachment. Mainly the Arapho and Shoshone. It was truely a sacred journey for me and as I've said above I am so enthralled by it, I feel deep kinship to it. While on the Wind River Reservation I spoke to several people about their current lives and the history that they once had. But never did I think to ask about reincarnation, RATS!! I wish now I would have...certainly the learned people I spoke with would have known. But I have the ability to recontact them and it will be one of the first discussions.

    Second, the retreat I attended had a deep spiritual connection to the Native peoples. Including as I mentioned in earlier posting a late night ceremonial drum dance. No words or time can begin to describe it. Skeptical at first, I participated with all my heart. Never, ever underestimate the power of the Native beliefs and spirits. Other ceremonies involved the directions and the earth and how they used them to find balance in their lives.

    It is my belief, my gut feeling that their understanding of the spirit world and the return of ancestors was and is in keeping with how we verbalize reincarnation. Though some of the terms are differing I see the same mystical approach to it. I believe it, somehow.

    One last bit of numinous thought. I have for sometime felt a connection to the ancient people. I feel this place is apart of me. And it seems only natural to me that the Native souls would in deed return to us and we to them. I believe it only natural for my soul to have walked this land 800 years ago and more. I walk this land now with a reverence only an ancient soul could feel. What purpose would there be to limit their souls to only the blood lines...I know it doesn't happen in any other forms or definitions. White, red, yellow or black it matters not to the soul...it simply brings other perspectives and kharmic knowledge.

    One last thing. As I slept in my cabin deep in the woods I often dreamt of ancient times...I journaled them and was blest to remember some of them. One morning my cabin mate from New York said "Tinkerman you talked to me in your sleep last night". Alittle worried of what I might have said I asked how he could hear me through the walls. He said it was almost dream like but very much real and audible from my room. He said I spoke in a Native language and very clearly was talking to him. He stated that i gave him a Native name that he interpreted as "Compass Heart". I asked if he could remember the specific words, thinking I could search for theit native origin and perhaps see if my connection might be to a specific tribe of people. But he could not. He was truely touched by this and I could tell his sincerety and the reality in his voice. Me....well, I was also touched and reassured that indeed there are things just below the surface that I am only now finding. How wonderful this journey is.

    Tinkerman
     
  3. Lights

    Lights Lights

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    As I get older, the more I wish I knew more about Cherokee religion. It seems at times part of me is missing. I don't know if that makes any sense, but I feel this at times. I have some Native blood (don't know how much, but people do ask me if I am part Indian), and I really would have liked to have learned things in my childhood but was "raised white", so I must try to piece it together as I am able. I was really glad to know that at least some tribes do believe in reincarnation.
     
  4. Denomar

    Denomar Senior Registered

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    :) That's incredible Deborah! I have Cherokee blood along with a little Shoshone and Chickasaw, but it would mainly be Tsalagi (Cherokee).

    I don't have any names as some of the records were lost when my grandmother divorced my grandfather and moved back to the UK (my grandfather was in the American Air Force and was stationed in England where he met my grandmother). However I believe it was my great great great grandfather who was called Silver Eagle or something along those lines.

    My Cherokee name is Head In Clouds or Asgaliyuuni-Tsila.

    The Cherokee language itself is quite confusing, but wonderful to listen to. :)
     
  5. Deborah

    Deborah Executive Director Staff Member

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    The Kutchin - tribes in the Northwestern Territories of Canada -- call a reborn person a natli and believe that the reincarnation of the soul from body to body must occur within a year of death from the previous body. Although there are exceptions. They pay close attention to a child's first words as well as a womans dreams during pregnancy. I find the fact that they are watching -and paying attention very interesting.
     
  6. Deborah

    Deborah Executive Director Staff Member

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    Anyone else notice that the Kutchin say it must be within a year for rebirth and Ian Stevenson and Jim B Tucker's research suggests the average turn around time is 15 months? I find it interesting when cultural belief's and research concur. *S*S*S*S.
     
  7. JulieZ

    JulieZ ******

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  8. Lights

    Lights Lights

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    Hi Denomar.

    I wish I could find a way to hear some Tsilagi. I have a friend who lives not too far from the reservation where much of the eastern band lives and I wish we could have got up there for a bit. Unfortunately, where I live, there isn't a lot of information available--once I get my own computer, I plan to see what I can find online.

    Hi Deborah, after so long.:) Your Great Grandfather was Cheif John Ross of the Cherokee Nation?! How wonderful. I have read a bit about him and admire him a great deal.
     
  9. Sestra

    Sestra New Member

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    Info on Cherokee and Choctaw Beliefs

    Hi Deborah,

    Perhaps I can help here.

    I get a newsletter from this shaman where I have learned amazing things about Cherokee and Choctaw beliefs and rituals. I have also learned so much about how the changes in earth itself affect us. Here is his website,address for the newsletter, and his credentials. You can read past newsletters on his website.


    This newsletter is offered with prayers for healing, growth and development by Jim Pathfinder Ewing (Nvnehi Awatisgi), a member of the Southern Cherokee Tribe & Associated Bands in Texas. He is Ceremonial Elder of the Manataka American Indian Council in Hot Springs, Ark., and a member of the Bear Clan Medicine Society in Russellville, Ark. Reiki, Shamanism, Energy Medicine. E-mail: blueskywaters@bellsouth.net P.O. Box 387, Lena, MS 39094 USA; phone: 601-654-3301; http://www.blueskywaters.com/
     
  10. Deborah

    Deborah Executive Director Staff Member

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    HI Sestra,

    Thank you so much for the information. I took a quick peek at the link you provided and will spend more time reviewing it this weekend. I will post my findings should something new arise. I appreciate the post and the information. Thank You.

    Research is important - finding the time is the hard part. It may take me a while before I actually get around to it. But I will :):):)
     
  11. Tinkerman

    Tinkerman Administrator Staff Member Super Moderator

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    Hi Deborah...just curious where your interest in this thread has lead you in recent times. T-man
     
  12. Athlynne

    Athlynne Senior Registered

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    Great topic. My dad has experienced memories of a past life as a Native American in which he was trampled to death by stampeding horses. As a result, he's rather afraid of horses, but he's been facing this fear and now even says he'd like to ride eventually.

    The other result of that life is his interest in Native American beliefs and history, and the deep respect he has for them. His family has a bit of Native American blood, Blackfoot or Crowe, I can never remember which, and my parents and I love visiting reservations to hear the storytellers and support the artists. Once we took my little niece Lea (she was 6 then, 7 now) since she was learning about Native Americans in school, and she loved hearing the stories and talking to the people there about what she's learned. I'm glad she's learning to appreciate other cultures at such a young age...
     
  13. Deborah

    Deborah Executive Director Staff Member

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    HI Tman,

    I am traveling to Italy this summer for vacation - but also to research my last past life in Northern Italy. My thoughts are to travel to Oklahoma and the surrounding areas in about a year or two and do the necessary footwork in order to do further research for both the Indian and Slave life times that preceded Italy.

    It seems to me that actually being there will lend more information and validation than any text book or on line resource. It has been a long process for me. Especially when I put into perspective the time that has passed and the phases that I have gone through personally. My first experience of living with the Indians was 1987. That was almost 20 years ago. In reflection -past life experiences are definitely a process.

    Living in a country where immediacy is demanded and expected - patience is required. I am learning to have more. Perhaps today is a good day to meditate. It has been months since I took the time.

    Namaste Tman. It's always good to see you here. :)
     
  14. Midnight.Sapphires

    Midnight.Sapphires Senior Registered

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    Deborah...

    I hope you don't mind if I repost this. I think it's relevant to the subject. I had originally posted this in the Book section but received no replies. This was taken from from the Lakhota.Com forum, a forum run by a Native Lakhota woman from the Pineridge Reservation (I think that's where she's from).


    The above is in reference to a book that can be ordered online(the information is in my earlier post). I think this would make for a fascinating read.
     
  15. tiltjlp

    tiltjlp A Recycled Soul

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    What an absolutely wonderful thread. My maternal great grandparents were full-blooded Penobscott Iroquois, who I recall meeting once. When my grandmother married, she gave up her heritage, and became Americanized. Although my grandfather died in 1933, she never returned to her cultural ways, and never would speak of them. All she ever told me was that her Iroquois name was Delicate Flower. I asked her to give me an Iroquois name, and she laughed and called my Sweet Tooth, probably because of my love of candy.

    It wasn't until after my father suffered a massive stroke in 1988 that any interest in my Native American heritage resurfaced. Sadly, any information my father might have been able to share with me was lost. This thread has awoken my desire to learn of my heritage, and I'll share whatever I may find. I can tell you that most every tribe believed in some form of reincarnation, and not just in human form. They also had a deep affection and connection to nature in every sense, especially weather and the wind.

    John
     
  16. tanguerra

    tanguerra Moderator Emeritus

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    Past life Indian Warrior memory

    I have an odd one. One time, in this life, I was in a bit of a state as I was quitting smoking and also going through a romance related upset and was all worked up and stressed out and feeling very emotionally distressed. I went out to sit quietly on the verandah at a friend's house to get a breath of air and try to calm myself down. I was looking at clouds when I remembered being an American Indian man who was sitting in the snow, in hiding, up in the trees on a hill overlooking an indian village at night. He was waiting for another man to come out of his tee-pee because he was going to shoot him (with an arrow) for some vendetta reason or other - not sure of the details and not even sure that he was that sure of all the wherefores either. A matter of high honour of some sort between the two groups of people. I had the sense it had been going on for a long time. Perhaps the original reason for it had got lost somewhere?

    He had been sitting there silently in the snow waiting for several days without eating, drinking, sleeping or making a sound because the other guy knew they were after him and was very wary. He was also in a bit of a state with hunger and stress but suddenly we were 'aware' of each other. I was remembering him and he somehow knew I was there remembering him, if that makes any sense. He thought he was having some sort of vision (which he was really) but was outraged that he would be a weak woman who was all upset about a matter of the heart. I remember him thinking that surely in the future he, such a big, brave, strong man would not become a woman!!! He considered this a bit of a backward step.

    I on the other hand retorted to him (mentally - however you describe it) if he was so very superior what was he doing trying to kill someone? He seemed a bit dumbfounded by this question. He had never questioned this (he was fairly young) and considered it his duty and a matter of honour to be brave and strong and so forth on behalf of his people. We had a wordless debate about the merits of learning to struggle with complex emotional issues and the merits of solving problems with violence and which was more difficult or worthwhile. It kind of faded out there. My friend (in real life) came out to chat with me on the verrandah and I lost 'the connection'.

    Some years later I 'heard' from this guy again. He was sitting in ceremony presumably in some type of trance state. He was now somewhat older and involved in making an important decision to do with a dispute with another tribe (maybe the same ongoing dispute?). He wanted to consult me (his "spirit woman" - or however he would have described it) on an important matter. I again counselled him to pursue the way of peace and not to resort to violence to solve problems because vendettas can become endless and violence is never a cure for violence.

    I have the sense that this was all a very long time ago, before the arrival of Europeans in the Americas. Certainly white people did not seem to figure in this guy's life in any way shape or form.
     
  17. Wulfie

    Wulfie Dreamer

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    I intend this post toward those doing research on Native American past lives.

    My Mother was Miqmaq which is one of the seven Algonquin Nations. The others are Maliseet, Abenaki, Passamaquoddy, Penobscot, Montagnais, and Naskapi. It was the Algonquins who met Columbus and, at the time, there were about 100 languages among the Miqmaq alone. My Dad was Lakota and Scot and there are upwards of 264 Siouian languages and dialects (with its root language being shared by several Algonquin tongues), most of which were oral rather than written, though there was a lot of art. The same is true of other Nations. There are languages within languages and most of the Native’s weren’t allowed to speak their own language let alone learn to write or read in it. So most of what is available was written by white people, or perhaps a better word, Europeans, who interject their own translations to what they learned about Native American traditions, you get a mix of what's true and what's not. And nowadays there's a lot of material offered up as being truly representative of a particular Nation but, in fact, it's a watered down version or colored version, made up by newagers or wannabees. And even some of the older texts came after forced conversions to christianity. (The Cherokee Nation, for example, is VERY christian, as are many of the south western tribes. Coeur d'Arlene Indians are another example.) So it's hard to do accurate research if you don't, at least, have a little back ground in the area.

    Nations varied from each other and even within themselves on many levels. Some nomadic clans, for instance, buried their dead. While settled clans would burn bodies to keep animals away and prevent contamination and sickness in the area that they were drinking, foraging, and living in. Some Nations, that someone here called Bone Pickers I think, dismantled the bodies to protect them from desecration by animals and others and also to assure that the Spirit moved on to the next world, rather than get ‘stuck’ here. Some Nations were matriarchal and others patriarchal and some swapped these around during war times or famine. Not to mention tribal mingling to join clans or prevent the loss of bloodlines or to forcefully integrate clans during war times. Contrary to popular belief Native Americans weren't all love and light; they had wars too.

    Another thing to consider, at least in regards to the Trail of Tears, is that sometimes children, whose parents or family died, were adopted by other Nations and taken to different reservation lands. There are Rolls available on-line that can be searched through of the various nations.

    Some good sources of information are the papers, dairies, etc of settlers and Jesuits. A favorite source of mine is ethnologist writers like Frances Densmore (off the top of my head) who presents the facts without coloring them with their religious or other views. Robert Moss, a writer about Dreams, often lists great resources for research, though he favors the Iroquoian nations. And believe it or not, books on native healing and herbalism are great as far as resources. I highly recommend Stephen Buhner’s three books on Native plant ways. He always gives detailed sources and an extensive Bibliography; though someone looking for an easy or fun read, might not appreciate him.

    For those interested specifically in Cherokee traditions I’d suggest J.T. Garrett’s books. He includes a lot of information about the Trail of Tears intermixed in his text. He’s a traditional Story Teller so likes to mix things together.

    The site Nativetech.org is an awesome resource. Though it focuses on Eastern Woodland Nations there are threads within threads that offer referrals about other Tribal customs. There are a lot of researchers there who are glad to help as long as they are approached respectfully. As far as languages, there were quite a few yahoo groups focused on preserving, teaching, and sharing languages; Cherokee and Siouian languages among them.

    I hope this is helpful to those interested.

    Wulfie

    PS Sorry this is choppy my server is giving me fits today!
     
  18. tiltjlp

    tiltjlp A Recycled Soul

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    Thanks for your wonderful post Wulfie. While I'm part Iroquois, I was unfamiliar with Robert Moss. I'll now be able to do more research about my heritage. While I book marked all your references, the one pertaining to the Iroquois is greatly appreciated. Thanks again.

    John
     
  19. Wulfie

    Wulfie Dreamer

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    Hi John,

    You might want to look at books by Carleton Burke, Ken Carey, Bill Lund, Frances Jennings. I heard that they're using the book Iroquois Indian Myths and Legends by Lewis Spence at the University but haven't seen the book myself. Alanson Skinner has a couple of books out, I think. Indian Captive: The Story of Mary Jemison by Lois Lenski is, I believe, about Mary's life as a captive among the Iroquois, but I couldn't bet my life on that.

    You could also see if you could find anything on line about the Six Nations Indian Museum. There's a historical society run by the Wolf Clan, in NY, and you might be able to find stuff about that on line; last I knew the leader was Twilah Nitsh, not sure of the spellng, who does a lot of work nowadays with Brooke Medicine Eagle. I can't vouch for either of these women, or Jamie Sams, who's a member of the group. I do know that they have correspondance courses and meetings and such. (they strike me as very newage and expensive but whatever works, right?) Look for things about the Iroquois Confederacy, tho do stay away from the hate groups, of which there are plenty. Back in the late sixties and early seventies it was in style to claim cherokee heritage. Nowadays it's cool to be lakota for some reason.

    Moss's book Dreamways of the Iroquois might help you a lot as, unlike his other books, it focuses nearly entirely on that nation. After a while you'll start picking up common words like longhouse, for example, and be able to narrow your search even further.

    Is the interest in Iroquois past life related or heritage related? I was confused because I thought you said you were penobscot by heritage. But my point was going to be, if it is other life related, make sure your write things down first THEN research them so you won't be influenced by what you read. Just a suggestion.

    Wulfie
     
  20. Wulfie

    Wulfie Dreamer

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    Oh, I had a thought mostly to Deborah and a couple others who were talking about reincarnation among native americans and why there isn't a lot of talk about it. After thinking about it I realized people might not realize that it would more likely fall under Ancestral worship or something along those lines. Many, many Nations believed that we are our own ancestors, that we come back within the Nation, clan, or family. That's part of the reasoning behind the whole Seven Generations thing; you're not only taking care of the future children, you're making sure you, in your next life, have something to return to. A lot of westerners tended to think this was about Ancestral Worship when it wasn't but that's how it appeared to them.

    So you might find more on the subject if you research it with that in mind.

    Wulfie
     

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