A Child, an Elder, and the Light from an Ancient Sky
Author: Kent Nerburn
Pubpsher: New World Library
Category: Social Science
A haunting dream that will not relent pulls author Kent Nerburn back into the hidden world of Native America, where dreams have meaning, animals are teachers, and the “old ones” still have powers beyond our understanding. In this moving narrative, we travel through the lands of the Lakota and the Ojibwe, where we encounter a strange little girl with an unnerving connection to the past, a forgotten asylum that history has tried to hide, and the complex, unforgettable characters we have come to know from Neither Wolf nor Dog and The Wolf at Twilight. Part history, part mystery, part spiritual journey and teaching story, The Girl Who Sang to the Buffalo is filled with the profound insight into humanity and Native American culture we have come to expect from Nerburn’s journeys. As the American Indian College Fund has stated, once you have encountered Nerburn’s stirring evocations of America’s high plains and incisive insights into the human heart, “you can never look at the world, or at people, the same way again.”
For many people the Sioux, as warriors and as buffalo hunters, have become the symbol of all that is Indian colorful figures endowed with great fortitude and powerful vision. They were the heroes of the Great Plains, and they were the villains, too. Royal B. Hassrick here attempts to describe the ways of the people, the patterns of their behavior, and the concepts of their imagination. Uniquely, he has approached the subject from the Sioux's own point of view, giving their own interpretation of their world in the era of its greatest vigor and renown –the brief span of years from about 1830 to 1870. In addition to printed sources, the author has drawn from the observation and records of a number of Sioux who were still living when this book was projected, and were anxious to serve as links to the vanished world of their forebears. Because it is true that men become in great measure what they think and want themselves to be, it is important to gain this insight into Sioux thought of a century ago. Apparently, the most significant theme in their universe was that man was a minute but integral part of that universe. The dual themes of self-expression and self-denial reached through their lives, helping to explain their utter defeat soon after the Battle of the Little Big Horn. When the opportunity to resolve the conflict with the white man in their own way was lost, their very reason for living was lost, too. There are chapters on the family and the sexes, fun, the scheme of war, production, the structure of the nation, the way to status, and other aspects of Sioux life.
“Do not begrudge the white man his presence on this land. Though he doesn’t know it yet, he has come here to learn from us.” — A Shoshone elder The genius of the Native Americans has always been their profound spirituality and their deep understanding of the land and its ways. For three decades, author Kent Nerburn has lived and worked among the Native American people. Voices in the Stones is a unique collection of his encounters, experiences, and reflections during that time. He takes us inside a traditional Native feast to show us how the children are taught to respect the elders. He brings us to an isolated prairie rock outcropping where a young Native man and his father show us how the power of ceremony connects the present with the ancient voices of the past. At a dusty roadside café he introduces us to an elder who remembers the time when his ancestors could talk to animals. In these and other deeply touching stories, Nerburn reveals the spiritual awareness that animates all of Native American life, and shows us how we have much to learn from one another if only we have the heart to listen.
At once spiritual and practical, Letters to My Son has been beloved by readers from all walks of life, including single mothers seeking guidance in raising a son, fathers looking to share a voice of clarity about life’s most important issues, and young men wanting an intelligent, sensitive, and streetwise companion on the journey toward a worthy manhood. In this twentieth anniversary edition, Kent Nerburn adds to his classic reflections on love, marriage, travel, money and wealth, tragedy and suffering, spirituality, sex, and the true meaning of strength, with new chapters on sexual identity and the difficulty of moving on (from relationships, homes, and stages of life). Unique in its profound simplicity and timeless insight, Letters to My Son is a book to savor and a gift to give to anyone looking for clear and gentle guidance on the big issues in life.
The Pawnee Mythology, originally published in 1906, preserves 148 tales of the Pawnee Indians, who farmed and hunted and lived in earth-covered lodges along the Platte River in Nebraska. The stories, collected from surviving members of four bands-Skidi, Pitahauirat, Kitkehahki, and Chaui-were generally told during intermissions of sacred ceremonies. Many were accompanied by music. George A. Dorsey recorded these Pawnee myths early in the twentieth century after the tribe's traumatic removal from their ancestral homeland to Oklahoma. He included stories of instruction concerning supernatural beings, the importance of revering such gifts as the buffalo and corn, and the results of violating nature. Hero tales, forming another group, usually centered on a poor boy who overcame all odds to benefit the tribe. Other tales invited good fortune, recognized wonderful beings like the witch women and spider women, and explained the origin of medicine powers. Coyote tales were meant to amuse while teaching ethics. George A. Dorsey (1868-1931) was a distinguished anthropologist and journalist who also wrote about the traditions of the Arapahos, Arikaras, and Osages. Douglas R. Parks is a professor of anthropology and associate director of the American Indian Studies Research Institute at Indiana University. He is the editor of James R. Murie's Ceremonies of the Pawnee (Nebraska 1989) and the editor and translator of Myths and Traditions of the Arikara Indians (Nebraska 1996).
Seldom does a book come along that speaks to the core issues of life with such clarity and wisdom. This profound book is deeply informed by the spiritual traditions of the West, the Far East, and the Native Americans, with whom the author has worked. It is a small treasure of wisdom about life’s deepest issues. From the Book . . . ON EDUCATION & LEARNING The true measure of your education is not what you know, but how you share what you know with others. ON MONEY People who measure their money against their desires will never be happy, because there will always be another desire waiting to lure them. People who measure their money against their needs can gain control over their lives by gaining control over their needs. ON LOVE Love has its own time, its own season, and its own reasons for coming and going. You cannot bribe it or coerce it or reason it into staying. If it chooses to leave your heart or the heart of your lover, there is nothing you can do and nothing you should do. Be glad that it came to live for a moment in your life. If you keep your heart open, it will surely come again.
Release on 2008-01-01 | by Clark Wissler,D. C. Duvall
Author: Clark Wissler,D. C. Duvall
Pubpsher: U of Nebraska Press
Category: Social Science
Mythology of the Blackfoot Indians, originally published in 1908 by the American Museum of Natural History, introduces such figures as Old Man, Scar-Face, Blood-Clot, and the Seven Brothers. Included are tales with ritualistic origins emphasizing the prototypical Beaver-Medicine and the roles played by Elk-Woman and Otter-Woman, as well as a presentation of Star Myths, which reveal the astronomical knowledge of the Blackfoot Indians. Narratives about Raven, Grasshopper, and Whirlwind-Boy account for conditions in humanity and nature. Many of the stories in the concluding group, such as ?The Lost Children? and ?The Ghost-Woman,? were tales told to Blackfoot children. ø These narratives were collected early in the twentieth century from the Piegans in Montana and from the North Piegans, the Bloods, and the Northern Blackfoot in Canada. Most were translated by D. C. Duvall and revised for Mythology of the Blackfoot Indians by Clark Wissler. Darrell Kipp provides an introduction to the new Bison Books edition.
Mythology of the Blackfoot Indians, originally published in 1908 by the American Museum of Natural History, introduces such figures as Old Man, Scar-Face, Blood-Clot, and the Seven Brothers. Included are tales with ritualistic origins emphasizing the prototypical Beaver-Medicine and the roles played by Elk-Woman and Otter-Woman, and a presentation of Star Myths, which reveal the astronomical knowledge of the Blackfoot Indians. Narratives about Raven, Grasshopper, and Whirlwind-Boy account for conditions in humanity and nature. Many of the stories in the concluding group-like "The Lost Children" and "The Ghost-Woman"-were tales told to Blackfoot children. Clark Wissler notes that these narratives were collected very early in the twentieth century from the Piegans in Montana and from the North Piegans, Bloods, and Northern Blackfoot in Canada. Most were translated by D. C. Duvall and revised for Mythology of the Blackfoot Indians by Wissler. Wissler (1870-1947) was curator at the American Museum of Natural History and chairman of the Department of Anthropology at Columbia University. Among his major works are North American Indians of the Plains and Man and Culture. Introducing this Bison Book edition is Alice B. Kehoe, a professor of sociology and anthropology at Marquette University and the author of North American Indians: A Comprehensive Account.
Pamela Sargent doesn't write showily and doesn't rely on action set-pieces to make her fiction. She creates original and intriguing premises and she uses fascinating and convincing detail along with well-executed and believable characterization to tell stories that deliver sneakily powerful visions of imaginary reality. This alternate-historical take on the frontier expansion of post-Civil War America takes us to a place we hadn't expected but can still see as a possibly better world than the one we know. Sargent is an SF writer but she works magic with her imagination and we're the richer for it.