Asian and Native American religions have a great deal of history behind them and they have many aspects that are very similar when you take a look at them side by side. Most of the Native American tribes have as many similarities as they do differences, so picking just one to compare with Asian religions is difficult. I will touch on a few Native American tribes and a few Asian religions for comparison. The first thing I thought of when comparing the two is the amount of emphasize they both put on nature. There is a story in the book from a Western Apache; Dudley Patterson’s grandmother that I thought was a good representation of their relationship with nature. Wisdom sits in places. It’s like water that never dries up. You need to drink water to stay alive, don’t you? Well, you also need to drink from places. You must remember everything about them. You must learn their names. You must remember what happened at them long ago. You must think about it and keep on thinking about it. Then your mind will become smoother and smoother. Then you will see danger before it happens. You will walk a long way and live a long time. You will be wise. People will respect you.(1 Russel) Nature is the main focus when you take a look at the Asian religions as well. For example, Shinto is a focus of harmony with nature. Daoism also places enormous importance on the significance of pulling out of the crowds to lead an introspective life and focus on the love of nature. This made me think about the Acoma Pueblo communities and how they blend into the surroundings high on the mesa away from others. The picture in the book is a good example of how similar the Chinese artists are able to capture the flows of qi through mountains, water, and trees in their paintings. The Dao motto says, “Follow what is natural”. Another similarity I found was the honoring of major points in the life cycle. The Shinto begin the rituals four months before the birth of a baby, when the soul is...
Cited: 1 Russel, George W. The Candle of Vision. Wheaton, IL: The Theosophical Publishing House, 1974. 8-9. Print.
2 Fisher, Mary P. Living Religions. Eighth ed. Upper Saddle River, New Jersey: Pearson Education, 2011. N. pag. Print.
3 Williamson, Mitch. Old Maps, Expeditions and Exporlations. N.p., 7 Mar. 2011. Web. 28 Mar. 2012. Path: http://mitchtestone.blogspot.com/.
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