Exciting Ways To Experience The Native American Culture

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Exciting Ways To Experience The Native American Culture

Who said learning about the Native American culture is boring?

There are many exciting ways to learn about and appreciate the Native American culture. More than just reading textbooks, looking at pictures in the Internet, or watching videos, there are interactive and immersive activities that you can do for better appreciation of our ancient culture.

Below let’s check out some destinations, activities and ways you can experience Native American way of life.

Indian Pueblo Cultural Center

Found in Albuquerque, New Mexico, the Indian Pueblo Cultural Center is home to the Native Indian culture of the state’s 19 pueblos. There is a weekly performance held at the plaza and attended by indigenous groups. There’s research library and a museum that houses numerous exhibits and resources on the Indian Pueblo culture. There’s also an annual film festival that features Native American cinema. If you want to try authentic pueblo cuisine, then be sure to visit the cultural center’s in-house café.

Navajo Nation Fair

A must-see if you want a firsthand experience of the Navajo culture, the Navajo Nation Fair is an annual gathering and celebration held at Window Rock, Arizona. During this week-long celebration, the indigenous group descends to the capital of the Navajo Nation to showcase their culture and participate in various activities. Visitors can see events like traditional singing and dancing, parade, science fair, and a pageant. Of course, you can expect the usual activities in a fair like food stations, rides, etc.

Petroglyph National Monument

A trip to the Petroglyph National Monument is a great way to learn our country’s earliest settlers. Located in Albuquerque, New Mexico, the place is considered one of the largest petroglyph sites in the US. You might think that with its rugged terrain, the place should be great to drive your off-road truck equipped with a 30-inch LED light bar reviewed at http://lightbarreport.com/best-30-inch-led-light-bar-reviews/. Unfortunately, driving isn’t allowed. You really have to walk and follow the trail from the visitor center to the petroglyph sites.

Once on the cliff, you can see thousands of mysterious shapes and drawings of humans and animals etched into the stones. These stone markings date back to between 400 and 2,000 years

ago,

and show a record of the Native Americans. Some stones also bear marking of the Spanish colonists who traversed the lands around 16th century. Indigenous people regard the place as holy, so act accordingly when you get there.

Taos Pueblo

What better way to experience Native American culture than by immersing with the Taos Indians. Located in the Northern

New Mexico, the five-story adobe residential complex showcases the indigenous culture of Taos Indians. To date, the residential complex is home to about 150 Taos. The place has been their home for more than five decades now, making it one of the oldest communities in the country. And the good news is that it is open to the public seven days a week, except during some days when they hold tribal rituals usually in late winter and early spring.

These are just four great ways to immerse into the Native American culture. There are still many more events and destinations that we’ll feature in our future posts.

Best Ways to Experience Native American Culture

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Best Ways to Experience Native American Culture

There’s no better way to learn and appreciate the Native American culture than a firsthand experience of their way of life. Fortunately, there are many initiatives being put to help preserve, protect and make the fascinating culture and history of Native Americans accessible to all.

Visitors, enthusiasts and culture buffs have the opportunity to learn about the indigenous culture through immersive activities such as attending events, visiting living history museums, exploring ancient sites, viewing exhibits, and spending a day at a “pueblo” or a Native American settlement.

With so many things to see and do, make sure you plan your trip well. A paper planner like those reviewed at GetLifeYouDesire.com can help you in sorting out your schedule for this immersion. Write down your goals, like a bucket list, and cross each one out as you accomplish them. It’s also nice carry around a planner where you can write about your new discoveries and other stuff.

So, what are some events and places to experience Native American culture? Check out this list.

Cherokee Heritage Center (Tahlequah, Oklahoma)

Located at the foothills of the Ozark Mountains is the Cherokee Heritage Center. This expansive cultural site spans 18 hectares and is dedicated to preserve the artifacts and culture of the Cherokee tribe. Among its best features is the Diligwa, a living history exhibit that lets visitors experience how the 17th century Cherokee villages looked like. You can also see the daily life of our ancestors through craft-making demonstrations and storytelling.

Then, there’s also the Trail of Tears exhibit that depicts the tragic history of Cherokees, their removal from their ancestral lands in the 1800s. You should also not miss the cultural classes that promote the Native American arts such as basketry, pottery and crafts. The center also hosts art shows that feature contemporary and traditional Cherokee art. Be sure to mark the dates in your calendar or planner. However, if you don’t own a planner yet, you can visit this link https://getlifeyoudesire.com/best-hourly-planners-for-busy-women/ to find one that suits your preferences.

Gathering of Nations (Albuquerque, New Mexico)

Experience Native American culture in this annual fest held at Albuquerque, New Mexico. This annual event is attended by thousands of indigenous people coming from different tribes around the country. It’s a multi-day event that is filled with events that promote our ancient culture. Some highlights of the gathering are the drumming competitions, traditional dance, and songs. Over 3,000 performers from 500 indigenous tribes make the festivities very colorful. There’s also a bazaar of Native American crafts and products, such as pottery, jewelry and artworks. If you get hungry, don’t worry as there’s a banquet of traditional American cuisines.

Blackfeet Heritage Center (Browning, Montana)

A warm, traditional welcome awaits you at the Blackfeet Heritage Center. Situated on the Indian reservation, this cultural site lets you walk through the Tipi Village and Lodgepole Gallery. Here they showcase an array of indigenous crafts and drums made of bison hide and elk. You can also purchase them as keepsakes or remembrance. You can go on a cultural tour and see a number of historical sites around the reservation. Blackfeet also lets you feast on Indian cuisine and even experience sleeping in a tipi. A day at the heritage center immerses visitors to the rich customs, history, and culture of Native Americans.

Trials of Manhood for Indians

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Trials of Manhood for Indians

Most ancient cultures in the world have a rite of passage for boys; when they reach a certain age and strength, they would be given a quest or a task to do. When they finished this task, they were officially considered men by the people of their tribe. Sadly, in most Western cultures we have all but abandoned the notion of a “rite of passage.” We’ve replaced manhood with an extended boyhood, and never expect people to grow up and improve themselves. I’ve compiled some observations from my study of the Native American people, and I want to share some ideas I’ve had about how we can learn about rites of passage to adulthood!

The Quest

The main part of the journey to adulthood in Indian culture was The Quest. The quest that Indian boys undertook was simple, yet difficult to complete. The boy who wanted to be considered a man had to go on a 1-2 week journey by himself, building his own shelter and hunting his own food. During this time he would commune with the spirits and find his life purpose. Was he a hunter? Was he a warrior? Or was a musician or shaman, one who would guide the tribe spiritually? Maybe he would be a sportsman, one who played sports like ones you could find at patiosport.com… Or perhaps his purpose and goal was to be a chief or an elder in the tribe, making the day-to-day choices that kept the tribe alive. The spirits would tell him what his purpose was, and how he would accomplish his visions.

His New Name

Indian children were given a name as children, one that was given to their parents by the spirits. One of the reasons for this quest was to transition the child out of childhood and into adulthood, and to do this the boy needed a man’s name. No one got to choose their own name however… It was given them by the spirits on the quest. Often, you would make a name for yourself by your actions… Much like I’ve made a name for myself around my hometown for being great at indoor basketball… Thanks Patio Sport! Although you could not choose your name, your name might be influenced by the actions you performed, such as bravery in the hunt or in a fight.

The Return

After the quest was over, the new man would return to his tribe. A ceremony was held after he arrived, celebrating his transition into manhood and honoring his accomplishment in finishing the quest. The ceremony would also recognize the man’s new name, and discard his old childhood name. He would be added to the tribe as a contributing member, and the elders would consult among themselves and the spirits about his new role in the tribe, and what his primary job would be. It’s a real shame that we no longer perform such rites… They gave everyone a place in the tribe, and in the world around them.

Lessons We Can Learn from the Native Americans

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Lessons We Can Learn from the Native Americans

If you don’t like history, you’re throwing away a huge chance to learn about the things other people went through without having to go through that trouble yourself. Why would you miss out on a chance to learn from the past, if it meant that your future would be better? There are so many lessons that we can learn from the Native Americans that apply so well to modern day. I’ve studied a lot of the philosophy that the Indians had, and I want to share with you guys some of the lessons I learned. Here are some truths that you can apply to your own life!

Waste Not, Want Not

Maybe the Indians didn’t invent that saying, but they certainly practiced it. Whenever the Native American people killed an animal, they used every part of its body. It was considered disrespectful to the spirit of the animal to throw anything away, so everything was used. The meat was eaten, the bones could be used as tools, the brain was perfect for tanning leather, and the skin was used for tents or clothes. Even the sinew from the muscles that couldn’t be eaten was used for a sort of twine, to tie clothes together or to sew tents. Most modern cultures are far too wasteful, and we could take a lesson from the Indians here. Reuse water bottles, keep plastic containers, use less water for dishes… There are all sorts of ways to show respect to nature and keep things in balance.

Be One with the World

Our modern culture conquer nature; the Indians wanted to live side-by-side with it. It’s much better to try and be one with nature, rather than trying to control it. We tend to see so many animals as pests, but often they were here long before us and will be there after we’re gone. That being said, I am very glad that we have bug traps like the ones from http://insectmurderer.com, because some animals truly are pests! However, often we should just observe the nature around us and be at peace with it as much as possible.

Believe in the Spirits

I don’t know what your personal beliefs are, and I don’t want to contradict them. I do think it’s valuable to see the world as the Indians saw it; that there was a bit of God or “The Great Spirit” in everything. You could see it in the deer, or the trees, or the rivers. This is why they didn’t waste anything of what they killed, because it disrespected the gifts of the Great Spirit to throw anything away. I believe it is valuable to have that attitude towards nature, because it makes you respect it. You won’t disrespect something that has a personality and feelings of its own, would you? Nature is more of a living being than we often think. Maybe that’s why we have environmental problems; we have no respect for the spirit of nature.

Native American Indian Cultural Vacation Spots

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Native American Indian Cultural Vacation Spots

Some vacations are all about relaxing somewhere nice; you don’t need to learn anything, and you don’t need to do anything. However, sometimes it’s nice to take a vacation where you learn something new. I’ve taken a few vacations in the US where I just wanted to learn about Indian culture all over the country.

The US is a gigantic country. There is a joke that it’s the only place where you can move 3000 miles away and still be in the same country. Because of the massive size of the country, many Indian tribes did not have anything to do with each other, so their cultures never influenced each other. The Indians of the American Southwest are quite different than the Indians of the Northeast. But here are a few of my favorite Native American Cultural Vacation Spots.

New Mexico

New Mexico has one of the most interesting populations of Navajo people in the US. The city of Santa Fe is a wonderful glimpse into the culture that dominated the area hundreds of years ago. The turquoise jewelry is the hallmark of this tribe, and the beautiful designs and paintings that cover the rocks draw the eyes as well.

In addition, if you’re in New Mexico you might want to take a trip up north to Southern Colorado. There, you will find the Pueblo city of Mesa Verde. This tribe built clay houses right into the sides of the mountains, hundreds and hundreds of feet in the air. These “mesas” or “tables” hold large villages that were home to hundreds of people. They were mostly safe from invasion, and were protected by layers of ladders that traced the area. If you’re a thrill seeker, you’ll love the Pueblo dwellings.

Virginia

The first contact that the British colonies had with Native Americans was around the area that is now known as Virginia. These were the Powhatan Indians. Pocahontas is the most famous member of this tribe. Near Williamsburg, VA you will find an abundance of cultural history, both of the US and of the Native Americans. Jamestown features dig sites that constantly unearth pottery, and evidence of trade between the Englishman and the Indians. These tribes were largely matriarchal, and had views we would consider differently today in many cases. For example, they viewed menstruation positively, as a sign of new life and replacement of the old. This view is held today by Top Ladies Secret and other sites as well. We can learn a lot from their views!

Other Cultural Spots

You can find amazing cultural heritage in other places in the US as well, such as Alaska, Tennessee, and Kansas. Native Americans left their mark on the United States in the big way; most of the states are named after the tribes that once lived there. Anywhere you travel in the US, you will find cultural landmarks that point all the way back to the days of the Native Americans. Don’t just pass these by; take some time to learn about them!

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