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Native American Traditions
and the "men's movement"

We also poke fun at our use of these traditions.
Copyright © 1993 by Pete Sinclair, author of King, Warrior, Magician ... Weenie

Talking Sticks. Sweat Lodges. Vision Quests. Is use of these traditions spiritual theft by "wannabes"? Articles here explore facets of this important issue.


What's here? For starters, we offer an interview with Lakota Elder Wallace Black Elk about the use of Lakota rituals and traditions in "Men's Work."

Ron Knobbe, head of a Mental Health Clinic for the St. Croix Tribe in Wisconsin, argues strongly in "Native American Traditions: Honoring or Exploitation?" that "We as white men need to be express a greater deal of sensitivity towards our Native American friends, by demonstrating more respect than we have towards them. ... I believe we are doing violence by using Native American rubrics as the while male dominant culture. We are again the aggressor as opposed to the student learner. We need to adopt the spirituality of humbly asking, of listening and learning."

Copyright © 1993 by Pete Sinclair, author of King, Warrior, Magician ... Weenie
Halim Dunsky disagrees. In "A Response to Ron Knobbe" he argues: "A carelessly superficial spirituality dishonors everyone. But when a person is making a sincere approach to the other world, it doesnít matter what the door. ... Itís also important to remember that Spirit is associated with place as well as with ancestors. When peoples migrate, they connect with their new home in both its outer and inner aspects, and it is entirely appropriate that they find life in ritual forms that are native to the place they have come to."

Author Jed Diamond examines this further, in his article "Becoming Native to Your Place."

Neither Wolf Nor Dog
by Kent Nerburn
(order on-line)
We also present reviews of a sampling of books by Native Americans, and authors respected by Native Americans, in order to promote respect for, and a deeper understanding of, Native American traditions. These include Gift of Power by Archie Lame Deer, (order on-line) Neither Wolf Nor Dog: On Forgotten Roads with an Indian Elder by Kent Nerburn, (order on-line) The Native American Sweat Lodge: History and Legends, by Joseph Bruchac (order on-line) and The Lakota Sweat Lodge Cards, by Archie Lame Deer (order on-line)

And on The Microsoft Network:

We invite you to check out our Native American Traditions Bulletin Board on the Men's Forum. What do you think of men's use of these traditions? Come and share your thoughts!

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