Native American Vs. Euro American World Views

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The differences in world views between Native American and Euro-Americans are vast. Major differences between these two cultures center around their perception of the world around them. For example, westerners who first settled in the New World had very different views in regards to the role that nature plays in everyday life. Euro-American’s attitude toward nature was very egotistical in that they believed it existed for the sole purpose of being used by humans, not only as a means of providing resources for survival but also to be profited from. In contrast, Native Americans believe nature to be a living entity in which resources were not to be profited from, but used with a reverent spirit of moderation, and only when necessary for survival. While Native American’s love of nature flowed over into how they worshiped their God. Euro-Americans followed harsh, rigid rules on what was considered appropriate worship, doing so strictly within the walls of churches. The Native way of worship was deemed pagan by westerners and their way of life savage, and thus the brutal process of “civilizing” Indians began. However, despite centuries of Euro-American domination and oppression, Native Americans culture has endured, retaining a love and reverence for nature, and maintaining the ability to see their God in its realms. Charles Eastman, a Native American field organizer for the Y.M.C.A., describes attempting to introduce Christianity and modern civilization to an Indian village. He illustrates being warmly received by the Indians community he visited, as they respectfully listened to his spiel on the benefits of the white man’s civilization and religion. An old chief addresses Eastman, and is said to have shown gladness not only toward Eastman’s desire to visit with the community but also that Eastman had found a religion and way of life that seemed good to
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