CSU - Dominguez hills
Popular in Course
verified elite notetaker
Popular in Department
This 11 page Study Guide was uploaded by smartwriter Notetaker on Sunday November 15, 2015. The Study Guide belongs to a course at a university taught by a professor in Fall. Since its upload, it has received 20 views.
Reviews for ANT101_FinalPaper
Report this Material
What is Karma?
Karma is the currency of StudySoup.
You can buy or earn more Karma at anytime and redeem it for class notes, study guides, flashcards, and more!
Date Created: 11/15/15
P a g e | 1 Daniel Hutton FinalCulturalResearchPaper Daniel Hutton Ashford University ANT: 101 Introduction to Cultural Anthropology Professor Chad Goings P a g e | 2 Daniel Hutton FinalCulturalResearchPaper According to the history of the Navajo Tribe, the Holy People lived in the underworld and helped by guiding the First Man and First Woman to earth (McCoy 1988). The Holy People are said to be attracted to songs, dances, and chants during the ceremony along with the creation of Sand painting. The Sand painting is used in the healing process of the ceremony to draw a picture that tells a story of the Holy People. The Navajo culture have amazed so many people to how beautifully constructed the rituals are performed. Although, the ritual has been passed on from generation to generation, how the Navajo rituals are ways of communication has been questioned by so many. Many believe that it way for the patient to come into “…harmony… ” with the universe (Klukhohn and Leighton 1962). The hypothesis for the question was presented based on exploration of the culture done by researchers; concluding that, the Navajo rituals are a way of communication to their ancestors/the Holy People, who are worshiped in return of good lucks for the Navajo Community. It is believed that through this ceremony, people are cleansed from bad spirit and good luck is brought upon the family. For example, the rituals are performed on pregnant women, young men going to the army, and sick people. Naturally speaking, the most intriguing part of their belief is the ceremonial concepts of healing people through the performance of these rituals. The Native Americans are known for being the first people on the land before the Europeans and Spanish came and invaded. Although, Native Americans are known for the different tribes, the paper will be focusing more on the Navajo Tribe also known as P a g e | 3 Daniel Hutton FinalCulturalResearchPaper the largest Native American Society in the United States. The Navajos are located in the north region up by Arizona, New Mexico, Utah, etc. After the Spanish had settled into the Navajo society, there were some hostility taking place between the two groups and then came along the Americans who then demanded for the land. The Americans had invaded because of the tribal refusal to surrender the land, which was what led to the Long Walks. The Long Walk took place between 1863 and 1864; the goal of the walk to Bosque Redondo was to withdraw the Navajos from their land. In order for the plan to go into action, on October 31, 1862, the establishment of the Fort Sumner was declared and war was made against the Mescalero Apache and Navajo Indian tribes (Robert 2004). As shown in figure 1, a 300 miles route was walked by children, women, and men for about two months. Once they reached the destination, an estimation of 200 people had died from starvation. A couple years later had gone by when the United States decided to introduce a treaty in1868 that allowed the Navajos to return to their homes also now called the reservations. Myths are of great importance in the Navajo community because it is believed that it was a way to connect to the Holy People. The myth helps recognize symbolized supernatural in chants, translates the meaning of songs, and explains the importance of the ritual objects (Lamphere 1969). For example, there is myth of the two heroes who had gone through some misfortunes but thanks to the super natural’s aid, the two heroes created a ceremony in which their troubles would disappear. Songs also play a huge role in the rituals because in the lyrics are myths that are usually repeated P a g e | 4 Daniel Hutton FinalCulturalResearchPaper throughout the ceremony. For instance, the Thunder Songs tell a story of visiting the sky, Buffalo Songs tells a story of trips that were taken with the Buffaloes, and the Sun Songs describes a myth of an incident that at occurred at the Sun’s home. In addition, the myth and the song clearly share a connection and together, they are believed to make the purpose of the ritual more effective. Navajos are characterized by their very complex system of ceremonials (Pierce 1992). The Navajo tribes, as a part of their culture, tend to have ritual performances in their communities. There are two main different ceremony called Blessing and Enemy way. The Blessing way is believed to guarantee good health and luck for all (Wyman 1970). The Enemy way are ceremonies performed in order to keep the bad spirits away. The Navajo’s ancestors had performed this ceremonies a lot, they believed it would protect them from bad spirits of the people they might have killed. The rituals are classified as a ceremony to cure illnesses and for that reason; they are categorized into three rituals: holy way, Evil way, and Lifeway. [Pierce 1992]: [The holy way rituals act to restore health to the "one sung over" by attracting good. The Evil way chants exorcise evil and the Lifeway chants are used to treat injuries caused by accidents. Sand painting ceremonies are a part of all holy way ceremonies and most Evil way ceremonies] Male Shooting Way is part of a complex of Shooting Way Chants (Wyman and Kluckhohn 1938). Each chants different in some of the rituals but it usually based on the myths. The holy way also known as the Male Shooting Way indicates chants toward the P a g e | 5 Daniel Hutton FinalCulturalResearchPaper supernatural by contact with arrows, snakes, and lightning (Lamphere 1969). The Ugly Way also called Male shooting Way Ugly, is believed to be associated with myths of witchcrafts and ghosts. Based on Lamphere’s analysis (1969), she was able to conclude that the rituals were performed in offerings to the supernatural and the relationship of the patient with them (supernatural). In the ceremonies, stories are told about legends and history of the ancestors. For example, they believed that the first man (Holy People) came from the underworld and created the world, giving them the plants, animals, and mountains. The (table 1) from Pierce (1992) summarizes some of the events that occur during the Holyday ceremonies. The numbers underneath the nights indicates the days the ceremonies occur. The Night way has been believed for curing the disease of the head (including deafness and blindness). This ceremony usually takes place during the winter season and lasts for about nine to ten days. John Bierhorst (1974) was able to come up with his structure of the Night way ceremony (Table 2) by breaking it down to the entire nine nights it takes to perform the ceremony. The two different tables are giving a more descriptive procedure of the ceremony to better understand the process. Once the ceremony begins, The Yeibichai dancer made up of fourteen dancers are formed including, six women, six men, the water sprinkler, and the leader. The Yiebichai dancer’s leader also called the Talking God is clothed with a white deerskin sash knotted to his shoulder and a white mask is worn with eagle feathers (total of twelve) attached to the top. The women wore a red sash and white deerskin with their tradition P a g e | 6 Daniel Hutton FinalCulturalResearchPaper dresses and to go with their costume, they wore blue square mask that only covered their faces, which allowed their hair to flow around freely. The men’s bodies were covered in white clay and wore ruff of spruce around their necks with kilts hanging down their back. They wore masks that covered their whole head which were white in the back and blue in the front; compared to the leader’s mask, the men only had two eagle feathers attached to the mask. The Water Sprinkler also known as the God of Waters, is dressed just like the men but sometimes wore long shirts and pants. Additions of juniper bracelets are worn on the arm and the wrist with a fox pelt in his right hands. The dancers are some of the most important aspect of the ceremony. In the ceremonies, there is a medicine man, who is practically a very important man in the whole ritual. There are so many requirements for the ceremony, including: memorized songs, prayers, special objects. Compared to many rituals, Blessing way is the most common used and this is because it is short, inexpensive, and can be performed for many reasons (Sander 1991). The medicine man is required to go through a purification of three day, including: vomiting, bathing, fasting, and sweating. This process is performed because they believe that this act of discipline will help heal and bless the sick patient. Colored stones, pollen, flower, and corn are collected materials for the Sand painting which is usually prepared within ten hours of the ceremony. It is known that, the spirits determined to come after the chants and Sand painting have been done beautifully (Villasenor 1996). In addition, this shows the creativity levels and how complex the rituals can be. P a g e | 7 Daniel Hutton FinalCulturalResearchPaper Malevolent spirits send bad things or may enter the body (Reichard 1939). The purpose of a chant is to remove the bad things out of the patient’s body and create peaceful conditions (Lamphere 1969). In order for the procedures to carry on, the singer must have the proper ritual object needed during the ceremony. Based on Lamphere’s text, items (ritual objects) in preparation of the ritual were found in the singer’s pouch. For example, four arrows, four “wide boards,” two bows, two smooth canes, four “talking prayer sticks” (which represents the sky, water, sunlight, and summer people), four plumes, two medicine stoppers, a whistle, bull roared, fire drill, and basket drum. The arrows, bows, canes made from reed are believed to be weapons carried by the Holy People. The four plumes represent the supernatural because they calm the patient (Haile 1947). The prayer sticks were held by the Talking God (the leader), in performing prayers towards the four different directions (North, South, West, and East). Before giving the patient the medicine stoppers, they are placed a bowl which is meant to protect from “ugly things” (Kluckhohn and Wyman 1940).The ‘wide boards” are used to draw a significant in the myth of the Holy People. Overall, having the proper materials is a must in order to guarantee that the ritual will be successful. The ceremony begins in the evening by constructing the Hogan (the tradition house that is build for and taken down after the ceremony) on the site it is to take place. Pigments of cornmeal and pollen are painted on the patient’s body. Bundles of herbs and feathers placed on the patient’s body are unwrapped symbolizing the release from evil things (Spickard 1991). A large fire is then built inside the Hogan, where the patient is given P a g e | 8 Daniel Hutton FinalCulturalResearchPaper herbs and accompanied by singing (Spickard 1991). In the morning more offerings, including: singing, dancing, and praying, are made to the Holy People. The patient will be asked to sit in the middle of the sand painting, in order for the singer to apply the medicine to the body. It is important to remember that during the ceremony, prayers (repeats the history of the Holy People) and songs are repeated, in order for the patient to become one with the Holy People. In order for the patient to become one with the supernatural, the person must present an offering. “The most common offering is a prayer stick because if correctly presented to the supernatural, the aide needed from the supernatural would give to the patient (Aberle 1967). The offerings are given to the snake people, the lightning and thunder, the buffaloes, and the earth and sun. Every day for four days, eight prayer sticks will be prepared as an offering for one of the groups. Afterwards all prayer sticks are taken by the patient and deposited to the direction of the supernatural (east). In order for the supernatural to accept the sacrifice, the patient must apply object on the body and take in the medicine in order to get rid of what is making the patient sick. Based on the Navajo beliefs, some of the objects found in the singer’s pouch, including: the arrows, bows, and prayer sticks must be pressed into the patient’s body. After the pressing, the whistle is now used by the singer in order to get the attention of the supernatural from all four directions. Food, using the mixture of herbs, is now served to the patient, symbolizing that medicine from the supernatural has being digested by the patient. Overall, the patient’s body is involved both externally and internally, through P a g e | 9 Daniel Hutton FinalCulturalResearchPaper direct offering or towards removing bad spirits that are against the patient. (Lamphere 1969). After researching and learning more in depth about the Navajo ritual, the importance of the tribe’s ritual is clearly described and understood. The proper objects were needed for the ritual, for this objects represents the supernatural and when placed on the patient’s body, the “man to god” relationship is as of a result. In the Navajo ritual, there are two significant parts of the ritual, including: identification and removal. This two symbolizes the procedure where the sacred objects were placed on the body and the “ugly things” are emitted. In addition, the Navajo ritual is a way of communication to the supernatural (Holy People). The ceremonies are performed in the act of cleansing and curing an ill person. Lamphere (1969) concluded that chants are a symbolic system and actions that expresses a means of dealing with illness through symbolic offerings of man to god. Overall, despite how complex the Navajo ceremony may be, learning about the ritual is an eye opener for those who wish to go further than just learning about the religion. The Navajo rituals are a form of communication to the Holy People, who are believed to be the protector and their guidance through rough times. P a g e | 10 Daniel Hutton FinalCulturalResearchPaper References: Division of Household Labor and Family Functioning in OffReservation Navajo Indian Families Ziarat Hossain Family Relations Vol. 50, No. 3 (Jul., 2001), pp. 255261 Published by: National Council on Family Relations Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/585877 The Whole Universe Is My Cathedral: A Contemporary Navajo Spiritual Synthesis David H. Begay and Nancy C. Maryboy Medical Anthropology Quarterly, New Series, Vol. 14, No. 4, Theme Issue: Ritual Healing in Navajo Society (Dec., 2000), pp. 498520 Published by: Blackwell Publishing on behalf of the American Anthropological Association P a g e | 11 Daniel Hutton FinalCulturalResearchPaper Article Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/649718 Depressive Illness and Navajo Healing Michael Storck, Thomas J. Csordas and Milton Strauss Medical Anthropology Quarterly, New Series, Vol. 14, No. 4, Theme Issue: Ritual Healing in Navajo Society (Dec., 2000), pp. 571597 Published by: Blackwell Publishing on behalf of the American Anthropological Association Article Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/649721
Are you sure you want to buy this material for
You're already Subscribed!
Looks like you've already subscribed to StudySoup, you won't need to purchase another subscription to get this material. To access this material simply click 'View Full Document'