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Modern Day Vampirism - Are you also Native American?


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#1 aeon

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Posted 27 November 2011 - 01:19 AM

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I've noticed a small trend amongst descendant Native Americans in today's society to also associate themselves with Vampirism. Perhaps it's the stigma of being 'different' that draws these people into a darker category of "vampire" or perhaps there is a real phenomena in the blood that makes these people more energetically aware.

I have a friend, for anonymity's sake I will call him Paul ; Paul is an Apache (nearly full blooded), he is hardly associated with the traditions of his ancestry - however - he has an ability to manipulate and understand energy around him. I've felt him do it - he's literally moved my sacral energy. (We laughed - this was an intentional act on his part and we've been friends ever since) Anyway, he's either shamanic or capable of strong medicine or B) 'vampire'.

When I first came to these forums it had been only a couple years since I'd been deeply involved with Native American Spirituality. I remember awakening to aura's in the sweat lodge & feeling the 'connectedness' of everything. It was powerful!

Anyway, I've noticed this small trend and I figured I would post something totally opinionated & not based on any particular facts other than my own observations. I'm open to anything you guys have to offer on the subject... Enjoy!

Edited by Adonis, 27 November 2011 - 01:32 AM.


#2 Violette

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Posted 27 November 2011 - 03:01 AM

I know of several who are both Native American and vampyric. Maybe I can get some feedback or get them to post.

I "think" I have some Native American. I'm not sure. The trend amongst my folks was to hide any ethnicity that wasn't Celt. :/ including French.

#3 WladimirA

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Posted 27 November 2011 - 08:57 AM

Personally I don't think just having a talent for manipulating another's internal energy automatically makes one "vampyric", nor does being any degree of native american make give one this talent versus someone that is not of this particular heritage. I have native american ancestry (that has been traced back to the Blackfoot Blood Tribe and yet any aspect of energy work I learned from asian aspects and martial arts, and my native american heritage had nothing to do with any proficiency I gained over the years (that I am aware of).

Such is an interesting question, but a bit flawed in logic because if one were to go with the post's line of thinking, then only those with native american heritage would be among those in the "vampire community"; and if your were to do a survey of sorts, I think you would find that those in the "VC" would be from a multitude of different ethinic backgrounds and not just native american.

#4 aeon

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Posted 29 November 2011 - 05:58 AM

I know of several who are both Native American and vampyric. Maybe I can get some feedback or get them to post.

I "think" I have some Native American. I'm not sure. The trend amongst my folks was to hide any ethnicity that wasn't Celt. :/ including French.


Hm, perhaps then it can be attributed to the tribal ancestry of anyone in-tune with this extrasensory ability and can expand beyond Native Americans to Celts, Druids, Suras, etc.
It just seems to be a very primitive, beyond words, way of understanding each other - and I've noticed quite a bit of Native Americans also embracing "Vampirism" to some extent to define themselves.


Personally I don't think just having a talent for manipulating another's internal energy automatically makes one "vampyric", nor does being any degree of native american make give one this talent versus someone that is not of this particular heritage. I have native american ancestry (that has been traced back to the Blackfoot Blood Tribe and yet any aspect of energy work I learned from asian aspects and martial arts, and my native american heritage had nothing to do with any proficiency I gained over the years (that I am aware of).

Such is an interesting question, but a bit flawed in logic because if one were to go with the post's line of thinking, then only those with native american heritage would be among those in the "vampire community"; and if your were to do a survey of sorts, I think you would find that those in the "VC" would be from a multitude of different ethinic backgrounds and not just native american.


I agree with you - this post was not intended to be all-encompassing for the vampiric community at all. I also have practiced Eastern Medicine such as Reiki, Meditation, etc. so I can see how you would say that Native American heritage is not the single contributing factor to any said awareness. I agree also that energy manipulation (of sorts) is not, by definition, vampiric. However it seems to be the mainstream nuance for those who associate themselves with the subculture of Vampirism.
Thank you for sharing your thoughts :) It certainly gives me a lot to ponder when trying to form an opinion on this subject!

#5 Synari

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Posted 17 December 2011 - 09:57 AM

I think u figured it out. It's primordeal energy that these people are able to tap into and work with. I think that it is just stronger in those with aboriginal and earth based histories...celt, native, tibetan, ect.

There is the sang and energy vamp aspects that overlap imo with these cultures. Many old cultures consumed blood and even experimented with cannibalism. These same cultures often had deep spiritual connections and training. It's easy to see how they would overlap or even be catagorized with vamps of any kind.

Southwestern US tribes have very strong beliefs concerning the dead and souls, esp human ones. Moreso than most other US tribes. They also had a much more intense belief system concerning negative energy spirits and their purpose in this realm. It is a small step to parallel with vampirism.

#6 Atehequa

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Posted 17 November 2013 - 06:02 AM

I'm more familiar with what are called cannibal spirits.



#7 Synari

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Posted 12 December 2013 - 09:05 PM

I believe that first someone has to be sensitive to energy before one can even learn to control its' manipulation. For example....I am the only one in my family that could be considered an empath....or a shaman...or even a "psi vamp of sorts'. While I have strong celt and supposedly some native american ancestry, it does not dominate my heritage. I am the only one in my family who can sense the life force energy of things around me...a rock, a tree, a plant, animal ect. and adequately describe how it seems to me.

 

While my whole family is very much outdoorsy and nature lovers; their talent or natural born gift is not as strong as mine. It was for this reason a native american Lakota shaman mentored me for a time many years ago; it was for this reason I was one of the very few able to work hands on with abused captive wolves during relocation projects.  Personally, I have come to feel that this sensitivity of which you speak is not a "gift" (via blood or genetics) but the choice of a soul. They choose to be interconnected and tapped into this whole other network because they wish to continue to honor and be a part of it. They cannot imagine a life without it.

 

It does not come without a down side and it is not all positive. I cannot tell you how much I have suffered physical, emotional and mental pain and anguish due to this ability. You cannot just "turn it off" whenever you wish. You can learn to focus it and control it....if you're lucky even "mute" it at times...but one can never turn it off. Some blessings are also curses'; depending on how you choose to see and use them. I have manipulated energy of others; plant, animal and human...and I can say firsthand that I do not enjoy the "aftertaste" that negative and selfish/fear manipulation leaves behind. It is "unclean"; like a stain on the soul. In comparison, selfless and positive interchange and manipulation...done with respect and honor, is clean and uplifting...it almost recharges the soul and reconnects you with the web of life.

 

Do I believe native people from all over the world are more sensitive to energies of this planet and all life on it....yes. Does it have to do with genetics....maybe. More likely it has to do with culture. Most other cultures (modern, non native) spend too much time trying to deny their "animalistic" natures....the very nature of humanity is one of an animal. They are too busy being afraid of what they do not know and too ignorant to open their minds to learn. They do not seek to live in harmony with the earth or the other creatures we share it with. They seek dominion over everything else and choose to exist in the darkness of denial and yet are controlled by fear.

 

Native cultures do not do this. They do not limit their minds, hearts or spirits. They do not separate themselves from all other life and they certainly do not seek dominion over it. It is about seeing the bigger picture of life and being a vital part of that cycle/circle. It is about influencing the energy and life around you in a positive way. One cannot do that when the path they walk is clouded with ignorance and fear.


Edited by Synari, 12 December 2013 - 09:21 PM.


#8 Atehequa

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Posted 04 January 2014 - 07:31 PM

Majestic creatures the wolves, yet in the times indigenous people roamed freely unhampered by colonialism and American manifest destiny these animals were often seen as a threat especially to hunters who wouldn't hesitate putting arrows or rifle balls through them if they attempted to take someone's deer, bison or any other kill. There was a time when we hunted them for hides as well, but never like the wholesale slaughter often for bounties carried out by the immigrant Europeans and their descendants. 

 

Wolves did not play as big of spiritual part of our being as imagined by non-NDN writers, artists, spiritualists and those of the entertainment industry. Something as small as a least weasel or even a mayfly  could have more spiritual significance than say a wolf.



#9 Atehequa

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Posted 07 January 2014 - 05:17 AM

I've never met another NDN person who was a vampire or werewolf, but I've seen my fair share of culture vultures -

 



#10 Atehequa

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Posted 07 January 2014 - 06:09 PM

Auditions 

 



#11 Atehequa

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Posted 25 January 2014 - 07:26 AM

"When I first came to these forums it had been only a couple years since I'd been deeply involved with Native American Spirituality. I remember awakening to aura's in the sweat lodge & feeling the 'connectedness' of everything. It was powerful!"

 

 Among the hundreds of different indigenous tribal groups here in what Amerigo Vespucci named America, there is no shared overall common religion or spirituality. Many non-NDNs seem  to think we all are beholden to one great spirit that is very similar to the western concept of monotheism. This great spirit concept is attributed to early Christian missionaries who sought to condense all the different indigenous beliefs into one supreme male deity which made the conversion process a bit easier. In many cases this conversion process was successful, but still many traditional people hold on to beliefs that predate Abrahamic monotheism by thousands of years. 

 

We are not all of the stereotypical  tipi living, horse riding plains culture envisioned by many non-NDNS either. 



#12 Atehequa

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Posted 25 January 2014 - 07:36 AM

Look at us -

 



#13 Atehequa

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Posted 25 January 2014 - 10:52 AM

Furthermore I am not all that much pleased by the television and motion picture industry's attempt to turn us into vampires and werewolves. Others have drawn more of our blood than we have theirs. 

 

But of course people who are big fans of the Twilight series and other similar romanticizing of our people never heard of people like Dennis Banks, John Trudell, or Russell Means -

 

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DLUz-Xh87lA

 

 

 

 

 



#14 Synari

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Posted 28 January 2014 - 05:37 PM

Most folks will never know of any of these men which you mention. Trudell, Means, Banks, Peltier and more. Those are just a few; the most famous of modern day warriors. There are so many more whose names do not make news or books; names only known within the smaller circles. Most folks will never know because they do not want to know...then they would have to look good and hard at the ugly truth of "america" and american history and genocide. Hell, few of the population want to face the ugly truth about the depth and extent of corruption of their own government and fellow citizens. Nothing has changed. It's still about lies and deceit; greed, power and manipulation. You cannot make the blind 'see'.

 

But truth be told, please don't assume all of us out here are ignorant of native cultures. Making assumptions about "white folks" is the same stereotypical behavior you're accusing others of doing to natives.



#15 Atehequa

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Posted 29 January 2014 - 07:41 AM

Well if most folks know not even these recent names I've mentioned, then most know very little or nothing at all regarding names from the past that are hardly or never mentioned. My willingness to shed some light concerning our indigenous cultures should not be looked at as making assumptions or accusations. 

 

Perhaps my only assumption was a notion there are people here wanting to know more.

 

You do want to know more, don't you?


Edited by Atehequa, 29 January 2014 - 07:47 AM.


#16 Synari

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Posted 29 January 2014 - 03:52 PM

Then perhaps you should refrain from calling some of those that seek to follow the ancient paths-regardless of color of skin or recent ethnic origin "CULTURE VULTURES". Since that term itself is demeaning. They are not "stealing" from your culture. Any elder of any ancient earth culture will tell you that it is not the color of your skin, your ancestry or the blood that runs in your veins that makes you a "native" or even a child of this earth. It is what is in your heart and the path you choose to walk upon your mother earth that determines who and what you are....these people you call "culture vultures" are no more 'stealing" or "borrowing" rituals from native americans than they are from say, the celts and druids. If their heart and soul are following native practices and belief systems with good intention (bettering themselves and the world around them;seeking enlightenment); then why is honoring ancient ways such a bad thing? We ALL are related; we all have the same ancient beginnings. Native americans cannot claim sweat lodges, medicinal herbs, shamanism or even vision quests as "solely their own" since cultures of early man did the same things centuries before native americans even existed.

 

I personally find SOME of your behavior towards non natives not only condescending, but also loaded with stereotypical assumptions... A mindset that I have encountered all too often from native americans at gatherings as well as ceremonies. You accuse non natives of stereotyping, but you turn around and do the same. Shedding light is not done with beginnings of negativity.

 

Are there people that want to know more about native cultures, yes...and the fact is, they're not waiting around for someone to teach them anymore. Those that really want to learn have already made an effort to do so in their lives. Are there many that are unaware of the atrocities and genocide committed on american soil against its' own indigenous people?....YES, definately. But these are not the first nor the last acts of genocide that modern society has committed against humanity. African americans can claim some horrible history at the hands of "white" folks as well. In fact, most "minorities" from any country in the world can tell you history as well as recent events of such unspeakable behaviors committed against them by the "ruling elite".

 

Do people want to know more about the ancient cultures of this earth? Of course; most intelligent folks seek wisdom. It is foolish to turn a blind eye to what is going on around us.

The fact is that a teacher has immense potential to effect their students lives and perceptions. The QUALITY of a teacher and that which he/she teaches should be paramount. I have no issues with what you seek to teach; my issue is how you are trying to teach it.

 

The fact is no matter what your heritage is: WE ALL SUFFER at the hands of the ruling elite. The suffering may vary in degree and extreme; but it is still injustice and it is still wrong. And while every ounce of it is tragic;  playing the "race" or "culture" card for almost a century constantly as justification for negativity and poor behavior is frankly, getting old and losing its' potency. I saw a great deal of soul sickness and heart breaking poverty during my time studying with native americans. The extent of depression and despair most live with everyday of their lives is crushing. But how a person handles the challenges life puts in their path dictate  strength of character. My native mentors believed that those that succumb to drugs and alcohol and even suicide...they were weak of spirit and choose to walk the wrong path. The hardship and cruelty in life caused by an ill society...either makes or breaks you. But the choice in how you act; how you behave and how you treat others we share this planet with...that path you walk is your own doing. No one can MAKE you do anything you do not want to do.

 

So I end with this. If you seek to teach, then perhaps you should first be a student of humanity yourself.  While I am behind enlightenment for all; the way you are choosing to go about it is....less than appealing.

 

It is possible that Perhaps I have misunderstood something you said in your posts or an idea you were seeking to convey; native humor tends to be unique and often is misunderstood by non natives. If I misunderstood something, I apologize. I tend to be very sensitive about how I am treated and perceived by indigenous people because I have been misunderstood and maligned by many of them due to stereotypes a great deal in the past. I am sorry if I have over-reacted as a result of this.

 

I am curious though....why did you come here...to a vampire and werewolf..i.e. alternative lifestyle forum if you think that most of us might be silly immature and ignorant "twilight" fans?


Edited by Synari, 29 January 2014 - 07:40 PM.


#17 Atehequa

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Posted 29 January 2014 - 06:12 PM

Guess you told me good, Twinkie.

 

I really get a kick out of these white folk who claim to have been trained by what they refer to as "Native American Shamans" and think they are more NDN than NDNs. 

 

Your demonizing of me is a typical NUAGE tactic. We of AIM have been dealing with this kind of behavior for over 30 years.

 

This following was composed by our friends at Our Red Earth Observations -

 

c.gif c.gif c.gif c.gif c.gif c.gif c.gif c.gif           Death Among Us:
Encountering Internet Exploiters Of American Indian Spirituality


THE EXCUSE
One will find that the "new age" exploitation of American Indian spirituality is typically justified by being upheld as "freedom of religion" and especially upheld as "freedom of religious expression" when openly taught.  Any attempt, whether benevolent or otherwise, to explain that what is being taught is indeed inaccurate and potentially harmful will be furiously denounced as an attempt to deny the same.

THE DISSEMINATION OF DEATH: TEACHINGS
A typical "new age" collective does not usually openly declare that anything whatsoever is being "taught."  This is to ensure a surface appearance of benevolence.  If nothing is being "taught," nothing is being "exploited," is the reasoning one often finds within these communities.  Additionally, this professed lack of teaching decreases the likelihood of someone quizzing and potentially exposing the community leader as a charlatan.  

Instead, "new age" community leaders instruct/mislead their followers by calling the dissemination of their inaccuracies "sharing."  They typically disguise the purpose of their community by describing it as a place to "share and discuss" (the leader's interpretations of) American Indian spirituality.  

"NEW AGE VERSIONS OF AMERICAN INDIAN SPIRITUALITY"
"New age" communities often call their exploitative versions of American Indian spirituality "shamanism."  Persons who study this "shamanism" are often said to be on the "red road," "walking the red path," or "walking the good red road."  The leader of such a community acts as the "shaman" of the group, though he or she will typically deny or profess to abhor the title (more on this later).

The teachings which the "new age" community collectively refers to as "shamanism" always consist of a random assortment of the myths, beliefs, ceremonies, folk tales, and symbolism of unrelated American Indian/First Nations Tribes.  Also incorporated into this "shamanism" are the beliefs of any number of world religions (i.e. Christianity, Buddhism, etc.) as well as non Western Hemisphere First Nations (i.e. African Tribes or Australian Aboriginal beliefs).  Thus, a typical "shamanism" community could very well be presenting/marketing a collection of Christian, Buddhist, African Tribal, and American Indian Tribal beliefs to the public as an "authentic Native American path."

Exactly how the "new age" communities determine what beliefs should be "borrowed" from other systems of spirituality is not known.  Primarily, the personal interpretations and beliefs of the community leader will be followed.  Secondary emphasis is placed on the interpretations of whatever "new age" authors are popular in the occult press.  The third and final emphasis is placed on the beliefs of the membership itself, probably to foster a sense of community unity and to attempt to convince the members that they are not being mislead, but rather are important contributors to the continuity of the "new age" community itself.

At any rate, once the collective beliefs are decided upon, they are then combined into "rituals" which are supposed to gain the performer any number of benefits such as material wealth, becoming irresistable to the opposite sex, various (and vague) form of personal "enlightenment," the ability to see and converse with "spirits," et cetera.

In addition to what has been covered thus far, there are several recurring themes in such communities which make them relatively easy to identify:

1.  There is a fascination with spiritual beings which are referred to as "totems," "totem-animals," "totem-spirits," and various other names such as "power-animals."  These "spirits" are based upon animals which are traditionally meaningful to American Indian Tribes (eagle, bear, hawk, etc*.). Much ado is made about the acquisition of such animals, and each person is said to have a specific number of them assigned to his person, the exact amount depending upon which "new age" version of spirituality you are studying, apparently.  These animals are said to represent the individuals personal characteristics/traits, such as his personality, etc.
*Curiously, no one ever seems to claim anything but predatory or graceful (i.e. "deer") animals as "totems."  One wonders who is remaining silent - surely someone out there has a flea, tick, or a maggot assigned to his person?  

2.  Second only to "totems" is the widespread use of a divinatory device erroneously called "medicine cards."   This "new age" oracle takes the form of a deck of cards and must have been conceived after and modeled on the more well known "tarot" cards of popular occultism.  There is apparently no set number of cards in a deck of "medicine" cards.  They are employed by choosing a certain number of cards (according to instructions which will be supplied with the deck) and interpreting them.  They are supposed to provide insight into one's "self" and "guide" one during times of duress, though "new age" adherents vigorously deny that the meanings of the cards are taken as absolute indicators of fact.  

"Medicine cards" are marked with various artwork including animals, shell gorgets, dreamcatchers, sunwheels, and even the paintings of  artist George Catlin.  (!)  It should be painfully obvious that "medicine" cards are indeed the products of a sad "new age."

3.  Symbolism.  A great deal of fuss is made over certain American Indian symbolism, most notably the popular/commercialized "dreamcatcher" and the "medicine-wheel."  While these symbols are apparently based upon "new age" interpretations of similar American Indian symbols, it remains to be pointed out that their presentation as part of an all-inclusive "Native American path" is - at best - inaccurate.

The discussion of the "new age" abuse of symbolism is well beyond the scope of this writing.  Very roughly, the following can be said of the "new age medicine-wheel":
A.  It is considered to represent interaction.
B.  It is depicted as a quartered circle.
C.  Each quarter is identified with one of the four cardinal directions.
D.  Each quarter is assigned a color for ritual purposes.
E.  It is roughly analogous to the "Sacred Circle" of the Wiccan religion.
F.  Each quarter is identified with an "element" of the ancient pre-chemistry science known as *alchemy*.  These are called earth, air, fire, and water.

4.  There is an all-consuming obsession with ceremonies, particularly "new age" versions of the Pipe Ceremony, Smudging, and "Vision-Quests*," with a secondary emphasis on acquiring items associated with the ceremonies (i.e. the Pipe itself, smudging bowls, sage, feathers, etc.).  Queries will often be seen from those desiring to purchase such items.  

*Curiously, there is never a mention that a "quest" might take a great deal of time and be unsuccessful, nor is there a mention of any sort of fasting.

5.  There is an obsession with books and the writings of new age authors who more often than not are not American Indian at all, and certainly not Elders.  One particular book which is much invoked is called *Animal Speak*, by one Ted Andrews.  Other works by such characters as Jamie Sams are highly regarded and treated biblically by the typical exploitative community.  

THE PLAYERS
A "new age" community typically includes a Leader and three divisions, these being Co-Leaders, Participants, and Readers.  All of these divisions are guided by the Leader, so with him we shall begin.  

The Leader
The typical leader of a "new age" community will be male and generally aged 35-50 years, though it has been noted that there are many 19-23 year old full-fledged "shaman" operating on the internet.*  Typically the leader is a Caucasian male or a mixed blood Native American who will not make an outright claim of being an Elder or a Teacher, but rather will claim something to the effect of having "studied with" or "studied under" various Elders of different Tribes.  Often the claim to have studied "many different traditions" is made, though when pressed it will be found that the leader will not or cannot name the Elders he claims association with.*  

*One wonders how a lifetime of traditional knowledge is gained within less than a quarter of a century with these young "shamen."  ("Shame-On?")

*Amazingly, this unwillingness to authenticate himself will always be upheld by the "new age" membership as an example of the leader's wisdom!  His refusal to validate himself is taken to indicate that he will not deign to authenticate himself to "troublemakers" who dare question his mystical authority.

Additionally, the leader will often be very eloquent and even more so intelligent.  He will always be well versed in "new age" topics and other airy theories, being able to draw almost effortlessly upon the teachings of any belief system when interacting to illustrate his point of view.  They are always well-read, dangerously authorative figures (thanks primarily to books, one might conjecture).  

Finally, it will be seldom that one encounters the Leader of a "new age" community who does not have an "Indian sounding" screen name.  Often these are actual American Indian names which are claimed to have been "bestowed" or "gifted" by "Elders"; at other times they are names apparently chosen to make the Leader appear otherwordly or immensely wise (i.e. "wolf-shaman," "Grandfather Day Eagle," etc.).

The leader of a "new age" community is never challenged by his flock and is acknowledged, usually with little or no fanfare, as the "shaman" of the the group, though (as noted earlier) he will vigorously deny the title if named or asked whether he is indeed a "shaman."  He typically remains aloof, interacting with general observations or settling small quarrels among the membership, in an attempt to present an air of mystery.  At all times he will attempt to remain an enigma, never becoming involved in detailed discussions, to further present himself as one who is already a "master" of whatever topic is being discussed in his forum.  This aloofness is of course purposeful, as it ensures that he will not be questioned and potentially exposed as a fraud.  It will also be found that when the Leader interacts through the written word (i.e. on a message board) he will end his interaction with a unique signature to further portray himself as wise, mysterious, and above all benevolent.  "Walk In Balance," and We Are All Related" are two such phrases often used.  The Lakota *Mitakuye Oyasin* or "All My Relations" is another extremely common signature employed by these characters.

It may also be discovered that the Leader maintains a personal website from which his version of American Indian spirituality is openly espoused.  Oftentimes he may be selling course in "shamanism" from his site or other items marketed as "Native American."  Such sites are typically loaded with American Indian themed artwork or other imagery and they are well worth examining in their entirety for reasons which will not be discussed here (legal issues).

Co-Leaders
The Co-Leaders of an internet based community of exploiters are well versed in "new age" topics and extremely vocal/outspoken.  This, along with their acceptance of the Leader's authority, is of course what gained them their position.  They typically have the same community administrative powers as the Leader, but they will always defer to him unless he is absent. They are fiercely protective of the Leader, and if an outsider attempts to question him, he or she (the outsider) will immediately find themselves in a hostile environment with one or more Co-Leader denouncing him/her as a "troublemaker" (more on "new age" debate tactics later).

Incidentally, it will often be noted in the case of male Leaders that the Co-Leaders are outspoken females.  There seems to be a general trend among these men to surround themselves with cohorts of the opposite sex. It is tempting to address this further, but anything more would be pure conjecture.

Participants
Participants are members who are active in the "new age" community.  They typically ask the questions, interact with one another on the message boards, and generally keep the community "flowing."  They are usually somewhat versed in and follow a "new age path," and they often refer to themselves as "seekers" or other like terms.  

The Participants or "seekers" may or may not be aware that they are contributors to exploitation. It is notable that in this group one often finds persons who only recently discovered that they are of American Indian descent, and it is further noted that these persons may indeed be making what they perceive to be an honest attempt at recovering (what they mistakenly believe to be) their Tribe's sacred Ways.  

Overall, Participants react unpredictably in debates, their actions/reactions apparently depending in part upon the amount of time they have spent under the influence of the Leader.  Some will defend the Leader without question, others will maintain an open mind.

Readers
These are identical to the Participants except they do not usually interact with the community.  Readers may or may not be "new age" adherents.  In this group can occasionally be found persons who are already versed in their Tribal beliefs who recognized the community as fraudulent right away, joining primarily just to see what silliness was being presented as being "Native American."

DEBATE
In encountering and asking questions of a "new age" community and its Leader, there are several factors one need be aware of.  Let us assume we are speaking of a typical "new age" community which is teaching (or "sharing" or whatever they may say) "an authentic Native American path."

1.  The Leader will use his administrative powers to remove you ASAP.  Fortunately, he will be unable to do this quickly and still maintain the guise of benevolence, so he will typically make some or other vague observation to counter your "negative" observation about his community and then recede into his cultured enigmatic mode.  When a false shaman is confronted by someone he knows or fears to be authentic, the typical side-stepping pronouncements will be such things as:

A.  "There are many paths which can be followed."
B.  "No one way is the right way."
C.  "No one owns spirituality."

Such silly observations obviously have nothing to do with the fact that the Leader is exploiting spirituality and they are of course just further ramblings made for the purpose of attempting to appear kind and benevolent.  (Perhaps a good counter here would be to note out loud that doctors do not practice medicine without a license, nor do Catholic Priests teach without certification.  Bluntly, one does not just wake up one morning and decide for himself that he is an American Indian Teacher or Elder).

2.  After the Leader assumes his enigmatic mode, the Co-Leaders will engage you in his place.  They will make every attempt to make you appear as if you do not know what you are talking about, with primary emphasis on attempting to trick you into conceding that which the leader espoused before vanishing (A-C above).  If one explains diligently and persistently that these observations are not relevant to the fact that exploitation is occuring, the debate will turn hostile.  Expect the following irrelevant statements/observations to occur with regularity:

A.  You will be denounced as attempting to "impose your views" on others.

B.  You will be denounced as "not an Elder" (for whatever the reason).  At any rate, the statement "You are not an Elder so..." will precede much of their interaction.  

C.  You will be called "white."  This is commonly used against American Indians, and it is curious that a community which advertises itself as peaceful and racially harmonious will quickly use such racist terminology.

D.  You will be called a "wannabe" (want-to-be) activist.

E.  You will be dismissed as a "cyberwarrior."  This is a term used by some when referring to persons who use the internet to participate in letter drives, etc.  It is intended to be an insult, apparently implying that one is "all talk" online and (one would suppose) meek or cowardly in the "real world."  

F.  Expect to be denounced as a "fake," "wannabe," or "not a real" member of any and all legitimate cultural groups (your Tribe) or organizations (i.e. activist groups) that you are known to be affiliated or associated with.  A statement often made by these expert judges of how American Indians act is "*Real* Indians do not act the way you are acting."

G.  Expect to be mocked as the "self appointed savior" of whatever topic you are debating.

H.  Further expect to endure various armchair psychological evaluations of your personality and character.  Expect such ludicrous observations as "You are full of hate," "You must lead an unhappy life," or "You are an angry person."  

I.  Also expect that **any online communities** that you yourself may belong to will be subject to the wrath of the "new agers."  Every attempt will made to identify your ENTIRE community with YOUR actions, thereby making it appear that a massive evil entity has "assaulted" the "peaceful seekers."

All of the above are of course irrelevant to any real debate and must be taken for what they are: insults.  By employing such tactics, the "new age" community attempts to make one appear to be a disruptive influence with no real honorable intentions whatsoever.  Additionally, if they are successful at provoking a hostile response, they will instantly appear at first glance to be a peaceful group of "seekers" who have been "attacked" for their beliefs. Again, note how the topic of the debate - exploitation - has been avoided entirely.  

Another notable "new age" (not just "new age," perhaps) tendency is to refer to any debate that goes contrary to their own opinions as being "attacked."  (?)  "I was attacked for my views," is a commonly read phrase. This is especially true if a "new age" adherent in unable to convert one to his flawed beliefs or at least gain the concession that his "way" is "also right."  One wonders how such an "attack" is accomplished through a monitor; surely it is a tactic worth learning.  

Another tactic is to claim to be or have been "intimidated" in a debate.  This is of course ludicrous, and both "intimidation" and "attacked" are nothing but tactics used to attempt to cast the legitimate individual into a position where they will be unconditionally accepted by all as persons who are racist, intolerant, bullies*, etc.
*Incidentally, "bully" is also often applied to persons who speak out against exploitation.

Finally, it remains to be noted that there *are" "new agers" and others who are genuinely interested in American Indian topics and who believe that what they are doing is valid.  It is not unthinkable that such a person could become shocked or angry when confronted by someone who denounces his "path" as fraudulent.  Perhaps this person has a stereotypical view of American Indians.  Perhaps he ascribes to the "noble savage" or the "medicine-teacher" notion of First Nations People.  If so, perhaps he or she really does believe, when confronted by an individual none too happy with ongoing exploitation, that he is witnessing racism, intolerance, etc. Admittedly this is conjecture, but a person who has never heard of such things as monthly commodities or the terrible living conditions of some reservations could very well think that he is being denied something he has a right to, or even believe that he is seeing racism.  He must think it a bitter irony that the people he imagined to be so noble and peaceful do not act just like he always imagined they would.  

Of course he will never know the greater irony.

For us.

We ARE the children of a People of Peace.

And war.  And hunting.  And trading.  And everything else that societies consist of.  We did it all, laughed and loved.  After all, we were nothing more than individual civilizations within the same racial group.

And we did share freely.

We shared the land which no one owns with the newcomers.

The killed us and took it all, because their great God Of Peace told them that they had dominion over the earth and it was their Manifest Destiny to do so.

So they took it.

And now their children are so spiritually bankrupt that they want our beliefs, too.

Ironic, isn't it?

The Scare Tactic
As noted in the beginning, you will notice that any attempt to educate "new agers" about exploitation will be denounced as an "attack" on "their" religious beliefs.  

Be further advised that if/when you begin speaking out against the "new age" norm, you will suddenly find that you are being denounced as "racist." Does the defense of one's spirituality, the unwavering demand that it remain unadulterated and taught solely by qualified individuals (Elders), indicate that one is racist?  The answer to this if of course a resounding "NO!"  Being traditional or perhaps a purist (which may be the best term here) simply means that you are a purist.  

At any rate, be advised that the term "racist" will be employed against you and that the use of this word is a "new age" scare tactic.  While "new age" persons may be ignorant of the fact that they are operating in error, they are definitely NOT ignorant of the attitudes prevalent in modern society.  They know well that racism (although common) is abhorred and that labeling someone "racist" will immediately and unconditionally attract negative attention to the person so labeled.  The vast majority of the public will automatically assume the worst of anyone they heard was a "racist" without taking the time to investigate the accusations for themselves.  "New agers" know this, so they can and do use this term against you in the hope that you will "go away."  

Further Considerations And Rebuttals To The Exploiters

STATEMENT: "I have the right to any spirituality I choose."
FACT: The idea that one has the "right" to "any" spirituality stems from living within a society steeped in Christian doctrine.  Christianity is an all accepting, open religion, and so naturally persons who are raised within a society with this mindset will automatically assume that all religions/beliefs are "open" and "accepting" in the same way that Christianity is.  This is inaccurate.  Tribal religions do not actively seek converts, nor will one find a tipi full of Elders waiting to offer one spiritual advice.  In short: we're a different culture with a different way of doing things - what you *thought* you knew about us is wrong.  

HOWEVER...

Although it happened only recently for American Indians, it is a fact that in the U.S. you have the legally protected right to BELIEVE anything you choose to believe.  No one can make you BELIEVE anything other than what you choose to believe.  However, whether or not you believe that you have the "right" to misrepresent  YOUR beliefs as an "authentic" American Indian belief system, it remains true that such action is immoral, trivializing, spiritually dangerous, and contributes to genocide.

STATEMENT: "You are trying to impose your beliefs on me."
FACT: When someone speaks out against exploitation, they could care less about you.Your beliefs are irrelevant are personal.  When someone acts against exploitation, they are acting against a fraudulent hocus pocus pseudo-religion which is being presented as an "authentic path," usually by a fatcat fake cybershaman.

STATEMENT: "No one owns spirituality."
FACT: Wrong.  Each Tribe owns its own spirituality.  It is theirs alone.  It was given to them alone...and it doesn't necessarily "work" for anyone else. In layman's terms: Try to imagine two groups of people.  Now imagine that they are two new automobiles, completely different models. Would you use a repair manual for the first car to repair the second car?  NO!  The manuals are DIFFERENT.  They only work for the car they were written for!  Sure, they and the cars may SEEM similar, but they are not.

Listen and understand.

STATEMENT: "I am descended from two different Tribes and my Elders told me that...."
FACT: GREAT!!!  If your Elders told you to mix beliefs, that is a PRIVATE affair between you and them and your beliefs now constitute and qualify as a PERSONAL - not a Tribal - belief system.  

Now...did your Elders tell you to run out onto the internet and teach your beliefs to all and sundry?

Thought not.

STATEMENT: "I'm Native American at heart.  Aren't we ALL red on the inside?"
FACT: Well.  No.  Actually we are several different colors on the inside.  Look at your hands on the keyboard: aren't the oxygen laden veins in your hands blue?

At any rate, this is common statement and - amazingly - a much argued one. Let us be realistic here.  We won't speak of things like CDIB's or Tribal enrollment - those are irrelevant.  It is still simple.  If you are a blood descendant of any of  the indigenous People of the Western Hemisphere, then you are American Indian/Native American/First Nations/AK Native, or whatever your People may call themselves.  If you are not - you are not.  It's just that simple.  It's DNA and genetics, not your lifestyle and how you "feel".  Period.

STATEMENT: "But I have always had a strong attraction to American Indian beliefs."
FACT: All of mankind once lived and loved within the Tribal unit.  All beliefs were probably originally earth oriented, much like American Indian beliefs.  If you are not a Native American and you feel a strong attraction to Native American beliefs, most likely you are feeling the desire to reclaim YOUR TRIBE'S unique beliefs.  Unfortunately, most of these are unknown today, but still...why not try to seek out, uncover, and re-discover the Ways of YOUR People first?  

At any rate, most persons do not recognize that they are feeling a desire for their own Tribe's religion, and so they mistakenly identify their "call" as being a "call" to the beliefs of American Indians.  

STATEMENT: "Exploitation is just an excuse for you jerks to have something to complain about."
FACT: Exploitation does many things, none beneficial.  

1.  It trivializes EVERY American Indian's beliefs.  To see a self proclaimed shaman "teaching" what he says are our ways is the same to us as it would be for a Christian to witness Adolf Hitler preaching Sunday mass.  It is not appreciated at all when the sacred is mixed with garbage and promptly posted - or worse, sold - online.
2.  It is spiritually DANGEROUS!  We have already shown that the Ways of a Tribe are meant for its members.  What will happen to the man or woman who gets caught up in some cybershaman's lies?  Yes, it's true that he or she may choose to go BACK to his "new age" beliefs...but don't we all have an obligation to at LEAST TELL him or her that s/he is being misled?  And yes, it IS by self-appointment.  No one cares about US but US.
3.  It contributes to genocide.  Since the advent of wars and armies it has been known that if you destroy a People's religion, you can dominate them entirely.  As long as the beliefs endure, so will the People.  In the days of city-states, entire CIVILIZATIONS would just stop - surrender - if an opposing army captured the Idol - which they literally worshipped as their God - of their city.  In the New World, Christian missionaries were charged with this duty, which they were sometimes successful at, and sometimes not.  All this aside, consider this: if everyone who decides that he is a shaman is allowed to promote his own false version of OUR beliefs, how long will it be - HOW MANY YEARS WILL IT TAKE - before the People don't know the difference between shamanic garbage and their true Ways?

It wouldn't really take that long, would it?  Who knows?  

But it *would* eventually happen, and the Ways would be lost.  If not vanished, then indistinguishable from the "new age."  In effect they would be gone...and then what?  The final solution for the Indian problem?

"Since the advent of wars and armies it has been known that if you destroy a People's religion, you can dominate them entirely.  As long as the beliefs endure, so will the People."

TERMS
Apple: An insulting term used to demean a Native American.  Being referred to as an "apple" means that you are being called "red on the outside but white on the inside."  

Redskin: A term once used when referring to a scalp which had been cut from the head of a Native American.  In times past, it was common to trade the fur of animals and scalps at trading posts.  It is said that delicate and sensitive non-Indian women couldn't bear to hear a "scalp" referred to as a "scalp," so the term "redskin" was adopted in its place.  Thus, a trader would refer to the "animals" he had killed as (for example) deerskins, coonskins, and redskins.  

Shaman: An Asian Native term for a religious and social figure in Siberia/extreme Northern Europe.  The precise etymology of the word is uncertain.  It has been traced to the Pali word *sramana,* meaning "to know," and translated as "[the] One Who Knows."  A well known group of People who looked to shamen for guidance were the Samik (Lapps) of Northern Europe.  This Tribe, traditionally, were hunters and reindeer herders.  Today they have been, for the most part, assimilated.  
In America, the word "shaman" is used to indicate someone who is involved in some way with the occult "scene."  "Shamanism" is now an all-inclusive term which could be used for any "occult profession."  It is often erroneously applied to American Indian healers, medicine-people, etc.

Shame-on: A term used to mock online "shamen."  It of course means "shame on you."

Sq#*w: A derogatory term applied to American Indian females.  It refers to a private part of a woman's body.  At one time, this is how American Indian Women were thought of in America.  American Indians often refuse to utter this word, instead referring to it as the "S-word."

Twinkie: A term used for non-Indian People who teach, practice, or promote non-Indian beliefs while believing their actions/beliefs to be "authentic Indian beliefs."  It is used as an insult.  

Wannabe: A term used to describe persons who "want - to - be" (wannabe) American Indians.  It is used as an insult.

#18 Atehequa

Atehequa

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Posted 29 January 2014 - 06:24 PM

And how the twinkie wannabees get bent out of shape when a real NDN shows up at their forums. I know both Lakota and Lenape people, provide me with some names if you want me to believe you, if not I'll look at your statement the same way I see people like Kiesha Crowther, Plastic Shamans. And by the way we NDNs do not use "Shaman" in regards to our spiritual leaders.

 

With the Zimmerman-Martin and white child stealing Gypsy thread, It was pretty much evident to me where I was.



#19 Synari

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Posted 29 January 2014 - 06:59 PM

I'm not bent outta shape at all. You are free to spout any declarations of war or name calling (which proves how immature you are) you like; it's called freedom of speech. I could care less what you try to label me due to terminology I use....if you knew anything about me you would know I studied alot of different religions, including buddhism. I never claimed that I was an expert at anything...nor did I ever claim to be anything but who I am. Do I admire others cultures, yes. Not just indigenous ones. But I am OK about being who I am...someone who believes we should all learn from one another. That little "declaration of war" and AIM mentality is exactly why I ceased my efforts to change perceptions. People like this choose to be angry and negative and deserve everything that happens to them. You reap what you sew.

 

But You really are tripping aren't you? You just proved everything I said about your narrow mindedness and superiority. Being indigenous makes you no better than anyone else. Thank you so much for proving why you do not belong here and why no one wishes to learn anything from a bigot like you. You definately are the "apple" I thought you were when I first read your posts. Thanks so much for proving how ugly you really are inside for the whole world to see AND showing the world how petty so many like you can be. Now you know why people do not feel there is anything worth learning from someone like you.

 

Now I know why you came here. And it's not a pretty picture. Go back to where others are as narrow minded and selfish as you are. With those spreading the wasicu plague.


Edited by Synari, 29 January 2014 - 07:34 PM.


#20 Synari

Synari

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Posted 29 January 2014 - 10:18 PM

Atehequa, it Seems you post and spam alot of OTHER forums online as well. I guess you have nothing better to do with your time than try to make others feel like crap about things in history they had no control over...in an effort to make yourself feel like you are somehow superior to anyone else. What a sad, pathetic excuse for a man you are. You disgrace the indigenous people you CLAIM to represent. Go somewhere else and spout your negativity.


Edited by Synari, 29 January 2014 - 10:37 PM.