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Author Topic: whats the main differences between traditionalism and reconstructionalism please?  (Read 4194 times)

Nyktipolos

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Quote from: Nyktipolos;143132
Do you happen to know what tribe they belong to? Often people reach out to other tribes because they have none, which I find to be preferable than reaching out to someone of an entirely different ethnicity who is erroneously commodifying their culture. Other Natives reach out to pan-Indianism, which has it's own sort of problems but then again, it's about reclamation of culture, not adopting practices that are steeped in exoticification of other cultures.

 
Adding this on instead of editing my post:

One thing I did not know previously to this discussion thread was that Michael Harner didn't just write a book in the 70's and then stop. It turns out he's written multiple books, he's one of the founders of the concept of "core shamanism", he runs multiple expensive workshops on "shamanism" which seems so much like a mockery of secondary education it makes my skin crawl, and he has an "Indigeous Assistance" program set up that seems more to me like it involves missionary work rather than helping out local Indigenous groups than anything.

Why this all creeps me out is that we do not need to be "saved". We are trying to save our cultures, our languages, our entire ways of life, on our own and we may stumble and fuck up, but we're doing it. We don't need people with White Saviour Complexes coming in and instead of working along side of us trying to tell us what our practices are (or asking us what our practices are, especially if you are not privy to that information; likewise I would never ask a friend of mine who is going through her Midewewin training what it involves unless she volunteers it, because it's a closed, mystery tradition and I would feel INCREDIBLY rude asking her to tell me) and how great they are for helping us out. It takes the narrative focus off the actual people they are helping (or "helping") and instead putting it on them, which is part of the problem.
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ethelwulf

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Quote from: Nyktipolos;143133
Adding this on instead of editing my post:

One thing I did not know previously to this discussion thread was that Michael Harner didn't just write a book in the 70's and then stop. It turns out he's written multiple books, he's one of the founders of the concept of "core shamanism", he runs multiple expensive workshops on "shamanism" which seems so much like a mockery of secondary education it makes my skin crawl, and he has an "Indigeous Assistance" program set up that seems more to me like it involves missionary work rather than helping out local Indigenous groups than anything.

Why this all creeps me out is that we do not need to be "saved". We are trying to save our cultures, our languages, our entire ways of life, on our own and we may stumble and fuck up, but we're doing it. We don't need people with White Saviour Complexes coming in and instead of working along side of us trying to tell us what our practices are (or asking us what our practices are, especially if you are not privy to that information; likewise I would never ask a friend of mine who is going through her Midewewin training what it involves unless she volunteers it, because it's a closed, mystery tradition and I would feel INCREDIBLY rude asking her to tell me) and how great they are for helping us out. It takes the narrative focus off the actual people they are helping (or "helping") and instead putting it on them, which is part of the problem.

 
I can clearly see your point and did not know how commercial Harner was until I looked up the website you listed. I only remember him from the past and had only read his book the way of the shaman. I do not like commercialization of any practice as he has and am sorry he has come to that. Thank you for the update on Harner. I also just read a different website criticizing the use of the word shamanism in reference to Native American beliefs. As I originally stated I do not like the term and try not to use it but it has become so pervasive.

ethelwulf

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Quote from: Nyktipolos;143132
Do you happen to know what tribe they belong to? Often people reach out to other tribes because they have none, which I find to be preferable than reaching out to someone of an entirely different ethnicity who is erroneously commodifying their culture. Other Natives reach out to pan-Indianism, which has it's own sort of problems but then again, it's about reclamation of culture, not adopting practices that are steeped in exoticification of other cultures.

 
One was Karankawa and the other was Apache but that event was over 10 years ago and they were trying to recover or reenergize their traditions. They were not interested in shamanism only the technique he had described to enter into the trance like state.  Since then there has been better organization and a more dynamic community but it was not always that way. The current group I have had the fortune to associate with is now over 20 people. They have a drumming circle and are working hard to bring younger people to continue the traditions. I do not know if the are a part of the pan-Indianism but they are connecting with many other groups in Texas and in Oklahoma.

SunflowerP

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Quote from: DavidMcCann;143116
But seriously, the use of the term "shamanism" generically has been established in academia for years and it's unlikely to stop just because some people don't find it politically correct.

 
1. Many of the relevant academic fields have ceased, or are ceasing, to use it, because that sort of generalizing among diverse cultures is less effective from a scholarly perspective.

2. Something worth pondering about the expression 'politically correct'.

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Quote from: DavidMcCann;143116
... like claiming you can be a mystic without being a Christian mystic or a Hindu mystic.

 
Wait, what?

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veggiewolf

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Quote from: DavidMcCann;143116
... like claiming you can be a mystic without being a Christian mystic or a Hindu mystic.

 
Are you seriously saying that Christianity and Hinduism are the only two Mystery religions out there, or that they are the only ones to which the word "mystic" applies?
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Quote from: veggiewolf;143240
Are you seriously saying that Christianity and Hinduism are the only two Mystery religions out there, or that they are the only ones to which the word "mystic" applies?

No, I'm just quoting a couple of examples. So, herewith the revised version:
"... like claiming you can be a mystic without being one within the framework of a specific religion."

I was forgetting the evident need to spell everything out in tedious detail round here. It's funny, I never have this problem on other forums: may be I'm in the wrong place. The section "Communication and language use" on this page rings a bell:
http://www.ravenkindred.com/wicatru.html
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Quote from: DavidMcCann;143261
No, I'm just quoting a couple of examples. So, herewith the revised version:
"... like claiming you can be a mystic without being one within the framework of a specific religion."

I was forgetting the evident need to spell everything out in tedious detail round here.

 
There are a mere ten extra keystrokes to your revised version, as compared to your original. That constitutes 'tedious detail'?

It's not, in fact, necessary in most cases to go into lengthy detail. It's usually sufficient to a) say what you mean, then b) reread it to make sure it does not say anything you didn't mean.

I am now wondering just what definition of 'mysticism' you are using, that restricts it to the frameworks of specific religions?

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Jack

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Quote from: DavidMcCann;143261
I was forgetting the evident need to spell everything out in tedious detail round here. It's funny, I never have this problem on other forums: may be I'm in the wrong place. The section "Communication and language use" on this page rings a bell:
http://www.ravenkindred.com/wicatru.html

 
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Quote from: DavidMcCann;143261
No, I'm just quoting a couple of examples. So, herewith the revised version:
"... like claiming you can be a mystic without being one within the framework of a specific religion."

I was forgetting the evident need to spell everything out in tedious detail round here. It's funny, I never have this problem on other forums: may be I'm in the wrong place. The section "Communication and language use" on this page rings a bell:
http://www.ravenkindred.com/wicatru.html

 
Replace Wiccan and Asatruar with 'bus driver' and 'grocery clerk' or 'librarian' and 'teacher' and suddenly it's not an issue of religious conditioning. It's people discussing stuff with varying amounts of the social niceties thrown in. Artifically drawing lines between the two groups like that seems kind of wrong to me. It's not like I haven't run into Wiccans who could curbstomp me with their debate skills.
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Sophia C

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Quote from: DavidMcCann;143261
No, I'm just quoting a couple of examples. So, herewith the revised version:
"... like claiming you can be a mystic without being one within the framework of a specific religion."

Definition of mystic,  from the Oxford English Dictionary:

mystic

ˈmɪstɪk/

noun

1.

a person who seeks by contemplation and self-surrender to obtain unity with or absorption into the Deity or the absolute, or who believes in the spiritual apprehension of truths that are beyond the intellect.

I consider myself an aspiring mystic,  without belonging to an established religion.  So you would say I'm misusing the term,  would you?
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Micheál

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Quote from: beith;142967


And tangentially related...do the Gàidhealtachd areas of Scotland also tend to have a lot of English speakers?  I plan to visit Scotland this summer and didn't think I would have too much language issues compared to other places I've been.  But if I visit a Gàidhealtachd area and should learn a few key phrases and perhaps carry a dictionary, I'd like to be prepared for that.

You'll be fine, there are very very very few people people in Ireland that aren't bilingual, and the few survivors in the Gaeltachtaí that aren't have a good understanding of English anyway. Put it this way, there are more Polish and Chinese speakers here than there are Irish, and they need a certain understanding of English in order to get around.... same for Scotland, all the Gaelgoirí know eachother, and will most likely converse in English if around a stranger or tourist, but if you make an effort, I'm sure they'll apreciate it and make it worth your while.

Nyktipolos

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Quote from: Naomi J;143291
Definition of mystic,  from the Oxford English Dictionary:

mystic

ˈmɪstɪk/

noun

1.

a person who seeks by contemplation and self-surrender to obtain unity with or absorption into the Deity or the absolute, or who believes in the spiritual apprehension of truths that are beyond the intellect.

I consider myself an aspiring mystic,  without belonging to an established religion.  So you would say I'm misusing the term,  would you?


I'm hanging off your post here Nay, because I really don't think people calling themselves "mystics" are the problem here at all, and I think this is important to point out.
 
So this really boggles me because well ... one can definitely be a mystic, or a spirit-worker (or whichever term one wishes to use), independent of a specific religion (I also want to say cultural worldview, but I don't have the spoons to properly include it because we all have worldviews, but many of them are secular and inspired by the life we grew up in, rather than being influenced by our religions, but not all?), but I don't think that's the problem here. The problem is rather that people are trying to call themselves shamans, or their practices shamanistic, while equally pulling it outside of the cultures this term belonged to (I mean I don't know about you, but I'm not seeing a lot of people (who are not ethnically Tungusic) walking around calling themselves Tungusic reconstructionist shamans ... which would be intensely problematic).

Instead it's people using tools that many cultures' mystic/spirit-workers used (but not all), but their roles and importance changed depending on how that culture interacted with these tools, especially those who were guided by spirits to do so. How I use and interact with a drum (especially with my own Michif/Nehiyaw/Anishinaabe worldview and how it contrasts with my own non-indigenous thoughts and practices) is probably going to be vastly different from how Nay views it, or how SunflowerP views it, or how someone in a Midewewin society in contrast to someone who is a Northern Tradition pagan in contrast to someone who is initiated into a Haitian vodou sosyete. I don't believe this makes all of it "shamanism" or "core shamanism", but rather different groups/people/worldviews using useful and proven tools specific for their own goals, spirits, and practices.
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Gilbride

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Quote from: Nyktipolos;143340
I'm hanging off your post here Nay, because I really don't think people calling themselves "mystics" are the problem here at all, and I think this is important to point out.


There are people who argue that there can be no legitimate mysticism outside of a broader religious tradition- so you can have Christian, Muslim, Jewish or Hindu mystics (as well as some other options) but no generic mystics. I can't remember exactly who is saying this, but it's not the first time I've come across it. It's an attempt to ensure that mysticism has a relationship with some form of established orthodoxy.

Nyktipolos

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Quote from: Gilbride;143341
There are people who argue that there can be no legitimate mysticism outside of a broader religious tradition- so you can have Christian, Muslim, Jewish or Hindu mystics (as well as some other options) but no generic mystics. I can't remember exactly who is saying this, but it's not the first time I've come across it. It's an attempt to ensure that mysticism has a relationship with some form of established orthodoxy.

 
I can honestly say I've never heard of that before (and even then, it still doesn't bother me?), but I would be interested in reading it if you come across the source again!
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