Chapter

A Unity of Experience

Joseph Epes Brown and Emily Cousins

in Teaching Spirits

Published in print August 2001 | ISBN: 9780195138757
Published online January 2009 | e-ISBN: 9780199871759 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195138757.003.0007
 A Unity of Experience

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This chapter focuses on the unity of experience in Native American religious traditions. Native American traditions stress a unity of experience. Where such traditions are still alive and spiritually viable, the dimension and expression of the sacred is present in all of life's necessary activities. When the elements of time, place, language, art, and the metaphysics of nature come together, however, as they do in ritual activities, the experience of the sacred is intensified. The three cumulative possibilities that must be accomplished by spiritually effective rites: purification, expansion, and identity are mentioned, as are initiation rites, and humor in Native American rites.

Keywords: Native American culture; religious traditions; spiritual rites; initiation rites; humor

Chapter.  6654 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: East Asian Religions

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