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Native American Culture - Essay Example

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Native American Culture

They had a value system in place before being colonized, which consisted of four commandments; respect mother earth, respect the great spirits, respect our fellow man and woman, and finally respect for individual freedom. The last commandment was violated by the incoming Europeans as they took away their freedom and way of life. Health Care Beliefs In Native America, there is the belief that is centered on interconnectedness, meaning that everything on earth is connected and therefore has a spirit. Medicine refers to remedies, actions and any type of prayer used to honor the sacred being. From the Native American point of view, medicine is about curing the ailing person rather than healing, and the traditional healers oversee these operations with their aim being to make a person whole again. Traditionally, Native Americans are of the opinion that sickness is due to spiritual troubles, and if a person falls sick then the person is imbalanced, and his or her thoughts are negative. The healers believe that conditions, which are inherited from the parents to the child, are hard to treat and the main cause is an immoral lifestyle led by the parents. The main purpose of traditional healers is to restore an ailing patient back to a state of being whole, and a healthy and pure state of mind, body and soul. The healers combine rituals, religion, herbal medicine and spirituality to treat ailing people. Practices widely used by the traditional healers include the utilization of purifying methods, herbal remedies, symbolic healing and shamanism to clean the body and soul. In rituals, family and friends can be used to invoke the spirits to aid in the healing of the sick person. Natives seek the direction of medicine men and healers for spiritual purposes, and to be reassured about something, the place to go is to the traditional healers. The Native Americans use the modern medicine to treat the White man’s illness and use Indian medicine to treat Indian diseases. According to the American Indian people, every person on earth is here for a reason and when the reason is attained, the person dies. Upon a person’s death grieving is not held for a long time since it acts as an obstacle to the dead, as it prevents them from entering the new world. Differences of Health Care Beliefs The Native Americans believe in cooperating with one another to achieve any obstacle while the Americans competition reigns supreme; the principals of capitalism are applied. As a sign of respect, eye contact is not maintained in health institutions, and it becomes difficult to diagnose a patient. As sign of honesty and earnestness, eye contact is maintained and diagnosing a patient becomes easy with the Americans. To the Native Americans listening is preferred to speaking therefore; it becomes difficult to know what ails the patient. Emphasis is placed on expressing what a person feels among the Americans therefore the ailing person will communicate with the nurses and doctors. According to Native Americans, emphasis is put on non-verbal communication and observation while the Americans emphasis is placed on communication, which is considered as very important since a patient is able to open up. Native Americans do not criticize the person administering the health services directly thus it becomes difficult to rectify ineffective situations in health facilities. Conversely, in the American culture, criticism is expressed directly, with the reason being that the patient ...Show more

Summary

Name Instructor Task Date Background Information Native Americans are the endemic people of North America made up of many tribes and found in Alaska and Hawaii. The migration of Europeans to the Americas in the 15th century led to the building up tension between the two communities and ethnic wars…
Author : aileen49
Native American Culture essay example
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