These spirit animals are often seen in a vision quest that each Native American do when they are young. This vision quest is a time for fasting and prayer and the youth hope to see their totem animal that also becomes their guardian (Gold, 2007).
The Florida Seminoles and the Miccosukee believe in a Great Spirit or the Breath Maker who is in charge of making and maintaining life (“Religion of..”, n.d.). The meaning of life is very important to the Miccosukee because they acknowledge that everything is a part of their environment. All life is important. In the old days, when they hunted, they asked the spirit of the animal that was being killed, for forgiveness (“Religion of” , n.d.). The Miccosukee would also pray to a spirit of a tree before cutting down the tree.
The Miccosukee may state that their strength comes from their religion and the fact that they have not adopted the Western ways. Because they are unique in keeping their customs and history, they would also see their matrilineal foundation as being important to their strength. For Native Americans, everything is spiritual and everything has a presence anywhere in the earth (Johnson, 2007).
The sweat lodges and shamans are very important to Native Americans and healthcare. Shamans often help with health issues in the tribe because they understand how to interpret dreams and oversee many rituals that take place within the tribe (Johnson, 2007). The sweat lodge is one of the ways that Native Americans are able to keep balanced with the spirit world and with the creator (Garrett, et al., 2011). For Native Americans, the concept of balance means that they will have balance in mind, body, and spirit “with the natural environment” (Garrett et al., 2011, p. 318).
On the spiritual level, the sweat lodge is also done for transformation and renewal of the spirit. In contrast to the way Westerners believe, the concept of transformation traditionally will be done in the presence of family and ...
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