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Native American (Witch) Craft

2002-09-24 04:09:44+00 by meuon 4 comments

Public gatherings in Chattanooga are fun, especially when the guy dressed as Jesus is carrying a cross (hollow, with a caster) and a sign attached that says.. Native American Craft is WitchCraft. He is better accepted by the crowd (at least he' s an X-tian) than the kewl kids harrassing him. But then, here in the "Belt Buckle of the Bible Belt" we also get the Christians protesting the adult video stores. Time to visit the left coast again.

[ related topics: Religion Children and growing up Humor Photography California Culture Chattanooga ]

comments in ascending chronological order (reverse):

#Comment made: 2002-09-24 13:55:21+00 by: ebradway

He who is without sin caster the first stoner... A hollow cross - how appropriate!

In some of my classes, Eastern Religions and Cultural Geography, I'm beginning to develop an interesting idea:

  1. Economic growth in the Western Hemisphere is directly due to the Christian idea that nature is subject to man's will (i.e., we can exploit the hell out of this world). All other major religions believe that mankind should at least respect the environment as it was created by the same gods as we were. It was because of this exploitation of natural resources that the Christian world was able to expand.
  2. Growth of Christianity is related more to a desire to have the apparent economic fortune than the strength of the actual beliefs. "All these rich (mostly white) folks coming in here and taking our land believe in this Jesus guy. Maybe if I believe in him too I can live in a nice house and have plenty of food for my children."

Of course, there are many other theories and they probably all contribute: the use of force by Catholic missionaries to convert the heathens, the stripping of native cultural by teaching English and enforcing it as a standard language (while not providing native cultural information in English), etc., etc. But the idea of the growth of Christianity due to doctrines about the environment seemed relatively unique to me - and extremely scary too!

#Comment made: 2002-09-24 15:55:36+00 by: Dan Lyke

Adopting some of the ideas of Jared Diamond, I'd go the other way. Technological growth is based on natural resources and geography. Spirituality is a function of technology. We believe that nature must be conquered because our culture has had the geography that has brought us a wide variety of predators, diseases, and other challenges, and our natural resources have needed refinement.

However, this belief doesn't contradict your point #2, that people try to adopt technology by wearing the fashions of those who have attributes they admire, the cargo cults being the most blatant example, but I think we also see it in the New Age adoptions of portions of certain japanese and chinese (and other "foreign") spiritualities, and even in the .com adoption of Foosball tables.

#Comment made: 2002-09-24 16:31:21+00 by: Shawn

we also get the Christians protesting the adult video stores

I visited a local store that was being protested once (pretty much by one woman, who I later saw at a City Council meeting where the Adult Oridinance was going to be reviewed - which was the same reason I was there). I was making an initial perusal of the store. Didn't think it was anything special, but I stopped at the protester on my way out and told her to go home and spend time with her family.

I honestly don't understand people who stand around in front of businesses holding signs. I have plenty of things I like to protest too, but I certainly don't have the time to hang out in front of them castigating their patrons. My initial reaction to seeing these people is "get a life".

#Comment made: 2002-09-24 20:02:02+00 by: Dan Lyke

Slightly related, and I'm too rushed to put context and background information in: Why No Industrial Revolution Happened in Ancient Greece and the comments section.