Sacred Earth: The Spiritual Landscape of Native America

Sacred Earth: The Spiritual Landscape of Native America

by Arthur Versluis


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Sacred Earth: The Spiritual Landscape of Native America by Arthur Versluis

This eye-opening journey through the terrain of Native American spirituality contrasts contemporary society's rejection of the sacred—and its arrogant belief in its own power to control the cosmos—with native traditions of reverence for the earth. The author reconstructs the archetypal and symbolic significance of indigenous rituals and sacred sites, placing Native American spirituality in the context of the world's great religions. The comparison illustrates the richness and universality of the native approach to the earth as a cherished being and reveals the poverty of our present-day attitudes toward the natural environment and its living creatures. This book is an urgent call to rediscover and become firmly grounded on the sacred earth again.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780892813520
Publisher: Inner Traditions/Bear & Company
Publication date: 06/28/1992
Edition description: Original
Pages: 176
Sales rank: 780,504
Product dimensions: 6.00(w) x 9.00(h) x 0.40(d)

About the Author

Arthur Versluis is Professor of American Thought and Language at Michigan State University and the author of many books, including Wisdom's Children: A Christian Esoteric Tradition, also published by SUNY Press. He is also the editor of the journal Esoterica.

Table of Contents


Part I. Foundations
1. Nature as Theophany
2. Wakan, Orenda, Manitou
3. Timelessness and Time
4. Totemic Revelations
5. Sacred Man and the Great Mystery

Part II. Spiritual Symbolism
1. Inscriptions in Stone
2. The Great Horned Serpent
3. The Stone Man
4. The Great Lodge as Microcosmos
5. Initiation and Its Inversions

Part III. Spiritual Landscape
1. Language of the Earth, Language of the Sky
2. Celestial Agriculture, Celestial Journey
3. Spiritual Landscape
4. Mountains and Fire, Winds and Waters
5. The Council Fire
6. The Songs of Solitude and Silence



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From the Publisher

Versluis, editor of Avaloka: A Journal of Traditional Religion and Culture, offers a much-needed understanding of Native American religion. Through discussion of how the religions of Native Americans compare with traditional religions, he finds ground for a common spirituality. While contemporary society emphasizes ecology, Versluis points out that Native Americans always had a love and respect for the environment and a recognition of the spiritual qualities of nature. This book may prove a bit difficult for lay readers, yet it is necessary reading for those seeking a greater understanding of Native American spirituality. For Native American and religion collections.

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