Religion was a very important part of Native life. Early Native people believed in a 'Supreme Being' who was the 'Master' and Mystery' of all that exists in the universe. The belief was that all animals and birds had the following inalienable rights: the right to man's love and respect, the right to man's guardianship, the right to live a full life, the right to grow and multiply, the right to enjoy unmolested freedom, and the right to share man's fellowship and to share the goodness of creation. And because all things, inanimate and animate, were created by the Supreme being, they were filled with his spiritual essence. No animal was ever deprived of its life without a silent prayer from the hunter.
To the early Native people, education was a part of everyday life. Their books were the rocks, the rivers and lakes, the trees and roots, the sun, the moon and the stars. It was from these elements that they fashioned their material culture. Creative life was in everything. One loved nature and nature loved in return. The people believed in only one Supreme Being, The Creator, whose mighty power governs and directs the beginning and end of all things.
Big White Owl, A Brief Sketch of Native Woodland Religion, The Native Perspective, July - Aug. 1977.
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