Boundaries and religion

Boundaries and - Chelsea Reizner Final Essay"It should be clear by now that we are part of a long tradition of mixing boundary questions with

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Chelsea Reizner Final Essay “It should be clear by now that we are part of a long tradition of mixing boundary questions with religious questions. Thus, our religion concerns the way we locate ourselves in space through the arrangement of sacred rites and holy places as boundary markers. It concerns, too, the way we locate ourselves in time through origin stories or theological traditions that also express boundaries. But location is always social. It concerns our place among other human beings, and it means staking out a claim on the landscape of identity.” (Catherine Albanese, “The Elephant in the Dark,” 5) Religion is very controversial for many reasons. It is unbelievably complex and difficult to define. Religion is comprised of boundaries of all types. These boundaries are what set one apart from others, which I believe results in religion. Location is also a big factor in defining religion. An instance in which location shapes religion is bringing religion to America. America serves as a new boundary for all religions. This example serves for all of the religions that are not native. Once each religion came to America they faced many obstacles, which in turn changed each religion. Furthermore, time influences change in religion, which we will see within the essay. One religion that is affected by the era in which it occurred and different boundaries, is the peyote religion. The peyote religion is a religious movement that started and began to spread throughout the 19 th century. The Peyote Religion is a hybrid between Christianity and Native American traditions, making it very accepting to all Native Americans. The Peyote religion was a result of the colonial crisis, which can also give evidence to why it is a hybrid. When the Euro-Americans came to America they felt as though the Native Americans were uncivilized scavengers. In their effort to civilize them, the Peyote religion was created. The Peyote Religion was started by the Huichols of Northern Mexico where peyote grows naturally. Quanah Parker, a comanche Indian, became interested in the religion. So, he learned the religion from the Huichols and when he arrived in the Oklahoma Territory he began to spread it. James Mooney thought that the
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Peyotists should have their own church. With James Mooney’s idea in 1818, the Native American Church was created. The creation of this church made Peyote appear more organized and more like a “legitimate” religion, in the eyes of the Euro-Americans, or so Native Americans thought. “By equating the religion with a Christian denomination, the NAC helped make Peyote seem less alien to non-Natives familiar with organized religions.” (Martin, 107) The non-Natives were still displeased with the Native American’s efforts to incorporate Christian values within the Peyote Religion. The non-Natives were against Peyote because it was not Christianity, which was their main goal in civilization. They also thought that peyote was an illegal drug making it
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This note was uploaded on 04/30/2008 for the course REL 175 taught by Professor Bidmeadandhanges during the Spring '06 term at Miami University.

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Boundaries and - Chelsea Reizner Final Essay"It should be clear by now that we are part of a long tradition of mixing boundary questions with

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