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American Indian Culture and Tradition (Northern Plains)

Barney Old Coyote, Indian Land Development - Oil, Gas, Coal and Other Minerals (1976)

American Indian culture, tradition, and history are the basis for Indian identity, values, and uniqueness in the United States of America. There is a common background for Indian culture, tradition, and values, particularly in the area of worship, life-styles and the perception of the Indian to his environment. This to the extent that it has been correctly represented that the “American Indian lived in harmony with nature.” This was and continues to be true with the Indian in his manner and style of worship, which manner extends into practically every facet of the Indian way, including culture, social, economic and other areas of the Indian life-style. The area of worship cannot be delineated from social, political, culture, and other areas of Indian life-styles, including his general outlook upon economic and resource development.

Similarly, Indian worship is not readily divided among many forms as it is with Christianity and other religions. The separation of church and state generally does not apply to Indian situations, although there is exception to this as with any rule.

Another unique facet of NorthernPlains culture are the sites, mediums and method of worship. The Indian uses permanent sites, semi-permanent and almost every location for his worship. He uses every form of nature, including animals, plants, birds, fishes and every form of living and non-