Native American Religion Sample Essay

Native American Religion


Jennifer Graber’s The Gods of the Indian Country: Religion and the Struggle for the American West focuses on the Kiowa Indians. Jennifer Graber is a renowned author and an associate professor of Religious studies at the University of Texas at Austin. Through the book, she describes the cultural transformation and the physical displacement of Indian Americans who were popularly known as the Kiowa Indians. It demonstrates the role that Religion played during the American’s hundred years struggle to acquire, explore and seize their motherland between 1803 and 1903. The issue that pushed me to select the book is my interest in the role of religion on contemporary issues ranging from politics and social life. It also explores the clash of rival economic systems and racial ideologies. During the nineteenth century, white Americans sought the cultural transformation and physical displacement of the Native people. The story depicted a clash of rival economic systems and racial ideologies intertwined in a profound religious struggle.

Modern-day religion should be understood in the context of our daily issues and problems. Though the book describes issues that might have occurred several years ago, it comes out as a masterpiece to understand the role of religion in our present times. During the nineteenth century, Americans went out in a spree to seek cultural transformation and the physical displacement of American Indian nations. Though many consider this as a clash of rival economic systems and racial ideologies, it was a spiritual struggle. During the struggle, the Kiowa were faced by forces including soldiers, missionaries and government operatives making them adopt spiritual rituals in the hopes of using their sacred power. Protestants and Catholics were expected to stand for the Kiowas but unfortunately, they wanted an Indian Country. They insisted on the primacy of the white Christian civilization and the need to transform the lives of native peoples. In the end, the representatives of religion were at the forefront in support of policies that broke treaties and appropriated native land. The topic is therefore important to understand the impacts of proper use and misuse of religion in the contemporary world. The book examines both Catholic and Protestant efforts to evangelize and Native Americans and shape federal Indian policy.

Reconstructing the Authors Arguments

As a summary, the book presents more than fifty illustrations many of which are presented by the Native Americans. The book tells a big story with several players yet it manages to maintain the trail of the ideas it aims. The book as Graber calls it a “big book” in his acknowledgment, the books present multi arguments. The author grabs the opportunity to narrate the 19th-century American religion. The book begins with an opening vignette about Kiowa Sun Dance and the Quaker school teacher. This is followed closely by two important reasoning or arguments. These two arguments form the basis for the question of the role Christianity has to play in a contemporary set up. The first reasoning is based on the argument that the Christian missionaries as well as the reformers, who were calling themselves Indian friends ate that time presented themselves as an alternative to native annihilation and destruction. The Christians, according to Gaber appeared with Bibles and soothing words but clothed in wolves sheep. They seemed to have had a strategy to acquire land and chive native peoples’ cultural transformation in a peaceful. The other white colonialists had appeared in arms stirring up resistance from the natives at the very beginning of their expedition. The self-identified friends of the Indians. According to the author, they were no less colonial when compared to white supremacists. What appeared as benevolence was in actuality genocide and colonialism.

In the second argument, Gaber focusses his reasoning on the Kiowa Indians and how they responded to the ravening white settler colonialism.  The white settlers came in intending to garb and reduce the land that was owned by the natives. Besides the grab, the white setters also thought to change the way of living of the natives and even break the tribal bonds. By interfering with the integrity of the Native’s identity, they would easily erase the identity of the Indians. When people cannot remember their identity it becomes the easiest way to begin colonization. The attempt to break the tribal bonds of the people looked like a divide and rule tactic. This would easily foster disunity among the natives, and scattered people are so easy to rule and colonize. As a response to the attempts, the Kiowa resorted to practices of making kin, giving gifts and engaging diplomacy. Religiously, they also engaged the sacred power. What follows are arguments and actions of the whites, Christian, reformers and the Kiowas leading to a book presentation that appears complicated yet well-articulated. It also provides an opportunity to interrogate the gods of the Indians. According to the Kiowas, the continuation of established spiritual beliefs and practices was able to sustain them in the face of great challenges. They made alliances with powerful neighbors such as Comanche with whom they shared the Sun Dance ritual. The Gods of the Indians present a deep look at a Native American Society and their settler-colonial conquerors. The efforts were characterized by reliance upon faith in the face of both success and failure, joy and sorrow.

Comparison with other authors

Among the authors who also passionately describe similar scenes as those expressed by Gaber is Joel W. Martin. In his book Sacred Revolt: The Muskogeees struggle for a New World, Martin describes the Muskogees struggle along the Gulf of Mexico. The like the efforts describe by Gaber and like the other culture, these struggles were characterized by the Indian societies enlisting the aid of the supernatural in controlling the natural and social world. Each set of the tribe just like the Kiowa had a set of observances that were devoted to a higher being. The sacred power is seen engaged through dance, peyote, and mission churches in both situations. The individuals tried to appease powerful spiritual entities with private prayers and sacrifices of valuable items. The items commonly used in both situations included furs, tobacco, and even food. The two authors all bring out the role of religion in preserving the heritage of the people. In Gaber’s scenario, the Kiowa were faced by Protestants, Catholic leaders, missionaries and reformers who came in as friends, teachers, and protectors something that is not brought out in the story by Martin. Martin brings out the proper use of religion in strengthening the natives while Kiowa produces both the misuse and the proper use of religion.

The other author who also portrays a similar story is James H. Merrel. The author presents, The Indians’ New World: Catawbas and Their Neighbors from European Contact through the Era of removal. Just like the other stories, this is a story of native agency, creativity, resilience, and endurance. Published in the year 1989, it tells the history of the Catawbas and their neighbors in the Southern piedmont. The story brings out a similar but more thrilling story in studying the Native Americans. Together with the Gods of the Indians, these books passionately serve as a model for the study of the Indian heritage and way of reintegration into American history. In a similar effort like the previous authors, this book emphasizes the ingenuity and strength of will by which the Catawbas coped with disaster and preserved their identity as a people. The Catawbas were having both the black and the white neighbors in a similar setup as the Kiowas. The reasoning of the two books is pegged on the efforts of the Indians to preserve the identity against the invasion by the colonialists and imperialists. The struggle is also brought out as religious since the Indians are depicted as seeking the intervention of a higher power.

A Personal Response

As a personal response to Graber’s work, it presents important contributions to issues about the role religion has to play in the contemporary world. The author plays close attention to the concept of religion and how it was used and misused in equal measure. The Catholics and the Protestants seemed to misuse religion to gain native land and even colonize them. The need to Christianize and civilize the Kiowa was a good move but it did not have to come to the expense of the natives’ land and freedom. The Kiowa’s also responded by defending their sovereignty. The book, therefore, fits in the field of indigenous studies through the efforts of the author to keep the Indians’ land and nations at the center of the focus.

The author is persuasive in his idea brought out in the book. The books cover the 19th century and chronologically folds into three main sections namely: open lands closed lands and divided lands.  It articulately tells the story of the America nation sprouted from a land that was considered an Indian country and was primarily under the patronage and custody of the Kiowa Indians. It ends when what was initially an Indian settlement changing to a white settlers’ property. Despite all these, the Kiowa’s maintain their connections with kin, land and sacred power. The fight put up by the Kiowa’s were worth it and the efforts by the white colonists were a misuse of religion. Through the book, the author introduces a variety of persons, including Christian reformers, Kiowa leaders, US leaders, and their policies as well as the Kiowa children. These provide clear evidence that is convincing and persuasive, providing a demonstration and picture of the situation in the 19th century. The sacred power is seen engaged through dance, peyote, and mission churches. The big book also gives an intimate feel. The glossary and the appendix are also quite engaging. In a nutshell, the book is a model piece for those having a special interest in American religious history.


Get Professional Assignment Help Cheaply

Buy Custom Essay

Are you busy and do not have time to handle your assignment? Are you scared that your paper will not make the grade? Do you have responsibilities that may hinder you from turning in your assignment on time? Are you tired and can barely handle your assignment? Are your grades inconsistent?

Whichever your reason is, it is valid! You can get professional academic help from our service at affordable rates. We have a team of professional academic writers who can handle all your assignments.

Why Choose Our Academic Writing Service?

  • Plagiarism free papers
  • Timely delivery
  • Any deadline
  • Skilled, Experienced Native English Writers
  • Subject-relevant academic writer
  • Adherence to paper instructions
  • Ability to tackle bulk assignments
  • Reasonable prices
  • 24/7 Customer Support
  • Get superb grades consistently

Online Academic Help With Different Subjects


Students barely have time to read. We got you! Have your literature essay or book review written without having the hassle of reading the book. You can get your literature paper custom-written for you by our literature specialists.


Do you struggle with finance? No need to torture yourself if finance is not your cup of tea. You can order your finance paper from our academic writing service and get 100% original work from competent finance experts.

Computer science

Computer science is a tough subject. Fortunately, our computer science experts are up to the match. No need to stress and have sleepless nights. Our academic writers will tackle all your computer science assignments and deliver them on time. Let us handle all your python, java, ruby, JavaScript, php , C+ assignments!


While psychology may be an interesting subject, you may lack sufficient time to handle your assignments. Don’t despair; by using our academic writing service, you can be assured of perfect grades. Moreover, your grades will be consistent.


Engineering is quite a demanding subject. Students face a lot of pressure and barely have enough time to do what they love to do. Our academic writing service got you covered! Our engineering specialists follow the paper instructions and ensure timely delivery of the paper.


In the nursing course, you may have difficulties with literature reviews, annotated bibliographies, critical essays, and other assignments. Our nursing assignment writers will offer you professional nursing paper help at low prices.


Truth be told, sociology papers can be quite exhausting. Our academic writing service relieves you of fatigue, pressure, and stress. You can relax and have peace of mind as our academic writers handle your sociology assignment.


We take pride in having some of the best business writers in the industry. Our business writers have a lot of experience in the field. They are reliable, and you can be assured of a high-grade paper. They are able to handle business papers of any subject, length, deadline, and difficulty!


We boast of having some of the most experienced statistics experts in the industry. Our statistics experts have diverse skills, expertise, and knowledge to handle any kind of assignment. They have access to all kinds of software to get your assignment done.


Writing a law essay may prove to be an insurmountable obstacle, especially when you need to know the peculiarities of the legislative framework. Take advantage of our top-notch law specialists and get superb grades and 100% satisfaction.

What discipline/subjects do you deal in?

We have highlighted some of the most popular subjects we handle above. Those are just a tip of the iceberg. We deal in all academic disciplines since our writers are as diverse. They have been drawn from across all disciplines, and orders are assigned to those writers believed to be the best in the field. In a nutshell, there is no task we cannot handle; all you need to do is place your order with us. As long as your instructions are clear, just trust we shall deliver irrespective of the discipline.

Are your writers competent enough to handle my paper?

Our essay writers are graduates with bachelor's, masters, Ph.D., and doctorate degrees in various subjects. The minimum requirement to be an essay writer with our essay writing service is to have a college degree. All our academic writers have a minimum of two years of academic writing. We have a stringent recruitment process to ensure that we get only the most competent essay writers in the industry. We also ensure that the writers are handsomely compensated for their value. The majority of our writers are native English speakers. As such, the fluency of language and grammar is impeccable.

What if I don’t like the paper?

There is a very low likelihood that you won’t like the paper.

Reasons being:

  • When assigning your order, we match the paper’s discipline with the writer’s field/specialization. Since all our writers are graduates, we match the paper’s subject with the field the writer studied. For instance, if it’s a nursing paper, only a nursing graduate and writer will handle it. Furthermore, all our writers have academic writing experience and top-notch research skills.
  • We have a quality assurance that reviews the paper before it gets to you. As such, we ensure that you get a paper that meets the required standard and will most definitely make the grade.

In the event that you don’t like your paper:

  • The writer will revise the paper up to your pleasing. You have unlimited revisions. You simply need to highlight what specifically you don’t like about the paper, and the writer will make the amendments. The paper will be revised until you are satisfied. Revisions are free of charge
  • We will have a different writer write the paper from scratch.
  • Last resort, if the above does not work, we will refund your money.

Will the professor find out I didn’t write the paper myself?

Not at all. All papers are written from scratch. There is no way your tutor or instructor will realize that you did not write the paper yourself. In fact, we recommend using our assignment help services for consistent results.

What if the paper is plagiarized?

We check all papers for plagiarism before we submit them. We use powerful plagiarism checking software such as SafeAssign, LopesWrite, and Turnitin. We also upload the plagiarism report so that you can review it. We understand that plagiarism is academic suicide. We would not take the risk of submitting plagiarized work and jeopardize your academic journey. Furthermore, we do not sell or use prewritten papers, and each paper is written from scratch.

When will I get my paper?

You determine when you get the paper by setting the deadline when placing the order. All papers are delivered within the deadline. We are well aware that we operate in a time-sensitive industry. As such, we have laid out strategies to ensure that the client receives the paper on time and they never miss the deadline. We understand that papers that are submitted late have some points deducted. We do not want you to miss any points due to late submission. We work on beating deadlines by huge margins in order to ensure that you have ample time to review the paper before you submit it.

Will anyone find out that I used your services?

We have a privacy and confidentiality policy that guides our work. We NEVER share any customer information with third parties. Noone will ever know that you used our assignment help services. It’s only between you and us. We are bound by our policies to protect the customer’s identity and information. All your information, such as your names, phone number, email, order information, and so on, are protected. We have robust security systems that ensure that your data is protected. Hacking our systems is close to impossible, and it has never happened.

How our Assignment  Help Service Works

1.      Place an order

You fill all the paper instructions in the order form. Make sure you include all the helpful materials so that our academic writers can deliver the perfect paper. It will also help to eliminate unnecessary revisions.

2.      Pay for the order

Proceed to pay for the paper so that it can be assigned to one of our expert academic writers. The paper subject is matched with the writer’s area of specialization.

3.      Track the progress

You communicate with the writer and know about the progress of the paper. The client can ask the writer for drafts of the paper. The client can upload extra material and include additional instructions from the lecturer. Receive a paper.

4.      Download the paper

The paper is sent to your email and uploaded to your personal account. You also get a plagiarism report attached to your paper.

smile and order essaysmile and order essay PLACE THIS ORDER OR A SIMILAR ORDER WITH US TODAY AND GET A PERFECT SCORE!!!

order custom essay paper