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Ethnic: Native American

To Pray With the Pipe:

The prayer to use with the Pipe is a pattern of free prayer from the heart. Set and written formulas are not used. I had several old Indians tell me that in the eatrly days the Indian people could not understand why the priest was always reading from a book for in their minds this was insincere and ineffectual. It is quite possible that there was a real cultural conflict that the early missionaries entirely missed. One frequently hears that the Pipe was their Bible and those leading double religious lives say that they live by the Pipe and the Bible. At the end of the Prayer, the Pipe is pointed skyward and earthward as a sign of conclusion. Sometimes the person touches the ground with the Pipe.

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Where learned: CANADA ; Tekakwitha Conference ; WINNIPEG

Keyword(s): AMERICAN INDIAN ; BIBLE ; CUSTOM ; ETHNIC ; Native American ; Pipe ; PRAYER ; RELIGION

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Prayer
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