A shining trail to the Sun's Lodge : renewal through Blackfoot ways of knowing

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Weasel Traveller, Audrey
University of Lethbridge. Faculty of Education
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Lethbridge, Alta. : University of Lethbridge, Faculty of Education, 1997
This research is focused on the teachings of the First Nations people which are grounded sacred stories and which continue to be recalled and recited through oral tradition. The teachings and lessons derived from the sacred stories can be described as ways of knowing. The study explores the persistence of the traditional ways of knowing as a source for influencing First Nations individuals toward greater cultural identity and strength in their present lives. The thesis addresses the value of Peigan ways of knowing as a tool for creating greater meaning in life; for enhancing spiritual wisdom; and for developing insight into and appreciation of First Nation oral traditions. As well, the thesis explores Peigan ways of knowing as an available resource for empowering present day Peigan youth. In researching the First Nations ways of knowing, one Plains Indian group, the Peigan, of which the writer is a member, was used as reference source. The Peigan First Nation belongs to the Blackfoot Confederacy and presenlty resides in southern Alberta on the Peigan Indian Reserve. All participants of the research are members of the Peigan First Nation. The research will begin with an overview of the writer's personal experiences as a student in on-reserve and off-reserve school settings, and later as a worker in the counselling profession. The purpose and significance of the study will be presented as well as the research design within the qualitative methodology. Four individuals were selected as interview participants who were born and raised on the Peigan Reserve. The literature review will reflect current research on the significance of story in the First Nations culture and conclude with the presentation of the recent history of the North Peigan people. The interview data will then be presented with emphasis on the themes that surfaced. Six major themes arouse, which included, renewal and transformation, significance of sacred stories, transmitting culture through story, path of life, the teacher and learner relationship, and finally, the vision for Peigan-Blackfoot youth. The final chapter of the study begins with a summary of the findings and an overview of the themes that details finer points making up the major themes. The implications of and recommendations following the study precede the study's conclusion.
viii, 112 leaves ; 28 cm.
Ampskapi Piikani -- Rites and ceremonies , Siksika -- Rites and ceremonies , Ampskapi Piikani -- Alberta -- Social life and customs , Siksika -- Alberta -- Social life and customs , Dissertations, Academic