Syncretism In African Americans

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Religious syncretism is a term used by historians that involves the incorporation of religious beliefs from one religion into another. Europeans enforced Christianity onto the First Nations through violent threats and ultimatums, which resulted in most Aboriginals to convert to Christianity at least nominally (Wax & Wax 1978). In order to relate to the new religion, Aboriginals syncretized to involve sacred objects and rituals, keeping ties that connect to their native religions (Wax & Wax 1978). As explored in the course, Native Americans generally were not against accepting the beliefs of their conquerors, as it was common within their own tradition– Aboriginal defeated tribes would accept the religion of their Aboriginal victors. A larger…show more content…
While the Native Americans are dis-integrated from the now dominant society, syncretism is only one factor in this result. First Nations were trading with Protestants in the fur trade, and out of fear of the degree to which Native Americans were Christianized, the Europeans relocated them to towns alongside their own. The Europeans isolated the Native Americans to prevent competitive religious missionaries from influencing the Natives (Wax & Wax 1978). Due to the syncretism/dualism of the Native Americans, Europeans were worried they would be more susceptible to influences from other religions, as they were not completely committed to Christianity. This geographic isolation, while not directly a result of syncretism, contributed to the dis-integration of Native Americans from the greater…show more content…
The Federal government in combination with the Catholic Church created the Residential school system, to convert Indian children to Catholicism entirely. They were prohibited from dualizing and were indoctrinated with a new religion (Barnes et al. 2006). While there are several significant issues that arose from the IRSS, the religious indoctrination is one factor that led to the dis-integration of Native Americans from the rest of society. The IRSS also created social problems with Native Americans, which is why the suicide rate of Native Americans are over five times that of the general population in Canada (Mills 1959). Being told what they are and are not able to believe caused social dis-integration, as they were unable to relate entirely to Christianity and they were forbidden from practicing their native

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