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Word Count: 772
The plains Indians were an advanced unique nation of their time Some people may perceive their cultural differences as cruel or bloodthirsty This essay will show both views of the Native Americans ways of life The sun dance was a ceremony which involved a young warrior dancing for four days without food or water whilst strapped to a tree by a leather strap which was embedded into his flesh This caused ripped skin and hallucinations To an outsider this must have seemed gruesome and horrendous to have a young adolescent unwillingly and painfully dance with a strap digging under his skin non stop for four days However the sun dance was really a way for young warriors to get in touch with spirits and to prove his strength to the tribe If this endurance test was completed successfully then it would be something to be proud of as well as a way for the spirits to bless everyone with good food and health Scalping was another custom which might have seemed bloodthirsty This was when the scalp of a person was cut off When the person was dead this may have seemed a disrespectful act and to do this to someone who was still alive was savage On the other hand this bloodthirsty custom was in fact a religious custom because they believed scalping someone was the only way to release the spirit of that person and allow it to go to the Happy Hunting Ground So again this was meant as a favour not as a harmful action The plains Indians attitude towards marriage seems uncivilised as the man was allowed to commit polygamy numerous wives In our society today this would be against the law and frowned upon as it is unaffectionate and disrespectful to the women Nevertheless because the tribes lost a lot of warriors during battle and to prevent the population from dwindling men were allowed to have more than one
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