Native american church

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Native American Church

A religious denomination which practices Peyotism or the Peyote Religion, originated in the U.S. state of Oklahoma, and is the most widespread indigenous religion among Native Americans in the United States. Peyotism involves the use of the entheogen peyote, a spineless cactus.

History of the Peyote Religion

Peyote was used in the territory of modern Mexico in pre-Columbian times to commune with the spirit world and also as a medicine. From the mid-15th century, the use of peyote spread to the Great Plains area of the United States primarily through the efforts of the Apache, Navajo, Plains Tribes, and various tribes in the western United States. Peyotism is now practiced in more than 50 Native American tribes and has probably around 250,000 adherents.

Peyotist beliefs vary considerably from tribe to tribe, belief in peyote personified as a god called Mescalito by some practitioners, but often include belief in Jesus as a Native American culture hero, an intercessor for man or a spiritual guardian; belief in the Bible; and association of Jesus with peyote. Peyotists believe in a supreme God. The “Peyote Road” calls for Native American brotherly love (often taking the form of Native American nationalism), family care, self-support through work, avoidance of alcohol, and avoidance of recreational drug use.

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