NATIVE AMERICAN CREATION MYTH AND COLONIAL SETTLERS

[The Indian] was kin to all living things and he gave to all creatures equal rights with himself. Everything of earth was loved and reverenced. (Chief Luther Standing Bear, Land of the Spotted Eagle, Houghton Mifflin, Boston & New York, 1933)POINT 2The Puritans saw human history as an unfolding cosmic drama in which every person had a predestined role to play. True, men and women had no free will, but they had the assurance that their existenceindeed, their every actionwas meaningful and that their strivings and sufferings in the present would ultimately produce a future of perfect peace and securitya kind of heaven on earth. That confidence made people like the Puritans anything but passive or despairing. On the contrary, they were an extraordinarily energetic, activist lot, constantly striving to reshape both society and government to accord with what they believed to be the will of God as set forth in the scriptures. They strove, too, to lead godly and disciplined livesbut not because they hoped that such righteous behavior would earn them salvation. Instead they believed that their very ability to master their evil inclinations provided some evidence that they ranked among the elect of saints. In other words, the Puritans did not regard leading a godly, moral life as the cause of a persons salvation, but rather as an encouraging sign of the effect of being chosen by God to enjoy eternal bliss in heaven. It was impossible, of course, to be entirely confident of ones eternal fate, but that edge of uncertainty only made believers redouble their efforts to purify their own lives and society as a whole. And nothing was more important to early modern men and women than gaining greater reassurance of salvation (Heyrman, Christine Leigh. Puritanism and Predestination. Divining America, TeacherServe. National Humanities Center).POINT 3Some of the earliest settlers to America came as a result of religious persecution or to separate themselves from the established church that was perceived as a corrupt institution. Other settlers, however, more often than not, came for materialistic purposes; indeed, these settlers often proved to be more driven to explore the region and establish themselves than those who sought religious freedoms. The settlers at Jamestowna group of businessmenwere commissioned as the Virginia Company by James I to emulate the success that the Spanish had had elsewhere in the New World. Although not immediately profitable, the fortune of the colony changed with the introduction of cash crops such as tobacco, which was sold to both Native Americans and people in England, starting as early as 1612. Easy to grow, tobacco became the money crop. Once the money began to flow in, the Jamestown colony grew, and other settlements in Virginia and other locations along the eastern seaboard were soon established. Capitalism, then, spurred the growth of the colonies, more so than a search for religious freedom. “Capitalism came in the first ships.” (Carl N. Degler, Out of Our Past)For the essay, then, using one or more of these points, discuss the perspective that Native Americans
and/or early American settlers had in regard to the concept of Man in the worldwhat that role is/should be and how Man must/should behave to achieve what is expected. The issues which may be considered include:Nature as regarded by Native Americans and the European settlersDivinity as portrayed and regarded by Native Americans and the European settlersWork ethic as key to way of liferesponsibility of the individual to contributeCapitalism/monetary gain as a spur to seek, establish, and develop the New World.Again, the essay should be 750 to 1000 words, although you are not limited to that length should you feel inspired. Also, sources that you choose to utilize for support must be limited to the textbook and other information which is available at Canvasno outside sources other than the text and posted material at Canvas may be used. Be certain to cite all material drawn from the text and the posted materialyou must credit all information used according to proper MLA format.