Originally posted by rdube02
My focus is actually some of the stories I've heard/read within the paranormal field that appear related to some of the practices/beliefs of the
"dark magic" practices of Native American witchcraft.
Hmmm... That could very well be difficult. The darkest magic I personally know anything about was practiced by the Aztecs. That is to say, where they
were actively trying to accomplish something we would consider evil. Most of these particular rituals would center around Tezcatlipoca, who thrived on
energy released from pain of death. Tezcatlipoca was a horrible, horrible god to follow.
Most Native American tribes, however, didn't really have "dark magic" in the way you might be thinking of. It might be considered dark from a
mainstream religious perspective, but many tribes tapped into the world of death for one reason or another. Some did it for advice and favors, others
did it for vision, and so forth. There wasn't really a heaven and hell, per se, so demons weren't being summoned...not in the same way you might
think anyway. It's rather complex, and also rather tribe specific.
Now a lot of tribes (including my own) had very precise instructions on how the dead were to be treated. If those rites are not properly followed, any
number of bad things can result, from a ghost coming back, confused and wanting to continue taking part in life on Earth, to the truly sinister which
would be the spawning of a horrible creature possessing the empty shell of the deceased (or worse yet, no shell at all).
But that wasn't generally something that happened on purpose. It would either be through incompetence or simply not finding the body in time.
My great aunt was a wisdom for the tribe and was the last of our people to refuse the white man. When she died, much of her knowledge and our language
was lost with her, because her daughters were all very Christian, and had disowned her. Some was passed to her sister (my grandmother) who later
passed it on to her grandchildren. One that was lost though was the ability to call lightning. This wasn't some amusing anecdote that parents told
kids to keep them in line, it was common knowledge that many members of the tribe had personally witnessed (sadly she passed before I ever got to see
for myself). I would give almost anything to know what secrets she possessed, but one of my cousins is the tribal lorist. He may have more on this.
So I guess, specifically, I'd need to know what dark magics you're referring to, because it wasn't generally considered light or dark. Those are
concepts instilled by the white man. Magic just was
. Sometimes its powers were great and terrible. Sometimes it was simple and commonplace. But
magic itself was no more light or dark than the heart of the person using it, and the aim it was put towards.
Originally posted by rdube02
For example - some sightings of glowing orbs, mutilated cows, some particular odd natural effects that (to the "white man") appear as odd...but
likely to someone who understands some of these practices, there's nothing odd about them at all...
I guess that's the best way I can describe my goal here, to ascribe some sort of explanation of the phenomenon in terms of possible causes by some of
these alleged practices.
Perhaps it would be best if some specific instances, or types of phenomenon were described. As both a member of the tribe and a skeptic, I'd say that
the most logical and rational explanation of mutilated cows would be the white man, since, if memory serves they are the ones that brought cows to
America, and also brought the art of scalping to the Iroquois, and typically were the ones to skin a buffalo and leave the remains out to rot.
Glowing orbs... could be just about anything. There's a lot of plants and animals capable of glowing in the dark, to say nothing of the spirits.
Further, there were many spirit animals that were unique, the avatars of a particular anthropomorphic personification or gods, or just critters that
stepped outside the bounds of nature. These were very highly prized hunts indeed.
I hope this starts to help, but will need specific incidents to offer much more in the way of thought. The concept of dark magic would be as alien to
most tribes as a coup stick would be to the European kingdoms back in the day. Technically, it could exist, the concept could exist, and there was
probably someone, somewhere, that did it, but overall, it just wasn't done that way.