Cowboys and Indians: Dismantling the Western, Settler-Colonial Worldview (PART I)

Red Letter Christians | 4/23/2019 | Randy Woodley
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EDITOR’S NOTE: This article on “The American Way” is the first in a 4-part series to deconstruct the Western, settler-colonial worldview and to #ResurrectEloheh.

The American, Western way of thinking and living, though replete with problems, is not completely evil. Unfortunately, though, the “American Way” (the current social-religious-economic systems in operation and the foundations that undergird those systems) is incapable of leading us past the current major hurdles we face such as climate change, racial strife, and assumed patriarchies. What is the root problem? The problem is moral and spiritual but even more, it is one of worldview.

Morality - Spirituality - Worldview - Example - Nature

Our current American, settler-colonial, cultural morality and spirituality are developed from a particular worldview. For example, how we understand nature is firmly rooted in the particular ways in which we view the world. From a Western worldview, nature is to be studied, harnessed, developed and exploited. From an Indigenous worldview, humanity is formed by nature — not the opposite. In an Indigenous worldview we are intricately related to all other parts of creation. This worldview, when it was the dominant worldview on Turtle Island (America), generally produced harmony and a relatively light impact on the earth, at least up until the spread of settler-colonialism and modern capitalism.

When considering the damage done to Indigenous peoples by settler-colonialism, there is an informed historical critique to be made. Colonial powers throughout the world disregarded the human rights of Indigenous peoples, committing murder, rape, and untold atrocities. Both the government and settlers alike stole our lands, extracted the earth’s resources, and framed the Indigene as either noble and naïve at best, and as godless savages in the worst cases.

Acts - Engine - Crusades - Peoples - Church

were often not only complicit in these acts but even served as the engine driving genocidal crusades against Indigenous peoples. To say the very least, the church benefitted momentously...
(Excerpt) Read more at: Red Letter Christians
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