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As a Native American Indian, I often find myself offended by the recent popularity and "coolness" of paranormal investigations being held at our burial grounds and sacred lands. Even tho I am told that many "good" paranormal groups have their own homemade laws regarding this.....has anyone considered asking a Native American Culture Preservation Member or an Elder about the validity of their rules? There are certain practices in our culture and things "To Do" and things "NOT TO DO" when visiting each native burial grounds site.

Rules are NOT necessarily the same from one Indian tribe to another Indian tribe either. For example it is not permitted to "PROVOKE" spirits in any circumstances in our culture. Provoking spirits is considered rude and intolerable. Tromping around blindly without any plan of offerings and laughing at us is also rude.

Before going to any Native Indian Sacred site, learn the history and  get permission first and be prepared to give the appropriate "offering" and if you are refused permission please abide by that decision and move on. There are many valid reasons you may receive a refusal.  I'm sure some will feel "entitled" to do whatever they please but be forewarned by doing set yourself up at getting what you seek and be prepared to suffer the consequences of your actions, whatever they may be.

Don't come crying on our shoulder if you do get something bad as you have obviously done something wrong and are at fault. Natives have long suffered at the hands of our government, so called well intentioned peoples, and by the result of broken treaty's. Our dead deserve the respect most of them NEVER got in life so first and foremost be respectful. We don't care about anyone's 5 minutes of fame.

Before going to our sites and grounds be prepared.....get humble.......and give the appropriate offerings and responses. I suggest bringing along a tribesman if you are given permission if you can even get one to go with you. The recent popularity of paranormal investigating and the popularity of going to native Indian sites has once again opened some old and new wounds.....justifiably so. Thanks for your understanding and as us natives say passing the talking stick "I have spoken"...


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  • I think the bottom line is not the spirits but the respect of the tribes and their ways. Cemeteries are made up of bones, not spirits, does one think that they follow their body from where they died and just is hovering around the cemetery, me thinks not.
    That is always frustrating for me when I hear this, but respecting the wishes of the land is important therefore respecting the Livings wishes of their ancestors.
  • My feelings have always remained the same cemeteries are for the living not the dead . I don't really care about investigating cemeteries that much I have investigated native Americans cemeteries in the west but I also was given permission the thing that worried me the most was getting rattlesnake bite. they hang out there a lot in the day or night. my feelings are that when we become spirit we are all the same no borders no races just spirit. the Lakota are trying to purchase the cemetery at wounded knee . the owner of the land has put it on the market you want to show respect donate to there cause again it means alot to the living tribe.
    • Great info...I have a good Lakota friend of mine who like me no longer lives on the rez ...will talk to her about the hopeful land purchase. I dont mind giving to some tribes such as the Lakota and Pine Ridge which is the poorest rez imaginable.
      • Not convinced we ought to be "investigating", any location that any society, past or present, had deemed 'sacred', "holy', whatever. Not that I'm concerned re; the 'wrath of God" thing taking place but I'll just blame it on how I was "brought up by my parents, as in "don't go walking around in cemeteries, show some respect to those who cannot speak for themselves". That notion of all "spirits" not able to physically let one know, "they" have issues with what one is doing, has long  since past, with me but somehow, it still doesn't "feel right". "Feelings" or still a "carry over" of "behavior mod., mom knew how to implement much too well for my own good.Hummm?
    • I think that much of what has been said applies to all locations that are important to different groups. We tend to think that  the earth is something that we have to take dominion over and not something that we must respect as having its own spirit. Places can have an energy of their own. When I went to the Botanical Gardens in Eureka Springs, Arkansas, there was one section of natural plains that had been left untouched. It was alledgedly part of what had been the Trail of Tears for so many Native Americans, including my step-mother's grandmother. I remember standing in front of that spot sensing that it radiated energy and was meant to be left alone as a testament to those who had been forced to pass onto it. I could have spent hours there, just as I had spent hours when young in the Bronx Botanical Gardens, also sensing a closeness to the untouched woods. If a person is truly psychic then they would have to come to spots under consideration for investigation and know that before going there, you have to sense whether or not it is meant to be explored. Respecting the locale is far more important than getting a few photos of orbs or spirits.          
      • exactly...couldnt be said any better. I am happy to know that there are still some sacred pieces of land left untouched......especially out west....can only hope that they remain so under the increasing pressure of human expansion. Just glad in our lifetime we get to enjoy such places. Trail of Tears was inexcusable.....a terrible time in history and an unjustified removal of peoples from their own land by a President. I can think of no other group of people so discriminated wronged yet they receive nor want some big  platform to spout their wants upon. Oh well I wont go on about that. A friend of mine on a rez told me his grandparents were given small pox infected blankets by the soldiers....intentionally so to wipe them out as we had no resistence to small pox. You are so right.....respecting a locale is so much more important than leaving a big  footprint on it. Thanks Max for your input
  • Once again I recently ran into some "well intentioned" (or not) paranormal investigators who without any permission did "paranormal investigations" on our sacred lands and burial grounds. Provoking was performed, disturbed artifacts were taken, and other behaviors that are frankly appalling to those living Native Americans.....and one can imagine  to those deceased as well. Once again, educating those who love to do paranormal investigating seems to be the key to being succesful in not opening new and old wounds. Even a few TV based paranormal investigating teams have sometimes revealed a lack of respect and knowledge regarding our sacred lands and burial sites. Those who decide to pursue paranormal investigating interests should first learn about the various cultural traditions and expectations first and foremost before pursuing investigations. Be prepared to present the appropriate offerings and if you are not sure of what constitutes an offering ask. Thanks 
    • Hi. As for "sacred sites", name of a book, btw, enjoyed visitng  the Navajo National Monument, contains the "ruins" of two Anasazi dwellings that date back to about A.D. 950. "Betatakin"is built beeneath a massive cliff overhannng at 7,300 ft. elevation. "Keet seel" is stuck in an eroded pocket in a red sandstone cliff. For 'unknown reasons", all left around 1300 A.D. and sealed all the doord shut in each building and the main door into it.(Good info. from tourist places). if you cannot hike, best if one doesn't go. Just my opinion. The "Second Mesa' as part of the Hopi Reservtion, is where most of the "public activities" take place but "mind your manners" if you go there. Last time I checked that "sacred sites book, there were about 650 pages woth of "sacred sites" "monuments', (natural and man-made), and each  state has a few as others, like Arizona, Florida, and New Orleans, have "sites' that eange dron histrorically accurate to those thhat mix "fact with fiction"but not to the "belivers'. I have for a long while enjoyed where csrtaain locations can do to/for you, psychologically to physically. depends on what you want/need 9think you ned)or are just curious. Some are not for the weak of heart or mind. Psychology joke there.
      • Thanks Wade great information there and I wish I would be able sometime to go to the Navajo National Monuments and Hopi Rez.....the sites you myself from an eastern tribe (lenee-Lenape) much difference in some of our traditions...not all but some as you compare east to western tribes.. I am leaving for Lake Tahoe this week and maybe I can visit some of the not-too-far western native sites and rez. as Nevada is full of such rich history. If you have any suggestions let me know! Being disabled hinders me alittle but I try to visit as many tribes as I can manage to share with them about our smiliarities as well as differences.Thanks
  • Thank you for posting this forum here on Haunted Society. It's very appreciated, and will help us to set standards of conduct in the field of paranormal investigations. I hope you'll share more of your insight in the future with more forums regarding this topic, because it's truly helpful tips and advice for ghost hunters and paranormal researchers to learn about the Native American Indian culture and expectations relating to ghost hunting in burial grounds and sacred sites.
    Phillip BrunelleCreator &
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