Fishers of Men

I’ve been wondering lately about what happened to the indigenous tribal groups that used to be so prevalent in the desert southwest.  Apparently, in the 16th century Spanish explorers along with Christian missionaries sailed westward to claim lands in the new world.  When they came across native populations the missionaries immediately set about trying to convert them believing they had the true path to salvation even though the indigenous people didn’t particularly feel the need to be saved since their own religions , which they had been practicing for thousands of years, worked pretty well.

There was one tribal group in northern Mexico, the Tarahumara people, who listened to the missionaries’ stories, then thought about it and changed things around so that God was married to the Virgin Mary and the Devil was God’s brother.

Well, I guess this didn’t sit too well with the missionaries because then they told the Tarahamara’s that if they didn’t believe in the true God and help build a mission they would surely go to Hell.  So the people went along and built a chapel so the missionaries could hold religious events but they still secretly consulted the local Shaman when they had serious questions to put before the ancestral spirits.

The missionaries, however, were unrelenting.  Before long they had the people working 9 to 5 in the mission gardens and were re-educating the children in the mission schools.

As sad as this story is I guess there is a bright side.  The gaming industry has been a God send for many native peoples.  I suppose you could call it Montezuma’s revenge.

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