The Shoshone Ghost Dance and Numic Myth: Common Heritage, Common Themes
- Author(s): Vander, Judith
- et al.
The outer form and inner meaning of Wind River Shoshone Ghost Dance are shaped by conceptions of nature and the relationship of people to the natural world. This paper examines Numic conceptions and images of nature in myth, shamanism, the Round Dance, and the Shoshone Ghost Dance, noting their close correspondence. Topics include the circle of nature and power, the power of song, dance, and language, nature and metaphor, and death and resurrection. Underlying concerns for food, weather, and health in myth, shamanism, the Round Dance, and Shoshone Ghost Dance songs further attest to the Numic nature of Wovoka's Ghost Dance religion and its performance by Wind River Shoshone in this century.