The Soul of the Indian

Howdy, and welcome to another terrific Tuesday.


THE LAST WARRIOR is currently up on Amazon as a pre-sale, due to be released in early December.  And I will be giving away a free e-book to some lucky blogger today.

Since this is the start of the Holiday Season, I thought I’d post some snippets of the book, THE SOUL OF THE INDIAN by Charles A. Eastman, original copyright 1911.  The very first chapter, entitled “The Great Mystery,” has some beautiful concepts pertaining to the American Indian, and I thought that I would share some of these with you today.

The picture off to the right here is a Thanksgiving picture which I thought might go well this close to Thanksgiving.

Here is a quote from the book, THE SOUL OF THE INDIAN:

“The native American has been generally despised by his white conquerors for his poverty and simplicity.  They forget, perhaps, that his religion forbade the accumulation of wealth and the enjoyment of luxury.  To him, as to other single-minded men in every age and race, from Diogenes to the brothers of Saint Francis, from the Montanists to the Shakers, the love of possessions has appeared a snare, and the burdens of a complex society a source of needless peril and temptation.  Furthermore, it was the rule of his life to share the fruits of his skill and success with his less fortunate brothers.  Thus he kept his spirit free from the clog of pride, cupidity, or envy, and carried out, as he believed, the divine decree — a matter profoundly important to him.”

Charles A. Eastman, THE SOUL OF THE INDIAN

To the left here is a picture of Charles A. Eastman as a young man.

This next quote from his book really speaks to me and so I thought I’d post it here today.  It is from the same chapter, “The Great Mystery.”

“It was not, then, wholly from ignorance or improvidence that he (the Indian) failed to establish permanent towns and to develop a material civilization.  To the untutored sage, the concentration of population was the prolific mother of all evils, moral no less than physical.  He argued that food is good, while surfeit kills; that love is good, but lust destroys; and not less dreaded than the pestilence following upon crowded and unsanitary dwellings was the loss of spiritual power inseparable from too close contact with one’s fellow-men.  All who have lived much out of doors know that there is a magnetic and nervous force that accumulates in solitude and that is quickly dissipated by life in a crowd; and even his enemies have recognized that fact that for certain innate power and self-poise, wholly independent of circumstances, the American Indian is unsurpassed among men.”

THE SOUL OF THE INDIAN by Charles A. Eastman

Well, that’s all for today.  I believe these passages were very beautiful and thoughtful and perhaps a good way to start out the holiday season.  And so I wanted to share them with you.

RED HAWK’S WOMAN is on sale now at Amazon, and is the book that I’ll be giving away today to a lucky blogger, so do leave a message.  Also, please do read the Giveaway Guidelines to the right of our posts — these guideline govern our give-aways.



Off to the left here are further pictures of Charles A. Eastman, and in closing for today, here is another passage from his book, THE SOUL OF THE INDIAN.

“We believed that the spirit pervades all creation and that every creature possesses a soul in some degree, though not necessarily a soul conscious of itself.  The tree, the waterfall, the grizzly bear, each is an embodied Force, and as such an object of reverence.”

I think that is uncommonly pretty language and a beautiful concept.  So come on in.  And please do leave a comment.




Karen Kay
KAREN KAY aka GEN BAILEY is the multi-published author of American Indian Historical Romances. She has written for such prestigious publishers as AVON/HarperCollins, Berkley/Penguin/Putnam and Samhain Publishing. KAREN KAY’S great grandmother was Choctaw Indian and Kay is honored to be able to write about the American Indian Culture.
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Updated: November 20, 2017 — 11:49 pm


  1. I have read quite a number of your books all on my iPad in my Kindle Reader App and absolutely love them! I believe in many of the Indian beliefs. I hurt for all the suffering they faced because of the white race. Why oh why couldn’t they learn from each other, there was so much good that could have come from the Indian if only the whites would have opened their minds and hearts to them.

    1. I so echo you sentiments, Starr. Lovely to see you here. And thank you so much for your kind and gracious compliment. : )

  2. Amazing passages. What happened to the native Americans was not right and we would have been better to work together.

    1. I so agree with you. Of course, it’s always easier given the distance from the past, but there was so much good to learn from the Indians, not least of which was independence and freedom. : )

  3. Avatar

    I loved this blog and I’m going to share it on my Facebook page. It really resonates with Thanksgiving! I’ve never read one of your books and would love the opportunity to read one. I just started reading again in October 2016 after decades of not reading. I’m on my 91st book now and I’m always looking for an author to add to my go to list. You’ve come to me recommended by Tonya Lucas that got me back into reading and I always know I’ll enjoy any author she recommends! Have a Happy and Blessed Thanksgiving!

  4. Hi Stephanie!

    Wow! I’m so glad to see that you are reading again. I can’t even imagine a world without a book and without reading. May we always have them — and libraries full of true history, so that we may learn from the past. Please give my thanks to Tonya for recommending me to you. In this world, there are people who seem to bless it simply by living a beautiful life. I think Tonya is in that category. Please let her know. : )

  5. Hi Karen! I absolutely loved these excerpts. I have learned so much from you about the Native Americans. Thank you for opening my eyes to their ways past the stereotypes and poor education I had of them in school. Have a wonderful Thanksgiving holiday!

    1. Hi Kathryn!

      Thank you so much. And you, too, have a wonderful Thanksgiving holiday. : )

  6. THat’s a beautiful passage of writing.

    1. Hi Sabrina!

      Yes, I couldn’t agree more. : )

  7. I always enjoy your posts, Karen. They are filled with knowledge and insight. Have a great Thanksgiving!

    1. Hi Sally!

      Thank you so very much. Have a happy Thanksgiving, also!

    2. Hi Sally!

      You are most kind, Sally. Thank you. Happy Thanksgiving to you!

  8. I much admire the philosophy of minimalistic ownership of “things”. Sadly, in today’s society that would be looked upon on backwards thinking! We did try to instill in our daughters the difference between NEED and WANT. I think we would all be better off if we focused more on providing more people with what they need, andless on what, as a society, we want.

    Happy Thanksgiving to you – hope you have resolved your creepy problem.

    1. Hi Karen!

      I think you’re right — in today’s society such sentiments would be lost on the majority of people. Happy Thanksgiving to you — still trying to resolve that creepy situation… Thanks for thinking of it.

  9. Hi Karen!

    Yes, in today’s society, this would be thought of as backward. Thanks so much for your post.

  10. What wonderful quotes, Karen. Thank you! Most people go their whole lives without realizing that they don’t own things; thing own them! I too believe in the need for solitude and being in touch with nature, the outdoors, which in turn should give one respect for all of god’s creatures and creation. Being crowded in all the time and caught up in busyness doesn’t really give one a chance to truly _See_ or _Feel_, does it?

    Thank you again for the lovely posting, and I hope you and yours have a wonderful Thanksgiving.

    1. Hi Eliza

      Yes, it’s so true, your observations. Never had thought about the crowded feeling before — it was a concept I hadn’t thought of before, which is maybe why it spoke so much to me.

      Have a terrific Thanksgiving. : )

  11. Thanks for educating me about the Native American ways and belief and culture. It’s always enlightening.

  12. Hi MH!

    You’re welcome. Of course, I love this sort of research. I, too, find it enlightening. Happy Thanksgiving!

  13. I do love these passages thanks so much for the post. I hope you have a wonderful Thanksgiving.

    1. Hi!

      Thank you so much. And a very Happy Thanksgiving to you, too. : )

  14. Thank you for sharing these beautiful words by Charles Eastman. I believe that many of us should think less of possessions and I imagine that our possessions will not be at the top of our list when we count our blessings this Thanksgiving.
    Happy Thanksgiving!!

  15. Gosh, Connie, you are so right. When I think of the things I’m thankful for, possessions is the last thing in my mind. What a good point.

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