I was born for a storm, and a calm does not suit me.
"Treat the earth well: it was not given to you by your parents, it was loaned to you by your children. We do not inherit the Earth from our ancestors, we borrow it from our children." — Ancient Indian Proverb
Before they had significant contact with Europeans, Indian nations had their own religions, ceremonies, and creation teachings about how the world was formed and what places were sacred. The northeastern nations, for example, have a story about Sky Woman, who lived in heaven and fell to the ocean. With the help of many animals who dove to the bottom of the ocean to bring up a piece of earth, Sky Woman transformed a handful of earth into Turtle Island, or what we know as the North American continent. Many Indian nations believed the land they lived on was given to them as a gift from the Creator and was much more than real estate to be bought, sold, or traded. The Creator did not give ownership in a European sense to the Indian people but held them responsible for preserving the land and the environment. Indian communities also believed the places where spiritual events occurred (where they received the gift of fire or where human beings emerged, for example) were sacred, and they performed ceremonies there. Unless they were under extreme economic duress or political pressure, Indian people were reluctant to give up their sacred land. The land of an Indian nation, in many ways, was like the Holy Land for Christians and Jews.