Sociologically speaking, what are your reflections on the Reading attached — The Nacirema people (written by Horace Miner) ? What are some of their rituals? Please quote from the Reading. (3 pts)
What do you learn from this exercise? Who are the Naciremas? (2 pts)
Can you apply cultural relativist point of view to this reading? why? Please quote from the textbook. (3 pts)
Reply to another student or the Instructor (2 pts)
reply to this student:
I found the Nacirema people and their customs to be very interesting. Some of their rituals include bowing before a charm box and mingling holy water into a small font beneath it. These ceremonies occur daily, in a household shrine. Each charm in the box heals and protects against certain bodily ailments. There are also holy mouth men, whose rituals include “inserting a small bundle of hog hairs into the mouth, along with certain magical powders, and then moving the bundle in a highly formalized series of gestures” (Henslin 124). From this exercise, I learned about a tribe who views the human body as damaged, and works to counteract the inborn issues. This was especially compelling to read, because in the religions I am familiar with, the human body is celebrated and viewed as blessed, with diseases being the curse (rather than vice versa). I can assume that through this belief system, the Naciremas do not take their health for granted, and are appreciative of their wellness; while in Western religions, we believe we deserve to be healthy and become upset if the opposite occurs. I can apply cultural relativism to this reading because we must understand that these people do not live in the same society as we do. Because of their region and way of living, the Nacirema people have little to no access to statistics and science, so they must credit the supernatural for their observations instead. When studying sociology, it is important to remember “if all of the logically possible combinations of behavior have not been found somewhere in the world, he is apt to suspect that they must be present in some yet undescribed tribe” (Henslin 121).