What Kiowa traditional beliefs were part of the grandmother's life?    

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Momaday states that, although his grandmother became a Christian later in life, she never forgot her Kiowa heritage. He reports that his grandmother retained her faith in the sacred nature of the sun. She cherished her memories of the Kiowa sun dances just as much as she cherished her new Christian faith.

Momaday's grandmother also continued her practice of reciting Kiowa prayers. The author relates that he remembers her making "long, rambling prayers out of suffering and hope." Another Kiowa tradition that his grandmother retained was the practice of holding communal gatherings during the summer. During these summer gatherings, the author's grandmother and her Kiowa kin held "frequent prayer meetings" and "great nocturnal feasts."

The men who attended were lean and strong; they held the marks of their previous warrior life and the "scars of old and cherished enmities" on them. Meanwhile, the women were clad in "fringed and flowered shawls, bright beadwork and German silver." They indulged in gossip and raucous conversation. The author relates that these summer gatherings were a tradition of the Kiowa people. His grandmother retained her traditional belief in the strength and resilience of her Kiowa community during her last years on earth.

 

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