Creed and Code are the essence of the standards our honored ancestors lived by. They are based on honesty, integrity, helping one another in work and play, making the best of things, being friendly and kind, respecting elders, and taking care of Mother Earth that gives us food and shelter needed to survive.

1. Each morning upon rising, and each evening before sleeping, give thanks for the life within you and for all life, for the good things the Creator has given you and for the opportunity to grow a little more each day. Consider your thoughts and actions of the past day and seek for the courage and strength to be a better person. Seek for the things that will benefit others (everyone).

2. Respect. Respect means "To feel or show honor or esteem for someone or something; to consider the well being of, or to treat someone or somethin with deference or courtesy". Showing respect is a basic law of life.

3. Treat every person from the tiniest child to the oldest elder with respect at all times.

4. Special respect should be given to Elders, Parents, Teachers, and Community Leaders.

5. No person should be made to feel "put down" by you; avoid hurting other hearts as you would avoid a deadly poison.

6. Touch nothing that belongs to someone else (especially Sacred Objects) without permission, or an understanding between you.

7. Respect the privacy of every person, never intrude on a person's quiet moment or personal space.

8. Never walk between people that are conversing.

9. Never interrupt people who are conversing.

10. Speak in a soft voice, especially when you are in the presence of Elders, strangers or others to whom special respect is due.

11. Do not speak unless invited to do so at gatherings where Elders are present (except to ask what is expected of you, should you be in doubt).

12. Never speak about others in a negative way, whether they are present or not.

13. Treat the earth and all of her aspects as your mother. Show deep respect for the mineral world, the plant world, and the animal world. Do nothing to pollute our Mother, rise up with wisdom to defend her.

14. Show deep respect for the beliefs and religion of others.

15. Listen with courtesy to what others say, even if you feel that what they are saying is worthless. Listen with your heart.

16. Respect the wisdom of the people in council. Once you give an idea to a council meeting it no longer belongs to you. It belongs to the people. Respect demands that you listen intently to the ideas of others in council and that you do not insist that your idea prevail. Indeed you should freely support the ideas of others if they are true and good, even if those ideas ideas are quite different from the ones you have contributed. The clash of ideas brings forth the Spark of Truth.

17. Once a council has decided something in unity, respect demands that no one speak secretly against what has been decided. If the council has made an error, that error will become apparent to everyone in its own time.

18. Be truthful at all times, and under all conditions.

19. Always treat your guests with honor and consideration. Give of your best food, your best blankets, the best part of your house, and your best service to your guests.

20. The hurt of one is the hurt of all, the honor of one is the honor of all.

21. Receive strangers and outsiders with a loving heart and as members of the human family.

22. All the races and tribes in the world are like the different colored flowers of one meadow. All are beautiful. As children of the Creator they must all be respected.

23. To serve others, to be of some use to family, community, nation, and the world is one of the main purposes for which human beings have been created. Do not fill yourself with your own affairs and forget your most important talks. True happiness comes only to those who dedicate their lives to the service of others.

24. Observe moderation and balance in all things.

25. Know those things that lead to your well-being, and those things that lead to your destruction.

26. Listen to and follow the guidance given to your heart. Expect guidance to come in many forms; in prayer, in dreams, in times of quiet solitude, and in the words and deeds of wise Elders and friends.

Responses to "26 Native American Traditional Code of Ethics Everyone Needs to Follow "

  1. Anonymous says:

    THIS so, SO TRUE! If only those of us who were born with many disabilities had been raised with wisdom...TRULY this world would be a better place. This methodology...IS wise, honest, kind,direct, and thrifty. LOVE is NOT WASTEFUL. LOVE IS both SUFFICIENT and EFFICIENT. IT never values confusion above certain God given rights. With GREAT TEARS we have been forced at times to break these HOLY rules....Most definitely we have "stumbled" in in trying to keep them. I must admit I have been a clumsy fool at times. YET I WILL endeavor to walk with "The One Who Truly Knows Us and Loves Us." IF the MostWise strikes me down I WILL give thanks for His Great Wisdom...and of course I WILL attempt to stand up again! ~ B ) .... P.S. I hope that I have been clear in my typing/thoughts and not of any inconvenience to you. I THANK YOU most sincerely for what you do.

  2. Anonymous says:

    These are wise choices in life

  3. Sue Ann says:

    A wonder philosophy to live by

  4. Anonymous says:

    So what if we live by rules? The past couple years I have been dreaming about wolfs... two dreams I had, I was turning in to a wolf.... whats that suppose to me????

  5. Anonymous says:

    Very Baha'i thoughts

  6. Joyce Redhand says:

    Working now to get these thoughts out to the general public. If we each do our little part in living them, as an example to others, it will help. Put aside any bitterness or thoughts of revenge and live the way our ancestors did. It's time to show the world who we are. Let it be the fair, loving and wise people we have always been.

  7. kaimling says:

    Thanks a lot for sharing these wise words!

  8. Yellowpoppy says:

    What a wonderful philosophy to live by!

  9. Sina says:

    "Show respect"..."Show *special* respect"? :/ lol sounds like "All people are created equal, some are more equal than others" :P

  10. Anonymous says:
    Meaning of wolf in your dream

  11. Anonymous says:

    Where did this list come from? I mean, can this be sourced back to actual writings by actual Native Americans? 'Cause it sounds a lot like the sort of generic platitudes that one finds in mass market self-help books like "Chicken Soup for the Soul" or "Everything You Need to Know You Learned in Kindergarten." Only someone decided to slap some pictures of teepees and Indians on it.

  12. rockieag says:

    Manners to live by, and are much needed in this World.

  13. Anonymous says:

    As with with so many things of value (and otherwise) on the internet/web, the list posted above has been passed around, sans source, and has also been edited and added to by folks with presumably good intentions and a bent towards "improving" things. The original list is much simpler, yet it was part of a larger body of material of high value that was compiled out of a rich context:

    "The information provided was gathered at a conference held in Lethbridge, Alberta in December, 1982. Indian Elders, spiritual leaders, and professionals from across Canada offered these fundamental elements that they considered to be common among Canadian Indian philosophies. These have become the foundation of work currently being carried out by The Four Worlds Development Project, University of Lethbridge."

  14. Anonymous says:

    Sent to me by my Cree friend, so I'm thinking it's genuine.

  15. Yaz says:

    seems to me a few young ones have missed out on these wise tenets, pity :(

  16. Anonymous says:

    There is a 27th point to consider , We as human beings must never allow animosity to enter our Hearts , fore it is the quickest way to destroy the peace and harmony of the global village.

  17. Anonymous says:

    Amazing to me; that with all the good here, we still find the nay Sayers and questioning where it came from and how true is it, looking for documentation, etc. That's what's so really sad. if there's something for someone here, that uplifts them for even a moment or changes a single life path, what's the harm? the point is, we share, we respect and we care. End of story. and I am guessing there are plenty out there, who found at least one piece of peace and harmony, they didn't have before. So, whoever said it, by what means, and by what standards, it changed a life. And after all, that was one worth saving.

  18. Anonymous says:

    "Attach great importance to the indigenous population of America....." - 'Abdu'l-Baha, Tablets of the Divine Plan, April 8, 1916

  19. Anonymous says:

    seems to me that the seven virtues of the cannupa cover all of this and more...

  20. Anonymous says:

    I read the Code of Ethics and thought there is a lot of wisdom here. The wisdom is very self-evident. Then I read the comments It you have problems understanding, you have 2 choices. You can look for some one or some thing that will help you understand or you can continue to live in ignorance. My hope for you is that you chose the first option because only then will you begin to really understand where your choices are leading you.

  21. There is only the red and white roads we should choose for our path , the dark road is the path to destruction and is the opposite of everything written here... It is your choice. But remember , Falling will feel like flying , but only for a short while

  22. Choirboy says:

    21 was the undoing...

  23. Mike W says:

    Life ..

  24. Anonymous says:

    Reading the thread of comments I'm most struck by those questioning the genesis and source rather than just accepting some words of wisdom that we all could use some reminding of on a daily basis. If the tenets suggested don't resonate with you on your chosen path then move on and if just one of them awakens or reminds you of your more noble purpose in this existence then embrace it and live it to the best of your ability. We are all searching, striving hopefully to be kinder compassionate beings and hopefully these words can help us work toward that authenticity.

  25. Words full of wisdom. The good path!

  26. Tom, Watson says:

    How often did anybody live by these, even the tribes? Tribes engaged in attacks against others, even before the arrival of settlers. This is a truth which ought be accepted, as to serve as warnings. To believe that the tribes are immune to the faults which plague all humans is to indulge a pride which can blind. All peoples have precepts similar to these, and among all, many folk choose to behave otherwise. I would add this: Accept truth when you are shown, even if it offends your vanity

  27. Unknown says:

    Respect overall is always good to be reminded of and it will come back to you.

  28. Unknown says:

    manners are manners, although exceptions must be, for the truth and to save.

  29. Unknown says:

    What I give out comes back. If I give respect and tolerance, that is what I get back!
    -"She who dances in two worlds"

  30. Do unto others as you would want yourself to be treated or act is inherent in these 26 codes of ethics.

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