Atira is the Pawnee goddess representing the Earth, and is seen as the “Sacred Mother” of every living creature.
From the Interwebz:
The Pawnee were hunters. When told to abandon hunting and settle down
to farming, their priest replied: “You ask me to plow the ground!
Shall I take a knife and tear my mother’s bosom? Then when I die she
will not take me to her bosom to rest. You ask me to dig for stone!
Shall I dig under her skin for her bones? Then when I die I cannot
enter her body to be born again. You ask me to cut grass and make hay
and sell it, and be rich like white men! But how dare I cut off my
mother’s hair? It is a bad law and my people cannot obey it.”
Because clearly agriculture is the superior lifestyle choice for humanity.
If you live in North America, chances are the land has recently undergone a name change. I’m in a place now called Hamilton, Ontario. It has had this name for less than 200 years. Obviously this area is much older than that. I found it rather embarrassing to know the area’s real name. I don’t even know who, specifically, the people were who lived here before we Europeans took over. Do you know the real history of your city?
Some cursory investigation found that this area belonged to a people who called themselves the Chonnonton, meaning, the people of the deer. It seems as though they are better known by names others have given them. The Hurons gave them the name Attawandaron, meaning, the people who talk funny. The French gave them the name la Nation neutre because they tried to remain neutral in the war between the Hurons and the Iroquois who were allied with the French and English respectively. The Wikipedia entry, Neutral Nation, is about them.
I haven’t done much research, but so far I haven’t found anything talking about the Chonnonton name for this area. Kind of sad, don’t you think?