Hopi Civilization

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The Hopi are a Native American people who primarily live on the 6,557.262 km² (2,531.773 sq mi) Hopi Reservation in northeastern Arizona.

The reservation had a United States 2000 Census population of 6,946 persons. Its largest community is First Mesa, Arizona.

According to Hopi legends they are a gathering of many separate tribes from distant areas, now identified by various matrilineal clans and culturally one people. Since the Athabascan migrations from Canada (forming the modern Navajo nation) ending as late as the 15th century they have been forced into defensible and dense villages on several mesa, in contrast to the Navaho who prefer to live small family groups in widely distributed farmsteads. Thus the Hopi have been townsdwellers for many centuries. The Hopi village of Old Oraibi, located on Third Mesa and founded about the year 1100, is the oldest continuously occupied settlement in the United States. Some aspects of the Hopi culture are in common with those of the Tewa puebloan culture.

The Hopi reservation is surrounded by the Navajo reservation. While traditionally the Hopi and the Navaho have considered each other to be "enemies" in various ways they have recently become more cooperative in actions involving environmental, Bureau of Indian Affairs, and economic issues, most notably in political and contractual actions to restrict the withdrawal of groundwater by outside entities, particularly by coal extractors for use in coal slurry transport.

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[edit] Overview

The name Hopi, is a shortened form of what these Native American people call themselves,Template:Fact Hopi'sinom, or "People Who Live in the Correct Way". The catholic encyclopedia lists the name Hopi as having been derived from "Hopita", meaning those who are "peaceful ones". Hopi is a concept deeply rooted in the culture's religion, spirituality, and its view of morality and ethics. To be Hopi is to strive toward this concept, which involves a state of total reverence and respect for all things, to be at peace with these things, and to live in accordance with the instructions of Maasaw, the Creator or Caretaker of Earth. The Hopi observe their traditional ceremonies for the benefit of the entire world.

Traditionally, Hopi are organized into matrilineal clans. When a man marries, the children from the relationship are members of his wife's clan. The child is named, however, by the women of the father's clan. On the twentieth day of a baby's life, the women of the paternal clan gather, each woman bringing a name and a gift for the child. In some cases where many relatives would attend, a child could be given over forty names, for example. The child may use any of these names or may use a non-Hopi name. A person may also change their name upon initiation into a Kachina society.

The Hopi still practice a complete cycle of traditional ceremonies. These ceremonies take place according to the lunar calendar and are observed in each of the Hopi villages.

Nonetheless, like other Indian groups, the Hopi have not escaped impact by the dominant American culture. The Hopi have been affected by missionary work carried out by several Christian denominations and also by consumerism and alcoholism. However, the effect of missionary work has had relatively little impact on traditional Hopi cultural and religious practices.

Traditionally the Hopi are highly skilled micro or subsistence farmers. The Hopi have also had to deal with the modern cash economy; a not insignificant number of Hopi have regular paying jobs; others earn a living from producing high quality art, traditional crafts—notably the carving and sale of Kachina dolls, highly crafted earthenware ceramic pottery, and other activities such as the design and production of jewelry, notably sterling silver silversmithing.

[edit] Hopi Prophecy

The Hopi prophecy is an oral tradition of stories that Hopis say predicted the coming of the white man, the world wars and nuclear weapons. And it predicts that time will end when humanity emerges into the "fifth world."

The Mayan calendar predicts a similar end in 2012; some Hopis have said their prophecy roughly coincides with that time.

The tradition says the years after 2012 could be a golden age with humans at peace. It also says the world will go through a time of trial, suffering and purification before a time of "one-heartedness."

[edit] White Feather

The following extraordinary Hopi prophecy was first published in a mimeographed manuscript that circulated among several Methodist and Presbyterian churches in 1959. Some of the prophecies were published in 1963 by Frank Waters in The Book of the Hopi. The account begins by describing how, while driving along a desert highway one hot day in the summer of 1958, a minister named David Young stopped to offer a ride to an Indian elder, who accepted with a nod. After riding in silence for several minutes, the Indian said:

"I am White Feather, a Hopi of the ancient Bear Clan. In my long life I have traveled through this land, seeking out my brothers, and learning from them many things full of wisdom. I have followed the sacred paths of my people, who inhabit the forests and many lakes in the east, the land of ice and long nights in the north, and the places of holy altars of stone built many years ago by my brothers' fathers in the south. From all these I have heard the stories of the past, and the prophecies of the future. Today, many of the prophecies have turned to stories, and few are left -- the past grows longer, and the future grows shorter.

"And now White Feather is dying. His sons have all joined his ancestors, and soon he too shall be with them. But there is no one left, no one to recite and pass on the ancient wisdom. My people have tired of the old ways -- the great ceremonies that tell of our origins, of our emergence into the Fourth World, are almost all abandoned, forgotten, yet even this has been foretold. The time grows short.

"My people await Pahana, the lost White Brother, [from the stars] as do all our brothers in the land. He will not be like the white men we know now, who are cruel and greedy. we were told of their coming long ago. But still we await Pahana.

"He will bring with him the symbols, and the missing piece of that sacred tablet now kept by the elders, given to him when he left, that shall identify him as our True White Brother.

"The Fourth World shall end soon, and the Fifth World will begin. This the elders everywhere know. The Signs over many years have been fulfilled, and so few are left.

"This is the First Sign: We are told of the coming of the white-skinned men, like Pahana, but not living like Pahana men who took the land that was not theirs. And men who struck their enemies with thunder.

"This is the Second Sign: Our lands will see the coming of spinning wheels filled with voices. In his youth, my father saw this prophecy come true with his eyes -- the white men bringing their families in wagons across the prairies."

"This is the Third Sign: A strange beast like a buffalo but with great long horns, will overrun the land in large numbers. These White Feather saw with his eyes -- the coming of the white men's cattle."

"This is the Fourth Sign: The land will be crossed by snakes of iron."

"This is the Fifth Sign: The land shall be criss-crossed by a giant spider's web."

"This is the Sixth sign: The land shall be criss-crossed with rivers of stone that make pictures in the sun."

"This is the Seventh Sign: You will hear of the sea turning black, and many living things dying because of it."

"This is the Eight Sign: You will see many youth, who wear their hair long like my people, come and join the tribal nations, to learn their ways and wisdom.

"And this is the Ninth and Last Sign: You will hear of a dwelling-place in the heavens, above the earth, that shall fall with a great crash. It will appear as a blue star. Very soon after this, the ceremonies of my people will cease.

"These are the Signs that great destruction is coming. The world shall rock to and fro. The white man will battle against other people in other lands -- with those who possessed the first light of wisdom. There will be many columns of smoke and fire such as White Feather has seen the white man make in the deserts not far from here. Only those which come will cause disease and a great dying.

"Many of my people, understanding the prophecies, shall be safe. Those who stay and live in the places of my people also shall be safe. Then there will be much to rebuild. And soon -- very soon afterward -- Pahana will return. He shall bring with him the dawn of the Fifth World. He shall plant the seeds of his wisdom in their hearts. Even now the seeds are being planted. These shall smooth the way to the Emergence into the Fifth World.

"But White Feather shall not see it. I am old and dying. You -- perhaps will see it. In time, in time..."

The old Indian fell silent. They had arrived at his destination, and Reverend David Young stopped to let him out of the car. They never met again. Reverend Young died in 1976, so he did not live to see the further fulfillment of this remarkable prophecy.

The signs are interpreted as follows: The First Sign is of guns. The Second Sign is of the pioneers' covered wagons. The Third Sign is of longhorn cattle. The Fourth Sign describes the railroad tracks. The Fifth Sign is a clear image of our electric power and telephone lines. The Sixth Sign describes concrete highways and their mirage-producing effects. The Seventh Sign foretells of oil spills in the ocean. The Eighth Sign clearly indicates the "Hippy Movement" of the 1960s. The Ninth Sign was the U.S. Space Station Skylab, which fell to Earth in 1979. According to Australian eye-witnesses, it appeared to be burning blue.

Another Hopi prophecy warns that nothing should be brought back from the Moon -- obviously anticipating the Apollo 11 mission that returned with samples of lunar basalt. It this was done, the Hopi warned, the balance of natural and universal laws and forces would be disturbed, resulting in earthquakes, severe changes in weather patterns, and social unrest. All these things are happening today, though of course not necessarily because of Moon rocks.

The Hopi also predicted that when the "heart" of the Hopi land trust is dug up, great disturbances will develop in the balance of nature, for the Hopi holy land is the microcosmic image of the entire planet; any violations of nature in the Four Corners region will be reflected and amplified all over the Earth.

In 1959, a six-man delegation of traditional Hopi leaders led by the late spiritual leader, Dan Katchongva, traveled to the United Nations Building in New York to fulfill a sacred mission in accordance with ancient Hopi instructions. Because of their prophetic knowledge, the Hopi leaders felt it was time to go east to the edge of their motherland, where "a house of mica" [The United Nations building] would stand at this time, where Great Leaders from many lands would be gathered to help any people who are in trouble."

They were to go when the motherland of the Hopi and other Indian brothers were about to be taken away from them and their way of life was in danger of being completely destroyed by evil ones among the White Men and by some other Indian brothers who were influenced by the White Race. This is a clear and present danger: the betrayal of Indian-U.S.A. treaties, land sales, and coal and uranium mining are destroying the Hopi land and its people -- and all other peoples and lands, in eventual effect...

According to prophecy, at least one, two or three leaders or nations would hear and understand the Hopi warnings, as "It is told that they too should know these ancient instructions". Upon hearing the message of the Hopi, they would act immediately to correct many wrongs being done to the chosen race -- the Red Man who was granted permission to hold in trust all land and life for the Great Spirit. This prophecy would seem to have failed. Hopi prophecy also declares that the doors of the "Glass House" would be closed to them. This was the case at first, though they have delivered their message to the United Nations Assembly since then:

"When the Great Leaders in the Glass House refuse to open the door to you when you stand before it that day, [Repeated, again in 1993] do not be discouraged or turn about on the path you walk, but take courage, determination, and be of great rejoicing in your hearts, for on that day the White Race who are on your land with you have cut themselves from you and thereon lead themselves to the Greatest Punishment at the Day of Purification. Many shall be destroyed for their sins and evil ways. The Great Spirit has decreed it and no one can stop it, change it, or add anything to it. It shall be fulfilled!"

On August 7, 1970, a spectacular UFO sighting was witnessed by dozens of people and photographed by Chuck Roberts of the Prescott (Arizona)"Courier". This sighting occurred after a "UFO calling" by Paul Solem and several Hopi Indians. This sighting was interpreted by some Hopis as being a partial fulfillment of a certain Hopi prophecy given by the Great Spirit Maasau and inscribed on Second Mesa, warning of the coming of Purification Day, when the true Hopi will be flown to other planets in "ships without wings."

Hopi prophecy also tells us that there will be a mass migration of Indians northward from Mexico and Central and South America. The migration will be led by a 130-year old Indian named Etchata Etchana. The movement will come after the huge fire and explosion that will herald the advent of the True White Brother.

According to Hopi belief, the survivors of the Great Deluge thousands of years ago split up into four groups that moved north, south, east and west. Only one group completed their journey -- to the North Pole and back -- under the guidance of a brilliant "star" in which the Great Spirit Maasau traveled. When he landed, he drew a petroglyph on Second Mesa, showing a maiden (with the traditional "butterfly" hair arrangement) riding in a wingless, dome-shaped craft. The petroglyph signified the coming Day of Purification when the true Hopi will fly to other planets in "ships without wings."

The prophecy also warns that there will be three divisions among the Hopi The first division was in 1906 between the Traditionalists and the Modernists. The Traditionalists were forced to leave Oraibi and move to Hotevilla. The second division took place in the wake of the spectacular appearance of UFOs in August, 1970.

[edit] Prophecy Rock

Image:Hopiprophrockbw.jpg

Near Oraibi, Arizona, there is a petroglyph known as Prophecy Rock which symbolizes many Hopi prophecies. Its interpretation is:

The large human figure on the left is the Great Spirit. The bow in his left hand represents his instructions to the Hopi to lay down their weapons. The vertical line to the right of the Great Spirit is a time scale in thousands of years. The point at which the great Spirit touches the line is the time of his return.

The "life path" established by the Great Spirit divides into the lower, narrow path of continuous Life in harmony with nature and the wide upper road of white man's scientific achievements. The bar between the paths, above the cross, is the coming of white men; the Cross is that of Christianity. The circle below the cross represents the continuous Path of Life.

The four small human figures on the upper road represent, on one level, the past three worlds and the present; on another level, the figures indicate that some of the Hopi will travel the white man's path, having been seduced by its glamour.

The two circles on the lower Path of Life are the "great shaking of the earth" (World Wars One and Two). The swastika in the sun and the Celtic cross represent the two helpers of Pahana, the True White Brother.

The short line that returns to the straight Path of Life is the last chance for people to turn back to nature before the upper road disintegrates and dissipates. The small circle above the Path of Life, after the last chance, is the Great Purification, after which corn will grow in abundance again when the Great Spirit returns. And the Path of Life continues forever...

The Hopi shield in the lower right corner symbolizes the Earth and the Four-Corners area where the Hopi have been reserved. The arms of the cross also represent the four directions in which they migrated according to the instructions of the Great Spirit.

The dots represent the four colors of Hopi corn, and the four racial colors of humanity.

[edit] Further reading

Image:HopiPueblo.1879.ws.jpg
Plaza at Walpi on First Mesa

[edit] External links

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[edit] References

de:Hopi el:Χόπι es:Hopi fr:Hopis hr:Hopi it:Hopi nl:Hopi (stam) ja:ホピ族 no:Hopi pl:Hopi pt:Hopis fi:Hopi-intiaanit sv:Hopi tr:Hopi

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