01 March 2012

American Pueblo Zuni might have appreciated this rock found in an Indiana creek bed

A rock found in an Indiana creek bed has no other context information. The Zuni, with an art modality of incorporating natural forms into their animal fetish art, might have found something like this to be significant. (click photo to expand)

"Native Americans have long carried interesting or unusual “charm stones” believing they bring luck, power or protection. The A-shi-wi, Zuni Pueblo Indians, like most Native American Indians, feel that animals and plants have spiritual nature. A fetish is an object, natural or shaped by man, in which an animal spirit is thought to reside. Stones that naturally resemble animals are “concretion” fetishes. Concretions and stones that require very little carving to bring out an image are considered more powerful than fetishes that require a great deal of carving. (empahsis added)


In short, the reason goes back to when the Zuni believe that the world was once covered by floodwaters that left it swampy. The Sun Father, revered by the Zuni as the giver of life and light, created twin sons giving them a magic shield, a bow {the rainbow} and arrows {lightning}. The Twins realized the world was too wet for mankind to survive so they placed their shield, the rainbow, crossed lightning arrows on top of the rainbow and shot an arrow into the point where they crossed and lightning flew out creating a tremendous fire. This dried the earth but made it too easy for predators to catch and eat people. To save humanity, the Twins struck these animals with their lightning, shriveling them into stone. But deep within, the animal’s hearts were kept alive, with instructions to help mankind with the magic captured within them. When a Zuni finds a stone that naturally resembles an animal, this is one of these ancient stone animals." (From southwestsilvergallery.com)

-kbj

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