April 2020 Update
Updated: Apr 18
Unfortunately, the whole world is being affected by the coronavirus pandemic and the Southwestern Pueblos are no exception. All thirty-one (31) Pueblos are closed to outsiders other than deliver and medical vehicles.
The Winter Solstice usually marks the beginning of Kachina Season, marking a time filled with ceremonies. Each month is devoted to a specific ceremony and is celebrated with dances at various times of day. Unfortunately, the villages are protecting themselves by cancelling these Kachina Ceremonies until further notice. I have heard this from several Pueblos and assume most are following this measure.
Normally during this time the Kachinam (which is plural for Kachina and are spiritual messengers of the Hopi people’s prayers, with distinct functions and names) as Ethereal giftbearers, it is believed they travel as clouds to be among the people for several months each year. The second Quarter of this year would have been as follows.
Kwiyamuya (April) – Villagers prepare fields for planting, as it is during the “Kwiyamuya” that the trees begin to show signs of life and begin to bud. That’s the sign that the earth is ready for planting.
Hakitonmuya (May) – Responsibilities are delegated to every villager as the planting season begins with encouraging dances. Also called “the waiting season,” it begins the planting season. Although it is too early for most crops to be planted, bean, pumpkin and watermelon seeds can be put into the soil, symbolizing the start of growing season. The scattering of these crops is a special occasion, and a variety of Kachinam are called upon to celebrate and bless this first planting.
Wuko’uyis (June) –Coinciding with the month of June, it involves the planting of many crops. Most importantly, the Hopi people begin planting corn. A sacred crop to the Hopi people, corn is used in the making of dietary staples like bread and corn meal. Corn meal is often used to thicken other dishes, and corn husks were historically used to create sleeping mats, baskets, dolls and more. Kachinam can be seen throughout the villages almost daily.
That’s a peek of what is missing this year in the Pueblos and hopefully never again. An empty Plaza this year sorta tells the story.
Thank you for all your help and support in our endeavor of the Conservation and Preservation of both, the Wild Parrots and Macaws of Latin America and our Native Americans of the Southwest Pueblos.
Prayers & Blessings to all.