Saturday, April 21, 2012

The spiral represents the never-ending cycles of growth, change and eternal life

 Petroglyphs found in a remote canyon near Abiquiu, NM.   Jean Stimmell 4/21/12
My last blog entry about White Buffalo raises a good question: how can Her return to earth be interpreted by two apparently opposite scenarios: ushering in ‘a new age or ushering in ‘the end of the world? 

How can rebirth and apocalypse be viewed as one and the same?

The answer lies in how Native Americans, at least in the west, view life as a spiral.  “The Spiral is known as an ancient symbol of evolution. One of the oldest symbols of human spirituality in existence, the spiral has been found carved into cave dwellings, rocks and tombs all over the world. It is said to symbolize the evolution of the universe, the never-ending cycles of growth, change and eternal life as well as the cycles of the seasons.”

The spiral petroglyphs that I photographed in a remote canyon on a private ranch near Abiquiu, NM were carved over 1000 years ago by the Anasazi, a Navajo word for ‘the ancient ones.”  The Anasazi were a highly evolved, prehistoric Indian civilization, ancestors of all the modern Pueblo peoples.
 Petroglyph found in a remote canyon near Abiquiu, NM.   Jean Stimmell 4/21/12
It has been said by some that the Anaszsi Indians saw a clockwise Spiral as the “correct or good path”, while the counter clockwise was seen as the “wrong or bad path”. But I think their beliefs were more nuanced than that. The clockwise spiral, it is true, is associated with power, independence water and life in ascendancy, while counter clockwise represented life descending, returning and homecoming.

But neither direction can be interpreted as negative or bad. 
Instead, “The spiral seems to tell a story about the labyrinthine journey of life and death and speaks of the possibility of rebirth. Each loop of the spiral progresses us to a higher level, yet always returns us to the same place. It demonstrates life renewal by returning to the source.”⁠1
In other words, to the Anasazi, even death brings new life.

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