Tuesday, April 8, 2014

Navajo Indians, Sacred Sand Paintings, and a Hogan

Sacred Sand Painting of the Navajo Indian

Desert Medicine
Beautiful with symbolic figures and design these sand paintings are sacred to the Navajo.  They are a part of the elaborate rituals of their "Sings," or ceremonial chants and must be traditionally perfect.  Made with desert sands and minerals of different colors these sacred paintings are prepared under the directions of the Navajo Shamans or Medicine Men.  The work on them is begun shortly after sunrise and they are destroyed before sunset.

"From the Land of Enchantment"
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Here is a postcard of a painting in progress .....

Navajo Sand Painters
Using many colors of fine sand, these artistic Indians paint intricate and beautiful designs believed to heal the sick and afflicted members of their tribe.

A western ways color photograph by Ray Manley
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Navajo Mother and Child
An excellent Mother and Child study by the nationally known photographer H. Armstrong Roberts.  The Navajo Indians are extremely kind to children.  Their infants are strapped to the traditional cradle board at birth and when the mothers tires of carrying the baby in her arms -  she just fastens the cradle board to her back.  These Navajo babies are kept in cradles until they are large enough to creep and are usually happy and smiling.
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Navajo Indians and Their Hogan
The colorful nomadic Navajo Indians are located in extensive reservations in northern Arizona and and New Mexico.  Famous for their artistic Navajo rugs and silver jewelry, they live in primitive circular hogans and depend on sheep and cattle raising for their livelihood.

Kodachrome by Mike Roberts
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All of these postcards are unused.

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