In The Cavity of a Rock

In The Cavity of a Rock
Father Lehi

Thursday, December 23, 2010

Hopi Baby Naming Ceremony

The Hopi baby naming ceremony like many other ceremonies practiced by the Hopi seems to date back to The Old Testament time period/Law of Moses. Although there are many ceremonial practices that are part of the birthing process I will just briefly focus on the end portion of that ceremony and in particular the actual naming of the baby.

On the twentieth day after the birth of the baby the mothers hair is washed with yucca suds by her Godmother (her husband's mother's sister) and the baby's aunts, who also take turns washing the baby's hair. This shows that the newborn is accepted into the family. Up to this point the baby has been kept indoors and has not seen the light of the sun. The mother's sister holds the baby in her left arm, waves two corn ears over the baby's chest and says, "May you live always without sickness, travel along theSun Trail to old age, and pass away in sleep without pain," and then, by "strick custom," pronounces the baby's name. By this time the other aunts have already given the baby a name as well but the name pronounced by the mothers sister is the one that sticks or that the child will be know by until receiving another new name during the Wuwuchim ceremony. The name pronounced relates to her and to the baby's father. The baby belongs to its mother's clan but it is named for its father's clan.

The naming of babies is an Israelite custom as can be seen all thoughout the book of Genesis. Similarities can be seen between this Hopi tradition of family and friends involvement in the ceremony and with Ruth bearing her child and the involvment of Naomi and their neighbors in Ruth 4:16-17 in the Old Testament,
And Naomi took the child, and laid it in her bosom, and became nurse unto it.
And the women her neighbours gave it a name, saying, there is a son born to Naomi;(Ruth's Mother in Law) and they called his name Obed: he is the father of Jesse, the father of David.
Thus we see that the name of Obed was actually given by her neighbors (probably including Naomi) not by Ruth directly. Once again this being an Israelite tradition.

After the naming ceremony, the baby is taken to the edge of the mesa and is presented to the sun. The baby is held in the right arm of the Godmother. As the sun rises, the Godmother uncovers the baby's face with her left hand. With the other hand she takes a pinch of cornmeal and breathes a silent prayer onto it. Then she rubs some between the baby's lips and throws the rest to the rising sun. She sucks the meal from the baby's mouth and blows it towards the east four times. She then takes the two special corn ears and describes a counter clockwise circle facing east and brings them to the baby's chest four times. Then she calls out the baby's name so that God may hear and recognize the baby. For a more detailed account read Helen Sekaquaptewa's book "Me and Mine" or the autobiography of Don C Talayesva entitled "Sun Chief". Here is a link to a more recent version of a Hopi Naming Ceremony with some great pictures.

Sunday, December 19, 2010

LDS Scholars offer rebuttal to the question of Horses in the Book of Mormon.

This is a video that I stumbled across on the youtube channel. This is a great video because it has some of the standard rebuttles for the more common issues that most anti Mormons like to throw around. I think Daniel C. Peterson, John Tvetdnes, and Brant Gardner and many of these other scholars do such a great job handling these issues in such a professional manner. I have had the opportunity to speak with a few these guys online and quiz them about some of my Hopi findings and ideas and they have proven to be completely professional in handling my questions and giving me added insights even when there were isssues that we may have disagreed upon (which were very few!). Anyways I hope you enjoy this quick video as much as I did.

Sunday, December 12, 2010

The Book of Mormon when compared to Mayan diety impersonation and divine kingship rituals

Most Mormons are familiar with the phrase in Alma 5:14, "Have ye received his image in your countenances?" but recently I stumbled across some added insights on this phrase as well as one of King Benjamins opening remarks when he preached to his people upon the newly erected tower at the temple in Mosiah 2:10-11, he says, " I have not commanded you to come up hither that ye should fear me, or that ye should think that I of myself am more than a mortal man. But I am like as yourselves, subject to all manner of infirmities in body and mind"

These two phrases or scriptures take on added meaning when placed in the midst of the Mayan civilization. Alma the youngers question of receiving the Lords image in your countenances takes on a whole new meaning when compared to to the Mayans ancient diety impersonation rituals, where kings and high ranking officials would actually put on engraven masks of their gods and impersonate them believing this would make them divine. When you take this in consideration along with the Mayan kings belief in "divine kingship" a litteral belief that the kings actually became divine beings especially when dressed in their masks and religious paraphanilia.

It would make since why King Benjamin would start his great speech or address to his people by reassuring them that he was mearly a human being and nothing more, also subject to the frailties of man completely removing himself from the pagan belief of being a divine king. This also help the understanding of Alma's question about receiving the Lords image in your countenances, because these were a people or a mixture of people who had either in the past had believed in or knew surrounding societies of people who believed in these pagan beliefs on becoming a god upon placing these pagan ceremonial masks on and practicing pagan sacrifices (sometimes human sacrifices) to their gods. This would be something Alma would have been preaching against when asking the Nephites if they had received the Lord Jesus Christs image in their countenances.

The first picture above is from the movie Apocolypto which painted a picture of a very blood thirst society which may not have always been the case in the Mayan civilization but it did have perfect examples of some of these costumes and masks and headdresses believed to add divine power. I find this ironic when compared to the beliefs of the Hopi on their kachina masks which I previously posted about. It becomes easy to see how a society (the Mayans and others) could easily mix teachings or fall away from beliefs of representation in to a full fledged belief of divine kingship. Thus we see one more piece of evidence that when certain senarios in the Book of Mormon are placed in the mesoamerican setting it only adds authenticity to the book and once more this is something that wouldn't have been known during Joseph Smith's time. Mear coincodence? I think not!

For more information on this check out the following link provided by the Neal A. Maxwell Institute from their DVD "The New World, Journey of Faith".

Friday, December 10, 2010

Thanks to those who supported the Hopi Outreach Bicycle Program

I'd just like to thank everyone who helped in supporting the Hopi Outreach program as we gathered new and used bikes as well as cash donations (which were in turn used to purchase more bikes). Although I wasn't able to go and help with the dropoff this year due to finacial and schedule conflicts I hope that this will be a routine occurance in the future. Once again thanks to all who participated.
Pictures coming soon!

Saturday, December 4, 2010

Book of Mormon and Hopi ceremonial sash both use the Hebraism Chiasmus as proof of antiquity.

In the late 1960s, a young Latter-day Saint discovered that an ancient form of Middle Eastern poetry was found throughout the Book of Mormon, suggestive of its ancient Semitic origins. This poetical form, chiasmus, a type of inverted parallelism, reaches highly artistic heights in the Book of Mormon and is difficult to ascribe to chance. Yet the information available to Joseph Smith when the Book of Mormon was translated provided nothing to guide him in crafting such structures. Could this be part of a growing body of evidence for ancient Semitic origins for the text?

Chiasmus is a form of parallelism used as a poetical structure in some ancient writings from the Middle East and Greece. The word chiasmus derives from the Greek letter chi (X) which symbolizes the top-to-bottom mirror image reflection achieved by elements of text. An example of a very simple chiasmus is found in Psalms 124:7:

We have escaped as a bird
From the snare of the fowlers
-The snare is broken
-And we have escaped.
for a more complex chiasmus example we will look in the Book of Mormon,

Mosiah 3:18,19:(Men will drink damnation to their souls unless)
(a) They HUMBLE themselves
--- (b) and become as little CHILDREN
------(c) believing that salvation is in the ATONING BLOOD OF CHRIST;
--------(d) for the NATURAL MAN
----------(e) is an enemy of GOD
------------(f) and HAS BEEN from the fall of Adam
------------(f') and WILL BE forever and ever
----------(e') unless he yieldeth to the HOLY SPIRIT
--------(d') and putteth off the NATURAL MAN
------(c') and becometh a saint through the ATONEMENT OF CHRIST
---(b') and becometh as a CHILD
(a') submissive, meek and HUMBLE.
These same chiastic structures merged with deep symbolism can be found on the Hopi ceremonial sash.

The ceremonial sash is tied to the right and joins the design in the ceremonial kilt, also worn to the right. The image on the sash is a visual chiasmus. Some have said that the design on the ceremonial sash is a face, similar to the Broadace Katcina mask. The pair of red lozenges (diamond or rhombus shapes)are said to be two eyes, and the zig-zag design in the band at the outer edges are said to be teeth, lions teeth. When looked upon in this sense it does appear to resemble a face, even upside down. And this face is indeed a mask, hiding the sacred motifs behind it, which are recognized as readily as a familiar face by only the initiated. What unmasks the facade and reveals the meaning within the design of the sash are the parallel white bars in the black lines between the eyes and teeth.

Without going into to much detail the top portion of the zig-zag represents the stars in the firmament with the black spacious universe behind the next line is the the black line with pairs of bars representing the pairs of witnesses with passwords to he heavens as well as a duel symbol for "the word" for the word of God is quick and powerful and sharper than any two edged sword (Rev. 2:12).
As stated earlier in the kilt worn by the Hopi Snake Priest the two white bars also represent the two or more witnesses or books combined to instill all truth. The red lozenges with white triangles represent those whose garments have been made white through the blood of the Lamb. The hook and the crook symbols in short represent the spirit of revelation and the spirit of prophecy as the crook brings things out of heaven, such as the voice of angelic revelation, while the hook brings things out of the earth, such as the voice of prophetic writings. As the visual pattern repeats itself in reverse order the meanings duel in nature mean virtually the same although some may be used as a voice of warning where as the zig-zag at the bottom also represents the weaping and whaling and gnashing of teeth brought upon by those banished to outter darkness. All of this is followed by the fringe and ribbons at the bottom of the sash. The wearing of the fringe can be traced to the American Indians' forefathers, the Ancient Israelites. The purpose of the fringe is explained in the Bible,

37 And the Lord spake unto Moses, saying,
38 Speak unto the children of Israel, and bid them that they make them fringes in the borders of their garments throughout their generations, and that they put upon the fringe of the borders a ribband of blue:
39 And it shall be unto you for a fringe, that ye may look upon it, and remember all the commandments of the Lord, and do them; and that ye seek not after your own heart and your own eyes, after which ye use to go a whoring:
40 That ye may remember, and do all my commandments, and be holy unto your God.
41 I am the Lord your God, which brought you out of the land of Egypt, to be your God: I am the Lord your God.

Since the Hopis are the Mother Nation, theirs is not a "ribbon of blue" but a ribbon of red, the same color spoken of in an earlier post of the snake dancers feathers in their hair to represent the color of the seed of Jacob, where as the color blue represents the color of the Israelite nation.
As can be seen in the Chiasmus whether in the form of poetry or Hebrew word or phrase formation or Hopi visual testament it serves the purpose of stating and restating in reverse order, so as to reaffirm the truth or point of the chiasm. It is interesting that these are also common in Mayan text pre 1580. These stand as witnesses to both the ties between the Hopi whose ancestors trace back to the Mayans and those people of whom we read about in the Book of Mormon, (whom many look upon as one and the same) as well as the authenticity of the Book of Mormon.
One last point that I found rather interesting while listening to Hugh Nibley's "Temples Everywhere" talk is that some of his colleagues from Israel one in particular Professor Shinar from Hebrew University was surprised to find that the Hopi called their sashes or prayer shalls the same thing they do in Jerusalem, a "Sheish"(spelling?).

Monday, November 22, 2010

Bonds of friendship strong between Catholics and Latter-day

I feel that in times like these it will be relationships like this that will help people keep the Christian faith. I remember while serving my mission in the Bible Belt we used to joke around and say that Catholics make the best Mormons, I had the opportunity to do service with many Catholics and had nothing but respect for each of them as well as those of other faiths who helped us in many ways. Although I recognize the added truth that we have received via the Book of Mormon (D&C and PGP) and latter-day prophets and I am greatful for those truths and do my best to understand them and apply them to my everyday life but I still think that when we all meet our maker we'll all be taking some sort of a "Religion 101".

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Mormon Times: From Sierra Leone to Temple Square

This is the video of Sister Mariama Kallon. I served my mission with her for about 6 weeks. She actually served her mission in the SLC Temple Square mission and as a 4 month reassignment that Temple Square missionaries get she was called to the Kentucky Louisville Mission. I was her first district leader and can attest for what an amazing woman Sister Kallon is. Upon entering the mission home she asked the mission president (Michael C. Cannon) for a rag that she could use. President Cannon gave her a rag and went about his business only to discover she didn't need it for herself. She used the rag to clean the shoes of her fellow missionaries after they had kicked off their shoes at the mission home door. She did this out of respect and the love she has for not only her fellow missionaries and their calling a calling the she herself held and fullfilled in such a reverant manner.

Her Christ like love was contagious to all those who knew her. I remember my companion and I and Sister Kallon and her companions getting up one morning and having a little campfire on the banks of the Ohio River and just hanging out as friends and having a good time kind of as a welcoming get together for her when she came to the mission. I later was transferred to my last area in Evansville Indiana and never got to see her again. So its good to see that she is still extremely active and shares her message....a message that needs to be heard! Upon finding out that my companion Elder Seegmiller and I were being transferred she made each one of us the following handkerchieves to show her appreciation to us as friends and fellow missionaries. She has truly been such a great example to all who know her.

Sister Kallons documentary DVD can be purchased through deseret book at the following link.

Monday, November 15, 2010

Genetic traits possible link between Hopi and converted Lamanites (Anti-Nephi Lehies)?

Albinism Among the Hopi Indians in Arizona

The variation in frequency of generalized albinism in various human populations constitutes an intriguing problem in population genetics. The overall frequency in European populations has been given as 1 in 20,000 (1946) with estimates varying from 1 in 10,000 in Norway to 1 in 29,000 in Italy and perhaps lower in france.

In a book entitled Physiological and Medical Observations Among the Inidans of Southwestern United States and Northern Mexico, by Ales Hrdlincka (1908) devoted a section to albinism. In 1906 he studied the Hopi Indians in Arizona and found 11 albinos from ten sibships among an estimated population of 2,000. This gives a frequency of 1 in 182. In addition Hrdlincka thoroughly described the albinos. He also noted that the Zuni pueblos a related tribe just east of the Hopi had a population of 6 albinos as well.

In 1961 Charles M. Woolf and Robert B. Grant from the Department of Zoology at Arizona State University (Tempe Arizona) set out to re-test these statistics. Fortunately many informants were found who were willing to help in supplying the names of albinos and in the construction of pedigrees. At the time there were 22 Hopi Albinos. The frequency is 1 in 227, using the estimated population size of 5,000.
Soon after the study was initiated it was realized that present day Hopis attach no religious signficance to albinos. At no time did an informant give any indication of belief that a village has "good luck" if any albino resides in it or that an albino has "supernatural influences"; thus, any rumors to this effect are apparently false. Albinos are viewed today as any other individuals with congenital defects; they are well integrated into Hopi society. In fact, they are frequent performers in the elaborate Hopi ceremonies and dances, as many tourists can testify.

There are many theories in regards to why these numbers are so skewed, including population control through the history of the Hopi until about the 1960's when highway 264 was made and made it easier for people to travel to the Hopi Rez and for the Hopi to travel outside of the Rez. In posting this information my purpose is to throw out an idea in regards to the changes made in the body to cause a human to become albino.
Albinism is a defect of melanin production that results in little or no color (pigment) in the skin, hair, and eyes. There are two main types of albinism:
Type 1 albinism is caused by defects that affect production of the pigment, melanin.
Type 2 albinism is due to a defect in the "P" gene. People with this type have slight coloring at birth. Since there is obviously an actual genetic change that is more common place among the Hopi and Zuni or Pueblo Nations the question arises as to why? or How?
The Book of Mormon speaks of possible genetic changes that took place mainly upon the Lamanites. In 2 Nephi 5 Jacob shares some information about the curse that took place as the Nephites seperated themselves from the Lamanites. He says, speaking about the Lords treatment of the Lamanites, "and he caused a cursing to come upon them, yeah, even a sore cursing,because of their iniquity. For behold, they had hardened their hearts against him, that they had become like unto a flint wherefore, as they were white, and exceedingly fair and delightsome, that they might not be enticing unto my people the Lord God did cause a skin of blackness to come upon them." He later states that, "they did become an idle people" It seems as though the curse was to not be in the presence of the spirit of the Lord it didn't actually effect the skin color. There is a difference between the mark and the curse. The mark placed upon the Lamanites was a dark skin (Alma 3:6). The curse was not the dark skin but being "cut off from the presence of the Lord" (2 Nephi 5:20). Notice that in both Alma 3:7 and Alma 3:14 the conjunction "and" is used between the curse and the mark. This implies that they are not the same thing. The people brought the curse upon themselves: "And even so doth every man that is cursed bring upon himself his own condemnation" (Alma 3:19) Through righteousness the curse may be removed, but the mark may remain as it has with the Lamanites. It the case of repentence there were many times where the mark may have had a reverse effect keeping the righteous Lamanites from mingling with wicked Nephites.
In Alma 23:17-18 speaking about the changes that took place among the Anti Nephi Lehies it states.
17. And it came to pass that they called their names Anti-Nephi Lehies; and they were called by this name and were no more called Lamanites.18. And they began to be a very industrious people; yeah, and they were friendly with the Nephites; therefore, they did open a correspondence with them, and the curse of God did no more follow them.
Also in 3 Nephi 2: 14-16 it states,
14. And it came to pass that those Lamanites who had united with the Nephites were numbered among the Nephites;
15. And their curse was taken from them, and their skin became white like unto the Nephites;
16. And their young men and their daughters became exceedingly fair, and they were numbered among the Nephites, and were called Nephites. And thus ended the thirteenth year.
The above scriptures seem to be speaking of both a physical and spiritual changes that took place . Although I don't think that albinism is a direct cause of the removal of the mark my question is would it be possible for this to be indirectly related to the removal of the mark. Could it be possible that the genetic transformations that took place in the Book of Mormon along with hundreds of years of mixing with others to whom these same changes had taken place along with those who were still part of the mark could cause a rare genetic condition (skin and pigment condition) that would manifest itself in these Pueblo people?
As evidence of a physical change that can take place upon conversion I quote from Joseph Smith jr. out of the History of the Church, speaking about the Blood of Abraham
"This first Comforter or Holy Ghost has no other effect than pure intelligence. It is more powerful in expanding the mind, enlightening the understanding, and storing the intellect with present knowledge, of a man who is of the literal seed of Abraham, than one that is a Gentile, though it may not have half as much visible effect upon the body; for as the Holy Ghost falls upon one of the literal seed of Abraham, it is calm and serene; and his whole soul and body are only exercised by the pure spirit of intelligence; while the effect of the Holy Ghost upon a Gentile is to purge out the old blood, and make him actually the seed of Abraham. That man that has none of the blood of Abraham (naturally) must have a new creation by the Holy Ghost. In such cases, there may be more of a powerful effect upon te body, and visible to the eye, than upon an Israelite, while the Israelite at first might be far before the Genile in pure intelligence." (HC 3:380)
(top) Albino Hopi Mana Middle Mesa.
(2nd from top) 2nd from the right on the bottom is an albino Hopi Flute Priest.
(3rd from top) Close up of the albino Hopi Flue Priest.
(4th from top) Group of 10 year old Hopi girls including one albino.
(5th from top) Two Zuni men one on the left is albino.
(6th from top) Zuni boys, the one on the right is albino not white.

Friday, November 12, 2010

"Far Away" Music Video | Lecrae | (Haiti Relief) [OFFICIAL]

This is a video I should have posted months ago because I love the song. This is by Lecrae and it was done for the Haiti Relief efforts. Even though its main purpose was to get donations for Haiti Relief I think that the message is one that each of us can relate to on a daily basis. I know that I personally seem to call on God at times when I am really in need but when things are going good he seems to take the back burner.....and then when we wonder why he seems "far away" once our times of need kick back up. Anyways great song great purpose...enjoy

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Daniel Peterson: How Nephi understood the Tree of Life (and why the Book of Mormon is an ancient record) | Mormon Times

Why would Nephi see a connection between a tree and a virginal mother of a divine child? His vision sems to reflect a meaning of a "sacred tree" that is unique to the ancient near east and, in israelite history. Specifically to the period before the babylonian captivity-Nephi's era.

Daniel Peterson: How Nephi understood the Tree of Life (and why the Book of Mormon is an ancient record) Mormon Times

After reading the above article feel free to watch this video for further information on archeological finds involving the role of Asherah

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Chichen Itza and links to Lehi and the 3 Nephites

While re-reading Dr. Jerry Ainsworths "The Life and Travels of Mormon and Moroni" I stumbled across an interesting section where he is speaking briefly about the history of Chichen Itza and some of the writings of Linda Schele and David Freidel. They say that although the genealogy of the people of Chichen Itza is incomplete, the original father of these people was named Lord Jawbone (Forest of Kings, 362). Any Bible dictionary will identify the Hebrew name Lehi as meaning "Jawbone."

These authors further report that the ancient settlers of that area never appointed kings for themselves. In other words, they could not have been those whom the Book of Mormon traditionally identifies as Lamanites, who were always ruled by kings. Instead, "three brothers" ruled the people at Chichen Itza, with none viewed as superior to the others (Forest of Kings, 359-60).

These statements suggest that the people of Chichen Itza may have been led there, as well as governed, by the Three Nephites. Their migration from the land northward could have commenced as early as A.D. 326, when Mormon was fifteen years old. At that time, the Three Nephites withdrew from among the Nephite nation in general (see Mormon 1:13-15). Schele and Freidel note that the three brothers were called "lords of fire" (Forest of Kings, 360). The Book of Mormon records that the Three Nephites possessed power over fire (see 4 Nephi 1:32)

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Lecrae-Background Ft. C-Lite Video

This is the Lecrae's new video called "Background". I love the message of this song so take time to listen to this song. I would advise getting this whole album because its worth every penny.

Friday, October 15, 2010

Abducted Lamanite Daughters/Hopi Lakon, Maraw, and Owaqolt ceremonies.

Have you ever wondered while reading Mosiah Chapter 20 why the Lamanite daughters that were abducted by the Priests of Noah were dancing in the wilderness? I have considered this a few times myself. In my studies of the Hopi culture I ran into the some ceremonies that I found quite intriguing because of what I had read in Mosiah. I was surprised even more to hear Hugh Nibley correlate these ceremonies with this same chapter in Mosiah. In Mosiah chapter 20 in a place called Shemlon the Lamanite daughters gathered themselves to sing dance and make themselves merry. It tells that eventually the Priests of Noah who had been keeping an eye on these daughters of the Lamanites eventually abducted 24 of them.

During the months following the snake ceremony the Hopi women hold three ceremonies. According to Hugh Nibley and Tom Cryers these festivals which generally follow the pattern of all ceremonials and derive from temple times when the maidens of Jerusalem, all dressed in white, went in the vineyards close to the city and danced and sang in a circle of the Day of Atonement, the time when an opportunity was offered to young men to select their companions for life. The ceremonies are four days long, as was the customary lament of virginity practiced by the daughters of Israel. The women erect elaborate altars, have kiva ceremonies, and dance in the plaza.

The first is called Lakon which is based on the theme of rain, corn and fertility of women. Songs are sung with desires for impregnation and motherhood. The primary emphasis of Lakon is how the village is blessed by women. Without going into too much detail the next is the Maraw. In the plaza performance, a pair of virgins, hoping for marriage, throws food to the spectators from inside a singing circle of women holding cornstalks.

The final women’s celebration, called Owaqolt, has the establishment of marriage as its theme. The culmination of this celebration is the tossing of gifts from a circle of maidens who wear headdresses that have a horn hair do on the right and a squash blossom one on the left and who have their faces and feet painted yellow like the Mayan and Aztec brides. These female celebrations are meant to impress upon the mind the blessings brought forth by mother earth and womankind.

This goes to show that the Lamanite daughters were more than likely performing ceremonies similar in meaning and actions to these performed by the Hopi women. Parts of the above three ceremonies are actually performed in the wilderness away from the actual village. Because they are held in the same general time frame each year it would make sense why the Priests of Noah would know when to expect the daughters to be alone in the wilderness and ripe for abduction.

Sunday, October 3, 2010

Hopi Snake Ceremony Part 2

Every ceremony performed by the is laced with so much symbolism that it is almost impossible to be able to trace the root of each of them. In Tom Cryers book, “Visual Testament” he attempts to do just that. He noted that during the last four days of the Snake Ceremony these days are dedicated to the hunt of snakes for the final dance ceremony. The First day of the hunt, the Hopi Snake Priests go northward. The second day they go westward, the third, southward, and the fourth and last day they go eastward. It is through the gathering of serpents from the four corners of the earth that the Hopis enact the formation of man, the gathering of Israel.

Part of the Snake Priests outfit is the zigzag motif on the kirtle (kilt) worn by the priests. This motif represents the plumed water serpent Paleuleukang. The bars, symbolic of the two records, divided by a tripod shaped symbol considered to be snipe tracks, which correspond to “the Word,” even as ibis footprints correspond to Thoth, the Egyptian god of writing.

Their headdress is made up of eagle breast feathers dyed red. To the ends of these are tied bluebird feathers. The joining of these two colors, red and blue, hearkens back to antiquity. It also is a visual forecast of a future joining of the blue and red nations. This particular headdress has been referred to as the nakwa, “wish\prayer.” The blue and red nations are considered Judah and Joseph…the Jews and the Native Americans.
This would make sense considering the design on the kilt has the two bars considered records and the ibis footprint representing Thoth, the Egyptian god of writing is more than likely a prophecy of the joining of the records of Judah and Joseph in the form of the Bible and the Book of Mormon.

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Hopi Indians Dance for Theodore Roosevelt at [Walpi, Ariz.] 1913

The Hopi Snake Dance Part 1

As the title says this is a video that was taken in 1913 on First Mesa (Walpi, AZ) on the Hopi reservation. This is a snake dance that was performed not for Theodore Roosevelt although he did happen to be in attendance. Some interesing things to notice is of course that you will see members of the snake clan holding the snakes in their mouth while members of the Antelope clan use a feather tool to calm the snake while they walk in partner groups. The other interesting thing is during the video you will be able to notice the members of the snake clan stomp their feet on a board towards the right hand side of the video. This blog post is mainly in reference to the "Stamping of Feet"

According to Tom Cryers "Visual Testament" the stomping is so forceful that it appears the intention is to break the board. This stamping is a signal to the underword. It informs the ancestors below that a ceremony is taking place. It also impacts with emphasis the prayer offerings that had previously been deposited below the board. This ceremony takes place the same time every other year, it is believed the underworld is performing the same ceremony at the same time. In a Jewish wedding ceremony, a small board is placed at the foot of the groom , upon which is placed a wine glass. The groom stamps upon it, dashing the glass to pieces, and the people cry "Mazzletouv! Mazzletouv!" Good Luck!, Good Luck! The Egyptians smashed a green stone of glass and flaming torch, which are then buried as an act of consecration and renouncement of earthly passions and desires. (Nibley 1975:124) The Prophet Ezekiel stamped with his foot to warn backsliding Israel of the famine and pestilence that would befall them. (Ezek6:11) The Masons ritually clapped their hands and stamped their feet at once to emphasize "light" as a candidate's "hoodwink" is removed and he becomes "intellectually illuminated."

Monday, September 20, 2010

Nahom - Book of Mormon Evidence

In 1994 the discovery of Nahom burrial ground in Southern Arabia became one of the most significant evidences of the truth of the Book of Mormon. This is where Lehi and Ishmael's family burried Ishmael after he passed away on their journey to the promised land. As this video shows it is interesting because Nephi's text specifically lets us know that this was the name of the land before Lehi's party ever journied through this land. This is significant because Lehi named many of the places his party stopped at but this was one of the rare places he didn't name and the reason why is because it already had a name. There is no way that Joseph Smith jr. could have known this upon translating the Book of Mormon because it wasn't discovered until 1994. I hope you enjoy this video it is part of a DVD called Journey of Faith put out by the Neal A. Maxwell Institiute which is just amazing. Enjoy

Thursday, September 16, 2010

Me and Mine The Life Story of Helen Sekaquaptewa

Helen Sekaquaptewa was a convert to the LDS church and in her life story she tells a few interesting stories that I would just like to cover really quick. My Uncle Bill who served his mission among the Hopi (in 1955-1957) knew her personally and her husband Emory and spoke highly of them.

In Helens life story she tells of some of the teachings that her father shared with her. During the long winter evenings he would share the teachings of the kiva, saying "You are young now and may not be interested , but I must teach you now while I am here with you. As you grow older, then you will learn to understand and know it is the truth. " This has come to pass. He said.

" The white man has kept a written record of the history of the people from the beginning, while the Hopis have passed their history from one generation to another by word of mouth. With the telling over the years, some of it has been omitted or misunderstood, and changes have been made. The written record is more accurate and true. There will come a time when the written record will be brought to the Hopi's by the white man. There will be many religions taught. You will need to be wise to recognize and choose the right church. It will teach you to be humble and will not try to force you into it. When that time comes we should forsake our native religion and join this true church, and we will all speak the same language and be as one people."

He said this many times, and at the end he would say, "I tell you this because you are my own blood. I want you to take this to heart and teach it to your children. I want you and your children to live by those teachings and benefit by what I have said." Both Emory and I heard him say this long before we ever heard of the Book of Mormon.

She later advised that when her and her husband had read the Book of Mormon and the Bible it made her Hopi traditions make since and her Hopi traditions helped her understand the Book of Mormon and Bible better. Later on she said,
"When the Mormon missionaries came to Second Mesa, they taught the first chapters of the Book of Mormon, telling of a prophet named Lehi who was told by the Lord to take his family, a wife and four sons, and leave Jerusalem because that city was going to be destroyed because of the wickedness of the inhabitants (this in the year 600 B.C.), how they journeyed many days in the wilderness on their way to the sea, how Lehi sent his sons back to Jerusalem to get their records of their forefathers and the teachings of their prophets, how they were led to a land that was choice above all other lands, having crossed the mighty waters and landed in America.
The head priests of the Hopis at Second Mesa, hearing these things, accosted the Elders and angrily said, "How come you know these things?" Only older men, high in the priesthood, know that. You keep your mouths shut."
Helen raised her family in the church and even though her father never converted he later on in life told Helen, "I marvel at the way you stood up against all the people, and we have all lived better because of it." He also complimented her on the great way she raised her family.

I share this as more evidence that the Hopi are indeed decendants of the people in the Book of Mormon and one day the prophecies concerning them will indeed be fulfilled.

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Trip Lee-The Invasion (Hero) Feat. Jai

Here is another Christian Hip-Hop artist named Trip Lee's new video called "The Invasion". This has kind of a subliminal overtone. The invasion represents the rise of modern Christians who band together and practice their religion while waiting for the second coming of Jesus Christ. Anyways I think its a great song and a pretty creative way to portray it in the form of a video. Enjoy

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Hopi Children Stories Tie Hopi History to People of Ammon (Anti Nephi Lehies)

In some of my recent reading I stumbled across Zula C. Brinkerhoff's "God's Chosen People of America" Zula was very close to the Hopi she was actually adopted into the Turtle Clan and given the name of Gah Het Tut (Little Mother) in July of 1975. Zula was also an active member of the LDS Church.

In her book Zula Brinkerhoff's adopted Hopi father David Monongye shares different Hopi traditional stories that are used to teach the children life lessons as well as the history of their own people. I would like to share one in particular which directly links the Hopi to the People of Ammon (The Anti Nephi Lehies). Its called the "Story of the Bow"
"Let me tell you about the bow. There's a story on the bow. During the month of February when the small children are initiated, they get the bows and arrows, and the little girls small dolls to play with.

I want to tell you now, there is a lot of meaning to it. There is a lot of different colors on the bow and a few places you seen dots and then right in the center of it all is white. Now, to the Hopi people, it means peace, so these are given to the small boys and when they receive this bow they hold it in the middle where it is white. Simply holding a whit flag which means peace and on the sides there are different colors means all of the vegetation on the earth. Like the flowers, trees, and animals and all things that live on this mother earth. And the dots on there represents the rain drops. When it rains on this mother earth it helps the plants to grow and it waters them.
And the string is stretched on top. Now that string, it sets this way-one is pointed toward east and the other toward the west. An the string is stretched to it. And then on that string, as we all know the sun rises from the east, and when the sun rises from the east and it travels on this string overhead and fertilized all the plant life and animal and human life upon mother earth, and it gives heat to all living things, such as trees, and everything that lives upon mother earth. And then the sun sets in the west, and then there is a little feather that hangs on the side and that means it represents the breath of this bow. And so that is what it means, you know when a boy receives his bow. He holds it in the middle where it is white so when they grow up they will grow up in Hopi ways that they would respect and would not molest anyone, because way back before the Great Star appeared in the sky, the Hopi have buried their weapons so that if ever war came up, they will not participate in any kind of war because they have buried their weapons deep in the earth. And so they were instructed not to take up arms and go forth against any other nation to kill any people, because this is a great warning to them by the Great Spirit. So this is what the bow means.

And the small dolls that is given to the girls, they take care of them and they are like babies. They are preparing themselves when they grow up so when they become of age they can marry and have children. And they must take good care of their children, just the way as their mothers do. They are preparing themselves to take care of these dolls, and they put them in little cradles, and sing to them. They get them to sleep. That is the way they are preparing themselves to become mothers in the future Now this is what it means."

In the Book of Mormon in Alma chapters 23-25 the converted Lamanites (actually Ishmaelites) buried their weapons of war and covenanted with their Lord never to take them up again. Their swords had been stained with blood and in burying their weapons of war they were (the people that is) washed clean in the sight of God and they suffered themselves to die by the sword when other Lamanites who were not converted attacked them rather than take up their weapons of war again and break the covenant and lose the forgiveness and promises they had received. This act of faith and courage actually brought more converts from the Lamanites than those of the converted group (later called the Anti Nephi Lehies or People of Ammon) who had died during this attack.
From this time forward they were considered a "Peaceful People" and after a four year proving time period in the Land of Jershon they were eventually accepted by the Nephites (although they did not consider themselves Nephites) and obtained a promise of protection by the Nephites. In return they gave the Nephites part of their crops as a good token of friendship. Later on when the Nephite armies were having problems with the Lamanites the Anti Nephi Lehies considered taking up their weapons to help in the battle. They were persuaded by their leader (who actually went by the name Anti Nephi Lehi) and a captain of the Nephite army by the name of Helaman not to break their covenant. At this point their children (2000 young men) decided to help the Nephite armies because they had not made the covenant (it was their parents) plus they had faith in the teaching of their mothers. They experienced many miracles while helping the Nephites.
With this said I think it is easy to see how the story of the Anti Nephi Lehies and the Hopi go hand in hand. They both are a peaceful people and had buried their weapons of war and held the family unit extremely important (especially the mother and her teachings). Thus he reason for the bow and arrows and the Kachina dolls being used to teach these key principals of their important past and the covenants they made with their God.

Rhema Soul - Fly Away

This is the new Rhema Soul video for their song "Fly Away". This is another of those Christian Hip-Hop groups that I previously mentioned. I love this video because it is very touching and I think that to some degree everyone can relate to wanting to "Fly Away" from their problems whatever they may be. I like that fact that they suggest using the word of God as a means of "Flying Away" or dealing with our problems. Anyways here it is and I hope you all enjoy it as much as I did.

Monday, September 6, 2010

Porter Rockwell

For those of you who know me you know that I am always in the middle of a good book and usually in the middle of a few good books. You may also know that I am a huge fan and advocate of Porter Rockwell. One of the good books that I have recently finished reading is John W. Rockwell (The great-great grandson of Porter Rockwell) and Jerry Borrowman's "Stories from the Life of Porter Rockwell".

I have read basically every book that I could get my hands on about Porter Rockwell from the Richard Lloyd Dewey 4 book series to Dewey's Biography on Rockwell. I have even read a few hard to find books on Porter Rockwell including Porter Rockwell The Mormon Frontier Marshal by Nicholas Van Alfren. I guess you could consider this a review on the above noted book by J. Rockwell and J. Borrowman. I consider it one of the more easy reading Porter Rockwell books and I think they did a good job simplizing the history surrounding Porter without compromising his character. I can even say that they shed some light on the real Porter Rockwell that I had never grasped on too until now. I had never realized that Porter Rockwell was a member of the seventy even until his death. I knew that Porter Rockwell was a pretty good business man and owned many businesses including hotels, taverns, ferry boats, livery goods, and plenty others. The one I found most ironic was that our modern day sampson once owned a barber shop, I found that ironic and entertaining as well. I enjoyed that fact that the authors pointed out that although Porter was illiterate he was a great business man and died one of the wealthiest men in Utah at the time of his death. I loved the portion of the book where it told of Brigham getting the saints ready to head west by getting all their temple covenants performed in the Nauvoo. Apparently Porter not only took out his own endowments and later accepted an assignment to act as an officiator in the endowment and as the authors stated,"It will take some readers just a few seconds to figure out what role he played, but its best to leave it at that." With all this said I would advise people to read this book to get a good picture of what I think Porter was really like. Too me it just adds to the character of Porter Rockwell that even though he had received the blessing from Joseph Smith jr in regards to not cutting his hair he wouldn't be harmed by either knife or gun that he was eventually willing to cut his hair for a wig to be made while he was visiting California and had stumbled across the widow of Joseph's younger brother Don Carlos Smith who had recently recovered from a Typhoid fever epidemic that left her with know hair.

I had read a review by a BYU student done a few years ago on his blog where he to some degree critisized Mormons for loving old Porter but knowing that they would never like their own daughters to marry a modern day Porter. I can honestly say that I would feel honored to have my daughter marry a member of the 70 who devoted his life to the protecting the prophets of his time and the church as a whole. Although he had his darkside to some degree I think we all do. His may have been his alcohol and what some call lawlessness but in reviewing his history I think the confirmed stories paint a picture of a Porter Rockwell who actually had a human side and although willing to kill at the drop of a dime he was most always a righteous and forgiving man. He also had his addiction to alcohol but I think his accomplishments are much greater than the fault. Here is an interview with the authors in regards to this book.


Don't Waste Your Life Video - Lecrae

As a self proclaimed hip-hop head I have been listening to rap (hip-hop) music since I was in 6th grade (I'm 33 years old now). I've listened to every type of rap music from freestyle battlerap to underground hip hop to gangsta rap to top 100 billboard rap. I am happy to say that for the past 3-4 years I have been blessed to stumble across an extremely talented group of Christian based hip-hop musicians. The groups and solo acts include: Lecrae, Trip Lee, Group 1 Crew, Rhema Soul, The Ambassador, Da T.R.U.T.H. and many more. In years past I have always migrated towards rap music with substance not all the crime and foul language or glits and glam, but musicians with knowledge and talent and skill. I am happy to say that these Christian Hip-Hop artists easily have the talent to be signed with major labels and be in the billboard top 100 if they were to sacrifice what the stood for and sell out their cause and dumb down their music. Instead they have choosen to elevate my favorite form of music and are finally starting to get some recognition for it to. I want to thank labels like Cross Movement and Reach Records for having the passion and understanding to support these musicians. Although I hope to eventually have some sort of LDS based Christian hip-hop artist in the future its these above named acts that are paving the way. So here's a link to one of my favorite hip-hop artists today Lacrae with his video for "Don't Want to Waste My Life"

Monday, July 5, 2010

The influence of Jaredite Nation (Olmecs)

As I stated in an earlier post Dr. Jerry Ainsworths book "The Life and Travels of Mormon and Moroni" has greatly influenced the way I read,study, and look at the scriptures. I decided to post a brief section from this book in regards to the importance of the Jaredite nation and the influence it had upon the Mayans,Nephites and Lehites as well.

"The Book of Mormon records that there would be "none greater than the nation" of the Jaredites "upon all the face of the earth" (Ether 1:43). Other cultures certainly revered the Quinamis or Olmec, as appears from their attempts to identify with them. In fact, it was common for later pre-Columbian peoples to rewrite their history and genealogy to make it appear as if they had descended from them. The Aztecs and many Mayan kings did this.

"As one writer observes, "While they were in the process of adopting the customs of the ancient culture... they finally assimilated the old language and beliefs to such an extent that after a few generations had gone by they had forgotten their obscure origins, and the chiefs of the various tribes had proclaimed themselves descendants of the glorous people who had flourished in these same parts in old times." (Sejourne, Burning Waters, 20-21).

Not only did later peoples, such as the Aztecs, Maya , and others incorporate Olmec culture into their own, so did the Nephites. The four sons of Jared, for example, were called Jacom, Gilgah, Mahah, and Orihah. The last two names end in hah, which in Maya means "by, or connected to water." These two sons, in other words may have been born while traveling on or living by the ocean. A search of Book of Mormon names from Lehi to Mosiah yields no names ending in hah. Once King Mosiah translated the plates of Ether, however, the term hah came into use.

The term hah appears in proper Nephite names and in the names of Nephite cities. The Nephites' incorporating this and other Jaredite terms into their vocabulary signifies their esteem for Jaredite culture. Even today, any Mayan city whose name ends in ha or hah is situated by or connected to water. Altun-Ha for example, is the site of an ancient Mayan city by a river on the coast of Belize. Xel-Ha is an ancint site on the coast of the Yucatan Peninsula that is used as a water resort today. Misol-Ha is the site of a waterfall and ancient ruins by the river south of Palenque, in the state of Chiapas, southern Mexico. It's therefore a safe assumption that the names of the Nephite cities of Moronihah and Nephihah refer to their proximity to water.

The greatness of the Jaredites is such that one finds few references in sacred writ in which incidents occurred like those Ether describes. The brother of Jared received marvelous revelations and accomplished things equal to those of the great prophets of recorded history. He was shown every soul that had been or would be born upon this earth. A comprehensive account of what the brother of Jared saw appears in the sealed portion of the Book of Mormon. His faith and accomplishments in leading a group of people across the sea to this land are inspiring.

The prophet Ether also saw the days fo Christ and what would occur on this continent to the end of time. He saw the creation of new heavens and a new earth, and he recorded the history of the Jaredites. The Jaredites built "many mighty cities" upon this land and prospered exceedingly in their times of righteousness (see Ether 9:16-23, 10:19-28).

The large stone heads ascribed to the Olmec are from the time period and location of the Jaredite."

Mormon Mission Biz -

Mormon Mission Biz -

This is a video that my brother forwarded me from that speaks on Mormon business throughout the world. Its really interesting and does a good job covering the truth. Great find Jared!

Friday, July 2, 2010

My New Life

This is a video that showed up a while ago on the Mormon Messages videos. I watched it a while ago and realized that the Mr. Neilson (her husband) she is speaking of is a friend of mine that I served with on my mission. He was a great missionary but I think that goes without saying. Their story is truly inspirational especially to a new blogger like myself. I hope you all enjoy it.

Nibley Abraham

Hugh Nibley on Abraham

I am adding this short video because it is of one of my favorite LDS scholars Hugh Nibley. I added it because it shows the depth of research he has put into the scriptures. He gets visibly emotional when speaking on part of the story of Abraham. It seems to me that his understanding of Abrahams situation at this time is on a very personal level thus the emotion. I feel at times while reading the scriptures that I wish that I could know these people personally. I know the day will come when we will all be able to meet and share our testimonies and partake of each others goodness but until then I only hope to be able to liken the scriptures to my life to the point that I can feel this way when describing them.

Friday, June 25, 2010

My research of the Hopi

I would like to start off by letting you all know the extent of my studies and roots of this fascination I have with the Hopi. I guess it started about 10 years ago while reading some of Nibley's books and articles and I found him sharing stories of the Hopi and their ceremonies and traditions. I never really paid much attention to them until a few things happened in my life last summer (09). It started off with my first ever visit to go and watch the Manti pageant. I know it is pathetic to be a Mormon in Utah and never visit the Manti pageant but either way I finally made it and loved it. I began to read everything I could about Mormon(he dedicated the lands of the Manti Temple as well as a few others of which I will share later) from Ether to Moroni as well as all the added commentary he added in the pages of the Book of Mormon. I became fascinated with him and his son Moroni.

One day while surfing the Internet at work I stumbled across the website for "The Life and Travels of Mormon and Moroni" book by Dr. Jerry Ainsworth. On the website he asked a handful of questions and gave partial answers to them but for more on the answers it suggested purchasing his above mentioned I did. It changed the way I look at the Book of Mormon. Later that summer I was able to take my little family and go camping on Black Mesa on the Navajo Nation reservation. I
can say that I felt the spirit while I was there and it was different than I have ever felt it in my life. During our stay we were able to visit some Anasazi ruins that I found very intriguing. Once I got home I did some research on the Anasazi and found out that they are thought of as possible ancestors to the Pueblo Indians, mainly the Hopi and date back to late BOM times. At this point it seemed that everywhere I turned there was something pointing me to research possible Book of Mormon lands and people, especially the Hopi.

In Dr. Ainsworths book at one point while he is speaking of the People of Ammon (also known as the Anti Nephi Lehies) he suggested that the some of the verses in Helaman when it is speaking of the migrations north it specifically mentions the People of Ammon as being among those who migrated north. If the Book of Mormon lands took place in what is now days Mesoamerica (Southern Mexico, Guatemala, Belize etc.) than to migrate north (depending on the distance) would put the peaceful People of Ammon in the modern day four corners area of the Unites states of course there were many stops for long periods of time during these migrations and many civilizations built from the possible ruins of Teotihuacan to various Pueblo ruins all the way to the modern day Hopi Nation surrounded by the Navajo Nation in northern Arizona. Upon further research of both the People of Ammon and Hopi I have found numerous ties and correlations between the two starting off with the simple fact that Hopi means "Peaceful People" which is exactly what the People of Ammon (Anti Nephi Lehies) were known for being. Of course it goes a lot deeper than this so I will attempt in my next few posts and as I find more evidence that supports this theory to paint the picture to the best of my ability.

Teotihaucan-The city was thought to have been estableshed between 200BCE and the 7-8th century. This city is approximatly 25 miles northeast of present day Mexico City, Mexico.

Walpi village mainly inhabited by Hopi (and Tewa) Pueblos. Walpi is on the tip fo the First Mesa and is one of the oldest inhabited villages in the United states second only to Old Oraibi which is on the Third Mesa (only miles away) which is also a Hopi inhabited village.

Thursday, June 24, 2010

Welcome to the cavity of the rock

This is the blog that I have decided to put together. It is basically just so that I can post interesting findings in my Book of Mormon studies. I have decided the blogs name due to the hiding spot of Ether in the Book of Mormon (Ether 13). It was basically a place where Ether was safe from harm and able to record the record of his people on the plates as well as a place where he was still close enough to the Jaredites so that he could witness and prophecy their destruction. I hope to be able to bring interesting things that I have found in my studies to those friends and family who may be interested. I will be posting video footage, links to other websites, artwork, and different findings that I feel others may find interesting, including some of the same links that I have posted in the facebook group (USA) Unprofitable Servants of America. I will also be posting some of my Hopi research and findings and how I feel they correlate with people and places in the Book of Mormon. I hope you will all enjoy and please feel free to provide feedback, comments, ideas and suggestions. Enjoy!