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Kokopelli Story page 4


URL: http://rubens.anu.edu.au/student.projects97/anasazi/rock/kokopelli.html
Date/Time: 03/05/2001 17:45:14


KOKOPELLI is an important figure in Pueblo at of both ancient and modern time. He has been assigned many different functions, and has come to symbolise a variety of qualities.

One such interpretation is that Kokopelli is a rain priest, who calls the clouds and the moisture with his flute. He is also associated with various insects, most notably the locust, and he is often depicted with antennae and other insect features. The Locust is an important figure in the emergence myth.
"As he was sent to look for an entrance into the Upper World, the Clouds shot lightening bolts through him, but he just continued to play his flute. Locust also plays the flute to melt the snow when appealed to by the sun loving snakes." (Schaafsma, 1980 p141) Thus, there are many rock art depictions of humped backed flute players with snakes.
Locust Flute Player

Kokopelli is also associated with fertility, being shown amongst herds of mountain sheep ( to increase their breeding ) and it is often stated that his hump is filled with seed. However, it is also believed that his hump contains babies, blankets or seeds which he uses to seduce young maidens.

Wellman (1970) (cite: Schaafsma, 1980 p141) describes Kokopelli as one who
"may be compared with the Universal Trickster archetype, who, in spite of his unrestrained sexuality, in his roles as hunting magician and rain priest change from an unprincipled amoral force into a creator who brings order and security into the chaos of the world."

Anasazi Humped Back Flute Player Cole (1990) however, argues that the ancient Anasazi symbol of the humped back flute player cannot be equated with the modern day figure of Kokopelli, despite the similarities in style.
Modern day depiction of Kokopelli


URL: http://www.thezodiac.com/koko.htm
Date/Time: 03/05/2001 17:39:08



Of course the ancient Greeks were not the only peoples to understand and honor the spirit of the "trickster." In the United States all the many Native American tribes have their own unique versions of this trickster spirit.

One of these tricksters has become quite popularized in recent years. His name is Kokopelli, the hunchbacked flute player. Another of his other nicknames is the "Casanova of the Cliff Dwellers."

The reasoning behind his nickname is not immediately recognizable from the modern depictions of Kokopelli such as the one here...

So, roll your mouse over this next picture of Kokopelli to reveal an ancient petroglyph located in a cave on the Pajarito Plateau (west of Santa Fe, New Mexico, USA). Maybe that will help illuminate his reputation as the Casanova of the Cliff Dwellers.

It's felt that Kokopelli's image was "cleaned up" over the passing of years due much in part to the influence of the many Catholic priests who came to the American Southwest to Christianize the "heathen" natives. If you've got an old browser - then click here to see the petroglyph.

Kokopelli's hump was said to be full of seeds. These were seeds he scattered on all his journeys, and symbolized the semen of the male principle to be laid to rest in the earth.

Kokopelli's flute music soothed the good earth, and made it ready to receive his seed... And BTW - the flute which Kokopelli played was a nose flute. (It all sounds a bit messy to me...)

Another interesting story regarding a Native American trickster comes from the Winnebago tribe. In this version of the Trickster - he apparently had a penis which he could detach and send down river to "have his way" with the young maidens who were innocently bathing in the stream.

And here's another version of a Native American trickster Kachina called "the Hano Clown..."

I've got this trickster high a top a book case overlooking all the events (and people) in my living room...

Funny, but he seems to make some folks a bit nervous... I wonder why?


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