Wednesday, May 30, 2007

The modern mixed with the more ancient

These are from Moenave, Navajo Reservation - behind the dinsosaur footprints.


JimP said...

Some of the symbols on that rock include the following:

The most prevalent symbol is that of the badger clan, indicated by the claws. Upwards pointing arrows indicate nighttime. Rainless clouds can be seen bottom right. Middle right can be seen coyote, rabbit, bear claws, and many snakes which look like the number 9. Above the snakes are many pipes.

There are a few symbols that indicate communication with spirits, including the tallest symbol middle left. There are a few crows feet indicating the presence of the crow spirit, and even a couple of spirit faces.

This rock with its lines of symbols would have told a story, and was most likely read in the direction of shadows as they pass over the rock.

The indications are that this was a very spiritual place. Not all petroglyphs in the southwest indicate spirituality. In fact, most of them are more utilitarian in origin indicating trails, villages, trade relations, springs, rivers, water sources, food sources, agriculture, etc.

pwax said...

Sounds like you know a bit about petroglyphs. Our guide said the repeated symbols in a row meant members of a family. I was impressed with the 9-11 petroglyph.

Later at the Petrified Forest we got to look at similar petroglyphs but from about 50 feet away. So the personal version we got at Moenave was pretty cool.

JimP said...

Petroglyphs are the most abundant feature in the White Tank Mountains, which is a five minute drive from my house. In the last year and a half, I have read just about every available resource on the region's petroglyphs. Much is known about them, but much more is yet to be understood.