Thursday, March 31, 2011

Last Chance for the 2011 Cherokee Calendar.

It's April 1, and as promised, the 2011 Cherokee Calendar will be taken off the market at the end of the day. The 2012 Calendar will be available no later than September 1.

It's packed with history, prophecy, cultural information, and content to help you learn the Cherokee language.

Everyone has been exposed to some degree of "2012 Hysteria"... the Calendar and Manual can help you understand what the prophecies really say, and what they might mean. But more importantly, I think the Calendar is a great way to introduce yourself, your children and grandchildren to the traditional stories and lessons of our ancestors.

So remember, this is no Kawoni-Fool's Joke... it's your last day to get this package.
All the best,

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Mayan Calendar According to Non-Mayans

There's a lot of chatter on the Internet today (03-09-11) about this being the start of the "Ninth Wave" or the period of "Universal Galactic Consciousness." Maybe it will be, but the Mayans said no such thing. These interpretations come from several European and American writers, NOT from fluent Mayan day-keepers, as best I can find. 

All of this is based on one of the Mayan Calendars called the Long Count, which many think ends on or about December 12, 2012.  A minority opinion is that it will end on October 28, 2011. However, some feel the alignment of the Long Count to the modern Gregorian Calendar is dicey at best, and may be off by as much as 52 to 520 years!

All of this is a lead-up to the day when the new cycle begins. All of the "Doomsday" scenarios are based on this inscription:

It says the at the end of the age - at the giant ceremonial New Year's Eve party in the city - "Bolon Yukte Kun," a minor deity, will "descend from heaven." An other interpretation is the BYK will be seen in his full regalia, descending from the heights. The image could have been a re-enactment similar to the annual descent of the Hopi Katsinas from the San Francisco Peaks into the town square. 

If this describes a Mayan religious procession, the person portraying BYK will descend from top of the pyramid ("heaven") to ground level ("earth"), in plain sight of the people. 

BYK is sometimes called "the many taloned claw" or "the many-rooted tree," which puts us in mind of the Tree of Knowledge in heaven replicated by the Tree of Peace (Harmony) here on earth. This can be a poetic way of saying that the ideal harmony of heaven will be re-established here in our world.

Still with me? Here comes Mr. Science. Some fad writers are saying that one of several galactic catastrophe scenarios will play out:  

Just as it might have been a good idea to consult genuine Mayan day-keepers about the significance of the Calendar dates, it would have been a great idea to consult with genuine scientists before speading some of these theories around and blaming them on the Mayans. 

No Planet X, no Niburu. That doesn't mean a disaster won't happen at one of these dates, but if so, it will more coincidence than prophecy.

PS: The 2011 Cherokee Calendar will only remain on sale until April 1. Until then, the price has bee reduced to $13.77. 
Brian Wilkes

Publish Post

Saturday, March 5, 2011

A Day to Greet the Returning Fire and the Returning Sun

Over the next week, many Cherokee communities will celebrate Nvda-igvyai, or First Moon. In some areas it is called Green Grass, New Fire, or New Beginnings.  The end (and survival) of winter and beginning of the new growth cycle was and is a cause for celebration!

It's appropriate that this year, it falls on a Firepit Day, the third day of the 20 day cycle.  Firepit is a reminder of the gentle, nourishing fire of the home and kitchen, and of the times our ancestors sought refuge in mountain caves. It is also called Abyss, House, Temple, Pyramid, Mountain. Some say all the pyramidal temples and mound sites were artificial mountains with an interior chamber containing at least a symbolic fire.

The chamber of refuge is also the tomb of the ancestors, and reminds us of the caves where our ancestors sought refuge from the elements, cyclic disasters, and adversaries. In psychoanalysis, it is a symbol of regression. It is also a symbol of the maternal womb, to a time of innocence and complete dependence in mother’s womb and after birth.

The ancestors saw the Turtle as conception, the Tornado as quickening, and Firepit as emergence, either as a birth or rebirth. The new life emerges from the cave on the third day. As in the creation story, we leave the cave/ womb/ tomb and emerge as full adults.

In the Cave of Refuge, we depend on the fire for our very existence. Once we leave and return to the outside world, our survival depends of carrying that sacred fire with us in our daily lives.

Judging by your response a searchable Cherokee dictionary would be a great aid for you. I've already started work, and plan to have it available in a few weeks.

Brian Wilkes
I had mentioned that the 2011 Cherokee Calendar will be withdrawn after April 1, and one of you asked if the price would be reduced, since we're already two month into the year. A traditional Calendar is still used in parts of the eastern mountains, especially east Tennessee and Kentucky. It clearly derives from Olmec-Mayan-Aztec sources, and its progression provides a framework for understanding ancient Cherokee tradition and the links to Central America.

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Looking forward to Spring Ceremonies! And to a new Cherokee Lexicon.


This will be a brief message. Things have been really hectic here in West Kentucky with storms, tax time and March Madness. With springtime comes thawing and often flooding in our Four Rivers area (Cumberland, Ohio, Tennessee, Mississippi).

On the first Saturday of April, our local community will celebrate the coming of spring with the ceremony known various as First Green Grass, First Moon of Spring, or New Beginnings. The timing of this ceremony varies in different communities based on local weather conditions. We will also have the Blessing of the Seeds, a ceremony that precedes the planting ceremonies, usually in May.
Based on your responses, I'm working on an interactive Cherokee dictionary (actually a lexicon or word list - a true dictionary give background, origin, and other information about each word. 

Since I began working with the language in 1995, I've been compiling a lexicon. Last night I started to reorganize it... about 15,000 words and figures of speech.

I plan to release this in PDF form. Many errors and duplications have crept in over the 15 years, so I have a lot of tedious clean-up to do. 

Here's my plan at the moment:

The publication will be available at a reasonable cost - probably $10 - $15; but currently enrolled students will get it without charge.

How does that sound? Let me hear from you!