The Totem Post

The Totem Post
A unique jewelry and gift shop with gifts from around the world.

Friday, February 19, 2010

Zuni Fetishes

Hello again. Today I'd like to talk about Zuni Fetishes. This is sort of an offshoot of yesterday's Rock Art. Now, this kind of fetish is not a kinky thing, but a small stone carving or even a naturally shaped rock which looks like an animal. These figures are thought by the Zuni to help them spiritually or in daily endeavors such as growing crops. This idea came from a legend that tells of how The Sun dried an earth covered with floodwaters. Lightening was sent to strike the earth and burn away some of the water. When it did it was too easy for so many predators to eat people. So they were struck by lightening as well, which diminished them to a small stone. However, their hearts were still alive and they were told to help mankind with the magic held within their hearts. So when a Zuni found a rock shaped like an animal, it was thought to be one of these animals which held magic in their hearts and it was greatly treasured. Today there are many Zuni fetish carvers who continue this tradition, but as an art form. A fetish is not truly a fetish unless it has been blessed by a shaman.

The wonderful thing about these fetishes are the emotion they stir within. Many people collect fetishes - some because of the animal, some the carver, some just adore the whimsy or intricate detail of the carving. Whatever the reason, these little animals are a wonderful way to connect to the vision of an artist and the beauty of stone and form. They are portable and can sit on your desk or go with you in your pocket as a reminder of spiritual qualities they represent. . .that is a whole other blog post. Maybe tomorrow!!

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