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Southwest Indians - Pueblo Religion Illustration

Southwest
Native Americans in Olden Times
for Kids

Pueblo Religion

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Nature Worship: The Pueblo got everything they needed from nature. It is not surprising that they would wish to say thank you.

Pueblo Gods: They had powerful gods. Father and Earth Mother had two sons - the War Gods - who both had magical powers. The Sky Serpent was the god who brought rain. The Spider Woman was the goddess of weaving. There were many, many more.

Kachinas: Kachinas are strong spirits that control nature. There are over 300 different Kachinas in the Pueblo religion. The Pueblo pray to the spirits for help in their daily life. They thank the Kachinas for their families, their homes, their crops, and their health every day.

Kivas: In olden times, a kiva was an large underground chamber or room used for secret religious ceremonies. The Pueblo prayed to kachinas in the kivas.

Today, modern kivas are circular or rectangular in shape. They have a fire pit in the center and a timbered roof. There is an opening in the floor - a hole - that represents the entrance to the lower world.

The Pueblo believed that all life climbed up from the lower world to enter this world. Hopi tradition tells of their people inhabiting three underworlds before finally moving into their present one, in this world. Most Pueblo people believed the same.

Kivas were the center of Pueblo religious life. The Pueblo believe that people must live in harmony with nature. They believe that things will work out, if they conduct ceremonies correctly.

Ruler Priests: In olden times, the most important members of the village were the priests. Priests were not concerned with war. Their job was to make sure that all religious ceremonies were conducted corrected, so that harmony could be achieved.

Kachina Dolls

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