Sacred colors and shamanic vision among the Huichol Indians of Mexico

Authors
Citation
H. Maclean, Sacred colors and shamanic vision among the Huichol Indians of Mexico, J ANTHR RES, 57(3), 2001, pp. 305-323
Citations number
22
Language
INGLESE
art.tipo
Article
Categorie Soggetti
Sociology & Antropology
Journal title
JOURNAL OF ANTHROPOLOGICAL RESEARCH
ISSN journal
0091-7710 → ACNP
Volume
57
Issue
3
Year of publication
2001
Pages
305 - 323
Database
ISI
SICI code
0091-7710(200123)57:3<305:SCASVA>2.0.ZU;2-D
Abstract
Color and the visionary abilities of the shaman may be related. Interviews with a shaman-artist of the Huichol Indians of northwest Mexico reveal that color is conceptualized as a language which the gods and spirits of sacred sites use to communicate with the shaman. Colors are perceived by the sham an as part of a synaesthetic experience in which color may convert to both songs and language. This visionary color language is depicted in Huichol ar ts and even in art such as yarn paintings made for sale. These findings sug gest further lines of inquiry into entoptic phenomena and other theories of how shamans visualize. The interviews, conducted as part of the author's o ngoing research with the Huichol since 1988, also provide a new perspective on the well-known association of sacred colors and cardinal directions.