Kósmos, plurality of worlds as Aby Warburguan library

Amélie Labourdette

2017 - 2019

Amélie Labourdette’s work, mainly related to the photographic medium, unfolds through the exploration of alternative narratives. The latter are crossed by post-colonial history, ecology, in the post-capitalist era. They invite to a knotting of spaces-times and attempt to build an alternative regime of historicity allowing us to imagine and embody other forms of inhabiting our world than those of Western modernity, where humans could reposition themselves within a relational dynamism with the cosmos.

Photographic constellation, Kósmos, plurality of worlds as Aby Warburguan library was realized in the American Southwest on a territory that includes the Fours Corners (Arizona, Colorado, New Mexico and Utah) to Southwest Texas.

By capturing traces, indices in the landscape, Amélie Labourdette develops a perspectivist reading of this territory by associating an anthropological analysis with a subjective poetics of images. With Kósmos, she does not simply seek to reproduce the image of the world externally, to document it, but explores the primordial strangeness of our terrestrial «environment» perceived as an encrypted world, in order to reveal its mesh, its inter-connectivities and interrelationships and attempts to account for the relationship of humans to the terrestrial biosphere and the cosmos. Far from being an immense timeless expanse, this territory is a multi-temporal and multi-memorial space, where different sites reveal themselves as places that bear witness to a profound link between humans and cosmos throughout the ages and civilizations. Kósmos mirrors the ancestral knowledge of the native populations of the Fours Corners but also contemporary scientific research, such as astronomy or ecology, as well as «utopian» projections or environmental impacts, manifestations of a modernity crossed by hubris.

The Pueblos (Hopis, Navajos, Zunis, Acoma, Keres, Tewa, Tiwa, Towa...) and the native peoples of the American Southwest do not consider space and the beings that live in it as material objects that they can possess, control or vanquish. They have developed knowledge related to astronomy, resulting in both a perception of the cosmos in which all the entities making it up are interrelated and a conception of circular time, in which the categories of past, present and future do not necessarily follow one another, but intermingle, enlighten one another and coexist.

Kósmos is a constellation in which the world composed of humans and non-humans, animal, vegetable, mineral and celestial worlds, is approached in a web of relationships, in the form of different analogical and poetic comparisons of «cosmovisions» and temporal strata and weaves its meaning from their articulations and resonances following the example of the library of the art historian Aby Warburg. In his library, he had collected more than sixty thousand books on ancient religions, rituals, myths, magic and art, an immense collection of cultural memory in which knowledge was decompartmentalized, in a subtle arrangement built piece by piece, according to the principle of «good neighbourliness» where one book summons another which in turn is part of a network of horizontal junctions. The library, «space of thought»[Denkraum] of the art historian, referring to the Kivas, by its elliptical form, «spaces of contemplation» [Andachtsraum] of he Pueblos people, a cosmos pre-modern representation.

The prints, made in Piezography (a printing process using carbon pigment inks) on a thin and fragile Japanese paper gives the photographic material a spectral and radiant presence. They are evocative of the experiences of the pioneers of photography, some of whom attempted to record "spectral appearances", invisible remanence. Impregnated with a black light, eclipse light obscure, the images of a carbonaceous chemistry with iridescent shades are imprinted like the reminiscence of a cosmic memory. We are, like these inks, carbon clumps, stardust. The light, black and vibrant, milky and napped, seems to come from the image projected into the inner vault of a skull. Like inner visions, Kósmos echoes a latent, ancestral space-time, enclosing a memory of material and immaterial, physical and invisible worlds.

The photographic series presented here is part of a larger corpus of 45 images.

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  • KÓSMOS #44 / Grand fall, Arizona. The Pueblos Hopis conceptualise the cycles of time as ages of the world. Their narratives describe three previous global cataclysms. According to the story of origins, the "First Peoples" emerged from the underworld, from the bowels of the earth where they had taken refuge, welcomed by the Ant People, following the collapse of previous civilisations and the destruction of the three Worlds that preceded it:
    The first world, Tokpela (Infinite Space) was annihilated by fire, - a comet, an asteroid attack or a number of volcanic eruptions.
    The second world Tokpa (Midnight Dark) was annihilated by a great glacial period.
    Then the third Kuskurza world was overwhelmed and destroyed by a gigantic deluge, immense floods.
    These three global destructions were not the result of simple random earth changes or astrophysical phenomena, but the consequence of collective transgressions or negative human actions in defiance of Mother Earth.
    Finally, the fourth world, Tuvakachi (the Finite World), is our world today.
    These first three inhabited worlds can be interpreted as a pile of caves crossed by a unidirectional axis, that of time and the succession of worlds to be rebuilt, and yet always referring to the same space. Without doubt they are nothing other than our world but situated in different times: one "world" would be a cycle of time.

  • KÓSMOS #04 / Optical telescope, Fred Lawrence Whipple Observatory, Arizona. "Archaeologists of the universe", the astronomers "dig through the layers of light", with their eyes raised to the sky they are searching for the origins of the world. The Southwestern American desert is a multi-memorial place, a memory of the universe, of the cosmos through astrophysics, a civilisational memory through archaeology, where different "doors to the past" "emerge". There are both numerous astronomical observatories and many remarkably preserved remains of native civilisations. These two levels intertwine, astronomical research and archaeology of Indian foundations. The astronomer scrutinizes the sky, the archaeologist digs the ground. These researchers share the same obsession, that of the origins of both the universe and civilisation. Astronomical observatories welcome researchers in search of the truth about the origin of the Universe, while archaeologists study pre-Columbian civilisations. The superimposition of celestial and subterranean strata is an important aspect of the cosmovisions of the Pueblo societies.

  • KÓSMOS #02 / Meteor. The origins of life on Earth remain uncertain, and the exact date of appearance of the first cell is not known by scientists. What was the source of the "elementary building blocks of life" (amino acids, nitrogenous bases and other monomers), the first essential step in the origin of complex polymers (proteins, nucleic acids and other macromolecules) necessary for the formation of the
    cell itself? Scientists studying Earth and the solar system propose three mechanisms at the origin of this first step, three not incompatible origins. An atmospheric origin, a geological origin and an extraterrestrial origin. Comets and meteorites constitute this third possible source of the origin of the molecules of life.
    The Anasazi ("Hisatsinom", ancestral Pueblos peoples) treated meteorites with reverence. One of these sacred stones was discovered in the remains of Clear Creek at the top of a mesa in the Verde Valley in Arizona. It was wrapped in a feathered cloth and deposited inside a stone cyst at the north-east corner of a building, that is, in the direction of sunrise on the summer solstice. Similar to the type used for the burial of infants, the tomb of this "child of the sky" who fell to the ground also contained a considerable amount of pottery.

  • KÓSMOS #15 / Meteor Crater, Arizona. With a depth of 180 metres and a diameter of 1,200 metres, the Meteor Crater was formed 49,000 years ago, following the entry into the atmosphere of a meteorite with a diameter of around 45 metres and a mass of 300,000 tonnes, at a speed of 12 km/sec.
    The earliest ancestors of the native peoples of the American Southwest were the first to explore the impact crater. Artifacts left on the rim of the crater testify to their presence.
    A number of remains of underground houses (or Kivas) are located on the southwest side of the meteor crater. These underground shelters or pre-Pueblos Kivas were built mainly before the 12th century in Arizona. The circular or oblong structures were generally excavated at a depth of 3 to 5 feet and had a diameter of 8 to 26 feet. The rounded corners of these underground shelters (or Kivas) reflect the specific morphology of the rounded corners of this particular crater. Thus, it is possible that the meteor crater may have provided the initial model for these early dwellings.
    The Hopi call the meteor crater, Yuvukpu, which literally means "collapse", "sinking" . They also have a Meteor Crater kachina, which resembles the Kaa-na, or Sunset Crater kachina.

  • KÓSMOS #08 / Carlsbad Caverns, New Mexico. In all the pueblo stories (Hopis, Zunis, Acoma, etc.) about "the world' s origins", the emergence myth is central and recurrent.
    The place of emergence of the "first peoples" in the "Fourth World", our world today, is called the
    "Original Sipapu" or "Ancestral Sipapu". According to the legend it would be located in the Grand Canyon, near the confluence of the Colorado and Little Colorado Rivers. The Sipapu itself would be a natural salt dome, six to eight metres high, topped by a permanent hot spring.
    In the Pueblo culture, the stalagmitecorne is the symbol of the "cave of beginnings". It refers to the stalagmite of the Grand Canyon Salt Cave, the "Original Sipapu" where the Hopi and Zunis say they emerged.

  • KÓSMOS #10 / Carlsbad Caverns, New Mexico. In the traditional cosmological model of the Pueblos, life is expressed in the Earth's matrix, represented as an immense cave, a hollow and fertile space. This subterranean matrix is similar to a breathing and living cave, a place where life emerges. This living cave is the home of Muy'ingwa, the spirit of germination. Its dwelling place is described as a lush world of flowers, full of life, with dragonflies, butterflies, birds... Muy'ingwa is the subjacent energy and the breath of life (the hikwisi) of all living beings, it allows the germination and growth of flowers and corn.He remains at the centre of the underworld on the Sihchomo, the "Hill of Flowers". Its breath of life emerges through the opening of the Sipapu, which designates a small hole in the ground of the kiva, the ceremonial chamber and place of worship for the Pueblos. The Sipapu symbolises the "place of original emergence", but also the flower, it is the portal and the passage between the underground world and the middle world (Fourth World, our present world).

  • KÓSMOS #11 / Montezuma Castle, Sinagua culture, Arizona. The Sinagua was a pre-Columbian culture that occupied the centre of Arizona between 500 and 1425 CE approximately. Nestled in an alcove in a cliff above the Verde Valley, archaeologists believe that Montezuma Castle was built by Sinagua women between 1100 and 1350 CE. Blending hunting and gathering with subsistence agriculture, the Sinagua created a complex society in Montezuma Castel for over 300 years, which was very much inspired by nature. The Verde Valley is an ecotone, where plants from north to south meet and intermingle. These plants played an essential role in the life of the people of Sinagua. Several contemporary Hopi clans and Yavapai communities trace their ancestry to immigrants of Sinagua culture from the Montezuma Castle area. Palatkwapi, the mythical city, central to accounts of Hopi migration, colonization and dislocation, may never have existed and escapes precise location, but some believe it was located at Montezuma Castle in the Verde Valley. Evidence demonstrating the continuity between the Sinagua culture and the Hopi tribe includes archaeological, anthropological, linguistic, folkloric and oral traditions. Members of these clans periodically return to these ancestral homes for religious ceremonies.

  • KÓSMOS #19 / Chetro Ketl, Chaco Canyon, "Anasazi" culture ("Hisatsinom", ancestors of the Pueblo people), New Mexico. Chetro Ketl is one of central site of the Chaco Canyon which brings together 3,600 archaeological sites belonging to the culture of the ancestral Pueblo peoples between 500 and 1300 AD. Centre of the Chacoan world, it became a commercial crossroads and a very important religious place.
    The notion of a central (median) place is extremely important in the Pueblo worldview. Their original myths emphasise the legendary migrations of the founders after their emergence in the «Fourth World» to find the central place intended for them by their deities.
    Chaco Canyon was symbolically considered the centre and cosmic axis of this Fourth World and the place of interconnection, between the horizontal axis of the cardinal directions and the vertical mundi axis connecting the subterranean worlds, the middle world (the Earth) and the celestial worlds. Built according to celestial movements, Chaco Canyon buildings are oriented according to cardinal points and aligned according to the solar and lunar cycles. They reveal ancestral knowledge linked to astronomy and a circular concept of time.
    The kiva, this elliptical space built in the hollow of the earth, pierced with a sipapu on its floor and a bay on the ceiling, is a scale model of the Pueblo cosmology. For the Pueblos, the Kiva is at the same time a memory of the first times (because it says the first habitat), a general model of the universe ( a representation of the cosmos), a lesson on the origin of beings, the emergence of the «first peoples» in the Fourth World and a place of connection linking the different celestial and subterranean strata of the world.

  • KÓSMOS #20 / Flower, petroglyph, ancestors of the Pueblo people, Petroglyph National Monument, New Mexico. Petroglyph National Monument is a volcanic escarpment made of basalt. There are an estimated 20,000 to 25,000 petroglyphs carved by the ancestors of the Pueblo people. Most of them seem to have been carved between 1300 and 1690 A.D. Hopi songs and their paintings and petroglyphs describe the sìitálpuva, a mythical "paradise". This parallel and spiritual world is a perpetual summer world, a place that radiates, covered with colourful flowers, birds and butterflies. According to their beliefs it can be generated in the "Middle World" by prayers, songs and actions of humans. Metaphors of the regeneration of life or the breath of life (hikwisi), the petroglyphs of flowers (but also dragonflies, butterflies and corn) serve as visual prayers to generate life. According to Armadeo Shije of the Pueblo de Zia, the escarpment area is considered a sacred centre: "The Pueblos continue to recognise this site, which they call 'the volcanoes', as the home of great spiritual powers: and hold seasonal ceremonies there. These fields of petroglyphs play a central role in communicating with the spirit world and form tracks to accompany the deceased on their journey to the other world".

  • KÓSMOS #36 / Awanyu (horned snake) and coyote, Petroglyph National Monument, New Mexico. The horned serpent appears in the mythologies of many Native Americans. The details vary according to the tribes. Awanyu, is a Tewa deity. Represented as a horned or feathered serpent whose curves evoke flowing water or the zigzag of lightning, Awanyu appears on cave walls or as petroglyphs in New Mexico and Arizona. The Tewa are a linguistic group of Pueblo Amerindians. The relationship of the Pueblos with their local environment is not that of farmers dominating the land, plants and animals, but rather a complex process of intimate relationships. Farmers depend on weather, soil and crops, as do birds, animals, insects, flowers and other wild plants. Understanding ecological relationships helps farmers to make predictions and respond appropriately. According to the ritual and metaphorical tradition of the Pueblo, the lightning snake, or lightning arrow, are the fertilizing instruments used by Sho'tokünûñwa (spirit that fertilizes lightning). The lightning snakes ritually fertilise the Sihchomo, the "Flower Hill" of the underworld through the sipapu of the Kiva. The snake is linked to the fertility of the earth, and this fertility depends on rain. Muy'ingwa, the spirit of germination, guides to the sipapu a set of intertwined natural metaphors, including lightning, snake, seeds and katsina. He fertilizes and waters a flower, allowing it to grow in the "middle world" of humans.

  • KÓSMOS #23 / Arcosanti, Arizona. An Experimental micro-city, " ideal city ", Arcosanti was founded in 1970 by the architect Paolo Soleri following his concepts of Arcology, in search of a radical reorganisation of the built environment through the integration of architecture and ecology. In building Arcosanti, Paolo Soleri sought to apply the principles of Arcology "Buildings and living things interact here as organs would in a highly evolved living being. Many systems work in concert with the efficient circulation of people and resources, multi-purpose buildings and solar orientation that provides lighting, heating and cooling for homes." Initially, the futuristic city was intended to accommodate 5,000 inhabitants. In fact, only 5% of the original project was actually completed, ultimately occupying only 4 hectares of the 860 hectares of the site.

  • KÓSMOS #25 / Cinder lake crater Fields, Apollo mission training area, Sunset crater volcano, Flagstaff, Arizona. In the 1960s, the astrogeology branch of the United States Geological Survey built from scratch a lunar analogue at the foot of the Sunset volcano. The porous volcanic gravel of the volcano provided them an equivalent to lunar rock and they reproduced the crater field of the Mare Tranquillitatis, the landing site of the Apollo 11 mission, simulating meteorite impacts by explosives. The final field contained 143 craters. This site became a NASA training area for the astronauts of the various Apollo missions. "While since the 1960s the United States has been drawing on Native American culture in the hope of restoring meaning to life in a materialistic society, NASA's space program reflects a cosmology and ethos that Zuni cosmology is clashing with. Far from the Western understanding of space as a collection of inanimate bodies, it reflects, among other things, an all-encompassing vision of the individual in the universe, which includes celestial bodies personified according to a rich and ancient mythology. In this respect, the Apollo programme can be seen not only as its antithesis, but also as a translation of the historical opposition between Anglo-Americans and Native Americans. Because the analysis of a cosmology makes it possible to lay bare the ideological mechanisms involved in the organisation of a society and its policies, the definition of the space programme cannot ultimately be independent of the way in which a culture conceives the organisation of the universe and the place of human beings in it". Complaints are the Indians of the Cosmos (Native American Perspectives on the United States Space Program), Jane M. Young.

  • KÓSMOS #27/ Bisopher II, Oracle, Arizona. Fantasies about the expansion of the human presence in space have never ceased to feed the imagination of modernity. The Biosphere II experimental site built between 1987 and 1991 by Space Biosphere Ventures was part of this fantasy of colonisation of other worlds. An immense hermetic dome covering an area of 1.27 ha, this structure aimed to reproduce a closed but viable artificial ecological system, with the terrestrial biosphere (Biosphere I) as its reference point. Different ecosystems were reconstructed here: a tropical rainforest, an ocean with its coral reef, a mangrove, a savannah, a desert, and land reserved for agriculture. Two missions were carried out there. The first lasted from 26 September 1991 to 26 September 1993 and the second, six months in 1994. The aim was to assess the feasibility of identical biospheres during the space colonisation and to find out whether such structure on the surface of Mars would allow humans to survive there. The project failed, in particular because of insufficient air recycling, and the experiment to colonise other planets was abandoned. In 2007, the University of Arizona took over the site and has since used it as a laboratory for studying and observing the effects of global warming. Some of these studies focus mainly on the impact of changes in temperature, precipitation and CO2 concentrations on existing biomes, with the aim of gaining a deeper understanding of the responses of different ecosystems to climate change.

  • KÓSMOS #28 / Spaceport America, the first general public spaceport dedicated to space tourism, developed by the VirginGalactic company, New Mexico. Virgin Galactic is a billionaire Richard Branson's company, whose aim is to sell suborbital flights to the public. Spaceport America is the spaceport from which Virgin Galactic plans to send into space with its model Space-ShipTwo VSS Unity, five passengers a year, for 250,000 dollars each. The first commercial flights into space are planned for the end of 2020. Since the 1960s, space policies have been determined by the states associated with the space agencies and certain industrialists. But for some years now, the laws and treaties committing the main government agencies to refrain from appropriating space, placing weapons of mass-destruction in it or exploiting its resources seem obsolete. Space then becomes a new territory that is no longer just to be conquered but also to be exploited. Private operators, whose main driving force is not the advancement of scientific discoveries but innovation and return on investment, are taking over the space sector. The Euro-American concept of the American border is based on the erroneous notion that the "New World" was unoccupied and therefore available for exploration and exploitation. Many Native Americans see the use of the metaphor of the border in discourses on the exploration and exploitation of cosmic space as a parallel to the historical "colonization" of America, in which settlers expanded the notion of "unoccupied" land through time, while gradually pushing the "border" westward. Native Americans fear that the motivations for expansion and exploitation, which in part guide the space program, may bring disruption to the cosmos.

  • KÓSMOS #29 / "Terraformation" of the Black Mountain, sacred lands for the Paiute Nuwu tribes, Ascaya, Nevada. "Transforming the natural environment of a planet, a natural satellite or another celestial body, in order to make it habitable by bringing together the conditions of a terrestrial type of life and to colonise it". The Ascaya project of billionaire developer Henry Cheng, a real "terraforming" project, aimed to create a set of luxurious residential districts overlooking Las Vegas in the Black Mountain, sacred land for the Paiute Nuwu tribes. To carry out this colossal project, the promoter levelled the mountain to the detriment of wildlife and its habitat, causing sprawling destruction and a disastrous environmental balance sheet. The destruction of the environment became a reflection of the expansionism of the "American dream". Mountain tops were bulldozed, roads paved and residential land cut off, but the development of the residential project was nearly abandoned following the 2008 recession. It did not restart until 2020.
    For the Southern Paiute Nuwu tribes, the mountains of southern Nevada are considered sacred land. Since time immemorial, their people have lived and travelled through these lands. Land they consider to have been stolen by white colonisers. Even today, they continue to celebrate their deep and indissoluble spiritual connection with these mountains and the animals that live there, such as Nah'gah, the great mountain sheep, through various ceremonial rites and territorial songs. They believe that just as their people are threatened by the loss of their traditional lands and culture, so are the mountain sheep, who are struggling to survive in the face of the expansion of the lands taken away from them for modern 'development'. They feel it is their duty to protect the mountain sheep, because if they all disappear, their people will die too.

  • KÓSMOS #37/ Forest edge, Truth or Consequences, Apache Territory, New Mexico. In Apache mythology, the Hactcins are supernatural personifications of objects and natural forces, they are the creators of all things.
    "Rocks are alive, just as alive as trees, plants, animals or pollen. They are the skeleton of the world. Without them, there would be no firmness or cohesion in the world. Everything would be sticky mud. Your bones are an essential part of your life, a part of your body. So you must consider rocks as alive as your bones are. (...) Everything is alive and living, rocks, trees, grass and plants. In the beginning, they could all speak like humans and they all spoke one language, the Apache language. (...) Thus, for the sake of variety, the Hactcins granted different languages and different ways of behaving to each being. But all these beings have power, even if they don't speak to us. Plants, rocks, fire, water, all are conscious and alive. They observe us and perceive our needs. They know how to recognize when we have nothing left to protect us, and it is then that they manifest themselves and speak to us. (...) When the white man sees pollen in a meadow, he considers it to be nothing. But the Indian knows that he is alive and sometimes the pollen speaks to him: "Why don't you pay attention to me? We are the way of life." It is said that one day, when the land is no longer suitable for life, the Apache people will begin an ascent to the third world, above the present earth and sky, just as they emerged from the subterranean worlds to this world." The departure of the Hactcin ans prophecies concernig the end of the present world.

  • KÓSMOS #38 / Mountain coyote skull, Territory Navajo, Southern Colorado. In the Navajo tradition, Coyote-Begochidi is the trickster and creator god. His creativity and healing power are inseparable from his cheating qualities. His unpredictability is linked to creativity. The Navajos are of Athapaskan origin, their migrations brought them to the American Southwest around 1400 AD, around the Pueblo valleys. The origin myth of the Southwestern Navajo is inspired by that of the Pueblos. Diné Bahaneʼ, the genesis of the Navajo is told in the context of a Blessingway ritual: "When the people emerged in the Fourth World (the White World, Niʼ Hodisxs), after having crossed a series of previous worlds (the Dark World, the Blue World, the Yellow World), the sky and the earth were created and arranged. The four Diyin Dineʼé (Sacred and Supernatural Beings) - the first man, the first woman, the woman of salt and the Black God - met and planned the conditions of life on the surface of the earth. Black God, because of his association with fire, was considered responsible for creation and of the maintenance of celestial bodies."
    In one of the versions on the origins of the heavenly vault, "Black God dedicates himself to the process cosmic by meticulously assembling constellations in a different sky empty. One by one, he pulls each star out of a pouch tied around his waist, sets him ablaze and fixes it to the firmament. When Coyote observes
    He loses patience with this. By tearing off the cover at Black God, Coyote scatters the remaining stars in the sky and forms the Milky Way. Like Black God didn't have the opportunity to shine the stars that Coyote had scattered, this history explains why some stars are less bright than others. » Dinner Bahaneʼ ("The History of the People"), Navajo Creation Myth.
    "It is also in the White World that the true death appeared. Coyote threw a stone in a lake, stating that if it sank, the dead would return to the previous world."

  • KÓSMOS #40 / Animal skeleton, White Mountains, Apache National Forest, Arizona / New Mexico. There would exist a primitive time, a biological, empirical, concrete, material time, an eternal, immemorial time which is also the time of the here and now, the earthly time intrinsic to earthly things which acts in a common, though singular way, in plants, animals, humans. This time would be the time of the collapsed "primitive star" (the Big Bang) from which everything proceeds. Everything we are is stardust. Everything we know about the Universe, the cosmos, seems to come from the Big bang, to be its "echo", whose fossil sound is still audible in the Universe. Our universe would never be anything more than a variation of the collapse of that "primitive star" that made our cosmos possible. The living would be this stellar force folded into a concrete form, an energy that is incarnated and that defines the living: time being the trace of this force present in all that exists.

  • KÓSMOS #43/ Spiral petroglyphs, "Anasazi" Solar Observatory, Hovenweep National Monument, Southern Utah. This solar observatory or astronomical clock "Anasazi" consists of two spiral-shaped petroglyphs. They are hidden under a cornice so that the sun's rays point a "luminous dagger" at the precise periods of the summer and winter solstices, as well as at the spring and autumn equinoxes. The symbol of the migratory spiral symbolises a circular conception of time and represents the circular migration patterns of the Amerindian tribes to where they now live, a metaphor for life's journey. The centre of the spiral is the "original sipapu", the place of passage and emergence in the Fourth World (our world today) of the "First Peoples". After emerging in the Fourth World, the ancestors of the Pueblo peoples divided, creating different tribes and began a series of large spirals around the Earth (across the country) before reaching their final destination, their current home in northeastern Arizona, the central (middle) place, the "right place" in the "middle" of the "middle world".

  • KÓSMOS #42 / Lava flow, living and dead trees, Sunset crater volcano, Flagstaff, Arizona. "The Pueblos and the native peoples of the American Southwest do not consider space and the beings who live in it as material objects that they can own, control or defeat. The cosmos is a single entity; the beings that make it up act according to the principles of continuity and similarity - principles that are evident in the unification of cosmic space. For Native American peoples, this continuity applies to both time and space.Although they may evoke a myth in which events take place " a long time ago " or " in the beginning ", they do not see these events as completed and past, situated at a single point on a continuous time line; rather, they perceive them as forever present, shaping the here and now. (…). Pueblo's conception of time and space is closer to that of relativistic physics, in which space and time exist in a single continuum relative to the observer, than it is to the "linear perspective of most members of Western society. (…). Time is cyclical, manifest in the ordered and regular movements and "returns" of the sun, moon and stars. Space and time are both organic and form continuous entities. One could thus say that, for the Native Pueblos, time is reversible: past, present and future coexist". Complaints are the Indians of the Cosmos, Jane M. Young

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