C^ilula [lower Redwood Creek (between rivers Mad &Klamath) valley, Humboldt County, California]


chapter title



Historical Background






Animal, Bird, and Snake Cosmology



Religion and Philosophy



Childbirth, Puberty, and Death



Ideology, Myths, and Folklore


pp. 7-8 the tribe’s names; its mythic origin

p. 7

The 2 subtribes in Redwood Creek valley are : “Lower Redwood Indians (Chilula Whilkut)” and “upper ... Redwoods (Kloki Whilkut)”. They are known as “Redwood acorn eaters” or as “Grasshopper Eaters”.

The name “Chi-lu-la” is pronounced “Tcho-lo-lah or Tchee-lu-lah, and not ... chiloolu”.

p. 8

According to myth, “people from within the redwood tree ... came out of a large hollow redwood tree when the world was first created.” The Whilkut speech is a dialect of Hupa.

They (Hupa) entertain a “belief ... which claims that they came from within a hollow tree, or hollow log via the “Underworld.””

{cf. the belief by various tribes in New Mexico and Arizona that they emerged, via a huge hollow reed, from a lower world}

pp. 18-19 wayside prayer-shrines

p. 18

Dancing Doctor Rock is “a rocky point on the top of the ridge ... used as a dancing place for those who were training to become shamans. ... The site was known as Dancing Rock because novice and practicing shamans were required to fast, seek a vision, lament for power, then sing and dance upon this sacred rock in order to acquire the “doctor pain” necessary for healing power.”

p. 19

a stone called Coyote’s cradle. Coyote hollowed this stone to receive his child, and ... any one put his child in the depression for a short time”.

Yimantuwinyai’s {cf. the name [<ibri^] /YIMANU^->el/, or more likely [Skt.] /MANDUka/} Stone.

The cultural hero is said to have hidden behind this stone when in passing he observed some maidens digging bulbs on the ridge south.

{cf. [in S^into myth] the stone behind which god Izana-gi was hidden from goddess Izana-mi}

The depression is the mark of Yiumantuwinyai’s hand and the crack is the opening which allowed

the passage of his member {penis into the vaginae} of distant girls, who were soon surprised to find themselves pregnant. ... women who desired children should sit and fondle it.”

{[Skt.] /Manduka/ is ‘Frog’ : cf. the Munduruku` & S^ipibo (LAILJ vol. 7, p. 54, n. 19) god whose penis greatly lengthened in frog-woman’s vagina.}

Women’s Good Luck Stones “are a row of stones making a fairly straight line about a hundred and ten yards long. The direction is roughly east and west.

{cf. the stone alignments at Carnac in Brittany. Stonehenge, by way of contrast, may have been intended as a “fairy ring” of toadstools.}

The individual stones are about two feet high and eight or nine inches in thickness and width. Yimantuwinyai is said to have placed them here to attract the attention of the maidens mentioned above. They were babies at first ... . Yimantuwinyai said that those who cared for him should set up any of the stones which might fall”.


pp. 32-35, 47, 52 hunting-magic & fishing-magic

p. 32

for good hunting luck” : “A prayer formula was made to the spirits of the deer, or the spirits of the elk ... . ... (angelica) roots were ... offered as payment to the {guardian} spirit of the animal to be hunted, in exchange for that animal’s life.”

p. 33

Men who “dreamed” of deer or elk prior to a hunt usually had good luck.”

p. 34

The Hupa customarily puncture the eyes of a deer as soon as possible after its death. {Is this done in order to help it shift over to using its spirit-eyen instead?} ... after the kill, the deer spirit follows the hunter home in order to gather up his bones, and to “see” if he is being handled properly.”

p. 35

In the sweatlodge, “Pepperwood was burned in the fire as a prayer offering while the leader fished”.

p. 47

Ceanothus integerrimus (buckbrush, deerbrush) is “used as hunting medicine ... carried for good luck as a charm to attract the deer to the hunter.” [p. 46 : Also, “it is used to fumigate the dead body prior to burial preparation”. {Is this to enable hunting-luck in the “Happy Hunting Ground”?}]

p. 52

Pepperwood ... nuts were believed to have “power” and were taken internally before a hunting trip for good luck.”

pp. 41-42, 47, 50 sacred herbs

p. 41

A plant called “wormwood”, which has large green leaves shaped like human fingers, ... has a strong medicinal odor and was considered to be a very sacred plant for “doctoring.” ... This plant was ... taken orally as a tea for arthritis, rheumatism”.

p. 42

Mountain balm, commonly called Yerba Santa, ... was considered a very sacred plant ... and was used to treat flu and asthma, bronchitis and tuberculosis.”

p. 47

Datura meteolides, commonly called jimson weed as powdered and made into a tea for psychic hallucinations. It was therefore used to develop “seeing power,” acquire visions, etc. ... The Chilula name is ki-ki-sa-u-il.”

p. 50

the Douglas fir had the potential to “purify” the human of his ... bad thoughts ... . Hence, this fir was used not only to bring good luck ..., but it was also a purifying agent designed to help man meet the spirits in a clean and proper manner”.

pp. 43-44, 48 herbs for sexual cures for women

p. 43

The thistle plant” : “The women often took this medicine ... when they were frequently raped”.

p. 44

Yarrow “was boiled into a tea, sung over by medicine women, and applied to a female patient experiencing menstrual cramps.”

p. 48

Juniperus ocidentalis (juniper berry), the fruit was ... used as an oral and douch[e] medicine for vaginal problems.”

pp. 45, 47, 49 herbs for corpses

p. 45

Tobacco “was often used as an ally to ward off evil spirits by the deceased soul as he/she left this world and traveled to the spirit world of the dead. Thus it was placed in the hands of the deceased at burial.”

p. 47

Chenopodium californicum “(soap root). The roots were used as a purifying soap ... . Particularly important for preparation of the deceased body during burial preparation. ... The fisherman mashed the roots into .. the creek or stream in order to poison the fish.” {So, could its use on corpses have been intended to protect the ghosts of the dead, by means of magical soap-bubbles, from assault by hostile fish-spirits while crossing the mythic river separating the world of the living from the world of the dead?} [p. 49 : “Marah fabaceus (man root), the root was pounded into a fish poison.”]

p. 49

Leptolaenia californica “(ginseng), the roots were used to cleanse and purify the body of deceased people.” {Or to bribe the deities controlling the world of the dead?}

pp. 63-64 drums

p. 63

Raw hides from the elk and deer were used to make Indian drums. The drums are square, played individually ... . ... Women are not allowed to touch or handle men’s drums ... .

... the drum is “alive and sacred” because “the spirit of the animal has been captured,” and placed into the construction of the drum.”

p. 64

The singer then called upon the power of his drum (from the animal used to make the drum), as an ally in singing ... . The drum and songs ... hence served to be part of his luck.”

p. 64 spiritual power acquired from a dream

women who dreamed of Tan, the Deer Spirit, might ... become a medicine woman.”

[dream by a woman, who thereby became a medicine-woman :] “I dreamed that I was here in the southeastern world in a large cloud. A feather ornament was moving this way and singing ... . It was the one who came for me who was doing it.”

[uses for the same woman’s resultant spiritual power :] “Psychically, the woman would use the deer “power” to cure a sick patient, predict potential misfortunes, ... or interpret other people’s dreams.”

pp. 64-66, 68-70 power-animals

p. 64

For good luck, a woman always prayed to the spirit of the deer when gathering, preparing, and cooking acorns.”

p. 65

Bears were considered reincarnated aunts and uncles, and the grizzly was considered a supernatural spirit.”

The sorceress or sorcerer ... was known to possess ... power from the mountain lion. “He/she used panther hides and panther power as an ally ... .””

Coyote hides were not used except by “Indian devil” [i.e., sorcerers] who could change themselves into the form of a large coyote. ... Men who cheated on their women or men who were too flirtatious were considered coyotes.”

p. 66

Ringtail cats ... hides were used in religious regalia. Certain members of the tribe, usually male gamblers, kept their Indian cards (gambling sticks) ... within ... sheaths made from such animal hides.”

p. 68

certain Indian doctors were known to be endowed with “woodpecker healing power.””

p. 69

only “night runners” or Indian sorcerers possessed owl feathers and claws.”

If a traveler happened to meet a snake on his path, a verbal greeting was usually made in the same way one would greet another human being.”

p. 70

The kingsnake ... “... could trace down pain and remove sickness.””

the gopher-snake could be an ally or (“power”) for an Indian card-game player, who would call upon this power when actually gambling.”

pp. 66, 68-69 omen-animals

p. 66

The fox was also considered to be a messenger of death. His appearance near the home was considered a ... sign, indicating that a family member would die within a week, unless an Indian doctor could avert the situation.”

The gophers ... were considered messengers of death, indicating the loss or a friend, or distant relative.”

p. 68

Hawks were considered spiritual messengers because they warned of approaching danger.”

Ravens ... were considered an omen of good luck, especially to a ... Indian doctor.”

p. 69

If a flicker whistled, it was a sign that someone was approaching the house.”

other animal-symbolism



p. 65 “Bobcats ... their hides were used for arrow sheaths.”

{The quiver-hieroglyph was the emblem of goddess Neith, for whose festival “torches were kept burning.” (NGW) So, “by waving a torch” (CDCM, s.v. “Lynceus”) invitation was extended to Lunkeus (‘lynx’ – GM, vol. 2, p. 398b).}

p. 67 “Weasels ... hides were used for hair wrapping ties”.

{“Galanthis laughed ... which provoked Eileithyia to seize her by the hair and turn her into a weasel.” (GM 118.g) Eileithuia was goddess of childbirth : when Maori goddess Tarana gave birth, she wrapped the baby in her own tied hair (tikitiki).}

rabbit ... Hides were tanned and used as a lining for the baby in the form of diapers ...; the rabbit hides were also used as a towel.”

{“Orion is from Greek ourios, 'urine'.” (O)

rabbits were his favorite prey.” (L)}

NGW = http://www.touregypt.net/featurestories/nit.htm

CDCM = Pierre Grimal : Concise Dictionary of Classical Mythology. 1990.

GM = Robert Graves : The Greek Myths. 1955.

O = http://www.constellationsofwords.com/Constellations/Orion.html

L = http://www.hawastsoc.org/deepsky/lep/index.html

pp. 79-84, 91 supernaturalism & shamanism

p. 79

In all respects the kitetau, Indian doctor ... was powerful in the spiritual realm of healing”.

p. 80

Personal contact with an unseen being (spirit) or through a special dream was another means by which a person become a potential shaman. ... The first signs of becoming a doctor were often through a series of dreams whereby a dead person (a ghost or spirit), an animal, bird, snake or some other spiritual entity would appear and give the dreamer a special gift. The dream would be [one] in which the dreamer would be assigned a special guide from the spirit world. The guide and/or ally may appear to be a grizzly bear, a woodpecker, deceased relative, an eagle, ghost of a former Indian doctor, or even a deer. In each case ... the neophyte would be spiritually guided to a particular prayer rock, called to a power spot such as a waterfall, or directed ... to fast, dance, and sing upon a sacred “doctor rock.” ...

The spiritual ally also taught the dreamer a special doctor song and the healing or seeing meaning of this song. ... The dreamer would also be taught by the “spirit” exactly what “tools” of the trade to collect. These tools might come in the form of flicker or eagle feathers, obsidian blades, pipes, dentalia shells, animal skins, amulets, or special plants and herbs. The objects were usually acquired under extraordinary or supernatural circumstances. ...

p. 81

Along with this “package” came a new medicine song and power which had to be “cooked” in the sweathouse, and “cured” in the Kick Dance. After that experience he became a “medicine man””.

the process for acquiring Indian “doctor power” ... is somewhat different than the process of a medicine man or a medicine woman :

... the spirit world would feel sorry for a particular person and “shoot them with pain.” ... After “the pain” is acquired the novice must fast and pray in the sweathouse by day, and dance in a Kick Dance at night, for a period of five to ten nights. ... The novice must “walk” to a sacred prayer site usually called a “dancing rock.” A practicing Indian doctor accompanies him/her to the site and remains there as guardian or supervisor for a period of one to ten nights. The novice is expected to continue fasting, praying, singing, and dancing all night until sunrise. The prayer site usually has a doctor seat ... . It must be in a very high place, isolated and

p. 82

unobstructed view and noise, so that the novice can “see” or “hear” the spirits and vision while in a semitrance state. If everything is done properly the novice will be contacted by a spirit or spirits in the form of lightning, a cloud, a bird, a snake, or a ghost usually dressed in special Indian clothing. Sometimes the contact may come in the form of a vision depicted far off in the sky, or appear as a large supernatural being on the distant landscape, whichever the case may be.

Immediately after receiving the “power pain” the novice returns to the sweathouse to be purified, and he/she must participate in a Kick Dance for another five to ten nights. After completing of the training the novice enters an apprenticeship with a practicing Indian doctor until such time that he/she is competent enough to start self-practice.”

If a person somehow acquires a pain or spirit but is not given the proper community assistance to cultivate the power, i.e., through a Kick Dance Ceremony, and/or apprenticeship, he/she may become mentally “crazy” for the rest of their life, or die.”

the training is usually done in a secretive manner. The novice must undergo an arduous process which necessitates many hours and days of ... [undergoing] tremendous psychological pressure while trying to cope with fear, anxiety, and sometimes hallucinations.”

p. 83

Sometimes the novice might fail the first time and attempt to repeat the process. In later years of life he/she may have to undergo additional training in order to obtain more power. ... The mark of a true “doctor: was his/her ability to contact the supernatural through an ecstatic state and use his/her powers for the benefit of the tribe. ... In most cases the novice did not have a choice, because the spirits would begin to afflict a series of ailments upon its {their} chosen pupil until he/she could no longer ignore the “callings.””

Indian doctors, however, were “mediums” who spoke directly to spirits and who utilized supernatural power to

p. 84

diagnose and effect a cure. ...

Some could be “seerers” {see-ers} (clairvoyants) and locate human beings, or their corpses. Seerers could predict the future, serve as a personal “psychic” counselor, foretell future fortunes/misfortunes, or trace lost/stolen articles. ...

And still another form of doctor might be a dreamer, or a visionary who was often called upon to use his/her power for the purpose of locating an elk herd, deer herd, predict a bountiful fish run, ... predict the weather ... .

They also counseled individuals when consulted about personal dreams, and hence served as “dream interpreters.” ...

The most powerful Indian doctor, however, was considered to be a “sucking doctor.” This shaman had the ability to diagnose pain and suck it out with his mouth. Usually this kind of Indian doctor also had “healing power in his hands” and could heal patients experiencing pain, toothache, broken bones, crippling and incurable diseases; ... and the sucking doctor could expel foreign objects which had been “shot into a patient by an Indian devil.””

An Indian devil, kitdonxoi might cause sickness or near death by using power to “shoot” a foreign object into his victim”.

p. 91

a Karuk-Hupa medicine man ... states that Indian devils even “have the power to change into a ball of fire, and fly across the country in a matter of minutes.””

pp. 86-87 sexual & gendre-based prohibitions

p. 86

Men and women were not permitted to have sex in the creek, on or near ceremonial grounds or prayer sites, or upon mountaintops.”

p. 87

Women were not allowed to handle ... men’s religious regalia.”

Men were not allowed to handle women’s personal religious items.”

pp. 88-89 healing

p. 88

Sometimes an “Indian bullet” (sorcerer’s evil miniature flint) would be extracted and shown to the patient and family after removal by the doctor. This object was lectured at by the Indian doctor and made to disappear into water, thin air, or smoke.”

p. 89

Often the patient was made to confess for a violation committed against nature ..., and the violation was then “blown” away. ... Often a patient gave as payment his wife and/or daughter(s) for the Indian doctor’s personal use. Such personal use may include labor and/or sexual services. ... In the case of a female doctor, an unmarried male might be given as a new (and additional) husband as payment to the female doctor, or her daughter.”

p. 95 power from a skeleton-spirit (quoted from Driver 1936)

Warriors seeking power went to certain spots where a skeleton might appear and tell them what to do for success. Certain warriors bathed in a hollow tree where thunder spirits lived. Here he attained invulnerability.”

Certain man was returning ... from Redwood Creek one night. ... He crawled under a log ... . Something struck the log ... . He saw a skull with sparks of fire coming from the eyes. The skull (ghost) said, “I felt sorry for you. You will live to be old. ...””

pp. 97-100 childbirth-customs & -beliefs

p. 97

The expectant mother was then given a medicinal concoction of yarrow rea, wild ginger, and/or sorrel leaf tea ... and she was instructed to lie down, relax, and dream about deer and bear. It was believed by the Chilula and Hupa that such dreams would invoke the female spirits to assist the woman in an easy labor and childbirth. Usually a sacred prayer was spoken by the

p. 98

medicine woman, who called upon the spiritual powers of the deer and/or bear for assistance. ... Sometimes the women were steamed in a concoction made from Douglas fir in order to “purify her for spiritual acceptance””.

p. 99

“ “steam medicine” had to be used in order to ensure that his/her “soul” would enter the newborn’s body within the ten day period ... . Consequently, the baby was steamed over a basket full of ... medicine (usually wormwood or wild ginger) ... for a period of ten days at intervals twice a day ... . The Chilula believed that a child’s soul hovers over the body, for a period of one to ten days, before “deciding” to enter” ... . ...

During the “purification period” the mother ...

p. 100

was expected to pray. ... During the time of childbirth the husband/father ... had to ... remain praying in the “sweathouse” for a period of five to ten days ... . The would then “steam” himself with Douglas fir boughs ... and offer tobacco and/or angelica root to the Creator and spirits, and hence pray for his wife and child.”

pp. 101-103 puberty-initiation for females

p. 101

She “was escorted to the specially prepared “moonhut” or minkk. ... She was “isolated” for ten days ... . During this purification ... she could not look at the sky ... .

Twice a day (once at dawn and once at dusk) she was encouraged to run to the sacred pond called minkkutminnaxawaldin.” {cf. /WALDeN/ Pond of Thoreau’s}

{in Karuk thanatology, in order for the soul of a woman who had just died to enter the Netherworld via the sacred lake, “she ran around the lake ten times.” (A, p. 69)}

p. 102

Every night the adult male relatives came to the hut, they sang sacred songs and danced over her. There were usually four to six men, half of whom wore red woodpecker headdresses and sealion teeth headbands, and the other half who wore “Brush Dance style” regalia and headdresses.”

group of dancers

ornaments worn by them

what the ornaments are believed to symbolize


the red woodpecker crest”

menstrual blood”


sealion teeth headgear”

“ “male” fertility”


Brush dance type of headrolls”


After the ten days, on the last night of the ceremony the young girl ... is confronted with two women who hold up abalone shells toward the southeast and north. The young girl makes a wish and stares in one, then the other “haliotis shell”, then she runs to the pond

p. 103

for her final bath. Upon completion of the ceremony she usually reports to the medicine woman who analyzes the young girl’s aura, dreams ... . Whatever “colors” the “reborn” woman saw in the abalone shells at the end of her ceremony will determine her character, purpose, and destiny in life. Whatever vision she saw within the “universe” of the shell will serve her as a celestial ally and guide throughout her lifetime.”

A = Julian Lang (transl.) : Ararapi`kva. Heyday Books, Berkeley, 1994.

p. 104 postmortem status of soul

There appears to be ... belief in reincarnation for the upper-class Chilula, or the “high men” which include shamans, medicine makers, and religious leaders ... . Lower class Chilula members ... are not reincarnated.”

existence for non-redincarnative souls in the “under-world” = “spirit world of the Kixunai” : “The spirits live on dead salmon ... . ... Dampness and darkness reign there.”

our spirit is reborn in the infant, gathers or loses its energy during the deeds of our lifetime, and eventually returns again after death.

... the burial ceremony is both death and the beginning of life. It depends on how you look at it.”

pp. 105-106 funeral

p. 105

The house is smoked with angelica root by a ... ninxatden (“headman” ...) who knows the proper formulas and spiritual practice. ... The corpse is bathed in ginseng root which has been boiled in water with a prayer formula ... . During this time the “undertaker” must socially isolate himself ... . He is ... the entire five days during and after the burial ceremony ... restricted to eating only acorn soup and dried salmon.”

p. 106

the corpse is removed head first through the kitchen window ... . In modern times this act replaces removal of the roof plank from the ancient earthen lodge. Four to six men (relatives) carry to body to ... where it is ... painted, and given acorn meal and tobacco.”

p. 106 instructions imparted to the dead immediately before interrment

You are dead now, you must not stay on this earth plane. You have your food and tobacco for the long journey. You cannot take your family or possessions with you. You will find regalia and new possessions in the other world. Someday your family will again join you, so do not torment or bother them anymore ... . Do not think of us and leave.

You will ... meet the spirit guide on the other side of the river (unseen world). ... Do not be afraid because the others in the boat await to help you.

{cf. Kharon the ferryman for souls of the dead}

They are your old and new friends, who will take you to the south to the spirit world of the deceased. You will be happy there and must remain there”.

{according to the R.c Veda, the souls of the newly dead are guided to the south by god Yama}

pp. 106-107 further funebrial customs

p. 106

Indian money (dentalia), acorns, and tobacco may be buried inside the grave with the deceased.”

p. 107

A fire is maintained at the grave by the undertaker for a period of five nights”.

pp. 114-115 medicine-camps

p. 114

The first kind of medicine camps are {is} found along secular trails leading through the Chilula territory. Usually these camps are legendary sites where the Creator first stopped and rested, in the beginning, when he originally created the world. Chilula legend therefore mandates a customary visit by the traveler. ... He is also expected to pay tribute to the spirits which inhabit that particular site and ask for permission to pass safely through their abode.”

The second kind of medicine camp is normally found on “sacred” trails leading up through the high country to a special prayer site such as Medicine rock, Dancing Doctor Rock, or Eagle Rock. Sacred trails are not used by routine travelers but are specifically

p. 115

designated for cultural training and power quests. Normally there are several different medicine camps along the sacred trail leading to the “power spot” that relates to the ten-day training-period. ... At sunset he builds an altar at the medicine camp, ... weeps, ... invokes the spirits, and prays for strength and protection.”

The third kind of medicine camp is used by a religious group of dancers who gather “medicine” and prepare for a ceremony such as the Deerskin Dance and Jump Dance. ... The ceremonial camp is supervised by a headman and formulist who continually prays and “makes medicine” on the dancers and regalia while coordinating the dancers.”

pp. 115-116 warrioresses {cf. the Amazones on the river Thermodon}

p. 115

Among “the tribes of Northwestern California, ... the Chilula and the Yurok were the only tribes who used women as warriors.”

Yurok legend : ... a Yurok woman from Wahsek had gained this “power” and knowledge while training (hoh-kep) for protection and

p. 116

long-life. ... Flint arrows merely bounced off her skin ... .

Chilula legend : “the Chilula had women warriors ... . The only female warriors ... came from Socktish and Sekyoxatin-nitme villages. These villages were originally within the Redwood Creek basin.”

pp. 117-118 the coming of Indians


Goddard 1914a:362



When Yimankyuwinxoiyan sexually violated a certain woman, “A log floated into his mouth with the water.”

{Thompson River : “Bald-Headed-Eagle met a girl at a stream; transformed his penis into a log on which she crossed” : [to punish him for this, ]after she had urinated in his face, then, forced by her, his “head entered her genitals”. (LP)}

He was sealed within a hollow redwood tree, until released by someone from the southeast.

{according to the Puran.a-s : Nara-simha was within the pilaster, until he emerged at the urging of Prahlada}

He sexually violated two women in their boat.

{Tillamuk : “The canoe was her vagina and the one paddling was her clitoris.” (NTT, p. 47, fn. 3)}

he saw a man wading with his sister”; and

{Irish : While Fionn pursued them, Diarmuid and Gra`inne waded across brooks.}

he sent his pubic hair into wading woman; she became sick from this; he “lay” with her to cure her.

{Sanpoil; Cowlitz; Nez Perce; Kalapuya : Coyote sent his penis into swimming woman’s vagina; she felt sick from this; he cured her by sexual intercourse. (LP)}


he saw a woman walking on the tops of the trees”, and sexually violated her.

{When “you might walk on the tops of trees” (FSI, p. 104), Gilla married the princess (FSI, p. 113).}

LP = “Long Penis” (in Amerindian Mythology) http://www.ruthenia.ru/folklore/berezkin/eng/031_16.htm

NTT = Elizabeth Derr Jacobs & Melville Jacobs : Nehalem Tillamook Tales. 1959.

FSI = Patrick Kennedy : The Fireside Stories of Ireland. Dublin, 1870. http://www.archive.org/stream/firesidestorieso00kennrich/firesidestorieso00kennrich_djvu.txt

p. 144 cardinal directions

The colors of the four sacred directions are” :











The Chilula believe that they originated in the “north”, from under the ground, via a hollow redwood “tree”.

They also believe that they must leave this earthplace via the “sky” in the south.”

The Creator entered and left the universe by means of a doorway in the northeast ... .

The doctor spirits enter and depart the earth via a doorway in the southeast part of the universe”.

The roan deer (red) represents the eastern corner,

the other deer (black) represents the western corner.”

p. 144 cosmological shapes

The pond represents the spiral opening to the spiritual world and whirlpool path of the deceased.

{cf. entry by shamans into Tlalocan via a whirlpool experienced in a dream (DE&S, p. 69).}

The noise “encircling the earth” indicates power surging from the unknown”.

DE&S = Timothy J. Knab : The Dialogue of Earth and Sky : Dreams, Souls, Curing and the Modern Aztec Underworld. U of AZ Pr, Tucson, 2004.

p. 145 square & circle in architecture; and after death

__ houses

have a __ door

square-type redwood


round circular Kick Dance


the deceased must be placed a square board (or box) prior to burial, and when the soul departs “it travels through the Milky Way whereby it passes through a doorway at the end of the Milky way, into another world, into the unknown.”

pp. 146-147 the “Little People”

p. 146

They had “crazy power” ... from the “Little People” who live in the woods on top of Bald Hills. ... Little Indians only a foot high who live in the deep woods ... live on top of Lord Ellis Mountain too, and up in the Sacred High Country near and past Aka (in the Red Mountain, Doctor Rock,

p. 147

and Chimney Rock area). They can make a person “go crazy” (give them power).”

pp. 147-148 bird-god of peace

p. 147

Merk is the fisherman bird, the white egret. He is the “peacemaker”. ... The Great Creator ... sent Merk (the “white fisherman bird”) to investigate the problem and make peace. ...

p. 148

Merk is a sacred bird; he is the “peacemaker.”

Driver 1936 = Harold E. Driver : “Culture Element Distributions : Northwest California”. ANTHROPOLOGICAL RECORDS, Vol. 1, No. 6. Berkeley, 1936.

Goddard 1914a = Pliny Goddard : “Texts on the Chilula Indians of California”. AMERICAN ARCHAEOLOGY AND ETHNOGRAPHY, Vol. 10, No. 6, pp. 265-288. Berkeley, 1914.

Robert G. Lake : Chilula. University Pr of America, Washington (DC), 1982.