This unique beaded necklace was made by a Huichol artisan in Mexico. It depicts a two-headed eagle and a deer, as well as various other Huichol symbols such as sacred Peyote Cactus. See below for a description of the symbols. This necklace is a work of art and measures approx. 18 inches in length and the square part is 5 inches by about 4.5 inches.
EAGLES – Believed to be the embodiment of a goddess known as Mother Eagle, Mother of the Sky and Queen of Heavens. Huichols admire Werika, the eagle as the most magnificent among all birds.
PEYOTE CACTI – Symbol for life, sustenance, health, success, good luck, and acquisition of shamanic powers, the peyote appears in practically all Huichol art and is considered a gift from the gods to the people to enlighten their lives and bring them into the mystical realm.
DEER – The spirit guide Kauyumari, who leads the shamans on their visionary pathways and teaches them how to gain their special knowledge. One of the most commonly seen motifs, the deer, maxa, in Huichol, often appear in male and female pairs, symbolizing the unity between men and women on their spiritual journey. Legends about the deer abound in Huichol culture. The deer mother is the guardian spirit, the important animal in Huichol shamanism. She holds tobacco gourds and corn plant, both of utmost importance for Huichol survival. The Huichols believe that deer give their lives willingly to those who hunt them in a sacred manner. After a deer hunt, the hunters have to perform purifying rituals for many days to insure that the animals are properly thanked for giving their lives to the benefit of the people.
FLOWERS – Play a part in all Huichol ceremonies, and all flowers are considered sacred in healing rituals; the patient's head is anointed with flowers. Shamans use them to prepare for the deer hunt and during harvest ceremonies to adorn the new corn. One flower that appears often is called Kiera, the tree of the wind. It is a hallucinogenic plant said to open the Huichols spirits to the highest level of enlightenment.
THE SIGNIFICANCE OF COLORS:
WHITE – Cloud Spirits.
RED – The East, fire, masculinity.
BLUE – The South, Pacific Ocean, water, rain, femininity.
GREEN – The Earth, the Heavens, healing, the heart, grandfather, growth.
YELLOW – A special root from Wirikuta used for face paint in ceremonies.
ORANGE – "Wirikuta", the sacred land where the Huichol believe life began and also where they gather peyote.