A Survey on Wixárika Tradition
Period: February 1st to 10th, 2012.
Today the People Wixárika gladly welcomes you to the sacred land of Wirikuta, the heart of Mexico and support of the energy and the spiritual life.
We have invited you this time so that as participantsyou may testify this historic event of cultural and spiritual character, and contribute as witnesses with your respectable presence to spread the knowledge of this relevant cause and to the salvation of Wirikuta.
With this statement we intend to clarify the meaning of this Survey on Tradition and its unprecedented features that has been called at the beginning of 2012.
WIRIKUTA is located in the municipalities of Villa de Ramos, Charcas, Santo Domingo, Villa de la Paz, Villa de Guadalupe, Matehuala and Catorce of the State of San Luis Potosi, Mexico. It is and will remain as one of the most significant sacred sites of the Wixárika People, not only due to its sacred quality, but also because here the candles of life are renewed, providing for human survival. Currently Wirikuta is brutally threatened by Canadian mining companies that have been granted authorization from the Mexican Government to practice mega-mining.
As we, the Wixaritari, are facing this menace, since a year ago we have been implementing actions and strategies for our defense. To do so we created the Tamatsima Wahaa Front in Defense of Wirikuta, formed by several indigenous and non indigenous organizations.
The Front is led and headed by the Wixárika Regional Council for the Defense of Wirikuta, composed of Traditional Authorities, as well as Agrarian and Civi authorities and Commissioners from the Wixaritari communities forming the Wixárika People.
Throughout our struggle we have been pointing out what we know is a serious violation of our right to exist as Wixárika people, especially since destroying the sacred territory of Wirikuta would mean equal destruction of our ancient culture, a territory where the integrity of the social fabric in its cultural, human, environmental, political and family aspects rest.
The actions of the Mexican government and mining companies are evidently violating our human and legal rights which have a transversal and universal nature, as granted in the Second Article of the Political Constitution of the United Mexican States; in C 169 Indigenous and Tribal Peoples Convention of the International Labour Organization (ILO, 1989); in the International Bill of Human Rights; in the Universal Declaration of the UN Convention on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples; in the jurisprudence of the Interamerican Human Rights Court; in San Luis Potosi´s State Decree to establish protection and respect for Wirikuta, comprising an area of 140,211.85 hectares and covering seven municipalities in the Highlands of San Luis Potosi; in the decree that establishes Wirikuta as a Protected Natural Reserve; in the Management Plan for the Natural Protected Area of Wirkuta as a Sacred Site; in the Historical Cultural Route of the Huichol People (2008), in the Indigenous Consultation Act of the State of San Luis Potosi and the Covenant of Hauxa Manaka (Durango, 2008), a pact that obligates the competent authorities to protect and respect Wixárika routes and sacred places of our culture and was signed by the governments of the states of San Luis Potosi, Nayarit, Jalisco, Zacatecas and Durango, and by President Felipe Calderon Hinojosa, who for the occasion dressed in our Wixárika traditional clothes.
Given the situation we face, we have carried out actions and strategies of defense to prevent the operation of mining companies in our sacred site, one of the largest in the world, so it can be effectively respected for its cultural and ecological features.
We have raised the question in the 10th. Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues of the United Nations organization at New York, as well as taken it to the President of the Permanent Forum, Mirna Cunningham, and we also raised it in Vancouver, the very seat of Canadian mining companies.
In the same way we directly delivered letters at the Presidency of the Republic, addressed to Felipe Calderón-Hinojosa, where we expressed our most urgent demands and requests about Wirikuta such as:
• That the mining concessions granted by the Mexican State in the protected natural area of Wirikuta, in the Sierra de Catorce and in the shallows where the sacred Hícuri plant grows, be cancelled.
• To forbid agribusiness megaprojects in the area where Hícuri grows.
• To start an alternative project to generate jobs for local people while Wirikuta effectively transforms into a protected natural area that allows it to become a model of ecological conservation for the entire world.
• To rise the status of Wirikuta as a Natural Reserve from the State level (as is now) to a Federal level.
So far we have not received any effective answer that could lead to solve our demands and present alternatives for the serious situation in Wirikuta and its area of influence.
We will continue to defend our right and we will not stop until finding a fair solution for Wixaritari, and for the people of Real de Catorce and the other communities in the region of Wirikuta.
Objective and Meaning of the Survey on Wixárika Tradition 2012
The severity of the situation and the urgency posed by the threat to Wixarika demand that we act from the deepest determination. This emergency united the whole Wixárika People to perform, for the first time in our history, a Survey en Wixarika Tradition, using the tools and knowledge that our own ancient spiritual tradition provides us, aimed to study and evaluate our own culture and its situation facing the threat Wirikuta confronts. This Survey on Tradition should become legal evidence and will be carried out under the responsibility of those skilled and suitable for this purpose: in our culture they are the Mara’akate Wixaritari (the Wise and / or Council of Elders) who belong to the various ceremonial centers of the Wixárika People.
In a Ceremonial Night, all the communities together will conduct a spiritual consultation: this is, a meeting with Kaka+yarixi,-Wirikuta deities, who will host and respond them; the consultants will be the Mara’akate. Through their singing they will reveal the feelings of Wirikuta and therefore, of all the Kaka+yarixi that coexist there.
The result of this questioning to the deities will serve as the basis for our Survey on Tradition. At the end of the ceremony, the Mara’akate will share this message with the guests, that in turn will share it to all corners of the planet. That will be the Consultation in which Wirikuta, like family of life, express its views on the pain caused by mining and agribusiness.
This joint ceremony will help meeting the debt and demand that the Wixaritari have been dragging for a long time. To renovate and turn on the CANDLES OF LIFE which are fainting and running out due to many factors, including the damage caused to the sacred land, now being deepened by the Canadian mining companies.
We emphasize the fact that this year the Wixarika People’s ceremonial centers, through the Mara’akate, their spiritual arrows and gourds Carriers, along with the Traditional, Agrarian and Civil Authorities, have decided that the different communities that make up the Wixárika People (from Jalisco, Durango and Nayarit states) should carry out a HISTORICAL PILGRIMAGE: while usually each Ceremonial Center makes its own pilgrimage in a certain time and date, this year the Wixárika People have decided that all communities will reach Wirikuta in the same date and hold the vigil simultaneously together.
With this we will make a remembrance of the historic walking our deities made before the creation of the world Wixárika, hence, of the planet Earth, seeking well-being and to recreate life in the glare of consciousness. For older grandparents tell the sory of the time when our ancestors walked in a twilight space where there was no light, that they departed from the heart of Tatei Haramara (Mother of the Sea) at a place called Hai Muti’uu up and went to the place called Wirikuta -Par+yatsie. They say also that during the journey all deities were dreaming and plotting: How to illuminate the world? They fought hard to shine the world. They achieved it through huge sacrifices because to do so they had to deliver their own lives.
The ancestors say that one of the deities, at that time turned into a human being, decided to give its own self to obtain light for the world. He was dressed in an embroidered costume, his hat adorned with feathers, carried his bow and arrows, and everything necessary to protect himself in the isolated space.
This person was burned and thrown into a land depression, to emerge after a while that lasted days and / or nights, 5 months, 5 years, perhaps up to 5 millennia. For the wisest, who saw the world through their dreams, had it that only in this way the light of day would be found, so all deities waited for time calculated by the elder.
While the time came, all the deities started wondering what name would be given to this new light, but no one could find the perfect name, until theset time was reached. It was X+au -Quail who began to cry: tau, tau, tau. And he repeated several times tau, tau, tau, right when Tau or Tawexik+a (now our Father Sun) was springing. That is the name of our father SOL, which emerged in the place called Ra’unax+ (Cerro Quemado), one of the altars we have today in the mountains of Wirikuta. Today our elders infuse this to us, they tell us, they sing it and through their songs announce the birth of Tau or Tawexik+a (Our Father Sun) in Wirikuta.
Another of the deities is Tamatsi Kauyumar+e (Our Older Brother –the deer), the only one who resisted and fulfilled all obligations and oaths from the Sea to reach Wirikuta. That is, he came clean, free of errors and fasting. Today Tamatsi Kauyumar+e is in one of the altars of our holy site located in the center of Wirikuta, on the shoal in the area of El Bernalejo. This deity is also symbolized in Corn, Eagle and Hícuri (Peyote), the sacred plant that germinates and grows in Wirikuta.
Now Kauyumar+e, or Hícuri, symbolizes the heart of Wirikuta and the world. He conveys wisdom, energy, life and the gift of seeing and dreaming beyond space. It is the Hícuri that makes us Mara’akame, of course if we fulfill all obligations and oaths Tamatsi Kauyumar+e made. Failure to meet these oaths makes us simply to be failed.
All these spiritual practices are those we have to do now, they are no longer needed only to renew the Candles of Life that are the foundations and support the world. But also for us to cure all humans on the planet of the diseases we suffer in body, soul and in our Iyar+ –Hearts, and because some of us have even lost our on life and can’t find it.
So in Wirikuta, the living, magical ceremonial center, the Tamatsi Hícuri Kauyumar+ or Hicuri will be revealed to us to find our lives; him as guide, teacher and sage who has been, will teach us how to take care of the world and will momentarily transform our elated spirits to find the balance of energies and forces. To achieve this we need to lose shame and fear, to leave aside all our sins, to remove and eliminate the anomalies of our hearts and of the very space where our deities exist. That is, there should be no damage, and on the contrary, we must UNITE OUR HEARTS.
Tentative program of activities
Our pilgrimage has started from the first days of February. The pilgrims have departed at different times from our ceremonial centers. We will all arrive together one of the altars called Tek Pariya Ra’unax+ or Pariya Tek+a (Cerro Quemado). The meeting will be on the afternoon of February 6th. In the evening we will have together a vigil, just the Wixaritari pilgrims of different ceremonial centers of the region Wixárika, because this is where the Mara’akate will talk and sing and directly with the deities.
Some ceremonial centers will be joined by special guests specifically assigned.
On the morning of February 7th the word of the Mara’akate will be released, a message that will be shared with all people who inhabit the planet.
A T E N T A M E N T E
“Wirikuta is not for Sale it is to be Loveth and Defendeth”
Regional Wixárika Council for the Defense of Wirikuta
Wixárika People’s Ceremonial Centers