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For Indigenous people, solar eclipse often about reverence and tradition, not revelry – Vancouver is Awesome

October 12, 2023

PHOENIX (AP) — For a few hours, Krystal Curley and her Indigenous women’s work group took over a college auditorium to share traditional Navajo practices regarding this weekend’s highly anticipated solar eclipse. More than 50 people — young and old — showed up for the chance to either connect with or remember cultural protocol going back hundreds of years.

They laid out books on Navajo astronomy and corn pollen used for blessings. A medicine man fielded questions from the majority Navajo, or Diné, audience on what to do when the moon partially shrouds the sun.

Don’t: Look at the eclipse, eat, drink, sleep or engage in physical activity.

Do: Sit at home and reflect or pray during what’s considered an intimate, celestial moment.

“There’s so many things we’re not supposed to do as Diné people compared to other tribes, where it’s OK for them to look at the eclipse or be out or do things,” said Curley, executive director of nonprofit Indigenous Life Ways.

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