Mornings in a Navajo household

A (cornerstone) canon of the Navajo Way of Life is to rise early everyday (before the Sun comes up).  The Sun is a person, capable of emotions, etc. And can be jealous of us humans.  The Sun must not catch you sleeping – do not let the sunlight touch you while you’re sleeping.  This has been drilled into my head.

The Egyptians (well, Akenaten, aka the weird Pharaoh) had a clue.  The sun rays depict hands while he makes an offering in this image (Yes, that diaphanous feminine figure is Akenaten aka Tutankhamun‘s father):

Now as someone who doesn’t need much sleep (about 6 hours average per night), I’m usually up by 6am and go to bed by Midnight.  It’s a little difficult for me to make sure I’m up before sunrise during the summer.  As a nudge (or it could be that my Mum’s passive-aggressive nature), Mum started her day quite early by weaving her Navajo Sash Belt this morning.  I learned how to weave a sash belt as a kid.  You have to be quite forceful in pushing down each strand (see video below, starting at 3:30).

I guess I wanted to sleep more and I just incorporated the weaving sounds into my dreams.  I don’t remember the dream content now but the alarm (phone) finally got me up this morning.

Back to this particular Navajo Principle.  Getting up early is still a valuable habit.  It teaches you discipline, to get up, even if you’re still sleepy.  You can overcome any (most) adversity if you have discipline.  Mind over matter.  That’s what I’m teaching my kids.  Of course I still teach that the Sun is a person, to be revered, respected which you can also talk to (just like a person).

So the lesson-  Even though I wanted more sleep this morning, I got up when the alarm went off.  I hardly ever nap during the day.  I conditioned myself to not need/require so much sleep.  My body knows when I need more sleep and I will usually go to sleep around 10:30p or 11:00p, if that’s the case.  Discipline, religion and my beliefs have carried me this far in life.  I fall down quite a bit (often literally), but I know I will triumph in the end.  May the new day bless all of you , my friends, in knowing that my friends and family will be included in my morning prayers.


About bibiiwens

Navajo, self-assured, bibliophile, skeptical, analytical and klutzy.
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