The Past Of The Hopi: 4 Worlds Of The Kachinas And End Of The World

According to the account of a Hopi elder, the original homeland of his tribe used to be on a land called Kásskara located in the Pacific Ocean, a land also known as Mu.

So stated Oswald ‘White Bear’ Fredericks, the main consultant for Frank Waters’ The Book of the Hopi  (1963), a common title in university libraries.

In the late 1970s, a former NASA engineer named Joseph Blumrich also enlisted Oso Blanco’s help to produce a book in German called Kásskara und die Sieben Welten (‘Kásskara and the Seven Worlds’), which has not been published in English or Spanish. In the course of his investigation, Blumrich often stayed with Oso Blanco and his wife, Naomi, at his home in Sedona, Arizona. The couple accompanied the former engineer to ceremonies on the Hopi reservation, where he was able to interview elders from various clans.

Blumrich recorded everything White Bear said, and Naomi put those recordings into a coherent, typed transcript. That manuscript is precisely the basis of the book.

A few years ago, professor and journalist Shawn Hamilton received a partial copy of the aforementioned transcript from an anthropology teacher through whom he had the good fortune to meet the old Hopi. What we will read below are excerpts abridged, translated, and lightly edited for publication.

The Cycles Of Birth And Destruction Of The Hopi’s World

According to Oso Blanco, humanity lived in two other worlds, Tokpela and Tokpa, before emerging in the Third World, Kásskara; and then to our current Fourth World, Toowakachi. These successive worlds generally correspond to various continents, time periods, and changing configurations of global geology.

In the First World, the divinity «Taiowa» created humans and all things in this universe. He gave us intelligence and the capacity for knowledge.

Oswald ‘White Bear’ Fredericks (1905-1996) and his wife, Naomi, photographed in 1985 at their home in Sedona, Arizona.
Credit: Henry J. Denny.

“He gave man everything he needs in his life, and he gave him the laws and duties in this universe, which man must obey,” said Oso Blanco.

He explained that the First World was destroyed by fire because the people had become malicious. But his people—those who in more recent times became the Hopi—survived the destruction because they had been selected to preserve knowledge through time. The Second World was destroyed by ice. Once again, his people survived and reached the Third World, the third continent. All of these and subsequent events are still alive in Hopi ceremonies.

The Third And Fourth World Of The Hopi Called Kasskara and Kachinas

The original Hopi homeland in the Third World, located on the Pacific Ocean, was called Kásskara, also known as Mu. Kásskara was a contemporary of Atlantis, a technological civilization that White Bear said existed in the Atlantic.

Plato described Atlantis in his dialogue Timaeus, detailing how one of the Egyptian temple priests at Sais had given this information to his uncle, Solon, along with the nice reminder that Egypt had documented a story that made the Hellenes (Greeks) ) look like children in comparison.

It is “a story that strange though it is, is certainly true,” Critias tells Socrates, portraying Atlantis with such exacting specificity that one may suspect the story is accurate.

Crucially, a key feature of the story is consistent with Hopi lore. It advances the disconcerting notion that planetary cataclysms occur periodically, at regular intervals. While Egyptian history includes several such global destructions, modern people remember only one: the Biblical Great Flood, or Flood.

Map of the hypothetical existence of Mu, the Kásskara of the Hopi.

Oso Blanco explained that the people who became the modern Hopi originated from Kásskara, although not all of Kásskara became Hopi. The people of this continent—of which Hawaii is a remnant—fought back in a war with Atlantis that led to the destruction of both civilizations. Oso Blanco reported that otherworldly beings called kachinas, who flew spaceships, had seen a continent emerge from the water to the east, and helped their ancestors reach this new rising continent we know today as South America.

“It was the same country we had lived in our Second World, Tokpa, but its appearance was different, so we now call it the Fourth World,” Oso Blanco noted.

According to indigenous tradition, the Earth has changed its poles several times, which means that the North Pole was in the place where the South Pole is currently and vice versa.

In the Fifth World, it will change again. On each occasion, the Earth tilted completely from north to south and not halfway,” Oso Blanco said. “That would have caused too much damage and was not intended by the Creator, except for one time during the Second World when the Earth tilted only halfway and everything froze.”

The Kachinas observed this new land, and when it was over the water, they began preparing for a large migration of Kasskaran refugees to the emerging continent that would become their homeland, White Bear said.

Petroglyphs found near Mishongnovi, Arizona depicting “flying shields” and ant-shaped gods that aided the ancient Hopi.

“The Hopi call it the Fourth World, Toowakachi,” he noted, adding that the word sistaloakha designates everything that is created quickly and perfectly. The Creator had decided to save them and ordered the kachinas to help people reach this new continent. These settlers migrated from the Third World to the Fourth in three types of vehicles.

“The initial group arrived in ‘flying shields’ (spaceships). These were assigned to important and high-ranking people who had priority because they were tasked with establishing the new colony. The kachinas, being space travelers, knew where the new land was, and they brought such esteemed leaders first. The kachinas could do that because they had flying shields. Our people did not have them, and we could not build them. The Atlanteans did have flying shields, but they did not receive them from the kachinas, who had left them behind but redesigned them with their malevolent power,” the old man recounted.

The arrival of the clans

The first clans reached Toowakachi long before Kásskara sank completely. Among the most important groups that arrived with the flying shields were the Fire Clan, the Snake Clan, the Spider Clan, the Bow Clan, the Lizard Clan, the Eagle Clan, and the Water Clan.

“The full list shows the Arc Clan towards the end because this clan did wrong in the Third World. But some people from the Clan of the Bow were still important,” said White Bear. Although many had taken part in the destruction of the Third World, not all had strayed from the path of the Creator. That’s why they were saved.”

Hopi drawing of a character seated on a “flying shield.”
The arrow below refers to the idea of ​​speed.

The second group of refugees flew in “big birds” (planes). The Hopi Powamu festival remembers these events. Oso Blanco participated in this ceremony in Oraibi (in Navajo County, AZ) when he was young, which allowed him to enter the Powamu society.

“Before the ceremony, the chief of our tribe sang a song that evoked the Third World we had left and talked about the evil queen who had conquered most of the world and whose influence was so damaging,” he commented, referring to the queen of Atlantis, who once used her beauty to manipulate the chiefs of her people, receiving so many jewels that they gave her the nickname “The Turquoise Woman”.

According to White Bear, Atlantis was similar to England, a small country with great influence.
Eventually, it extended its reach farther east, into what we now know as Europe and Africa.
Image: Athanasius Kircher’s map showing a supposed location of Atlantis.
(Mundus Subterraneus, 1669).
Map-oriented with south on top.

“Many people were afraid during this time because the old continent, Kásskara, was sinking fast; one city after another was being destroyed. The water kept rising and covered most of the continent, but our people knew they were going to be saved,” he continued.

The third group consisted of those who were still at the beginning of their search for spiritual wisdom.

My clan, the Coyote Clan, was part of that. I know from my mother that she belonged to this clan, like her parents,” she explained. “They had precise knowledge of these facts because they kept them in their memory to transmit that knowledge as an inheritance to the Fourth World.”

Powamu Festival.

Oso Blanco said that this third group came in boats and had to fight for a long time.

Throughout this migration by sea, the kachinas protected this last group. In fact, each clan had a kachina assigned to guide its members safely to the new continent, advising them and directing them towards islands where they could rest; but White Bear said that while the kachinas could make themselves understood, humans at first did not have the privilege of speaking with them.

The Flute Clan still celebrates a ceremony that refers to these boat trips, and in this way, the Hopi remember every detail and stage of that epic ocean voyage, an event that reminds them of a row of seven statues (moai) on the island of Easter.

Ahu Akivi is a particular sacred place on Rapa Nui (or Easter Island) in the Valparaíso Region of Chile, towards the Pacific Ocean.
The site has seven moais, all of the same shape and size, and is also known as a celestial observatory that was established around the 16th century.

“These statues represent the seven worlds that we must cross,” said Oso Blanco. “Easter Island is the only island along the way that did not completely sink into the ocean after our passage.”

On the subject of “the seven worlds,” a bit of context might help to enlighten the reader. The Hopi actually speak of nine worlds, or universal realms, that came into being according to Creator Taiowa’s plan. One spiritual realm was reserved for Taiowa and another for his “nephew of his,” Sotuknang. Oso Blanco’s mention of “the seven worlds that we must cross” is related to the vibratory centers ( chakras ) of the human being, corresponding to the glands on a physical level.

Then, by means of their flying shields, planes, and boats, the Kachinas guided the Kasskaran refugees to South America to help them establish a colony there.

“At that time, the highest part was already over the water,” explained Oso Blanco. «But you must know that not all those who survived Kásskara were able to come to this new continent. We, the Coyote Clan, were the last to arrive.

«Those who left after us were taken by the currents to other lands because they had not been selected to come to South America. Some made it to Hawaii, a part of the Third World that had not been destroyed. Others made it to islands in the South Pacific, and some to an island that is now part of Japan, as I learned a few years ago,” the old man said. «A young man from this island visited me. He had read the Book of the Hopi and said that his grandmother had told him exactly the same stories about the old world.”

The fate of the Atlanteans

According to Oso Blanco, not all the inhabitants of Atlantis perished when their continent was destroyed. Those who had not taken part in his queen’s attack on Kásskara were spared. They too wanted to come to the new continent, but the Creator had promised that the new land would belong solely to the Hopi ancestors for a long time.

Although there were still no Hopi on this new continent, the inhabitants of Atlantis could not come to South America. The Creator did not want to have them there, “he assured. “He So he sent the kachinas to prevent them from moving west because, even if the survivors had not followed their chiefs, they were still subjects of Atlantis.”

Oso Blanco detailed that during the Third World, the people of Atlantis had also associated with kachinas, but the kachinas abandoned them when the Atlanteans turned malevolent.

Artist’s representation of Kásskara being sunk in the sea

“The kachinas led them east into areas now called Europe and Africa. But their abilities had been taken from them. Pinned to the ground, they could no longer fly and could only survive if they went out in small groups and each group carried only a small portion of the total knowledge they had before,” he recounted. “That is why the people of that region do not have a memory of their history comparable to ours”

He also added that when the Atlanteans destroyed the Third World, the Creator reduced them to a low cultural level. But after their punishment, which lasted for hundreds of years, they began to develop again.

“Think about the culture of the Egyptians. For us, the Hopi, this time is not so remote and this is all part of the Hopi tradition,” said Oso Blanco.

Destruction of the First City Of Kásskaran Called Táotoóma

Upon arriving on the new continent, the initial task of the Kásskaran refugees was to build the first city, Táotoóma, which they located at the bottom of a mountain.

Oso Blanco described this city as being the size of present-day Los Angeles, saying that a section of it was what we recognize as Tiwanaku (or Tiahuśanaco ), in present-day Bolivia.

Gradually, the land area expanded as it rose from the sea, and a small number of people began to migrate to other places.

H-blocks at Puma Punku, Bolivia.
With surfaces as smooth as a mirror, the 1.5-ton (!) blocks were cut from incredibly hard volcanic rock.
If we wanted to make a replica these days, we would need the most sophisticated diamond drilling technology.

“We were able to start exploring the new continent, and so we used the flying shields (spaceships). Some of us had reached a sufficient rank to accompany the kachinas during their explorations to see how the newly founded colonies were faring,” he explained.

Over time, people reconsidered their own ideas about the correct way to follow the laws of the divine Creator. They had left the right path, White Bear said, adding that among them were high-ranking people who were drawn to wealth and prestigious positions.

“They started misusing Tawuya [no translation], so the kachinas tried to stop them from flying out into the universe. We were not allowed to go there until we had fulfilled all our obligations in this world. But these people falsely believed that they were ready. The Creator realized what had happened, and after a while, he came in person and took the city, lifted it up into the sky, turned it over, and buried it in the ground. In the entire area around him, one felt the enormous rush of air. The ground vibrated, it was like an earthquake.

“It was a disappointment to our Creator, whom we had disobeyed. After that, our people disbanded and went in various directions. This was the first dispersal of our people on this continent.”

Drawing of Hopi kachina dolls from an 1894 anthropology book

Oso Blanco specified that these events occurred during the 4,000 years after the clans met on the new continent, which emerged from the water looking very similar to the current one.

Subsequently, people—especially those who had remained faithful to the Creator—left the ruins of Táotoóma, the first city built in the Fourth World. They wanted to separate themselves from others in order to preserve their ancient wisdom and cosmology, as well as fulfill their sacred obligations.

“They founded new colonies all over South America. They did not all leave at the same time but gradually, over a long period. A  kachina was assigned to guide each group during their migration. The groups, which we call clans, had to separate in order to survive and successfully follow the Creator’s teachings, which belonged to the divine plan. During these migrations, the kachinas were able to communicate with us and helped us as before. They taught us to sow and harvest on the same day without waiting months for the fruits to ripen,” he said.

After the people moved away from the ruins of the destroyed city, certain kachinas were “destined,” or designated, for children yet to be born. These children were selected to pass on actual memory of past events, with Oso Blanco noting that such events “made their way into Hopi history very often.”

“The child receives knowledge while still in its mother’s womb. Sometimes it is the mother who receives it so that all these thoughts can penetrate the child before birth, so that the child does not need to learn afterwards. It is only necessary to remember this knowledge that he received before his birth, “clarified Oso Blanco. “All of this happened over several hundred years after the start of the migration. But the teaching of the kachinas made it possible to keep our traditions alive in memory.

Photograph taken in 1899 of Old Oraibi, the original Hopi pueblo that is part of the Hopi Reservation in Arizona.
Oraibi was the birthplace of Oso Blanco.
In 1964, the town was declared a US National Historic Landmark.

Bear Clan Migrations

White Bear related the story of the Bear Clan his father belonged to, saying that he chose this clan because he was selected to play the role of guide and leader in the Fourth World.

“I learned everything from my father and his brother who knew the history of the clans and their migrations to this hemisphere because our ancestors were the chiefs of the Hopi and the Bear Clan since their arrival in the Fourth World,” he recounted.

But first I want to tell you something my mother told me. As we left the destroyed city, the kachinas erased the memories of all who remained, as well as their future generations. So everyone who lived around the ruins afterward had no idea what had happened before,” she said, noting that in the Third World the Bear Clan was one of the least important clans.

“It did not have a negative past and had not taken part in the destruction of the previous world, and for this reason, it was selected as the ruling clan in the (current) Fourth World. That is why the Bear Clan ranks higher than the Fire Clan, which destroyed the First World, or the Spider Clan and the Bow Clan, which destroyed the Second and Third Worlds.”

Due to the Bear Clan’s status among the Hopi, a higher-ranking kachina , Eototo, was assigned to guide the people of this clan, although White Bear said that Eototo was more properly a deity. Eototo stayed with them wherever they went to ensure his well-being. He led them north from South America, but they encountered harsh conditions along the way.

“The area they had to cross was terribly hot. They spent a lot of time roaming the woods and getting used to the weather, and many children died at birth from the heat. Times were hard. They wanted to look for mountains to get out of this heat, but the kachinas encouraged them to continue and protected them throughout the long journey through the jungle. Today there is still a ceremony that remembers this protection,” said Oso Blanco.

“After a long time, they migrated from the tropical region. People began to breathe better, children no longer died, and the population increased. They continued moving north while Eototo led them toward lakes and rivers. After many years they reached an “ice barrier” near what we now call the US-Canada border. It prevented his passage to the north. This happened about 12,000 years ago. Eototo warned them that this ice sheet was a door that would open later for other people to migrate south.”

The Ice Wall from Game of Thrones actually existed and once blocked the direct path to North America

These, of course, are the groups anthropologists recognize as crossing the Bering Land Bridge, but the Hopi say their own people got there first and came from the opposite direction. Oso Blanco recounted how his ancestors moved away from the ice cap and had to move east across a vast expanse of wetlands to reach the Atlantic Ocean. Eototo told them that it was the end of their journey to the east, and then directed them to walk in the direction of the setting sun.

They obeyed and went west, reaching the Pacific Ocean after many years. Eototo told them: “You have finished your migration and now you can choose where you want to live”, but the clan still did not know where they wanted to settle. After much research, he chose this place (Oraibi), where the people built their first village and where the Hopi have lived ever since.”

The coming of the Fifth World

The Hopi do not perceive time in a straight line as we usually do. While we may assume that our modern civilization represents a pinnacle of human technological achievement, the Hopi wait patiently on their remote mesas for our version of civilization to die out, which inevitably must because it is out of harmony with the laws of the universe.

White Bear commented that he and other elders had gathered in a kiva on Shongopovi (Hopi land) to discuss their current situation.

“We see the same things happening right now that happened just before the destruction of the Third World. We are worried because we know what will come. And we know that we have reached the point of no return,” he concluded.

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