Report to the Honorable Harry R. McCue Regarding the Dine' (Navajo) Families' Religious Concerns and Suggested Solutions
                                A SIMPLE REQUEST
       Many of our files are unique and/or copyrighted by The Center For 
       World  Indigenous  Studies  and The  Fourth  World  Documentation 
       Project.   All  FWDP  files  may  be  reproduced  for  electronic  
       transfer  or posting on computer  networks  and  bulletin  boards 
       provided that:
          1. All text remains unaltered.
          2. No profit is made from such transfer.
          3. Full credit is given to the author(s) and the Fourth World 
             Documentation Project.
          4. This file is included in the archive if being used as a 
             file on a BBS, FTP site or other file archive.

       Thank you for your cooperation.

       John Burrows
       Fourth World Documentation Project

   ||                                                                      ||
   ||    The Fourth World Documentation Project runs entirely on grants    ||
   ||    and private donations.  If  you find this  information service    ||
   ||    useful to you in any way, please consider making a donation to    ||
   ||    help keep it running.  CWIS is a  non-profit  [U.S. 501(c)(3)]    ||
   ||    organization.   All donations are completely tax deductible.      ||
   ||    Donations may be made to:                                         ||
   ||                                                                      ||
   ||    The Center For World Indigenous Studies                           ||
   ||    c/o The Fourth World Documentation Project                        ||
   ||    P.O. Box 2574                                                     ||
   ||    Olympia, Washington  USA                                          ||
   ||    98507-2574                                                        ||
   ||                                    Thank You,                        ||
   ||                                    CWIS Staff                        ||
   ||                                                                      ||

::  This file has been created under the loving care of  ::
::                                                       ::
:: Questions and comments on FWDP can be addressed to:   ::
::                                                       ::
::  John Burrows           ::
::  P.O. Box 2574                                    ::
::  Olympia, Wa                Fido Net 1:352/333        ::
::  98507-2574                    206-786-9629           ::
::     USA                  The Quarto Mundista BBS      ::


                             No. 90-15003

                        JENNY MANYBEADS, et al.



                   UNITED STATES OF AMERICA, et al.


                             REPORT TO THE
                       HONORABLE HARRY R. McCUE

                           December 21, 1993


     Lee Brooke Phillips, Attorney for the MANYBEADS
     Big Mountain Legal Office
     308 N. Agassiz
     P.O. Box 1509
     Flagstaff, AZ 86002

     Katherine W. Hazard, Attorney
     Member of the United States Mediation Team
     U.S. Department of Justice
     P.O. Box 23795 (L'Enfant Station)
     Washington D.C. 20026


          At a negotiation session in Phoenix on September 16, 
     1993, the Dine' families expressed concern that Dine' 
     religious issues were not adequately addressed by the Hopis' 
     proposed draft lease. Judge McCue asked us, the lawyer for 
     the Dine' families (Lee Phillips) and a member of the 
     federal mediation team (Katherine Hazard), to meet with the 
     families to see if their religious and other concerns with 
     the Hopi proposed lease could be reduced to writing and 
     suggestions made for how those concerns could be 
     accommodated by means not involving a land exchange. During 
     October and the first two weeks of November meetings were 
     held by Mr. Phillips in the Hopi Partitioned Lands (HPL) 
     communities to discuss with the families what had happened 
     in the mediation since the August 5, 1993, meeting at Rocky 
     Ridge and to ask whether they would like to continue 
     participating in mediation and work, as Judge McCue had 
     requested, to identify their religious and other concerns 
     with greater specificity. Meetings were hold at the 
     communities of Teestoh, Mosquito Springs, Coalmine Mesa, 
     Sand Springs, Big Mountain and Cactus Valley. 
          One of the concerns frequently raised at these meetings 
     was that the families had not been more directly involved in 
     the mediation process. The Dine' families live scattered 
     throughout a large area of land accessible only by dirt 
     roads. Travel is time consuming and difficult. To cross the 
     affected area is approximately a five (5) hour drive. Few 
     people have telephones and, except in the Teestoh area to 
     the south east, there is not a governmental or community 
     organization structure in existence for the Dine' residents 
     of various areas on the HPL. Thus, communication to hold 
     meetings and exchange information is difficult under any 

          Throughout the mediation there has not been any 
     representational mechanism for the families on the HPL. On 
     November 22, 1993, several residents from each of the 
     communities met in Flagstaff with us to discuss whether 
     representatives night be selected from the different 
     communities so that there could be a mediation team to 
     participate in future meetings and negotiations. It was 
     unanimously determined that the residents would return to 
     their communities and representatives would be chosen from 
     the communities and reconvene in Flagstaff on December 7, 
     1993. This was a landmark step that will greatly facilitate 
     mediation. Aware of the December 31, 1993, deadline for a 
     showing of progress required by the Ninth Circuit, the 
     representatives planned a 2-day meeting for December 13-14 
     to identify in writing their religious concerns and begin 
     drafting suggestions for an accommodation of those concerns. 
     A day long drafting session occurred on December 16, 1993, 
     involving a smaller group chosen to complete the report. 

          The following religious concerns and suggested 
     solutions were expressed by the Dine' families in the 
     various meetings which occurred between the families and the 
     Hopi Tribe during the summer of 1993, in community-wide 
     meetings which occurred throughout the fall of 1993, and 
     during three (3) days of meetings with approximately thirty 
     (30) representatives from the various Dine' communities on 
     the HPL. The United States participated, at Judge McCue's 
     request, in order to aid in facilitating the formulation of 
     a report/proposal that articulates the families' concerns 
     with the terms of the Hopi lease proposal -- not to endorse 
     the substance of any concern or proposal. With this 
     introduction to the process requested by the mediator, what 
     follows is a report by Mr. Phillips and the Dine' families' 
     of the families' religious concerns and suggested solutions 
     and recommendations regarding an accommodation. 

                                Respectfully submitted,

                                Lee Brooke Phillips

                                Katherine W. Hazard


          The following religious concerns and suggested 
     solutions were expressed by the Dine' families in meetings 
     between the families and the Hopi Tribe during the summer of 
     1993, in community-wide meetings on the HPL during the fall 
     of 1993 and during three (3) days of meetings with 
     approximately thirty (30) representatives from the various 
     Dine' communities on the HPL. The families feel that these 
     concerns were not adequately addressed or considered in the 
     development of either the Agreement in Principle or the Hopi 
     draft lease proposal. 


          The Hopi draft lease proposal contains no express 
     guarantee that the religious beliefs and practices of the 
     Dine' families will be recognized or protected under the 
     proposed settlement. The mediation was ordered by the United 
     States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit in the 
     filed by the grassroots people who refuse to relocate for 
     religious reasons. The families wish to emphasize that the 
     purpose for filing the MANYBEADS lawsuit and for the Ninth 
     Circuit's decision to order the mediation and to appoint 
     Judge McCue as mediator was to consider the religious needs 
     and concerns of the Dine' families and to find an 
     alternative to the forced relocation provisions of the 1974 
     relocation law. This alternative must recognize the 
     legitimate religious beliefs and concerns of the Dine' 
     families and provide them with a fair and reasonable 
     religious accommodation. 

          Throughout the last several years of mediation very 
     little time was spent discussing the religious concerns of 
     the Dine' families facing relocation. When the mediation did 
     focus on religious concerns, the Dine' families felt that it 
     was primarily Hopi and not Dine' religious concerns which 
     were addressed. For example, focus on Hopi religious 
     concerns -- such as eagle gathering by Hopis on the Navajo 
     reservation, giving the Hopis access to Cliff Springs, 
     inclusion of provisions that the Navajo Nation give the Hopi 
     Tribe Navajo land including the sacred area known as 
     'Sipapu' and land for a corridor to connect the CO Bar Ranch 
     with the Hopi reservation -- left the Dine' families feeling 
     that the federal government and the Mediator gave greater 
     recognition to the Hopi religious concerns than to those of 
     the Dine' families. This perception was greatly increased 
     when the families were asked to dismantle Mae Tso's 
     ceremonial hogan and the hogan at the Big Mountain Survival 
     Camp as part of the Hopi Tribe's 10 Preconditions. 

          Although the Dine' families raised several religious 
     concerns in meetings during the summer, the August 5, 1993, 
     deadline ended the direct talks between the Dine' families 
     and the Hopi Tribe. There may have been different 
     expectations about how to proceed to address the concerns 
     that were expressed by the Dine' families. Regardless, the 
     end result was that these religious concerns have not yet 
     been addressed by the Hopi Tribe and the draft lease 
     proposal has not yet been modified to accommodate these 
     needs. Any agreement must include a guarantee that the 
     religious beliefs and practices of both Hopi and Dine' 
     people will be respected and protected on an equal basis. 


          The thread running through traditional Dine' culture 
     that defines well-being, indeed life itself, is a religion 
     that has enabled the Dine' to retain their identity in a 
     rapidly changing world. Religion as lived by the traditional 
     Dine' is their well being, it is life, the rain, the 
     weather, the change of seasons, the land, the hogan, their 
     livestock and cornfields, These things are interrelated and 
     can not be separated. The land and home (the hogan), the 
     reproductive powers of nature, and the origins of the Dine' 
     Way are closely tied together in legend and ceremony. 

          For the traditional Dine', their "church" is the world 
     bounded by four sacred mountains, and their traditional 
     home, the hogan, is a model of that world, from the details 
     of its construction to the placement of the first and the 
     orientation of the doorway. Thus, many traditional 
     ceremonies are held in the family's hogan. But many others 
     are held outside, sometimes at a distant location away from 
     the hogan. Religious ceremonies do not always take place and 
     sacred places are not always centered -- as they are for 
     many non-Indians -- only in built religious structures. The 
     sacred can manifest itself many other places: in trees, 
     mountains, springs, or plants. Proper attention and respect 
     for the sacred requires that offerings and prayers be made 
     at many different types of offering sites. Sacred places and 
     practices are part of the definition of the Dine' families' 
     occupancy of their homesites and thus religion; to limit 
     people to three acre homesites without a guarantee of 
     protection for sacred places outside the homesite betrays a 
     fundamental misunderstanding of the nature of the 
     traditional Dine' religion. 

          a.  THE HOGAN -- The hogan is the center of Dine' 
     ceremonial life. The hogan itself is, like a church, a very 
     sacred place. Most traditional ceremonies require a hogan 
     and the religious paraphernalia known as the prayer or earth 
     bundle are kept in the hogan. The prayer bundle is one of 
     the most sacred objects in Dine' religion. It contains sand 
     from the six sacred mountains, a sheep doll fetish made of 
     white stone, a horse doll fetish made of black (jet) stone, 
     buckskin, corn pollen, white shell, abalone, turquoise, jet 
     stone, crystal and Ha dah hon ni yeh (a sacred stone which 
     serves as the centerpiece or spine of the bundle). 
          The prayer bundle symbolizes the balance in life and 
     must always be kept safe and secure. The prayer bundle is 
     kept in a Navajo basket which in turn is kept in the hogan. 
     The relationships of these sacred objects is essential to 
     maintaining the balance and harmony in the beauty way of the 
     Dine' world. 

          One of the most central and fundamental Dine' 
     ceremonies is Blessingway. With the Blessingway, as with all 
     Dine' ceremonies, "marking" or offerings of white corn meal 
     and corn poller. are made before the ceremony begins. The 
     purpose of the ceremony is to establish a state of balance 
     or harmony. Blessingway songs are sung at the end of every 
     ceremony. Blessingway is also the core of the initiation of 
     young girls into womanhood, and new homes are blessed with 
     songs from the ceremony. Its legends tell of the events 
     after the Emergence, the construction of the hogan, and the 
     sacred geography of the Dine'; hence, Blessingway is perhaps 
     the most important religious facet of traditional Dine' 
     identity. These ceremonies can only be performed in the 
     families' hogans and at other sacred places known to the 
     Dine' families. 

          b. SACRED SITES ON THE HPL -- Learning how to live 
     means praying to and giving thanks for what gives life: 
     Mother Earth, the Sun, Fire and Air. Each has gods or Holy 
     People dwelling within. There are prayers and offerings at 
     special places -- like springs, shrines, flat areas, young 
     trees, and at home -- that must be learned and passed on. 
     These prayers are for well-being, protection, and blessings 

          The first tie to the land occurs when a child is 
     conceived in the mother's womb. Prayers and ceremonies are 
     performed for the unborn child which introduce the child to 
     the Holy Ones and visa versa. When the child is born the 
     afterbirth is offered to a young tree so as the young tree 
     grows the child grows. The tree stands in a lifelong 
     relationship to the person and prayers and offerings are 
     made there throughout one's lifetime. 

          Sacred places are commonly expressed as a place of 
     offering. A place is sacred because it is possible to 
     communicate there with the Holy People through prayer and 
     offering. The Holy People cannot be seen, but their presence 
     is known through air movements and vibrations, a certain 
     kind of light, pictographs, noises, and through legends. 

          There are several consistent qualitative associations, 
     such as kinds of places, atmospheric conditions, or times, 
     that provide needed access to the Holy People. Mountains, 
     watercourses, springs, hills, flat areas, at young trees, 
     and at home are common places for prayer and offering. There 
     are also traditional natural springs, rock formations, and 
     other phenomena of nature that are shrines. 

          Families' traditional use areas are bounded by sacred 
     places where Holy people dwell. Parents and grandparents 
     teach their children and grandchildren the prayers and 
     offerings that must be made at these places to insure well-
     being and protection. The land outside of this protective 
     line is potentially dangerous. Also, families have 
     responsibility as caretakers of the land; the prayers and 
     offerings must be continued to maintain the essential order 
     of balance and harmony. 

          Sacred places are used on a regular basis by local 
     families, and some are used regionally. Big Mountain is an 
     example of a site with regional significance. The mountain 
     is a very important Holy Person, mentioned frequently in the 
     literature of Navajo religion. "He is the one that created 
     man,' said one resident. There is a Shrine on Big Mountain 
     that was built by Holy People when the universe was being 
     form d. It was built by the Holy People for the Dine' and 
     they were instructed to preserve and protect it. 

          There are numerous places throughout the HPL which have 
     religious significance to the Dine' families. (1) Neither 
     the Hopi Tribe nor the U.S. Government, and to some degree 
     the Navajo Nation, realized or understand the many religious 
     sites which exist on the HPL. The families believe that the 
     governments involved do not understand the significance or 
     importance of these religious sites to the Dine' families. 
     (1) Some of these places include: natural springs, trees 
         struck by lightning, rocks struck by lightning, 
         prairies/meadows, stream and river beds, trees, wind 
         paths, undisturbed areas, cornfields, highest points of 
         mountains/buttes, plants, rocks, Star Mountain, daily 
         offering places located away from the homesite where 
         offerings are made at dawn and dusk, coyote paths, eagle 
         nesting areas, cliffs or tse (rocks), hilltops, sacred 
         mountains, talking rocks (where nature joins you in your 
         prayers) and caves, mouths of canyons or elsewhere where 
         the wind echoes. 

          There are sites such as Big Mountain and Star Mountain 
     that are significant to all Dine'. There are sites such as 
     springs, rock formations, trees and other special places 
     that have a religious significance to the extended families 
     which make up the Dine' communities and clans. There are 
     also offering sites, burial sites and other places that have 
     a religious significance to the individual family that lives 
     within the Dine' communities. All of these places are 
     important because they are known by the Holy People and by 
     the Dine'. 

          These sacred places must be respected and protected. 
     Some of these places can be identified and discussed with 
     outsiders. Other places cannot be identified or discussed 
     without exposing the site and the people who depend on the 
     site to danger or destruction. Any settlement must include 
     an express agreement that sacred sites will be respected and 

          The families suggest that each community prepare a map 
     of the sacred sites within the community. These maps must be 
     kept confidential and would be used in meetings with the 
     Hopi Tribe to work out the details for land use, development 
     etc. The Manybeads/Tso family and Medicine man Alvin Clinton 
     and the other families from the Star Mountain area are in 
     the process of mapping their areas. They should be prepared 
     by mid-January to discuss the maps of those two areas to the 
     Hopi Tribe and the Mediator. 

          The families believe that in the past the U.S. 
     Government and the Hopi Tribe have not respected or 
     protected religious sites on the HPL. For example, Star 
     Mountain, which is located in the Teestoh area, is a place 
     of great religious significance to the Dine'. When the Hopi 
     Tribe and the U.S. Government began to erect barbwire range 
     fence near Star Mountain, the Teestoh community raised their 
     religious based concerns with both the Hopi Tribe and the 
     U.S. Government. Despite being aware of the religious 
     significance of Star Mountain, the Hopi Tribe and the U.S. 
     Government ignored the Dine' concerns and fenced Star 

          A medicine man in the Teestoh community was then 
     arrested and jailed when he attempted to stop the U.S. 
     Government and the Hopi Tribe from desecrating Star 
     Mountain. The U. S. Government and the Hopi Tribe could have 
     built its range fencing around Star Mountain without 
     interfering with this important religious site. Instead, the 
     U.S. Government and the Hopi Tribe chose to put the barbwire 
     fence up over Star Mountain in spite of the Dine's expressed 
     religious concerns about the area. As a result, Star 
     Mountain is fenced to the top from the east and west sides 
     of the mountain and there is also a third fence line that 
     comes to the base of mountain from the south side. 

          The Hopi Tribe wants a two mile radius around its 
     shrine at Cliff Springs that restricts development, grazing 
     and other uses. The Hopi Tribe also seeks similar protection 
     for eagle nesting areas and for the sacred area known as 
     "Sipapu," all of which are located on Navajo land. The Dine' 
     families believe that the Hopi Tribe has in the past refused 
     to agree to equal or similar protection of Dine' sites. The 
     Dine' families therefore would like the same type of 
     protection or respect. There must be equal treatment of Hopi 
     and Dine' religious needs. 

          c. CORNFIELDS/FARMING -- Cornfields are also sacred. 
     There are songs and prayers that involve the corn and 
     cornfields Sand from the cornfields is involved in 
     ceremonies. The sand is taken into the hogan and returned to 
     the field after the ceremony is completed. Sand is also used 
     in sand paintings and as a purification wash. Different 
     kinds of corn and different parts of the corn (the husk, 
     corn cob, corn pollen) are used in ceremonies and as 
     offerings. In the field, the different colored corn are laid 
     out in a sacred way in planting. The corn is used in almost 
     every ceremony. These fields are also important for food. 
     Corn and other crops, such as melon, beans and squash are 
     grown in the corn fields and the seeds from all the crops 
     are saved for replanting. 

          Each individual family's cornfield is sacred and 
     important to them and should be protected and treated as a 
     sacred site. When children are married they need to be able 
     to select cornfield for their family. 

     ceremonies are performed in hogans or other special 
     structures. Unlike the Hopi, we do not live in villages or 
     perform our ceremonies in Kivas. We Dine' perform our 
     ceremonies at many different locations, normally at secluded 
     or undisturbed areas of nature. These outdoor ceremonies are 
     never performed at the same place twice. (2) 

     (2) An example of some of our ceremonies include: Yei bi 
         che, Ni dah, Firedance, Hozho Ji, 5 night ceremony, Ki 
         nal dah, Nit chi ji, wedding ceremony, Peyote, Herb 
         gathering, Hand trembling, Crystal gazing, Sundance, 
         Daily offerings, Ni ghiz, Healing ceremonies and Sweat 

          Many of our ceremonies, including the Yei bi che, Enemy 
     Way and Fire Dance ceremonies, last several days and require 
     us to build special structures away from our homes. These 
     ceremonies require the use of open areas and land much 
     larger than three acres. The type of structures usually 
     include hogans, ramadas, sweat lodges, Yei houses and 
     firepits. We need to be able to build these religious 
     structures not only at our homesite but also elsewhere on 
     the HPL. The structures may need to be up for several weeks. 
     For example the Yei bi che, Ni dah and Fire Dance last for 
     nearly two weeks. In certain rare situations a structure may 
     need to be left up for a longer period of time. We could 
     either notify the Hopi Tribe directly or through the Navajo 
     Nation when we have such a ceremony. 

          An example of what we are talking about is the Yei Bi 
     Che ceremony. For this winter ceremony we need a ceremonial 
     hogan, a ramada or cooking shack, a Yei house (four wooden 
     posts covered with green cedar tree branches), an herb rack 
     and a sweat lodge. Normally the Yei house is built about 500 
     feet to the east of the hogan. The ramada or cooking shack 
     is about 200 feet west of the hogan and the herb rack is 
     located near and to the southeast of the hogan. 

          We use approximately 10 loads of wood during the 
     ceremony. We need camping and parking space for the 
     participants and guests. We also need to gather herbs prior 
     to the ceremony. We may go anywhere from 5-20 miles to 
     collect the herbs. Prior, during and after the ceremonies 
     there will be a lot of people travelling to and from the 

          The ceremony lasts for 13 days (9 days followed by 4 
     days of reflection after the ceremony). Sacred objects are 
     then left in the Yei house which is left standing until the 
     it decays by natural forces. The other structures may be 
     taken down after the days of reflection. 

          The Dine' families will identify the various ceremonies 
     that involve construction of shelters outside the homesite 
     areas, describing the approximate number of days of the 
     ceremony and reflection time and describing which structures 
     (if any) must remain standing after the ceremony and for how 

          4. GATHERING OF HERBS. 

          Herbs are used in all Dine' ceremonies and medicines. 
     (3) The agreement would need to contain a recognition that 
     we have always gathered and used these herbs and that we 
     would have the right to do so in the future. There is a 
     special way in which these sacred herbs are collected. The 
     medicine person knows where the plants are located. They go 
     to that place and offer a prayer. The plant is called by its 
     Dine' name and an offering is made to the Holy Ones. The 
     Holy Ones are told why the plant is being taken and who the 
     plant is for. We take the plants for ceremonies only at the 
     time when they are needed and in the amount that they are 
     needed for a particular ceremony or patient. Herbs are also 
     used for food, dyes and medicine. 

     (3) Some of the herbs we use in religious ceremonies and 
         offerings include: Yucca, Spearmint, Cho'ho Juv Yeh, 
         Snake Weed, Cactus-Prickly Pear, Sage, Foxtail, Cedar, 
         and Chil bi Chi Th. 

          5. WATER 

          Natural springs are considered sacred to the Dine'. 
     There are several natural springs on the H.P.L. (4) 

     (4) An example of some of those springs include: Red Willow 
         Springs, Big Mountain Springs (East, West, North, 
         South), Gravel Pit (Coalmine area), Mosquito Springs, 
         Dove Springs, Badger Springs, Owl Springs, Sunshine 
         Springs, Tiic Ya Toh, To Ha Tich, Black Horse Spring, 
         Clay Spring, Onion Spring, Horse Spring, Yes Ya Toh, 
         Lizard Spring, Tsi Dzeh (Jeddito area) and other various 
         natural springs. 
          The agreement would need to include a guarantee that 
     these sacred places will be respected and protected. In the 
     past, many of the springs have been disturbed or destroyed 
     by the BIA or Hopi Tribe. For example, Horse Springs, near 
     Star Mountain, and several other natural springs have been 
     sealed off and the sacred water diverted to other areas for 
     Hopi cattle. We would want to be able to identify these 
     springs and be consulted before the Hopi Tribe or the U.S. 
     takes any action which would impact a spring. 


          This is a very sensitive issue. For the Dine', we do 
     not think of one's death and it should not normally be 
     spoken about. To speak about death and burial is understood 
     by the families as if we are planning for their death. When 
     death does occur, we see it as the completion of a natural 
     cycle where we are returned to our Mother. 
          Existing burial sites must be protected and we must 
     also be allowed to bury our loved ones in the future. Our 
     families and our ancestors have been born and raised in our 
     homelands. We hope our future generations will be born here 
     as well. These are the lands where our umbilical cords are 
     buried which help tie us to our Mother, the Earth. There are 
     prayers and songs like the Beauty Way and other traditional 
     Dine' ceremonies which have been performed on the land. 
     These prayers and ceremonies anchor us to our Mother. We 
     believe that the places where we are born and where we are 
     buried, are sacred places. When we pass on, we are returned 
     to the lands we know and love. We are returned to our 
     Mother. For us, it is a moral and religious right to be 
     buried on our homelands. 

          Those who have passed on and who have been returned to 
     the earth on the HPL should be respected. Each community 
     should decide how their burial sites could be identified so 
     that they will not be disturbed. This information should be 
     kept confidential. 

          Each community should also decide how they will settle 
     the issue of future burial sites. Some communities may wish 
     to establish community cemeteries, others may choose to 
     continue burying their loved ones on the Navajo reservation 
     or even off the reservation. Some families may wish to 
     continue burying their loved ones at a traditional site near 
     their homesite. The exact details should be worked out 
     between the Dine' communities and the Hopi Tribe. We are 
     very uncomfortable about the Hopi Tribe regulating this 
     special issue and want to stress that any agreement should 
     be sensitive to this concern and we must be treated equally 
     with the Hopi. 

          7. HOMESITES 

          The Hopi lease only provides approximately 112 
     homesites. The agreement should include all Dine' families 
     who live on the HPL on a full time basis. It is not possible 
     for us to separate our children from ourselves. Our 
     relatives who are temporarily away from home for military, 
     school, work or medical reasons should also be included. 

          Families are also concerned that the three acre site is 
     not large enough to accommodate an extended family and the 
     necessary structures for practicing their religion and 
     maintaining their traditional livelihood. Because of the 
     construction freeze, many Dine' families have not been able 
     to construct homesites for children as they have families of 
     their own. One family will serve as an example of why a 
     three acre homesite is not large enough. There are seven 
     heads of household, requiring seven homes. There are also 
     the following additional structures and requirements: 
     outhouse, coal or wood pile, lumber pile, water barrel, ash 
     pile, trash, rabbits/pigs/dog/cat/chicken shelters, shade 
     trees, clothes line, goat and sheep corral, horse corral, 
     ramada or shade house, hay storage place, tool shack, 
     ceremonial hogan, tipi ground (for members of the Native 
     American Church), storage for tipi poles, sweat lodge, bread 
     oven, play area for children. 

          Any agreement should provide for residential, farming, 
     grazing and religious use. We understand that this is a very 
     important issue and we would like to map our homesites to 
     demonstrate where and how we live. Many of the elderly are 
     still fearful of being fenced inside a three acre area with 
     no other grazing area for their animals and of not being 
     allowed outside the three acre site for religious purposes. 
     This issue requires further discussion and some method of 
     visually demonstrating the concept to the people. 

          8. LIVESTOCK 

          For us, the traditional grassroots people, our 
     livestock are one of the most important things in our lives. 
     These animals have been given to us by the Creator for our 
     ceremonies, food, to be used to teach our children the 
     stories and lessons that they must know to carry on our way 
     of life, and for wool which is used to weave rugs and 
     provide income to the families. The weaving of rugs means 
     much more to us that just income. When a women learns to 
     weave she is taught the stories about the animals and about 
     the loom and the other instruments that are used to turn raw 
     wool into a beautiful rug. The weaving process teaches the 
     woman to use her mind and imagination to plan the design, 
     color and size of the rug. It helps her strengthen her mind, 
     to develop exact thoughts, and to weave a story, using 
     symbols, into the rug. As livestock has been severely 
     reduced over the years, so has this central part of a 
     woman's religious education. 

          All of the animals have sacred songs and prayers. Each 
     has a name which is used in our ceremonies. Livestock is 
     also used as gifts and food in our religious and social 
     functions and for economical survival. Livestock is so 
     important that sheep and horse fetishes are kept inside the 
     Navajo prayer or earth bundle. 

          We understood that the livestock must be raised so that 
     the land is not overgrazed or injured. We also understand 
     that we are being asked to share the land with the Hopi 
     neighbors so that we both can have a good life. We only ask 
     to be treated fairly and equally with the Hopi neighbors. 

          For us, we believe we must be allowed to maintain our 
     animal herds, including sheep, cattle and horses -- not just 
     sheep. If there is not enough land for all of the animals, 
     perhaps other land off the HPL could be made available near 
     us for grazing. The amount of animals that would be allowed 
     should be discussed between each Dine' community and the 
     Hopi Tribe. In addition, the Navajo Nation should not be the 
     ones to decide who gets the grazing allocated to the Dine' 
     families. The allocation should be worked out between the 
     Dine' residents of the HPL and the Hopi Tribe. 

          9. EVICTION 

          The Hopi lease proposal has many things that are harsh 
     and that hurt us when we hear about them. It seems the Hopi 
     Tribe is really trying more to evict us than to live with us 
     as neighbors. We want these harsh words to be replaced with 
     words of friendship and peace. 

          If a non-Indian or Hopi person breaks the law, they are 
     punished by a fine or a jail sentence. They do not lose 
     their home and their family. We should be treated equally 
     with the non-Indian and the Hopi. If one of our people 
     breaks the law we should be punished the same as the non-
     Indian or the Hopi, we should not be driven from our 
     homeland and our family. The same basic laws should apply 
     equally to all of us regardless of race, creed or color. In 
     this way we will all be treated the same no matter whose 
     laws or courts are used. 

          There are also several traditional forms of livelihood 
     which should not be considered "commercial activities." 
     These include silversmithing, weaving and selling rugs, 
     raising livestock, gathering herbs, and performing 
     ceremonies (medicine people). Practice of these traditional 
     forms of livelihood should not be considered violations of 
     an agreement. 

          Eviction and violations of the agreement are difficult 
     to discuss because it seems to imply that these bad things 
     will happen. We believe that we can reach an agreement with 
     the Hopi Tribe and that through further meetings and 
     discussion we will demonstrate that the harsh parts of the 
     proposed lease will not be necessary to include in our 
     agreement. The people need to understand that the rules and 
     regulations do not apply only to them and that these are the 
     same laws that Hopi, non-Indian and other Dine' must follow. 

          10. RENT 

          This issue is very difficult for us because, for us, it 
     is like asking us to pay for the right to practice our 
     religion. We, the people who live on the HPL, should make 
     our agreement with the Hopi Tribe concerning the religious 
     accommodation. The Navajo Nation, the U.S. and the Hopi 
     Tribe should make a separate agreement concerning the 
     lawsuits between the tribal governments and other money 
     issues. We do not want cur religion mixed with the money 

          11. 75 YEAR LEASE TERM 

          We believe that if we can explain ourselves to the Hopi 
     Tribe and if they can explain their religious concerns and 
     needs to us, it will be possible to reach a more permanent 
     arrangement. We think that if we can both experience a good 
     neighbor relationship that it should be presumed that the 
     neighborship agreement will continue for future generations. 
     Perhaps a test or interim period should be agreed upon so 
     that we can all see and understand how the agreement will 
     work. In this way, the agreement could be reviewed or 
     modified if we discover that there are problems that we did 
     not foresee. 

          The draft lease currently includes a 75 year lease 
     term. At the end of that 75 year period there is no 
     agreement that the Dine' families will be allowed to remain 
     on their ancestral homelands. The right to remain on their 
     ancestral homelands is central to the Dine' peoples' ability 
     to exercise their religion and, thus, is central to any 
     accommodation. There are two categories of reasons why 
     continued occupancy is essential for the exercise of the 
     traditional Dine' religion. The first includes reasons why 
     one must stay on one's traditional use area. The second 
     includes reasons why one could not leave their homeland and 
     live in a "foreign" place. 

          One should stay on one's traditional use area because 
     of the responsibility for taking care of the land, in a 
     spiritual sense. As an HPL resident put it: "The places were 
     handed down from my mother and father. They told me to use 
     it. They told me to live on that land. If we don't pray 
     there, if that prayer is not offered and we relocate and are 
     no longer there, the Holy People might think humans are no 
     longer in existence and that may bring the end of the future 
     at that time. I don't want the end to occur that soon. I 
     want my children to live and my grandchildren to live." 

          In other words, there may be a new, unknown, and 
     potentially dangerous order of things if the families cannot 
     meet their responsibility for taking care of the land. The 
     sacred places in a family's traditional use area define a 
     sacred zone to which they have responsibilities and which is 
     also a safe area for the family. For a family, this is 
     analogous to the sacredness and safeness of the area which 
     exists for the Dine' as a whole within the four sacred 
     mountains. People feel spiritually safe and secure within 
     these spiritual zones of protection. 

          There are also serious problems in moving to unknown 
     "foreign" land, as the following quotation from a resident 
     of the Hopi-Partitioned Lands clearly indicates: "We are not 
     familiar with many places, we are not familiar with many 
     areas. Because we have never been there, there night be a 
     place where people are not supposed to go that is for 
     something else, and we might be living there. Or maybe we 
     might go to a spring where our people were forbidden. And 
     here we thought it was a good place and we would go there 
     and we would conflict with the Holy People that protect 
     those areas. This we could not know because our grandfathers 
     and our mothers and fathers did not tell us, because we 
     never knew that things like this relocation would ever take 

          As noted above, the traditional Dine' belief is that 
     "improper contact with inherently dangerous power . . . may 
     lead to illness, the price man pays for disturbance of the 
     normal order, harmony, or balance among elements in the 
     universe." Moving to a "foreign" land could bring persons 
     into contact with dangerous powers that could cause illness 
     now or in 75 years. 

          A related concern for traditional Dine' moving to 
     "foreign" lands is a lack of knowledge of places where one 
     can communicate with the Holy People; in other words, sacred 
     places. People will wonder where, for example, certain 
     ceremonies may or must be held. 

          These issues are even more significant today than they 
     were a generation ago. Much of the specialized religious 
     knowledge is held by elderly medicine people, and by the 
     grandparent-generation. With the passing on of these 
     persons, the likelihood of finding persons who know, or can 
     determine, places to avoid or places where one may 
     communicate with the Holy People is greatly diminished. The 
     families fear for their children and grandchildren who will 
     face this problem in 75 years. 

          For these reasons, the Dine' families have made clear 
     that they can not relocate now or in 75 years. For the 
     families, the 75 year lease period is like saying that the 
     families only have 75 more years to be Dine'; 75 more years 
     to carry out their religious teachings which have been 
     passed down through generations; 75 more years for sacred 
     places which were given to the Dine' by the Creator to 
     remain sacred. At the end of 75 years the families are 
     expected to stop being Dine'. There must be some guarantee 
     that the Dine' children and grandchildren will be allowed to 
     remain near their sacred places in the future in a treaty or 
     neighborship agreement reached and fulfilled by the parties. 


          We would like to have the mediation extended beyond the 
     December 31, 1993, deadline to allow for the following: 

          1. Identification, by January 21, 1994, of the details 
          of other major ceremonies (in addition to the Yei bi 
          che ceremony) that may require use of areas outside the 

          2. Completion of the maps of sacred sites in the Dine' 
          communities near Teestoh and Mosquito Springs by 
          January 21, 1994. Completion of the maps in the other 
          communities by February 18, 1994. 

          3. Development of a more detailed discussion of our 
          concerns and suggested solutions to be provided to the 
          Hopi Tribe prior to the change in Hopi administration. 

          4. Discussion of our concerns and suggested solutions 
          with the Mediator once the maps for the Teestoh and 
          Mosquito Springs areas are completed. This could occur 
          in late January. Because of the sensitivity of sharing 
          the location of sacred sites, we would like to share 
          the maps for purposes of discussion, but to keep them 
          with the Dine' families -- at least while there are 
          discussions prior to ratification of a preliminary 
          draft agreement as discussed in number 6 below. 

          5. Meetings between the Dine' representatives and the 
          Hopi Tribe to allow the Dine' to explain their concerns 
          and suggestions and to answer questions the Hopi Tribe 
          may have. These meetings could begin as soon as the 
          Hopi Tribe would be available. We, the Dine', believe 
          that we do not understand the Hopi Tribe's concerns and 
          needs and, for that reason, it is difficult to know on 
          some issues what to offer as a suggested solution. 
          Without understanding the Hopi Tribe's concerns and 
          needs, we, the Dine' families, might propose something 
          that would cause upset and frustration and sound harsh 
          and harmful to the Hopis. We hope that the Hopi Tribe 
          can explain their concerns and needs to us, as well so 
          that we can help each other find a way to live in peace 
          and harmony. 

          6. The preparation and ratification of a preliminary 
          draft agreement on several key issues including: 1) 
          recognition and respect for both Dine' and Hopi 
          religion; 2) recognition and protection of sacred 
          sites; 3) burial sites; 4) the construction of 
          religious structures outside the homesite; 5) gathering 
          of herbs; 6) right to maintain cornfields and farming 
          areas; and 7) protection of and access to certain 
          natural springs. This could be completed by March 1, 

          7. Meetings between the Hopi Tribe and individual Dine' 
          communities to work out the details of the remaining 
          issues including the final form and nature of the 
          agreement, residential use areas, grazing, and a 
          dispute resolution mechanism.                                   


          The Dine' families understand that this process cannot 
     go on forever. At the same time, we feel that we now have 
     only just recently been included in the actual negotiation 
     process and have made great progress in the last several 
     months. We want to live as neighbors with the Hopi. We 
     believe that each Dine' community should be allowed to 
     finalize the details of a neighborship agreement with the 
     Hopi that takes into account the unique concerns of the 
     various communities. We do not believe we understand the 
     Hopis and want very much to listen to their concerns and 
     needs so that we can understand their position on these 
     issues. We also believe that this mediation is our best hope 
     to achieve a fair and humane solution to this complex issue. 

          The Dine' families remember the words that you said to 
     Mae Tso at the first mediation meeting in San Diego over 
     three years ago when you introduced yourself to them. You 
     told her that you had been appointed by the Ninth Circuit 
     Court -- to listen to her problems -- to help her forget her 
     pain -- and to help those two great nations settle this 
     dispute so that Mae Tso and the other elderly women would 
     weep no more about this problem. If these things could be 
     done, you will be blessed by the Holy Spirit. We want to 
     assist you in reaching that goal and hope that this report 
     will bring us closer to a resolution acceptable to all. 
     Thank you. 

          Respectfully submitted, on behalf of the Dine' 
     residents of the HPL, 

     Lee Brooke Phillips                                                    

     To have a current Center For World Indigenous Studies Publication
            Catalogue sent to you via e-mail, send a request to



                     FTP /pub/FWDP/CWIS

                    Center For World Indigenous Studies
                               P.O. Box 2574
                            Olympia, WA  U.S.A.

                             BBS: 206-786-9629

               OCR Provided by Caere Corporation's PageKeeper