The Zia Indians are an indigenous tribe centered at the Zia Pueblo in Sandoval County, New Mexico. They regard their Sun symbol with its groups of rays pointing in four directions as sacred. It is painted on ceremonial vases, drawn on the ground around campfires, and used to introduce newborns to the Sun. Four is the sacred number of the Zia and can be found repeated in the four points radiating from the circle. The number four is embodied in the:
- four points of the compass (north, south, east, and west);
- four seasons of the year (spring, summer, autumn and winter);
- four periods of each day (morning, noon, evening and night);
- four seasons of life (childhood, youth, middle years and old age); and
- four sacred obligations one must develop (a strong body, a clear mind, a pure spirit, and a devotion to the welfare of others).
Archaeologists believe that the Keresan-speaking residents of Zia are descendants of the Ancestral Pueblo people of the Four Corners region who migrated to the Jemez River Valley sometime in the thirteenth century.
The red sun symbol of the Zia is featured on the flag of the state of New Mexico.
Information source: Wikipedia
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