Kokopelli Symbolism and Meaning
Kokopelli is an interesting Native American symbol. This symbol features a hunchback who plays a flute. At times, he is depicted as carrying a sack in his back. Images of the Kokopelli symbols were first discovered on Hohokam pottery over one thousand years ago.
In Native American mythology, Kokopelli is somewhat like a god. He possesses the wisdom of age, and many people refer to him for solutions when they have problems. He is a storyteller, music maker, rainmaker, healer and magician. Kokopelli is also held in high regard as a good teacher.
This legend is a merry traveler who leaves important life lessons everywhere he passes through. You need not take life seriously all the time. At times, create time for yourself and make the best out of life. These are some of the lessons that he has for people he encounters.
This symbol gives us hope for a better world. You should appreciate all the bad and good experiences you encounter in life because they teach you important life lessons that you need not forget.
In some myths, it is believed that Kokopelli’s hunch has seeds, plants, and sacred medical elements. While he sows seeds on the land, he plays his flute, thus blowing the breath of life into the earth for abundant harvests.
Understanding The Kokopelli
The Kokopelli deity holds great significance in the lives of Native Americans situated in the Southwestern region of the United States. This symbol signifies happiness and joy, fertility, good luck and celebrations.
Kokopelli came up as a representation of Aztec traders. These traders would journey long distances with sacks on their backs, carrying the goods they intended to trade. This symbol signifies divinity and is revered by the Hopi, Zuni, Anasazi and Navajo tribes.
It is believed that Kokopelli brings good fortune and prosperity into the people’s homes that listen to his songs. He has melodious songs that attract people. When he reaches a place, he plays his flute to announce his coming. Once he leaves the said place, the area will be bountiful in its harvests.
It is said that the Kokopelli’s flute can be heard in the breeze of Spring. It brings warmth to the earth following the Winter season. Kokopelli is also seen as a magician who makes magical things happen whenever he passes.
Symbolic Meaning of The Kokopelli
Symbol of Fertility
Some Indian tribes view the Kokopelli as a god of fertility. It is associated with childbirth and the production of crops. Legend has it that the sack Kokopelli carries on his back contains seeds that he plants. These seeds bring about bountiful harvests that make people happy.
Some legends claim that when he plays his flute, sweet music is produced, and men use the same to court women. When they are successful in courting the women, the Kokopelli plays his flute again, and the women become fertile and so they can give birth to children.
In some tribes, it is believed that when Kokopelli played his flute, snow would melt, marking the end of Winter and the beginning of Spring.
Sign of Happiness and Joy
Some cultures believe that the sack on Kokopelli’s back carries rainbows that bring happiness onto the earth. The Rainbow Kokopelli spreads happiness, joy and hope for a better tomorrow. Always look forward to a better life beyond the life you are living now.
This symbol is also a sign of a life full of blessings and great abundance. Yei people look at this deity as a symbol of beauty in cordial relationships.
Symbol of Music
Music is sweet to the ears when played right. The Kokopelli is believed to have the most amazing music any ear has ever heard. Kokopelli’s flute signifies joy, music and fun. It is a representation of the laughter and music that should engulf different kinds of celebrations.
The Kokopelli is a reminder that people should enjoy themselves. Do not hold yourself back even for a second. Enjoy life while you still can because life is short. Do not live a serious life all the time because you might just die without actually having had enjoyed yourself to the fullest.
This symbol is an inspiration to creative minds such as poets, writers and musicians.
Sign of Unity
The Kokopelli brings people together in celebrations and planting seasons. This concept is well drawn in the book ‘Kokopelli: The Magic, Mirth, and Mischief of An Ancient Symbol’ written by Dennis Slifer.
Being a god of fertility, the Kokopelli unites people, animals and plants through their ability to reproduce and improve the status of the world. All living creatures in the world share a connection that brings about unity and harmony.
The Indians value their tradition of passing the pipe around. It was believed that if the Kokopelli appeared to you while you held the pipe, then good luck will follow you. It was a sign that you would prosper in your future and achieve all your heart’s desires.
The Kokopelli is, therefore, a great good luck symbol to have in your life.
The Negative Side of This Symbol
Some Indians view the Kokopelli as a Trickster god due to its funny and jovial nature. Some Indian tribes see this deity as a joker and swindler.
They do not believe in it as a fertility god because, at times, plants fail to produce, and couples fail to have children. At times plans fail, but the Kokopelli should not get the blame for this. Some people just tend to make the wrong decisions and choices.
Modern Understanding of the Kokopelli
The hippies have taken over the Kokopelli, and they have changed it to be a colorful musician with dreadlocks, leaning over his instrument. He is not longer a hunchback with a flute in his hand or a sack on good on his back.
This symbol can be found on clothing, tattoos and jewelry. It can also be found on music festival posters and concerts.
In the Hippie Culture, the Kokopelli signifies a free spirit, free to explore the world and learn from new experiences.