If a picture is worth one thousand words, then Marcia Keegan’s latest book is a chronicle of the similarities between two ancient cultures that have sustained the human legacy through epochs of change. While our current world view has been shaped by the renaissance in Europe and the industrial revolution, the Native American and Tibetan Cultures were thriving in a world of isolation from “modernity” maintaining their own traditions handed down through their elders. The Native American emergence stories and world cycles and ceremonies are as alive today as they were in pre-historic times. The Tibetan rituals date back to their root culture of Shang Shung pre-dating ten thousand years ago as the indigenous culture for the Tibetan plateau. Both cultures have co-evolved without any recorded contact between each other until 1979 during the Dalai Lamas first historic visit to North America.
Marcia Keegan was there to arrange the initial meeting between the Hopi Elders and the Dalai Lama’s delegation. The Hopi greeting to the Dalai Lama “welcome home” signified a fulfillment of one of their prophesies, The Dalai Lama in response asked “ where did you get your turquoise? ” which signified a recognition of shared values for both cultures. The subsequent dialog between the two leaders explored many common values that reveal their basic human and cultural values that have existed and sustained the spiritual, economic and governance of two cultures through centuries of change and have been codified in a cosmology that respects the dignity of the individual, sacredness of nature, and the importance of ceremony as a living condition. Although the ceremonies and spiritual beliefs differ, the core human values are the same defined by their land and architecture, people, culture and customs, mountains and spirits, mandalas and sand paintings, ritual dances, petroglyphs and rock art, creation myths, prophesies, and coming together. This book through text and images will captivate you and offer a rare glimpse of the heritage of our common human legacy.
Keegan, through her insightful text and photographs allows you to draw your own conclusions as to what is important, questioning your values in relationship to two ancient and dynamic cultures that have made a contribution to mankind in a non-material manner. The conclusions you draw are your own, the choices you make have their own results for the world that you live in.
Enjoy this book, ponder the comparison of similarities not only of two ancient cultures but also of the world you live in. It is never finite and always subject to change.