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Dancers celebrating the Hikuri Neixa (the Peyote Dance) festival in a ceremonial center.

The Wixárika People Candidacy

We westerners have come to believe in One God, or no god at all.
We perceive people’s earnest talk about their god, or worse still, their gods, with an unlimited dose of scepticism. What we secretly really would like to do is laugh in their faces and beg them to stop their infantile talk.
Now, imagine for a moment a Huichol, listening to the voice of a forebear – a father or mother, a grandparent or even a great-grandparent – talking to her or him from the depths beyond the mind, opened up by the hikuri, the venerated peyote. Imagine that Huichol person entering into a discussion with this forebear, through which the entire past of the Huichol people is progressively revealed, its tribal customs and its intimate relation to the natural world. Archetypal images of peyote, deer, corn - the mother – and the primordial snake that represents cosmic creation, are hallucinated. These archetypes are not just images, but symbols of the divine Huichol pantheon that form part of their mythology and are venerated together with the forebears. Accessible once the doors of perception have been cleaned by hikuri, these images come to life and turn the Huichol celebrant into an equal of these divinities, participant of creation and responsible for it. Since this responsibility is not a mentally accepted political issue but the result of a profoundly lived existential, physical experience, the Huichols engage from personal desire in a harmonious relation with their natural environment.

We westerners have been prohibited the use of mind-altering products; we have been separated from the voices of our forebears and our gods and are totally alienated from our bodies and nature around us: we live in an existential void.
We are trying desperately to save the natural world, although we continue turning it into a garbage can. After all, what do our small efforts matter if governments and the captains of industry promote toxic waste on unimagined levels? The way out of the global ecological suicide and the economic model sustaining it seems almost impossible. Maybe it is, but as long as we believe in the possibility of a future for our descendants, we must look for alternative ways of development. The Huichol people do give us an example of a spiritually rewarding life coupled to a deep respect and devoted care for the natural environment, enabled by their wise and respectful use of the mind-altering peyote.
We are therefore happy to propose the Huichol people, represented by the Huichol Center for Cultural Survival and the Traditional Arts in the person of its director Susana Eger Valadez, for the nomination of the 2019 Nobel Peace Prize, in the hope that this candidacy will draw attention to the valuable example the Huichols offer the world.

Below, in his paper "The Shared Candidacy of the Wixárika People for the 2019 Nobel Peace Prize", our president Adriaan Bronkhorst puts this candidacy in its historical context.
In her "Presentation" and 'Interview" (links in the left margin) Susana Valadez gives relevant information on the Huichols, the Huichol Center and her own person.


"Attacks on sustainable societies: the Wixárika answer"
Paper by Adriaan Bronkhorst

We are at the start of the 3rd Millennium. Almost all the peoples from the countries that adhered to the post-World War II International Drugs Control Treaties have submitted to Prohibition, the Pax Americana's Wars on Drugs. All?
No! Not the indomitable Huichols, the Wixárika people (pl. Wixaritari) as they call themselves, descendants of the First Peoples, who still hold out against the oppressor and its allies, the United Nations of the world. Although life is hard, deep in their mountain refuges of the Gran Nayar in Mexico's Sierra Madre Occidental, the Wixaritari have succeeded in resisting the latest waves of persecution of their ancestral way of life. They do so by means of the Lophophora Williamsii, a desert cactus called peyote in English, hikuri in Wixárika. This magical plant gives the recipients supramental insights which so much fulfil the Wixárika quest for life that it keeps sustaining the covenant with the divine ancestors in the Kiekari, their spiritual territory and foundation of their mythical cosmos, in spite of the huge economic costs it imposes on the whole community.
... read the complete paper