Native Zuni Turquoise Hunting and Bears Fetish Ceremonial Bowl

Zuni fetish bowl.
Ceramic with crushed turquoise stones and 4 carved bears of different natural stones attached to bowl and one inside of bowl. Accented with feathers. Measures 3.25" x 5." wide

The Zuni fetish bear is considered the Guardian of the West. The bear is associated with great strength, power, healing and self-knowledge. He is the great protector, the "sacred bear". He is a spiritual guide and also carries within him supernatural powers. Bear is a powerful healing fetish. The traditional way of housing a Zuni fetish carving is in a pot or bowl with a corn meal offering inside to sustain the fetish. Some fetishes are fed ground turquoise also. The top is for putting the fetishes in or taking them out. The bowls are usually kept on a shelf in the kiva or ceremonial room, about shoulder height and only a tiny pinch of sacred corn meal or pollen as a token to show attention or respect rather than a lot of food. This is to appease the spirit of the fetish, to keep it happy. A happy fetish makes for a happy person. This means of fetish storage is based on Zuni legends that tell of fetish powers helping to sustain hunters in the mountains.