The Huichol Indians (pronounced "Wee-chol") are an indigenous tribe of traditional people living in western central Mexico, in the states of Jalisco and Nayarit. Many live in small scattered settlements high in the Sierra Madre Mountains. Because of the extreme remoteness of this rugged mountain area, the Huichol were not conquered by the Spaniards, nor greatly changed by Mexican culture. They remain one of the last tribes in North America still living much as they did in pre-Columbian times, maintaining many of their ageless rituals and beliefs. Today it is estimated there are only about 10,000 Huichol Indians still in existence.
The Huichol believe themselves to be "mirrors of the gods" and try to reflect a sacred vision of the world, both physically and spiritually. To the Huichol, everything is alive and has a soul (called kupuri) and is therefore divine. They are a deeply religious people and worship multiple deities. They make offerings and prayers to assure the protection and goodwill of these deities.
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