Tepi – Three Mysteries
This bone tepi is a work of art. We baptized it “Tres Misterios” or “Three Mysteries”. It has on top a pajé or shaman, in the middle the sacred Kambo frog and on the point the Boa constrictor or Yuxibu. It is bigger than average and is a great piece for ceremonial use of rapé.
The boa constrictor is the most sacred of snakes in pano mythology, the Huni Kuin call it the Yuxibu and is their creator. They also call the non physical entities Yuxibi
For the Kaxinawa, the concepts of agency and power are based on the fluidity of perceptible form. The non-human beings, yuxin and yuxibu, are the masters of form transformation, and the human condition resides in the conquest of a certain fixed form in the midst of a multiplicity of possible forms. The production of people as “thinking bodies”, that is, subjects with shared social principles, depends on a specific logic that governs the attention given to the power of images and form.
The Kambo frog gives its secretion for healing. There is a legend about a medicine man asking the creator for one medicine for all diseases, while he’s praying he spits on the ground and it hits a frog. Then he gets his answer that the medicine will be on that frog.
The pajé or medicine man is the one who directs the healing power of the sacred plants and the spiritual beings of the forest.
There may be slight varieties from batch to batch since this is a hand crafted product.
This model was made by our handicrafts experts at the Tetê Pawã arts and crafts studio. They are located in the upper Juruá region of Marechal Thaumaturgo municipality, way up on the Amazon. The only way to get there is a two day boat journey or with a four seater airplane. They have been our close partners since 2014, always delivering state of the art handicrafts and their excellent Kuntanawa Rapés.