Navajo Nation lawmakers recess for solar eclipse

AP News
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Posted: Oct 23, 2014 5:42 PM

WINDOW ROCK, Ariz. (AP) — The Navajo Nation Council has taken a recess from its fall session in observance of the partial solar eclipse.

Navajo tradition teaches that tribal members shouldn't gawk at an eclipse, and they should refrain from eating and drinking while the new moon hides part of the sun from view. It's seen as a sign of respect and honor to allow the sun to die and be reborn.

Other American Indian tribes view the sun and moon as cultural deities, but the beliefs among individual tribes and their members don't all signal a need to stay clear of an eclipse.

Navajo council delegate Elmer Begay requested the recess Thursday. He says lawmakers should respect the Navajo culture and tradition.

Pro-tem Speaker LoRenzo Bates told delegates to reconvene Thursday evening.