|Q: Tell me about your visionary experience. How did you write the kiva ceremony in LOST IN LAS VEGAS?
MJ: I got to the point in this book where the elders would make a decision about how to respond to the loss of White Wing. They knew he was in Vegas, but they don’t make decisions very quickly. They purify themselves in prayer and take about three days just in preparation. I knew there were kachinas that were very old and sacred, but I didn’t know what they were and I didn’t know the ceremonies associated with them. A ceremony just came to me in one three-hour writing period in which all the elders danced the kachinas. In a very dreamlike vision, I saw them dancing and described the scene. It wasn’t automatic writing, but I was totally absorbed in it. I knew I had to bring out a decision that Anglo would be sent to Las Vegas to find White Wing, but how that was going to happen I had no idea. Then that scene came out, and when it was over, I was drained and awed by it.
I gave the pages to my wife Pat, who read them and then asked, “How do you know this?”
I told her that I didn’t know. Then eighteen months later, I read a book which contained secrets of the Hopi and Pueblo tribes. This required a conscious decision on my part, as the secrets had pretty much been stolen from Native Peoples, and exposure to them should not be taken lightly. I read the book out of my desire to avoid writing anything which would violate the secrets of the tribe. In it I found a description of the kachina dancing ritual that had come to me in the vision. I wept when I saw it.