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Home  |  Ghosts   |  Native American Ghosts   |  Navajo Ghosts   |  Chindi : The Unspoken Ghost

Chindi : The Unspoken Ghost

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At a glance

Description
Origin Navajo Mythology
Classification Ghosts
Family Members N/A
Region United States of America
Associated With Death, Sickness

Chindi

Introduction

In Navajo mythology, a chindi is the ghost of a deceased person that’s supposed to leave the body with the person’s last breath. According to the tradition, this is because the person was unable to bring about universal harmony during his or her lifetime. The belief that contact with a chindi can induce ghost sickness is also indicated by the tribe’s traditional practices.

According to the beliefs of the Navajo, chindi are known to remain around the deceased’s possessions, so they are often destroyed after death and the deceased’s name is never said after death, as they fear that that will make one ill. The practice of allowing death to occur outdoors is carried out to allow the chindi to disperse.

Physical Traits

A mini-whirlwind of dust/dirt is said to represent a chindi. The Navajo call these ‘dust devils’ and believe that a clockwise dust devil is a good spirit and the counter clockwise is an evil entity.

Other Names

The Chindi is also spelled chʼįį́dii in Navajo toungue and sometimes written as Chi’idi.

Powers and Abilities

The Navajo believe that the final breath of a deceased person contains all of the sins of that person’s life, and if the Chindi is released outside, it can dissipate on its own. The other belief that suggests that the presence of medicine men and witches can spread the disease carried by the Chindi and that they can infect people with it as well. The symptoms of ghost sickness are usually fever, fatigue, and nausea. It can also be triggered by the presence of a chindi or if a person is exposed to a piece of the body that’s been buried.

Modern Day Influence

Belief in the Chindi is still prevalent in the Navajo community with special rituals being conducted to ward off the effects of the Chindi. Cedar berries are used to make ghost beads, which are made from the hollowed out berries and are designed to protect against evil spirits. They are usually made by allowing ants to consume the insides of the berry, leaving behind a shell that’s punched through, and they are then strung together on necklaces and other accessories. The other type of beads, which are also made from wood, are used to keep the chindi at bay.

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Disclaimer: While it is the intention of Mythlok and its editors to keep all the information about various characters as mythologically accurate as possible, this site should not be considered mythical, legendary or folkloric doctrine in any way. We welcome you using this website for any research, journal or study but citing this website for any academic work would be at your own personal risk.
Disclaimer: While it is the intention of Mythlok and its editors to keep all the information about various characters as mythologically accurate as possible, this site should not be considered mythical, legendary or folkloric doctrine in any way. We welcome you using this website for any research, journal or study but citing this website for any academic work would be at your own personal risk.
Disclaimer: While it is the intention of Mythlok and its editors to keep all the information about various characters as mythologically accurate as possible, this site should not be considered mythical, legendary or folkloric doctrine in any way. We welcome you using this website for any research, journal or study but citing this website for any academic work would be at your own personal risk.