Man in the Maze 500 Piece Jigsaw Puzzle, Designed by J. Mark Sublette Medicine Man Gallery
- Circa: 1996
Makes a 20.5" diameter puzzle. Box is 13" x 13" x 1.75" ISBN: 978-0-9861902-2-3. Not suitable for small children due to small puzzle pieces. Description: High atop sacred Baboquivari Peak in Southern Arizona lives the spirit of Iitoi. Chosen by the gods to survive a desert flood and begin a new race, he was the ancestral Elder Brother of the Hohokam and later the Pima and Papago (today’s Tohono O’odham) cultures. Iitoi and his people flourished for many years. Unfortunately, he was later killed by one of his own. His spirit returned to the peak where he had endured the flood; occasionally visiting his descendants and mysteriously removing their belongings. Taking the form of a small man, he uses such devious paths back to his home high up on the mountain that the people cannot possibly follow. These paths are the maze we see in the basket. The legend also has a more profound meaning to the people. The little man represents birth: the maze is the path of life with its many twists and turns. All these changes lead to the interior of the maze where one gains strengths and wisdom with age. Prior to death (the dark center of the maze) one enters a small tight corner, a place to contemplate life, make peace and accept death. This design is not unique to the Southwestern United States. Interestingly, it has been found among ancient Mediterranean Island cultures.