History of the SACNAS Logo
As we inaugurate our 40th anniversary year, it is important to look back on significant aspects of SACNAS history to fully understand our “roots” as an organization, what was important to our founders, and why. A good place to start that journey is with the SACNAS logo—its history and the explanation of its symbolism.
SACNAS was formed in 1973 and its founders began to reach out to inform various communities about SACNAS, its mission, vision and values. One of the outreach tools which the organization developed in the early 1970s was the SACNAS logo. The SACNAS logo is a blending of Central American and Southwest indigenous symbols, intended as an emblematic unification of the Native American and Chicano/Hispanic communities.
The ancient Mayan symbol for new sun (Yaxkin) was an oval with a lotus leaf in the middle and a flowing beard. Original logo (This glyph is also the main element of the glyph of the sun god, the streamer-like arrangement being the beard of this god.*) The nine rays on the SACNAS logo emanating from the oval were added to represent the New Mexico Zia Pueblos emblem as depicted in the sun logo which appears as the state symbol for New Mexico. Finally, the original Mayan lotus leaf was replaced on the SACNAS logo with the schematic of a helium atom, which powers the sun and is the “noblest” of gases, thereby linking Native American and Chicano/Hispanic cultures with science.
The SACNAS logo has become an important part of the SACNAS brand, the “brand” being a name, term, sign, symbol or design, or a combination of them, intended to identify the products or services of one organization and differentiate them from those of another.
The SACNAS logo is proprietary, and appears on all SACNAS print publications, on all website and other internet communications, and on T-shirts, tote bags, and the like.
* From The Ancient Maya by Sylvanus Griswold Morley
Additional Information on Mayan Astrology Signs & Inspiration for SACNAS Logo
Pop: July 26th to August 14th
Meaning: Jaguar, Chief, Leader, Soft Earth
Mayan Astrology Signs Interpretation: Those born in the Pop sign are leaders. Both Jaguar and Chief refer to positions of power in ancient Maya. You can bring clear vision and direction to those around you while remaining sensitive to their needs. Your gift is at the forefront guiding others around you. You have an affinity for the earth and doing grounding meditations will enhance your gifts.
Yaxkin = month 6
Yaxk'in: November 23rd to December 12th
Meaning: New Sun, Sun God, Red Clouds, Green
Mayan Astrology Signs Interpretation: Those born in the sign of Yaxk'in have a connection with the Mayan Sun God Ah Kin. He provided protection against darkness, drought and disease. Those born in this sign are natural healers. You may find you have an affinity for healing those around you, whether with soothing words or as a healing practitioner. This sign also has one downfall which is doubt. Ah Kin was known as the bringer of doubt and indecision. Learn to trust in your decisions and the decisions of those around you.
Whether you’re a student presenting research & connecting with mentors or a professional giving back to the next generation, membership means taking part in something greater than yourself. With SACNAS, you're part of a community of scientists; you belong.