The Creation Story of the Maya The Popol Vuh, or Popol Wuj in the K’iche’ language, is the story of creation of the Maya . Through their actions, the Hero Twins prepared the way for the planting of corn, for human beings to live on Earth, and for the Fourth Creation of the Maya .
The Hero Twins left Xibalbá and climbed back up to the surface of the Earth. They continued up into the sky, becoming the Sun, and the Moon. Now that the Sun and Moon were in the sky and illuminated the Earth, the deities created the final form of human beings using white and yellow corn.
Their bodies were sturdy; however, their skin was dry and crusty, which made it difficult for them to move in a coordinated manner. Worst of all, they had no memory and no emotions. Because of this they were unable to properly respect their creators .
Scholars have suggested a number of potential reasons for the downfall of Maya civilization in the southern lowlands, including overpopulation, environmental degradation, warfare, shifting trade routes and extended drought. It’s likely that a complex combination of factors was behind the collapse.
The designation Maya comes from the ancient Yucatan city of Mayapan, the last capital of a Mayan Kingdom in the Post-Classic Period. The Maya people refer to themselves by ethnicity and language bonds such as Quiche in the south or Yucatec in the north (though there are many others).
The Mayans religion involved several aspects of nature, astronomy and rituals. Most Gods represented a form in nature, for example, Sun God , Kinih Ahous, or Maize God , Yum Kaax . The Mayans were known for their calenders and astronomical buildings. These were used during their religious rituals.
The Mayan Pantheon: Gods and Goddesses Itzamna . Itzamna is a creator god, one of the gods involved in creating human beings and father of the Bacabs, who upheld the corners of the world. Yum Kaax. A nature god, Yum Kaax is the god of wild plants and animals, the god of the woods. Maize God. Hunab Ku. Kinich Ahau. Ix Chel. Chaac. Kukulkan.
The Maya believed that when people died, they entered the Underworld through a cave or a cenote. When kings died, they followed the path linked to the cosmic movement of the sun and fell into the Underworld; but, because they possessed supernatural powers, they were reborn into the Sky World and became gods.
The Maya used stucco plaster to create large masks and portraits of both the gods and the kings.
Mysterious Decline of the Maya From the late eighth through the end of the ninth century, something unknown happened to shake the Maya civilization to its foundations. One by one, the Classic cities in the southern lowlands were abandoned, and by A.D. 900, Maya civilization in that region had collapsed.
K’inich Janaab Pakal
The Haab is a 365 -day solar calendar comprised of 18 months of 20 days each and one month of five days. These two together form the Calendar Round, which repeats in 52-year intervals. The Calendar Round is still used in some parts of Guatemala.