Maya religious beliefs are formed on the notion that virtually everything in the world contains k’uh, or sacredness. Maya belief establishes the creation and sanctity of human beings, the earth, and all things sacred. This divine sanctity can be translated into Maya creation myths as well.
One of the two stepbrothers of the Hero Twins (the other being Hun-Batz) he is depicted as a howler monkey. Along with his brother, he is the patron god of artists and writers. While Gucumatz was the most popular god, Hunab-Ku is considered the supreme deity of the pantheon of the Maya, known as `Sole God’.
The codex depicts hieroglyphs and numerals and figures, and contains ritual and divination calendars, calculations of the phases of Venus, eclipses of the sun and moon, instructions relating to new-year ceremonies, and descriptions of the locations of the Rain God, which culminate in a full-page miniature showing a
The Mayan religion was Polytheist, and they worshiped more than 165 Gods . The Gods were human-like. The Gods were born, grew up and died. The Mayan religion believed that most peoples souls’ were vanquished to spend their afterlives in the underworld.
Most Maya today observe a religion composed of ancient Maya ideas, animism and Catholicism. Some Maya still believe, for example, that their village is the ceremonial centre of a world supported at its four corners by gods.
Two thousand years ago, the ancient Maya developed one of the most advanced civilizations in the Americas. They developed a written language of hieroglyphs and invented the mathematical concept of zero. With their expertise in astronomy and mathematics, the Maya developed a complex and accurate calendar system.
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 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.
Another aspect of Maya blood sacrifice involved ritual bloodletting. In the Popol Vuh, the first Maya pierced their skin to offer blood to the gods Tohil , Avilix , and Hacavitz.
The Mayans venerated Venus as the basis of the god Kukulkan, elsewhere known as Quetzalcoatl. Unlike its modern, Western interpretation as the planet of love, the glittering orb was at that time associated with war. In fact, Venus was considered more important than the sun in Mayan calculations.
The codices were probably written no earlier than the twelfth century A.D., but the Maya may have copied books that were written much earlier. According to archaeoastronomer Anthony Aveni, the codices were used to set dates for rituals, often by linking them to astronomical events.
READ MORE: What Caused the Maya Collapse All three of these factors–overpopulation and overuse of the land, endemic warfare and drought–may have played a part in the downfall of the Maya in the southern lowlands.
Mayan Animals The Black Howler Monkey . The Jaguar . Rattlesnakes. Armadillo . Bats. Deer. Rabbit. Ducks.
The Maya had a system of serfdom and slavery . Serfs typically worked lands that belonged to the ruler or local town leader. There was an active slave trade in the Maya region, and commoners and elites were both permitted to own slaves .
Although the Mayan people never entirely disappeared— their descendants still live across Central America—dozens of core urban areas in the lowlands of the Yucatan peninsula, such as Tikal, went from bustling cities to abandoned ruins over the course of roughly a hundred years.