The Mayan myths and legends Reflect the popular culture of one of the most fascinating civilizations in history. They are characterized by having magical or supernatural aspects, these being the main reasons for which they are distinguished.
The myths and legends are stories that are narrated and dispersed generation after generation, thanks to word of mouth.
On many occasions, by the need to express a faith or belief. Each of them presents an explanation or symbology regarding the culture of which it is part.
They narrate facts that are impossible to verify, in order to give a meaning or an interpretation to something happened.
20 wonderful Mayan myths and legends
1- Dziú and the corn
The legend centers on Dziú, a bird that was recognized for its bravery. Responding to the orders of Yuum Chaac, the God of the rain, risked his life to save a corn seed from a burned field, since this seed was considered indispensable for life.
As a result of entering the fire, Dziú was left with red eyes and gray body.
It was recognized by Yuum Chaac and all the birds, so that from then on, Dziú could be free of the construction of nests for their young, because he could lay his eggs in any bird, and would be looked after by them as if they were their own .
2- The Chom
The legend tells the story of the birds called Chom and the punishment imposed for them by the King of Uxmal.
The Chom were birds with colorful plumages flying over the palace of the king at the time of the celebration performed by him to honor the Lord of Life, Hunab Ku.
The Chom ate the food the king had prepared for the occasion. Uxmal ordered a punishment for them and it was a group of priests who took charge of carrying it out.
They made a special black preparation, which overturned the body of the Chom and decreed that from now on, they would eat only garbage and dead animals.
As a result, the Chom became birds of black and dry plumage, with head pelonada.
Not to be seen fly very high and go down only to look for food in the garbage.
3- The princess and the Maquech
This legend recounts an oath of love between Princess Cuzán and her lover Chalpol, a young man with red hair.
Cuzán agrees to marry Prince EK Chapat, following his father's orders. This one would kill to Cuzán but the princess promises to stop seeing it in exchange for that they conserve its life.
The princess's father forgives Chalpol's life but, through a sorcerer, he makes him a maquech, a beetle.
Cuzán takes him close to his heart, as the most precious jewel, fulfilling the promise of love that had been made.
4- The Flower of May
This legend tells the story of a girl, daughter of a devotee who could not have children and how he asks the gods to give him the opportunity to be a father.
He observed the beauty of the stars, particularly of the Southern Cross, during the month of May. It is then that his wife gives birth to his daughter. But this one dies in its adolescence in the same time that was born.
Every May, when the Southern Cross illuminates its tomb, the flower of May appears at the foot of it.
5- Uay Chivo
The legend Uay Chivo refers to a sorcerer or sorcerer represented as an entity of black color, with bright eyes and big horns. Your mission is to scare those who appear on your way at night.
According to this belief, there are demonized people who have the ability to become a goat to scare the population and / or meet some target of evil origin.
6- Xkeban and Utz Cole
This legend deals with two women, Xkeban who practiced prostitution but was humble and kind to the poor and genuinely surrendered to love. And Utz Cole who said himself virtuous and honest.
When Xkeban passed away, a beautiful scent of flowers smelled in the city. After To bury her, flowers appeared on her tomb with this characteristic. To which they called Xtabentún. A wild flower with an intoxicating nectar like the love of Xkeban.
Now, when Utz Cole passes away, he becomes a flower called Tzacam, a cactus from which flow flowers without aroma and touching it is sharp.
However, Utz Cole, with the help of evil spirits manages to come back to life. Out of envy to Xkeban, he decided to fall in love with the men. But with a simulated love, because his heart was not like hers.
7- Che Uinic
This myth is about the forest man, a giant who possesses supernatural powers and eats human flesh, so it is to be feared.
He is described as a man without bones, with his feet upside down. In other words, the fingers point to their back. For this reason uses a trunk as a cane.
To get rid of him before his presence, it is necessary to perform a dance with branches, because this causes him grace by causing him to fall.
Because of its characteristics, it is difficult for it to rise from the ground, so that in that time, the person can escape.
Alux is called the elf or elf who steals children. Usually play in most of the times and sometimes perform things of diabolical origin.
The myth about Alux and other goblins argues that they are invisible but can be made visible in order to frighten people. They are associated with places like forests and caves and often travel in search of offerings.
It is believed that invoking them, the peasants will achieve seven years of good harvest and protection for their fields, p Or what they perform within them, what is called the house of the alux or kahtal alux.
At the end of this period, the alux must be enclosed in the house, which must be tightly closed. For if the alux escapes he will begin to be aggressive with the people.
The legend tells that the Uay is a magician or sorcerer who realizes phenomena of enchantment inherent to the black magic. It has a phantasmagoric character that adopts different animal forms to achieve its malicious goals.
10- Sac Nicté and Canek
Canek was a prince of Chichen Itza. 21, brave and with a good heart, falls in love with Sac Nicte, a princess of 15. But she was to marry Ulil, the crown prince of Uxmal.
Canek went to look for her warriors on her wedding day, ready to fight for her. He snatches it from the arms of the witnesses and war is fought between his army and Uli.
Canek migrated with the princess and all her people, so when the people of Uxmal go to Chichén Itza to claim it, the city was empty.
11- The dwarf of Uxmal
The legend tells the story of an old lady who worked in the oracle of the town and who could not have children.
So he asked the God Chic Chan and was granted a son, who was born dwarf, with red hair and green skin.
This little dwarf built a large jicara (a kind of vessel) that he used as a sort of rattle.
According to legend, whoever played a similar instrument and its sound was heard in the Mayab (Mayan region), it would become king.
The king of then enraged challenged the dwarf who passed all the tests. But in the last one he asked that the king do it too and he did not survive. Then the little dwarf was proclaimed king.
In his reign, he built the temple called the governor's house and a house for his mother, which he called the old mother's house, both of which could be appreciated in Uxmal.
12- Punishment to vanity
The Mayan legend tells that the earth was darkened when the sun and the moon were set to rest.
But by then, the vain king wanted to prove that with his jewels could illuminate the whole city.
For this he climbed a tree with them, and the gods punished him by throwing it, getting muddy and covered with dirt was then warned.
13- The myth of the owl, the wise adviser
This myth tells the story of an owl who was a counselor to the peacock, the king and was punished for wanting to withdraw from a feast all birds had prepared in his honor.
The king forced him to dance in front of all the guests and the owl felt ashamed and humiliated, reason why he did not want to leave more in public.
In its period of confinement it read the sacred book of the Mayas and discovers a secret on a treason. Going out to tell him, he discovers that he could no longer read since his eyes had become accustomed to the darkness.
Since then he did not go out again during the day, this being the way the gods have punished him.
14- When the Tunkuluchú sings...
The legend tells the story of a mysterious and solitary bird that flies over the ruins of Mayab, which they call Tukulunchú. With his song announces death, so everyone is afraid of him.
The cause of it was a desire of revenge of this bird towards the Maya, who at a party had ridiculed it.
In order to get revenge, he took advantage of his sense of smell, which was his strength. He approached the cemeteries to recognize the smell of death and, thus, to announce to the Maya the closeness of his death.
15- Water and love
Legend has it that a warrior from Bolochen, a people who grew up around nine wells but suffered from drought, falls in love with a maiden.
Her mother, for fear of losing her, encloses her under a cave.
The warrior and his people find it, and next to the cave seven ponds, the Chacha, the Pucuelba, the Sallab, the Akabha, the Chocoha, the Ociha and, the Chimaisa.
16- The Cocay
The cocay is the name with which the Mayas call the fireflies. And legend tells how this insect created its own light.
In the Mayab there resided a man capable of healing the sick with their green stone. One day she discovers that she has lost her in the forest and asks the animals to look for her.
It was the Cocay who sought it untiringly and before finding it, by its dedication and perseverance, obtained its reward, its own light.
When he returns the stone to its owner, it tells him that the light represents the nobility of his feelings and the brilliance of his intelligence. Since then the Cocay was respected by all the animals.
17- The quail
According to this Mayan myth, the quail called Bech, was the favorite bird of the gods so it enjoyed many privileges, envied by the rest of the birds. But not satisfied, in her selfishness, the quail wanted a world for herself and her family.
On one occasion, the Great Spirit with Yaa Kin, the Prince of the Sun, visited the earth. This news made Box Buc the Prince of Darkness become black with envy. Which drove his desire for revenge for travelers.
It was Bech with his numerous family who helped him find them. The Great Spirit was disappointed by the bird to which he had loved so much and condemned it from then on to be the bird that is at the mercy of the beasts and the hunters.
18- Zamna and the Henequen
According to this Mayan myth, Zamna, a wise and kind priest from the city of Izamal, the Queen confesses that her astronomers had warned her that on the next moon, her lands would disappear.
Therefore he entrusts the task of taking some families of the kingdom and three Chilamanes of greater wisdom to carry the writings that tell the history of the people.
Entrusting him further, that he must found a new city and that under the greater temple he must keep those writings with the aim of preserving them.
When Zamna finds the place indicated by the Queen, joining the rain that did not cease; The power of heaven; That of the henequen (plant with which he had injured his legs) and, from the pilgrim men who accompanied him and helped to heal, founded the great Izamal.
19- The creation of the Earth
According to the Mayan legend on the creation of the earth, before the existence of the same existed only two gods: Tepeu and Gucumatz. They were the ones who came together to create the world.
From their thoughts, everything they thought was created. This created the mountains, the valleys, the sky, the water and all forms of life on Earth.
20-Creation of Life on Earth
The gods Tepeu and Gucumatz made the beings whom they created, who care for their creations and those who praise them.
But until then there were no beings capable of speaking, so they set about creating them. In their first attempt, the clay men they gave them to life were still unable to speak.
Then the wooden men could do it but they could not think or love. Then they caused a great flood to destroy them.
In their last attempt they created four men of pasta of corn with all the characteristics that they wanted. Later they created four women for them. And these eight human beings were the ancestors of all men today.
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