Friday, January 30, 2015

Mayan,Inca,Ancient American Indian astrology was similar to Hindu astronomy

Image from 'Ancient India's Contribution to Astronomy', see link below
This fascmile is from the
Pancha-siddhantika (Five Principles)
dated around the 5th century.
This text graphically shows
how eclipses are to be calculated.
Thus this text foreshadows
what Westeren Astronomers propounded
nearly one thousand years later
Indian Astronomy-Astronomy started from ancient India per vedic texts ,millions of years ago(not 5000 years ago)These are called religious texts by poor evengelist westerners but they have science as you see in my all posts here. Indian Panchang is able to foretell about Sun and Moon eclipse without looking at them directly because there is connection between all elments including different SUNS , all moons and many earths and it is math. Pl see my other posts about Indian Sacred Math, that was called Arabian Math as westerners came to India after Islamist came in ~780 years ago and destructed and changed many temples to barbaric Mosque. Even Qutum Minar, was a astronomical place called Dhruv Stamph and used for astronomy purpose but these Islamist Rascals destructed and put their name on that.Link here.
In the Veda texts, the noble men  were called Devas,(IT IS NOT USED FOR GOD as many sites tell you)And bad people were namedd Asuras and Melicha. The Sun, comets, the sky, dawn, and the horizon were all deified based on their attributes. A beautiful verse from a Veda mentioning about SUN is here-
'Thou art a blessing when thou art near
Raise up wealth to the worshipper, thou mighty Dawn
Shine for us with thy best rays, thou bright Dawn
Thou daughter of the sky, thou high-born Dawn.'
The earliest Veda text mentioning astronomy is called the Rig Veda, and was written millions of years ago not 2000-5000 BC as historians misguide it.
Indian astronomers recognized like Aryabhata,Varahamihira, Brahmagupta , that the stars are the same as the Sun, only farther away. Verses mention that the night sky has uncountable suns. This is an incredible scientific leap which Vedas knew millions of years ago before westernes found out and still struggling to say that. Rigvedas refer that Sun not Earth was center of our Sun Universe. Ypu all know how christian evengelist blinded eyess of Galleo when he quoted that just few hundred years ago.
The Rigveda shows that the Indians divided the year into 360 days, and the year was subdivided into 12 months of 30 days. Every 5 years, two intercalary periods were added to bring the calendar back in line with the solar year, ensuring that years averaged 366 days. However, the Indian year still migrated four days in every five years, and Indian astronomers constantly tweaked and adjusted their calendars over the millennia. The text also shows that the Indians used four cardinal points for ensuring the correct orientation of altars.

The Jyotisa Vedanga, the first Vedic text to mention astronomical data, records events going back as far as 4000 BCE, although many archaeoastronomers believe that this text may include observations from as early as 11 000 BCE. They point out that some of the records may have been copied from earlier manuscripts, but this is an area where more research is needed, as many of the references are unclear and couched in religious terminology.
In the 5th century, a great Indian astronomer and mathematician named Aryabhatta advanced this heliocentric theory and also discussed his idea that the Sun is the source of moonlight. He also studied how to forecast eclipses. His books and others were translated into Latin in the 13th century, and profoundly influenced European mathematicians and astronomers, who stole Indian astronomy and put their nameLINK.
Several Indian scientists of the 6th century also were the first to advance the idea of gravity. They noticed that a special force keeps objects stuck to the earth, and hypothesized that the same force might be responsible for holding heavenly bodies in their place. The idea pre-dates Newton's conception of gravity by about 1100 years. GRAVITY WAS DISCOVERED BY INDIANS NOT NEWTON.
Following is summary of Indian ASTRONOMY-
There are astronomical references of chronological significance in the Vedas. Some Vedic notices mark the beginning of the year and that of the vernal equinox in Orion; this was the case around 4500 BC. Fire altars, with astronomical basis, have been found in the third millennium cities of India. The texts that describe their designs are conservatively dated to the first millennium BC, but their contents appear to be much older.

Some scholars have claimed that the Babylonians invented the zodiac of 360 degrees around 700 BCE, perhaps even earlier. Many claim that India received the knowledge of the zodiac from Babylonia or even later from Greece. However, as old as the Rig Veda, the oldest Vedic text, there are clear references to a chakra or wheel of 360 spokes placed in the sky. The number 360 and its related numbers like 12, 24, 36, 48, 60, 72, 108, 432 and 720 occur commonly in Vedic symbolism. It is in the hymns of the great Rishi Dirghatamas (RV I.140 – 164) that we have the clearest such references.
A text on Vedic astronomy that has been dated to 1350 BC, was written by Lagadha.
The earliest concept of a heliocentric model of the solar system, in which the Sun that is at the centre of the solar system and the Earth that is orbiting it, is found in several Vedic Sanskrit texts written in ancient India.
The Aitareya Brahmana (2.7) (c. 9th–8th century BC) states: "The Sun never sets nor rises. When people think the sun is setting, it is not so; they are mistaken." This indicates that the Sun is stationery (hence the Earth is moving around it), which is elaborated in a later commentary Vishnu Purana (2.8) (c. 1st century), which states: "The sun is stationed for all time, in the middle of the day. [...] Of the sun, which is always in one and the same place, there is neither setting nor rising."

Yajnavalkya (c. 9th8th century BC) recognized that the Earth was round and believed that the Sun was "the centre of the spheres" as described in the Vedas at the time. His astronomical text Shatapatha Brahmana ( stated: "The sun strings these worlds - the earth, the planets, the atmosphere - to himself on a thread." He recognized that the Sun was much larger than the Earth, which would have influenced this early heliocentric concept. He also accurately measured the relative distances of the Sun and the Moon from the Earth as 108 times the diameters of these heavenly bodies, almost close to the modern measurements of 107.6 for the Sun and 110.6 for the Moon.

Based on his heliocentric model, Yajnavalkya proposed a 95-year cycle to synchronize the motions of the Sun and the Moon, which gives the average length of the tropical year as 365.24675 days, which is only 6 minutes longer than the modern value of 365.24220 days. This estimate for the length of the tropical year remained the most accurate anywhere in the world for over a thousand years. The distances of the Moon and the Sun from the Earth was accurately measured as 108 times the diameters of these heavenly bodies. These are very close to the modern values of 110.6 for the Moon and 107.6 for the Sun, which were obtained using modern instruments.

There is an old Sanskrit shloka (couplet) which also states "Sarva Dishanaam, Suryaha, Suryaha, Suryaha" which means that there are suns in all directions. This couplet which describes the night sky as full of suns, indicates that in ancient times Indian astronomers had arrived at the important discovery that the stars visible at night are similar to the Sun visible during day time. In other words, it was recognized that the sun is also a star, though the nearest one. This understanding is demonstrated in another Sloka which says that when one sun sinks below the horizon, a thousand suns take its place.

Many Indian astronomers had later formulated ideas about gravity and gravitation in the early middle ages.

The cosmological time cycles explained in the Surya Siddhanta, which was copied from an earlier work, gives:
  • The average length of the sidereal year (the length of the Earth's revolution around the Sun) as 365.2563627 days, which is only 1.4 seconds longer than the modern value of 365.2563627 days. This remained the most accurate estimate for the length of the sidereal year anywhere in the world for over a thousand years.
  • The average length of the tropical year (the length of the year as observed on Earth) as 365.2421756 days, which is only 2 seconds shorter than the modern value of 365.2421988 days. This estimate remained the most accurate estimate for the length of the tropical year anywhere in the world for another 6 centuries (until Muslim mathematician Omar Khayyam gave a better estimate), and still remains more accurate than the value given by the modern Gregorian calendar currently in use around the world, which gives the average length of the year as 365.2425 days.
Later Indian astronomer-mathematicians such as Aryabhata made references to this text, while later Arabic and Latin translations were very influential in Europe and the Middle East.
The Indian astronomer-mathematician Aryabhata (476550), in his magnum opus Aryabhatiya, propounded a mathematical heliocentric model in which the Earth was taken to be spinning on its axis and the periods of the planets were given with respect to a stationary Sun. He was also the first to discover that the light from the Moon and the planets were reflected from the Sun, and that the planets follow an elliptical orbit around the Sun, and thus propunded an eccentric elliptical model of the planets, on which he accurately calculated many astronomical constants, such as the times of the solar and lunar eclipses, and the instantaneous motion of the Moon (expressed as a differential equation). Bhaskara (1114-1185) expanded on Aryabhata's heliocentric model in his treatise Siddhanta-Shiromani, where he mentioned the law of gravity, discovered that the planets don't orbit the Sun at a uniform velocity, and accurately calculated many astronomical constants based on this model, such as the solar and lunar eclipses, and the velocities and instantaneous motions of the planets. Arabic translations of Aryabhata's Aryabhatiya were available from the 8th century, while Latin translations were available from the 13th century, before Copernicus had written De revolutionibus orbium coelestium, so it's quite likely that Aryabhata's work had an influence on Copernicus' ideas.

Aryabhata wrote that 1,582,237,500 rotations of the Earth equal 57,753,336 lunar orbits. This is an extremely accurate ratio of a fundamental astronomical ratio (1,582,237,500/57,753,336 = 27.3964693572), and is perhaps the oldest astronomical constant calculated to such accuracy.

Brahmagupta (598-668) was the head of the astronomical observatory at Ujjain and during his tenure there wrote a text on astronomy, the Brahmasphutasiddhanta in 628.

Bhaskara (1114-1185) was the head of the astronomical observatory at Ujjain, continuing the mathematical tradition of Brahmagupta. He wrote the Siddhanta-Shiromani which consists of two parts: Goladhyaya (sphere) and Grahaganita (mathematics of the planets).
"In India I found a race of mortals
living upon the Earth. but not adhering to it.
Inhabiting cities, but not being fixed to them,
possessing everything but possessed by nothing". - Apollonius Tyanaeus
- Greek Thinker and Traveller 1st Century AD  
Calendar stonePriest-astronomerMayan Astronomy- Mayanas used astronomy for agriculture purpose, although they did not invent any clock but their mayan calender has many animlas, celestial events and they go by that. What it means is that they were well worsed with universe of stars,probably learned from Indian, their roots. If you look at Indian and Mayan calender- they look a like.
Cosmology from the Codex Vaticanus AMayan cosmology is well described in this article Mesoamerican astronomy (see references). Earth is in layer one of upper world in the center of universe. And there is underworld(PATAL LOKA as in Indian  scriptures) .It is shown a  large wheel surrounded by the teoatl,(divine water), -or ocean that extends to the horizon. Layer 2 is Ilhuicatl metzli,,place for moon and clouds. Layer 3 is Citlalco, associated with deity Citlallicue ("She of the Starry Skirts"). Layer 4 is called Ilhuicatl Tonatiuh is SUN.Fifth layer is Venus, the "Great Star. 6 th layer is is Ilhuicatl Mamalhuazocan, ("Heaven of the Fire Drill,)" a constellation ? Orion's .Comets("Smoking Stars come in to this layer ,as they say "fire serpents attend to their duty of bringing the sun from the east to west". 7 th layer is called Blue or Black Heavens. with winds / storms. 8 th layer is is blue heaven, covered with dusts. 8th layer is , Itztapal Nanatzcayan(home of thunder) - "Where Stone Slabs Crash Together." 10 th layer is white ,.Layer 11 is yellow.Layer12 is red. Layer 13 is Omeyocan, is a place for a dual male-female god(ARDHNARISWAR AS IN INDIAN SCRIPTURE), that created space and time,lives (matter).

Map of the Maya area

The Milky Way was seen as umbilical cord ,to connect soul to underworld. Michael Coe states, "The Mesoamerican cosmos was one in constant flux, in which space and time were co-terminous, in which the heavenly bodies moved in fixed layers, and which was in constant peril of cataclysm".

Tonatiuh, a red eagle with a large and all-seeing eye, was the god associated with the sun. Mayan knew that tilt of the Earth's axis, is reason for sun's appearance at different positions in the sky depending on the time of year and responsible for seasons. The Maya accurately calculated times when the sun would rise and set, and even more amazing, they determined the length of the solar year to be 365 days. A tropical year is 365.2422 days ,small error though. This was updated
 continuously  throughout the generations.                                                                                         
The moon was represented by a female deity  with effect on terrestrial events. A Mayan astronomer calculated that there were exactly 149 moons over a period of 4400 days, which works out to an average lunation of 29.53 days. In the city of Palenque, it was found that there are 405 moons in 11,960 days, which means that an average lunation is 29.53086 days. This is remarkable accuracy, given that the actual average lunation is 29.53059 days.
Venus  was connected with the major deity Quetzalcoatl.,called Xux Ek, the "Great Star,".Mayans knew that it is the same object seen both in morning and the evening at different times of the year. The priest-astronomers determined the synodic period of Venus (how long it takes to orbit the sun) to be 584 days, which is again incredibly close to the actual period of 583.92 days. When Venus rose in the mornings, it was considered bad luck, and everyone would stay inside their homes and block their chimneys so that the evil light from Venus could not enter.                                                      
The Mayans also calculated the synodic periods of Mars as 780 days (actual = 779.936 days) and Mercury as 117 days (actual = 116 days).                                                                                        
Mayans did not have interest in Jupiter and Saturn.                                                                           
 Pleiades star cluster was  known as tianquiztli, (marketplace), that appears in the morning sky around planting time, in late April. This helped for sowing season ahead . Polaris, or Xaman Ek, was  used by travelers to orient themselves on land.
 Comets were believed to be an even more direct link to the human world. If a comet, or "star that smokes," appeared in the sky, it foretold the death of a noble person.
Mayan numbers Maya priest-astronomers knew that sun and moon crosses each other' path  every 173.31 days. and  eclipses may occur within 18 days this period. Look at this eclipse table resides in the Dresden Codex, which was written in the eleventh century in the northern Yucatan. The codex is made of ficus tree bark, and the pages are covered with lime for a glossy finish. The glyphs are painted in red and black with a very fine brush. In the eclipse section of the Dresden Codex, two numbers appear quite frequently. The numbers 177, which is approximately the length of six lunations, and 148, or five lunations, are representative of times when eclipses were predicted. The astronomers periodically corrected the eclipse tables, learning from their small mistakes and adjusting the calendars, and so on several occasions we see that the number 178 appears in place of 177. In effect, the eclipse tables consist of columns and rows of the numbers explained above, and in some cases, the eclipse glyph is presented instead. This symbolizes days when an eclipse could be expected, and if one did occur, the number was replaced by the eclipse glyph.
Mayan Mathematics
The Maya mathematical system were a copy of Indian math system with numbers and while Europe had dark age Mayan system were playing with numbers,vigesimal, or base 20, number system. Mayan numbers consist of a series of dots and bars, where dots have a value of one and bars represent five. The numbers one through nineteen, and a series of glyphs representing the number zero, are shown in the picture below. Remember ZERO was used by Aryabhatta in India >2000-5000 yrs BC.
Example of math operationThe Mayan system operated on exactly the same principles,what is used now a decimel using 1o while Mayans were using 20's in place of 10's. i.e. 1; 20; 400; 8000; 160000. An example of simple addition of a large number is shown in the figure below . The Maya also COPIED  the concept of zero, FROM INDIANS which had immense benefit as a place-holder and vastly simplified basic arithmetic, along with making it possible to do more complex calculations. Western archeologist and mathmatecian still will say That Mayan used Zero before Indians but it is again a history they want to hide from all and trying to proove Indians as sheep dwellers,which is debunked now.

The Mayan Calendar
Mayan mathematical system was in the development of their Indian counterpart and were as good as Ancient Indians. They had different calenders,one for RITUALS-consisted of thirteen 20-day periods, which totaled 260 days. Although it is unclear exactly why the Maya chose a 260-day calendar, there are several theories. First, the numbers 13 and 20 were two of the numbers considered to have magical powers. Second, by coincidence, two ritual calendar years (520 days) is the same as 3 eclipse half-years (520 days). Finally, although this is a controversial idea, 260 days is approximately the length of human gestation (266 days). It seems likely that a combination of these factors influenced the creation of the 260-day ritual calendar. Each day in a 20-month period of the ritual calendar is represented by a specific animal, plant, or natural force.
Other calender was Solar calendar, was 365 days long, consisting of eighteen 20-day periods plus a final five "days without name. 
Diagram of UxmalAlignment of Mayan Buildings and Temples
Archeologist like Aveni think that Mayan Temples were of significant astronomical event based as in Indian counterparts(see references).For example ,look at this Building J at Monte Alban, which was built around 275 B.C.E. This building was constructed in an arrow shape, and Aveni found that five of the brightest stars in the sky would at that time have set approximately at the point of the arrow. In addition, a line drawn perpendicular to the front steps of the building would have pointed directly to the place on the horizon at which the bright star Capella rose. By coincidence, it seems that the appearance of Capella at this position could have heralded the passage of the sun through the zenith (the point directly overhead), since at Monte Alban these events are almost simultaneous. Evidence of this appears in the presence of a zenith tube at the same site, which points directly overhead and effectively finds the sun's zenith passage.
Mayans had temples built basically works as observatories that had special viewing windows set into the walls (Like counter parts in Indian temples -link

Astronomy of Incas-There was a King, military king Pachacuti Inca Yupanqui that brought South America united, after demise of Huari and Tiwanaku cultures.It was centered near city of Cuzco in the Andes Mountains, over 375,000 square miles. The society was very organized, like Harrapan in India,with  laws and demarcation of classes.
Inca ceremony Like Ancient Egypt and India, there Astronomy was basically for agriculture purpose like when Pleiades star cluster rose, it signaled the start of the Incan year. The Pleiades were called the Seven Kids after the seven brightest stars in the cluster, but the Inca were able to see 13 stars.

Astronomy was used extensively for agricultural purposes. The Inca built carefully oriented pillars on hills overlooking Cuzco, and when the Sun rose or set between the pillars, it was time to plant at a specific altitude. A whole range of pillars was employed so that the most accurate time-keeping was possible for the high altitudes, the valley floor, and everywhere in between..
Egyptian Astronomy-

The sky goddess NutThe Egyptian gods and goddesses were numerous before Islamic terrorism as in India. Certain gods were seen in the constellations, and others were represented by actual astronomical bodies(LIKE IN MAYAN AND INDIAN). The constellation Orion, for instance, represented Osiris, who was the god of death, rebirth, and the afterlife. The Milky Way represented the sky goddess Nut giving birth to the sun god Ra. In the picture below, Nut is shown bending over the Egyptians. The stars in Egyptian mythology were represented by the goddess of writing, Seshat, while the Moon was either Thoth, the god of wisdom and writing, or Khons, a child moon god. Egyptians and infact all mediterranians were part of Ancient Indian extension untill 1000 years ago- islamic terrorism came and made them STUPID MULLAH.Click for link .They were worshippers of SUN god like Indians.
Chinese astronomy-
Chinese used extensive system of the zodiac designed to help guide the life of people on Earth. called 'yellow path', a reference to the sun traveling along the ecliptic. Like in Western astrology, the Chinese had twelve houses along the yellow path.
The first Chinese written records of astronomy are from about 3000 B.C. The first human record of an eclipse was made in 2136 B.C., and over hundreds of years of advanced sky-watching, the Chinese became very adept at predicting lunar eclipses. They followed a calendar of twelve lunar months, and calculated the year to be 365.25 days long. They translated this 'magic' number into a unit of degrees, by setting the number of degrees in a circle equal to 365.25 (as compared to our use of 360 degrees).
One of the famous observations made by Chinese astronomers was that of a supernova in the year 1054. They referred to this phenomenon in records as a 'guest star', and mention that it remained bright for about a year before again becoming invisible. This supernova created what we see today as the Crab Nebula. The explosion itself in 1054 was also recorded by the Anasazi Indians of the American Southwest, but for some reason there is no known record of this occurance in European or any other cultures.
In order to mark the passage of time and the seasons, the Chinese primarily used the orientation of the Big Dipper constellation relative to the pole star in early evening. They were also the inventors of the first clock, a water clock which divided a day into 100 equal parts. During the Ming Dynasty, between the years of 1436-1449, an observatory was built in Beijing on the old city walls, and was filled with impressive bronze instruments.
Astronomy of Ancient North Americans- So called Red Indian Tribes by British were in fact well versed in Astronomy.
The Anasazi of Chaco Canyon, New Mexico
Penasco BlancoThe Anasazi were  mysterious people, lived in Arizona and New Mexico about 1000 years ago. They built high cliff dwellings, the ruins can be seen today. They left little to decipher but a  recently discovered site Penasco Blanco depicts supernova explosion (see picture below). The relative orientations of the crescent moon and the star make it very likely that this is a recording of the supernova which created the Crab Nebula in 1054 A.D. This supernova, which would have been about five times brighter than Venus for about three weeks, was also recorded by Chinese astronomers. Another very interesting site is called the Anasazi sun dagger. It is a spiral design traced into a cave wall, and during midsummer, midwinter, and the equinoxes it is perfectly bisected or surrounded by daggers of sunlight which enter the specially placed windows. The Anasazi also built a solar observatory called Hovenweep Castle at Four Corners. All of this evidence points to the fact that the Anasazi were quite experienced sky-watchers, as are their probable descendents, the Pueblo Indians.
Big Horn Medicine Wheel, Wyoming
Big Horn Medicine WheelThe Big Horn Medicine Wheel is a mysterious stone marking which was placed at the summit of a 10,000 foot mountain between 200-400 years ago, probably by the Cheyenne Indians (see photo ). It has a diameter of 90 feet, with 28 spokes that radiate outward and apparently stand for the number of days in a month. Medicine wheel marks both the rising and setting sun on the summer solstice. Other stones in the arrangement mark the rising of the bright stars Aldebaran, Rigel, and Sirius. Other medicine wheels have also been found to have astronomical orientations, such as one at Moose Mountain in Canada, which was probably built between 100-500 A.D.
Pawnee Indians of the North Central U.S.
Pawnee star chartThe Skidi band of Pawnee are known to have had a complex religion of which astronomy was a large part. They designed their lodges and villages with astronomy in mind(Like Mayan and Indians). Villages were laid out in the position of the most important stars in the sky. In the last corner of the village was a shrine to the morning star (Venus), and in the west was another shrine to the evening star (also Venus). The doors of the lodges always faced east to the rising sun, and four posts representing the four important directions (northwest, northeast, southwest, and southeast) were used to hold up the lodge. The domed roof represented the sky. Part of their creation myth says that Mars, the red morning star warrior, mated with Venus, the female evening star, to produce the first humans. They worshipped the Pleiades cluster. The pole star was considered to be a chief protecting the stars and the people,make sense as north star is always up and everything else in the sky revolves around it.
Chumash Indians of the California Coast
 The Sun was seen as a widower who carried a torch through the sky, while the Moon was a female god in charge of human health. The Chumash identified Mars, Jupiter, and Saturn, as well as a number of stars as dim as sixth magnitude. Their major religious ceremonies took place around the time of the winter solstice, which was seen as a critical time during which the Sun might decide not to return. Winter solstice ceremonies were marked by praying and chanting to pull the Sun back to Earth.
Now with all above description I let reades to decipher how close were Ancient Indian, Mayan, Ancient Agyptian,Ancient Aemerican(red indian). In fact it seems they were one colony untill first Christian gang of conversion started from Rome and converted and destroyed many buildings,terrorized, changed religion to cult and then still followed by islamic terrorism. Pl visit  if you want more regarding these topics. Otherwise stay here for more  vedic and hinduism science.

Modified from starteachastronomy with following references-
J. Norman Lockyer, The Dawn of Astronomy, MIT Press, 1894.
History of Indian Astronomy.
Anthony Aveni. Ancient Astronomers. Smithsonian Books, 1993.
Anthony Aveni. "Astronomy in Ancient Mesoamerica." In In Search of Ancient Astronomies, edited by E.C. Krupp. Doubleday and Company, 1977. 165-202.
Anthony Aveni. "Possible Astronomical Orientations in Ancient Mesoamerica." In Archaeoastronomy in Pre-Columbian America, edited by Anthony Aveni. U. of Texas Press, 1975. 163-190.
Anthony Aveni. Skywatchers of Ancient Mexico. U. of Texas Press, 1980.
Michael Coe. "Native Astronomy in Mesoamerica." In Archaeoastronomy in Pre-Columbian America, edited by Anthony Aveni. U. of Texas Press 1975. 3-31.
Evan Hadingham. Early Man and the Cosmos. Walker and Company, 1984.
Guillermo Hinojosa. Personal interview. April 25, 2000.
E.C. Krupp, Echoes of the Ancient Skies: The Astronomy of Lost Civilizations. Harper and Row, 1983.
The Maya Astronomy Page.
Colin A. Ronan. Changing Views of the Universe. MacMillan, 1961.
Clive Ruggles. Peruvian Images.


Anthony Aveni, Stairways to the Stars, John Wiley & Sons, 1997.

J. Norman Lockyer, The Dawn of Astronomy, MIT Press, 1894.

Wednesday, January 28, 2015

POPOL VUH- South America 's scripture similar to Ancient Indian Scripture

        Popol Vuh - narrative about the origins, traditions and history of the

        Quiché (K'iche') Maya nation told by an anonymous Guatemalan Indian who produced

           the document between 1554 and l558.

In Chichicastenango around l7OO, a priest, Francisco Ximenez copied the manuscript, adding a Spanish translation.


Now there are several (perhaps many) translations of the Popol Vuh, popol vuh  including Goetz and

Morley's English translation of Recinos' Spanish version, Munro Edmonson's scholarly

translation which reproduces typescript of the original Quiché (K'iche'), Dennis Tedlock's

translation done with the help of a Quiche shaman (which is nicely annotated and footnoted,

but which lacks any reproduction of the Quiché. A Native speaker of K'iche' ( Chavez ) has

also provided a translation into Spanish, and Allen Christenson has perhaps the most recent

translation (2000).


Part I Part I of Popol Vuh consists of two stories.

l. A narration of the failure of the gods to create earthly beings

who will adore, obey, and sustain them (three chapters).

2. tells how two mysterious twins, Hunahpu and Xbalanque

destroy an arrogant celestial being, Vucub-Caquix, and his two sons,

Zipacna and Cabracan, who refused to adore, obey, and sustain their creators.

The first story of Part I opens with a description of what it was like before the first creation began.

"All was empty..., all was in silence..., all was motionless...there was only the sky and the sea".

In the sea, surrounded with light, hidden under green feathers, was

Gucumatz. In the sky was "the Heart of Heaven, or God- as he is called."

All was in suspense

Then came the word, like a lightning bolt it ripped through the sky,
penetrated the waters, and fertilized the minds of the Earth-Water
Deities, Tepeu and Gucumatz
Then the creator couple said "let it be done", and it was done: The
earth emerged from the sea; plants put forth shoots; wild animals came to be.
And then the Gods made three frustrated attempts to create humankind; first out of animals,
then out of mud, and finally out of wood. The Wood men were killed off too,
however, and their descendants are today's monkeys.
The second story opens with a vain Lucifer figure named Vucub-Caquix, who had two sons;
Zipacna and Cabracan, both of whom made the earth shake as they burrowed under mountains.
The Hero Twins (Hunahpu and Xbalanque), out hunting, shoot Vucub Caquix in the jaw
with a blowgun, while he is in a tree eating fruit. Angered, Vucub Caquix tears off Hunahpu's arm.
To recover the arm, the twins pose as dentists, go to Vucub Caquix' house, and dupe him into
letting them pull his teeth and replace them with white corn kernels (while they retrieve the arm).
With his new corn dentures, Vucub Caquix no longer looked like a lord, so he died in poverty.
Then the Hero Twins set out to kill Zipacna. (( Zipacna had himself just finished killing "the 4OO
young men". He had feigned death when the four hundred young men tried to do him in by having
him dig a hole in the ground so that they could plant a pole on him, but he escaped, and while they
were celebrating his death, they were then crushed by Zipacna, becoming stars in the
sky.)) The Hero Twins made a crab to lure Zipacna, who found the crab and was killed in its
embrace of death.
Next, the Hero Twins poisoned a bird with white earth, and when Cabracan ate the bird, he died.
Part II PART II comprises the next l4 chapters.
The first two of these 14 chapters introduce two brothers, Hun Hunahpu and Vucub Hunahpu,
sons of Xpiyacoc and Xmucane (the diviners), one of whom (Hun Hunahpu) is the father of the hero
Hun Hunahpu and his wife Xbaquiyalo have two sons; Hun Batz' and Hun Chouen
(we find out later that Hun Hunahpu and another woman, Xquic ["Ms. Blood"]
are the parents of the Hero Twins)
Hun Hunahpu teams up every day with his bachelor brother to play the
ballgame with his sons, the "Monkey Twins" (Hun Batz' and Hun Chouen).
One day the noise of their ballgame annoyed the Lords of Hell (Xibalba), who
summoned the Hunahpu brothers to come and play ball.
The Hunahpu brothers came down to Hell, and after a series of tortures
they were sacrificed and buried.
On the spot where the brothers were buried, a tree sprang up,
loaded with skulls for fruit, and among the fruit was the head of Hunahpu, in skull form.
Along came Xquic, daughter of one of the Lords of Hell. She reached up
to pick one of the fruits, and the skull of Hun Hunahpu spat in her hand.
This made her pregnant with the Hero Twins.
When her pregnancy was noticed, her father ordered four messengers to
take her out into the woods and sacrifice her and bring back her heart for burning.
Xquic talked the messengers into letting her live, so they brought back a false heart in a gourd.
Xquic went up to earth to the home of her new "mother-in-law, Xmucane, where she gave
birth to the Hero Twins
The Monkey Brothers, half brothers of the Hero Twins (having the same
father, Hun Hunahpu) envied the Hero Twins, and tried to kill them with
ants and with thistles. But the Hero Twins survived being placed on an anthill,
and also being placed on thistles while still infants.
The Hero twins, once grown, tricked their Monkey half-brothers into
climbing a tree, where they turned into monkeys while the tree grew
taller and taller.

The next scene deals with the Hero Twins as cultivators of maize.
In spite of their efforts at clearing the fields during the day, their work was undone
at night by wild animals including rat, rabbit, and deer, telling the plants, "rise up trees,
rise up vines".
They catch the rat (and the other animals) in the act one night,
and the rat tells them where their father's ball playing gear is.
The Hero Twins find the ball game gear and start playing ball,
so the Lords of Hell summon the Hero Twins. The message is
relayed (from Xmucane) by means of a louse that on the way
is swallowed by a toad; the toad is then swallowed by a snake
and the snake by a hawk, which is then shot down by the Twins'
When the Twins cure the hawk it vomits the snake, which vomits the
toad, which ejects the louse, which tells the message.
The Hero Twins go to Xibalba (sending a mosquito ahead to sting the
lords of Hell, and that is how the Hero Twins learned their names,
thus gaining power over them. Upon entering Xibalba the twins
call the assembled lords of Xibalba by their real names).
The Trials - The Lords of Xibalba then put the twins to a series of
tests, putting them in various "houses": (between Houses, the twins play ball
with the Lords of Hell, always winning or tying with them)
House of Gloom - twins sent to hold lighted pitchpine sticks and
smoke a cigar. They succeed with the help of fireflies.
House of Knives - twins sent to gather flowers in the house of knives.
They escape being cut to pieces with the help of ants.
House of Cold
House of Jaguars
House of Fire - as with the previous ones, the Twins survived.
House of Bats - twins slept inside their blowguns and were not
bitten until along came Camazotz (Death Bat) from the sky, and when Hunahpu
poked his head out Camazotz cut off his head.
During the ball game the next day, Xbalanque, through trickery, got
Hunahpu's head head back onto his body.

Then in the final story of PART II, the Lords of Hell set up a contest where the
twins are supposed to jump four times over a bonfire without getting burned
The Twins deliberately jump into the fire and die.
Shortly afterwards they arise miraculously and re-appear as old men.
They present themselves disguised first as dancers, then as
magicians. They kill a dog and restore it to life, then they
kill themselves and are resurrected.
Seeing this, the envious Lords of Hell ask to be sacrificed and
brought back to life. The twins sacrifice them, but don't
restore them to life.
The Twins then give a farewell speech and are lifted into the sky
to become the sun and the moon..
PART III - It is time for humans to appear on the earth.
In part III is the beginning of when the first true humans appeared. The first
four men (called in the Popol Vuh the four fathers, who were also
the Quiche forefathers) were made this time from corn dough.
Heart of Heaven blew mist into their eyes so that they could only see
what was close, thus checking their desires to become gods.
Then the first four women were created as wives for the first 4 men.
Jaguar Quiche (Balam Kitze) got Red Sea Woman
Jaguar Night (Balam Aqab) got Beauty Woman
Naught (Mahuq'utah) got Hummingbird Woman
Wind Jaguar (Iq'i Balam) got Parrot Woman.
They all spoke the same language. And they went to Tulan-Zuiva
(city of the seven caves) where they received their god, Tohil.
They had no fire, and by this time they could no longer understand
one another. Tohil gave them fire, and in return he wanted more
than just their blood.
At first Tohil wanted only men's blood, that is, before the Quiche
came to Tulan. "Bleed your ears, prick your elbows;
this will be your thanks toGod."
Later, after he had given them fire, he demanded their hearts
("their waist and their armpits") also. Symbolic wounding was
not enough. Death was the perfect offering.

Tohil was the Quiche god, and he had to be hidden from the Quiche's
enemies, who were pressing in from all sides. The Quiche nation
held together, but Tohil had turned to stone, and the priests and
sacrificers had to use trickery so that the people would not know.
His image would appear to speak and to command.
PART IV Part Four describes the total victory of Tohil, who operated upon the Lords of the
Earth through the instrumentality of the priests and sacrificers. His dominion, however, was the
reason for the destruction of the Quiche.
The story begins with the priests and sacrificers who began the abduction of the men of the tribes,
and who went to sacrifice them before Tohil. The tribes became aware of this and tried to overcome
Tohil by various ruses and temptations, but failed.
The Quiche founded the city of Gumarcah, and here Gucumatz
(the feathered serpent), a most magnificent Lord, raised the Quiche
Mayans to their greatest peak of power.
Gucumatz could foresee things, and could change himself into different animals.
Among other things he instituted an elaborate ritual of fasting and
other abstinence rites.
Part Four of the Popol Vuh ends with the genealogies of the tribes of
the Quiche "who finally came to an end".
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