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Owls in Mayan culture


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#1 Therefore

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Posted 07 June 2007 - 06:39 PM

Well Fenris asked me in another thread about my Avatar of a Mayan owl so i just thought instead of diluting that thread with something off topic I'd just create a new topic.
old thread here

This was the owl:
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Found here at Dos Pilas
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Ah Puch -- The Maya god of death, also known as Hunhau, he ruled over Mitnal, the land of death, the lowest and worst of the nine hells. He was normally shown with the head of an owl on a human body. To this day, the Indians of Central America and Mexico believe that someone will die when the owl screeches. In other representations Ah Puch is shown as a skeleton or a swollen corpse, wearing bells.

Ah Puch - God of death and ruler of Mitnal, the lowest and most terrible of the nine hells. Portrayed as a man with an owl's head or as a skeleton or bloated corpse. Also known as 'God A'. Ah Puch survives in modern Mayan belief as Yum Cimil (Lord of Death).

In Mesoamerican myth, Au Puch, also known as Yum Cimil and Cum Hau, is the Mayan Lord of the dead. His realm is Hunhau, which literally means "spoil." It is a bitter land of the dead where punishments are inflicted on evil doers. Au Puch presides over the ninth and worst layer of Hunhau. He is usually depicted as a skeleton (skull head, bare ribs and spiny projections from the vertebrae) or with bloated flesh marked by dark rings of decomposition and a menacing grin. In his hair are bell like jewelry and he takes great pleasure in causing eternal torture and torment to the damned. According to some legends, he is said to occasionally roam the earth looking for evil people, causing war, sickness, and death. Once someone is condemned to Hunhau, they can never leave. Sacrificial victims were offered to Au Puch in the cenote or sacred pool.

Even today, some Mexicans and Central Americans believe that an owl's screeches signify imminent death... as the following saying, in local Spanish, indicates:
Cuando el tecolote canta... el indio muere (When the great owl sings, the Indian dies)


The Fourth Moon of the Mayan Calendar is the moon of the ‘Owl’ which begins 18th of October. The Mayans called the owl ‘Moan’, and to them the Great Horned Owl was the most sacred. The Mayans regarded them highly for their wisdom and their ability to see in the dark. For often the truth is hidden. Owls are also very powerful creatures with sharp talons and beaks.
If the bird has ears or horns and a much smaller beak, it’s an “omen owl.” Owls are typically depicted holding shields, which symbolize their fortune-telling ability.
The owl, a symbol of wisdom used by Aztec wisemen and warriors in Mexico.



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MUAN: AH-PUCH's messenger demon and bringer of evil omens.

This is the name of a screech owl — who seems to have been used as a Godly messenger bearing not-very-welcome tidings from the direction of the Underworld.



So there you have it....anyone think it would make a nice tattoo..?

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Edited by .:. Greencavefloat .:., 07 June 2007 - 06:41 PM.


#2 Fenris

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Posted 08 June 2007 - 11:33 AM

Cool thanks for posting that, its good stuff and an interesting read.
Quite similar to a thunderbird but from a different region.

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#3 SaBReT00tH

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Posted 08 June 2007 - 03:15 PM

reminds me of Moloch, the Babylonian God which they sacrificed children to. (lookup Bohemian Grove also ;) )
"We're not a threat, we're salvation. The world will have to deal with us" - (The 4400)

#4 No_One

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Posted 09 June 2007 - 03:33 PM

Looked into Moloch and came across this:

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". . . THE DOPE begins its DEADLY WORK of arousing SEXUAL PASSIONS . . . with no restraint as to COLOR or RACE!"
Robert James Devine, Assassin of Youth: Marihuana 1943


:P
“Honesty is the first chapter in the book of wisdom.”....Thomas Jefferson

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"Speak what you think today in hard words and tomorrow speak what tomorrow thinks in hard words again, though it contradict every thing you said today."....Ralph Waldo Emerson

#5 Therefore

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Posted 09 June 2007 - 04:17 PM

Cool thanks for posting that, its good stuff and an interesting read.
Quite similar to a thunderbird but from a different region.



Nice thunderbird...what region...is it mayan?

#6 ThunderIdeal

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    like an unfinished analogy,

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Posted 10 June 2007 - 12:01 AM

marihuana: gave the mexicans super-human strength.

In Occidental theology, the word transcendent is used to mean outside of the world. In the East, it means outside of thought. To imagine that your definitions of your God have anything to do with that ultimate mystery is a form of sheer idolatry from this standpoint. Your God is good enough for you and mine’s good enough for me. A God, from this point of view, is merely a reflex of one’s ability to conceive of God. Since people have various abilities of this sort, they have various powers of apprehending God.


#7 XipeTotec

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Posted 11 June 2007 - 05:00 PM

i had to kill one this weekend... will this make me immortal?
and when I die, and when im gone, there will be one child born, and this world will carry on.

#8 PD.

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Posted 11 June 2007 - 09:38 PM

anyone think it would make a nice tattoo..?


Do it GCF. :)

#9 Fenris

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Posted 12 June 2007 - 10:46 AM

Nice thunderbird...what region...is it mayan?


North American

In Native American cultures birds of prey, especially eagles, are represented in numerous artifacts and legends. The Thunderbird is present throughout North American Indian legends. The form of the Thunderbird is typically a huge eagle or vulture-type bird which exists in the heavens. The bird was believed to cause thunder as it flew, and some tribes considered it to be the Great Spirit itself. It was said that if you saw an eagle while you were praying or participating in a ceremony, your prayers would be answered. Some tribes believed that the eagle carried prayers directly to the great creator.
The potential for a mystical experience is the natural birthright of all human beings.