Aztec religion and religious sacrifice

Read more about the surprising origins of the Aztec flower war. In the Beginnings Quetzalcoatl, the plumed serpent According to ancient Aztec religion, it took the gods 5 tries to create the world.

Sahagun reports that the priests had a very strict training, and had to live very austere and ethical lives involving prolonged vigils, fasts and penances. The Aztec priests defended themselves as follows: The After Life Warriors were highly regarded in the Aztec culture.

For more on Aztec religion: Either there would be ritual blood-letting, or actual people would be sacrificed. But it was the Aztec empire that really took the ritual to new heights.

He was also deemed the enemy of Quetzalcoatl, but an ally of Huitzilopochtli. Life is because of the gods; with their sacrifice they gave us life Huitzilopochtli is first in rank, no one, no one is like unto him: These included Tlaloc who was the god of rain, Huitzilopochtli who was the patron god of the Mexica people, Quetzalcoatl the god of civilisation and order, Tezcatlipoca the god of destiny and fortune and also the god of war and sorcery, and Ehecatl the god of wind.

A fire was ignited on the body of a victim, and this new fire was taken to every house, city and town. The sky, on the other hand, had thirteen layers with the highest one called Omeyocan and housed the progenitor dual god Ometeotl.

They were responsible for going out and finding and capturing the majority of the sacrifices used to appease their gods. This included wandering curers, black magicians and other occultists of which the Aztecs identified many types, most of which they feared and hermits.

The Hierarchy of Aztec Gods A part of the religious Aztec legends is the belief in a hierarchy of gods.

Human sacrifice in Aztec culture

In front of every major temple lay a large plaza. The military conquest and ritual sacrifices were all related, and in a great part focused on helping Huitzilopochtli keep the sun strong so that disaster could be averted every 52 years.

In the ceremonial center of Tenochtitlan, the most important temple was the Great Temple which was a double pyramid with two temples on top.

The lowest layer of the sky was a verdant spring-like place with abundant water called Tlalocan "the place of Tlaloc". The victims heart would be ripped from his body and a ceremonial hearth would be lit in the hole in his chest.

Aztec sacrifice

For forty days prior to their sacrifice one victim would be chosen from each ward of the city to act as ixiptla, dress and live as Xipe Totec. For instance, when the Spanish conquistador Hernan Cortes arrived in Aztec, he was thought to be the god Quetzalcoatl who their prophecies said would return.

The Tlatoani of Tenochtitlan was the head of the cult of Huitzilopochtli and thus of the state religion of the Aztec empire.

They believed that all the forces of nature were kept in balance by different gods and their worship, along with offering in the form of sacrifices, was need to ensure that the balance of nature was retained.

The underworld called Mictlan had nine layers which were inhabited by different gods and mythical creatures. Sometimes, those practicing the Aztec religion sacrificed just one person. They wanted to avert disaster by paying the endless debt.

How many people were sacrificed by the Aztecs?

Aztec Religion Human Sacrifice and Rituals One of the most important rituals of Aztec religion was human sacrifice for which prisoners of war were used. Some years after the Spanish conquest of Mexicoa body of Franciscans confronted the remaining Aztec priesthood and demanded, under threat of death, that they desist from this traditional practice.

For instance, warriors who died on the battleground were thought to become butterflies or hummingbirds and live with gods. Those who were higher in status within the Aztec religion were expected to give the most blood during these Aztec rituals.

He died fighting against up to four fully armed jaguar knights and eagle warriors. Quetzalcoatl meaning feathered serpent was the one who would create humans. If the captive was particularly noble or brave, however, he was carried down instead.

Other methods of atoning wrongdoings included hanging themselves, or throwing themselves down precipices. However, slaves - a major source of victims - were not a permanent class but rather persons from any level of Aztec society who had fallen into debt or committed some crime. Aztec Religion Beliefs, End of the World The concept of the end of the world in Aztec religion was also related to the concept of the balance between the forces of nature.

Some scholars argue that the role of sacrifice was to assist the gods in maintaining the cosmos, and not as an act of propitiation.Ancient Aztec religion was a complex interaction of gods, dates, directions and colours.

It seems that most of the preoccupation in the religion had to do with fear of the nature, and a fear of the end of the world. In pre-Columbian civilizations: Aztec religion Perhaps the most highly elaborated aspect of Aztec culture was the religious system.

Aztec religion

The Aztec derived much of their religious ideology from the earlier cultures of Meso-America or from their contemporaries. The Aztec religion incorporated deities from multiple cultures into its pantheon.

Ritual sacrifice played an essential role in the religious practice of the Aztecs, and they believed it ensured the sun would rise again and crops would grow. Blood was a common theme - the sacrifice that the gods required (see Aztec religion for more on Aztec sacrifice).

So, animals would be sacrificed, as well as humans. Also, there was ritual blood-letting, where people would cut. For the Aztecs, human sacrifice fulfilled multiple purposes, both at the religious and socio-political level.

Aztec Religion

They considered themselves the “elected” people, the people of the Sun who had been chosen by the gods to feed them and by doing so were responsible for the continuity of the world.

The religion of the Aztec civilization which flourished in ancient Mesoamerica ( CE) has gained an infamous reputation for bloodthirsty human sacrifice with lurid tales of the beating heart being ripped from the still-conscious victim, decapitation, skinning and dismemberment.

All of these.

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Aztec religion and religious sacrifice
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