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Tlaltecuhtli, El Tajin

Tlaltecuhtli, El Tajin

Tlaltecuhtli - Tlaltecuhtli

Tlaltecuhtli ( Klassiek Nahuatl Tlāltēuctli , uitspraak Nahuatl: [t͡ɬaːl.teːkʷ.t͡ɬi] ) is een pre-Columbiaanse Meso - Amerikaanse godheid die voornamelijk wordt aanbeden door de Mexica ( Azteekse ) mensen. Tlaltecuhtli's uiteengereten lichaam, ook wel het 'aardemonster' genoemd, was de basis voor de wereld in het Azteekse scheppingsverhaal van de vijfde en laatste kosmos. In houtsnijwerk wordt Tlaltecuhtli vaak afgebeeld als een antropomorf wezen met gespreide armen en benen. Beschouwd als de bron van alle levende wezens, moest ze verzadigd worden door mensenoffers die de voortdurende orde in de wereld zouden verzekeren.

Volgens een bron waren de goden bij de schepping van de aarde niet moe de vloeibare wereld te bewonderen, geen trillingen, geen bewegingen, dus dachten Tezcatlipoca en Quetzalcoatl dat de nieuw gecreëerde wereld bewoond moest worden. En hiervoor lieten ze mevrouw Tlalcihuatl, 'Vrouwe van de aarde', uit de hemel komen, en Tlaltecuhtli, 'Heer van de aarde', zou haar gemalin zijn. Tezcatlipoca en Quetzalcoatl creëren de aarde uit het lichaam van Cipactli , een gigantische alligator die zelf in de Omeyocan is geschapen.

Tlaltecuhtli is bekend van verschillende post-veroveringsmanuscripten die de Mexica-mythologie en geloofssystemen in kaart brachten , zoals de Histoyre du méchique , de Florentijnse Codex en de Codex Bodley , beide samengesteld in de zestiende eeuw.


Tlaltecuhtli (Classical Nahuatl Tlāltēuctli, Nahuatl pronunciation: [t͡ɬaːl.teːkʷ.t͡ɬi] ) is a pre-Columbian Mesoamerican deity worshipped primarily by the Mexica (Aztec) people. Sometimes referred to as the "earth monster," Tlaltecuhtli's dismembered body was the basis for the world in the Aztec creation story of the fifth and final cosmos. [4] In carvings, Tlaltecuhtli is often depicted as an anthropomorphic being with splayed arms and legs. Considered the source of all living things, she had to be kept sated by human sacrifices which would ensure the continued order of the world.

According a source, in the creation of the Earth, the gods did not tire of admiring the liquid world, no oscillations, no movements, so Tezcatlipoca and Quetzalcoatl thought that the newly created world should be inhabited. And for this, they made Mrs. Tlalcihuatl, 'Lady of the earth', come down from heaven, and Tlaltecuhtli, 'Lord of the earth', would be her consort. [1] Tezcatlipoca and Quetzalcoatl create the Earth from the body of Cipactli, a giant alligator self-created in the Omeyocan.

Tlaltecuhtli is known from several post-conquest manuscripts that surveyed Mexica mythology and belief systems, such as the Histoyre du méchique, [5] Florentine Codex, and Codex Bodley, both compiled in the sixteenth century. [6]

IN THE NEWS: latest excavations.

Early in October 2006 news reports started flooding out from Mexico City that a major new archaeological discovery had just been made at the Templo Mayor site in the heart of the capital. (Written/compiled by Ian Mursell/Mexicolore)

The two British newspaper cuttings above and left come from The Observer, Sunday 15th. October 2006, and The Guardian, Saturday November 18th. 2006, which named the monolith as Tlaltecuhtli (Earth Deity). Reuters reported at the time &lsquoMexican archaeologists [have] unveiled the largest Aztec idol ever discovered on Friday and said it could be a door to a hidden chamber at a ruined temple under the heart of Mexico City.&rsquo To any student of the Aztecs this was riveting news. Now finally (July 2007) we can add considerable flesh to this bony but hugely important skeleton.

Pic 2: Dr. Leonardo López Luján, Clore Education Centre, British Museum 14/7/07 (Click on image to enlarge)

On Saturday July 14th., the British Museum hosted an extraordinarily revealing and highly informative lecture by Dr. Leonardo López Luján, Senior Researcher and Director of INAH&rsquos (Mexico&rsquos National Anthropology and History Institute) Templo Mayor Project in Mexico City, entitled &lsquoFrom the Sun Stone to the Earth Goddess monolith (1790-2007): Archaeology in the Aztec Capital, Tenochtitlan&rsquo. Dr. López Luján, who is on our &lsquoAsk the Experts&rsquo Panel, illustrated his presentation beautifully with slides both of the excavations themselves and of archaeological and iconographic evidence supporting the identification of the monolith as Tlaltecuhtli.

Pic 3: The Tlaltecuhtli monolith. Photo: Leonardo López Luján. Courtesy PTM-INAH, Mexico (Click on image to enlarge)

The giant rectangular stone monolith, thought to weigh in at some 13 tons, and measuring 4m x 3.57m (making it even larger than the Sunstone, at 3.58m x 3.58m), was found, lying just 10 feet away from the Templo Mayor on the North side, on October 2nd. 2006, by members of INAH&rsquos Urban Archaeology Team exploring the foundations of the Casa de las Ajaracas (on the corner of Argentina and Guatemala streets in central Mexico City) (Pic 3). The next day Drs. López Luján and Eduardo Matos Moctezuma - two of Mexico&rsquos most eminent archaeologists - were on the scene.

Pi 4: López Lujan and Matos Moctezuma describe the discovery of the Tlaltecuhtli monolith, Arqueología Mexicana, no. 83 (2007), pp.22-23 note its comparative size! (Click on image to enlarge)

Broken into four pieces, still with traces of red, ochre, white, blue and black paint, and discovered face upwards, the figure was made of andesite stone, quarried by the Aztecs from the shores of Lake Texcoco, some 6 miles from the centre of Tenochtitlan. Clearly female - giving-birth posture, wearing a skirt and sporting alternating skulls and bones in the fashion of Coatlicue, the Aztec Earth Goddess - the deity&rsquos immediate identity was uncertain, and the experts ended up with a group of six (including Coatlicue), all known as &lsquotzitzimime&rsquo, on their &lsquoshort list&rsquo.

Pic 5: Stone sculpture of Tlaltecuhtli, Templo Mayor Museum, Mexico City (Click on image to enlarge)

Tlaltecuhtli (&rsquoLord of the Earth&rsquo in Náhuatl) (Pic 5) took both male and female forms - though could never be bisexual. (S)he played a classic dual role in Aztec beliefs: both generative (life-giving) and devorative (life-consuming) of humans. Most Aztec images of Tlaltecuhtli were sculpted on the bottom of artefacts (stressing ties to the underworld), whereas this colossal sculpture is believed to have had its frontal view facing skywards - the lower surface is visibly irregular, suggesting that the sculpture could have formed the lid or cover of a chamber.

Pic 6: Adapted from a drawing of the Tizoc and Ahuízotl Dedication Stone in &lsquoAztec Art&rsquo by Esther Pasztory, New York, 1983, p. 150 (Click on image to enlarge)

The long spurt of blood streaming from the deity&rsquos tongue (Pic 7) is a powerful visual representation of Tlaltecuhtli&rsquos devouring role, and a symbol of the divine link between human sacrifice and providing sustenance [food] to the Aztecs&rsquo gods. In the top half of a beautifully sculpted greenstone plaque commemorating the completion of the Temple of Huitzilopochtli in 1487 (now in the Museum of Anthropology, Mexico City) rulers Tizoc (L) and Ahuítzotl (R) pierce their ears with bones to offer streams of blood to Mother Earth (along the bottom) (Pic 6).

Pic 7: Blood streams from Tlaltecuhtli&rsquos mouth (Click on image to enlarge)

A major clue to the monolith&rsquos likely role came from the location where it was found: the works of Spanish and Aztec historians, such as Sahagún, Durán and Alvarado Tezozómoc, have all pointed to the fact that several Aztec emperors, including Axayácatl, Tizoc and Ahuítzotl, were cremated and buried in or beside the building known as the &lsquoCuauhxicalco&rsquo, between the Templo Mayor and the &lsquotzompantli&rsquo (skull rack) (Pic 8).

Pic 8: The Florentine Codex (Book 12) depicts an Aztec ruler&rsquos cremation in the &lsquoCuauhxicalco&rsquo, right in front of the Templo Mayor (Click on image to enlarge)

Tellingly, right in the bottom left-hand corner of the newly discovered monolith, within one of Tlaltecuhtli&rsquos claws, is carved (Pic 9) the date sign &lsquo10 Rabbit&rsquo - the year (1502) in which the emperor Ahuítzotl died (by an odd coincidence he was also crowned in another 10-Rabbit year, 1486).

Pic 9: The calendrical sign 10-Rabbit

The year sign 10-Rabbit can be seen (Pic 10) attached to Ahuítzotl&rsquos name glyph and death bundle, alongside the figure of his nephew Moctezuma II (who succeeded him) in the Codex Telleriano-Remensis. [There is another possible reading of this glyph, as 12-Rabbit (oddly, there are a further two dots located on the other side of the incomplete rabbit glyph), linked to a famous eclipse in the year 1478].

Pic 10: Ahuítzotl dies in the year 10-Rabbit (1502), Codex Telleriano-Remensis, facsimile edition by Eloise Quiñones Keber, 1995, folio 41r (Click on image to enlarge)

As Dr. López Luján explained (Pic 11) in his British Museum lecture, the Tlaltecuhtli monolith was found - just on the northern side of the Templo Mayor associated with Tlaloc - exactly where the historical record suggests are buried the ashes of Emperor Ahuítzotl.

Pic 11: Dr. López Luján explains the Ahuítzotl connection. (Click on image to enlarge)

This in turn suggests that the monolith may actually have been the funerary slab for the emperor, one of the more successful Aztec rulers, whose name means &lsquoWater Beast&rsquo and whose glyph can be seen clearly in a stone plaque at the National Anthropology Museum in Mexico City (Pic 12)

Pic 12: Plaque with an image of an &lsquoahuízotl&rsquo, National Museum of Anthropology, Mexico City (Click on image to enlarge)

Tantalisingly, in recent weeks (June-July 2007) ground-breaking radar scans of the spot where the monolith was found have revealed up to 4 hollow chambers. Are archaeologists on the point of excavating the entrance to a royal tomb in the heart of Mexico City/Tenochtitlan. As Dr. López Luján asked his audience to bear constantly in mind the fact that something like only 0.2% of the archaeological remains of Tenochtitlan have so far been excavated, we&rsquore in for plenty more exciting finds.

This article was uploaded to the Mexicolore website on Jul 20th 2007

Riti e rituali

Poiché il corpo di Tlaltecuhtli era stato trasformato nelle caratteristiche geografiche, i Mexica attribuivano strani suoni dalla terra o alle urla di Tlaltecuhtli nella sua agonia smembrata, o alle sue richieste di sangue umano per nutrirla. Come fonte di vita, si riteneva necessario placare Tlaltecuhtli con sacrifici di sangue, in particolare i cuori umani. Gli Aztechi credevano che l'insaziabile appetito di Tlatlecuhtli dovesse essere soddisfatto o la dea avrebbe cessato il suo nutrimento della terra e i raccolti sarebbero falliti.

I mexica credono che Tlaltecuhtli ingoi il sole tra le sue enormi mascelle al tramonto e lo rigurgiti la mattina successiva all'alba. La paura che questo ciclo potesse essere interrotto, come durante le eclissi solari, era spesso causa di disagio e aumento del sacrificio rituale. La connessione di Tlaltecuhtli al sole ha assicurato che fosse inclusa nelle preghiere offerte a Tezcatlipoca prima delle campagne militari azteche.

Infine, a causa dell'associazione di Tlatlecuhtli con la fertilità, le ostetriche hanno chiesto il suo aiuto durante le nascite difficili, quando un "bambino guerriero" ha minacciato di uccidere la madre durante il travaglio.


Esta semana en Raíces recibimos a la arqueóloga Alejandra Aguirre, miembro del Proyecto Templo Mayor dirigido por Leonardo López Luján. A finales del 2020 se publicó el segundo volumen de la serie Reportes del Templo Mayor, una co-edición del Ancient Cultures Institute y del Instituto Nacional de Antropología e Historía: Un umbral al inframundo. La Cámara 3 del Templo Mayor de Tenochtitlan.

En otra ocasión pudieron conocer el primer volumen, La restauración del monolito de la diosa Tlaltecuhtli, cuya autora , Maria Barajas Rocha, nos hizo una amplia presentación disponible aquí.

En el caso de la publicación de Alejandra Aguirre, se trata de recordar una excavación magna, descubierta a principio de los años 1980: la Cámara 3. ¿En qué contexto se hizo esta excavación? ¿Cuáles materiales fueron registrados? ¿Cuáles relaciones se pudieron establecer con otros depósitos? ¿Cuáles elementos simbólicos destacaron de sus estudios biológicos, arqueológicos e iconográficos?

Boletín del Seminario de Tlaloc Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México.

La Piedra de los Tecomates ¿Tlaloc o Chalchiuitlicue? Por Jennie Arllette Quientero Hernández.

Los colores de Tlaloc en los murales teotihuecanos y su relación con los rumbos del universo. Por Bruno Daniel Díaz Pérez.

Ixchel, una diosa vinculada con la luna y con el agua. Por Ofelia Márquez Huitzil.

Tláloc y los abanicos de papel o las nubes y el sacrificio de niños al agua, en Mesoamérica
Ofelia Márquez Huitzil

Estudio dialéctico sobre el concepto abstracto de Tlaloc
Jorge Angulo Villaseñor

Dos esculturas con signos solares del Posclásico en el estado de Morelos
Raúl Francisco González Quezada

Armaduras, Cotas y Corazas teotihuacanas P.7
Alfonso A. Garduño Arzave

Desdoblamientos de Tláloc, reflexiones sobre
el repertorio iconográfico de Seler P.20
Ofelia Márquez Huitzil

O presente artigo consiste em uma revisão das principais ideias discutidas por Eduardo Natalino dos Santos e Esther Pasztory sobre a aceitação da arte pré-colombiana pelo Ocidente, seguido de comparações formais e sociológicas entre obras de arte ocidentais da Idade Média e obras produzidas por civilizações pré-colombianas. O principal objetivo do texto é demonstrar como dois tipos de produções tão distintos se assemelham em suas soluções formais, em suas funções e nos fatores que dificultaram a sua aceitação como obras de arte pelos europeus, destacando a universalidade de uma ideia de arte a serviço do poder e como meio de persuasão e devoção.

Publicado na revista Desvio. Ano 1, n. 1, Novembro 2016. Rio de Janeiro, UFRJ.

Tláloc en el Códice Laud
Ofelia Márquez Huitzil

Formación de la Escuela Nacional de Antropología e Historia. Historia de su proceso académico y desarro-llo socio-político en el tiempo
Jorge Angulo Villaseñor

Muye, el Tláloc otomí en los códices ¿Qué papel juega en las veintenas?
Geraldine Patrick Encina

En el mundo prehispánico la ascitis era un signo
frecuente, resultado de la presencia epidemiológicamente
significativa de alteraciones hepáticas
y cardiacas. Así mismo, era importante su relación
con Tláloc y los dioses y diosas de la lluvia y
el agua. El cuerpo ascítico era entendido simbólicamente
como un recipiente lleno de agua y se le
atribuía la función específica de servir a Tláloc al
ser portador de ésta. En el presente artículo analizamos
el papel de Tláloc y sus deidades asociadas,
como proveedores de agua y alimento.
Describimos cinco diferentes tipos de representaciones
plásticas de cuerpos llenos de agua, todos
claramente asociados con Tláloc.

Ascites has been a common pathological sign
among prehispanic Mexican people, as a result
from hepatic and cardiac ailments. In this sense it
represents a significant epidemiological problem.
But it also is important because is related to Tlaloc
and the rain gods and goddesses. The hidropic body
is a symbolic water container and have a special
function: serve as a Tlaloc and related gods vehicle
to transport the precious liquid. In this paper
we analyze the Tlaloc role as water and alimentary
substances provider and his capital importance for
people survival. We also describe five different plastic
ways to represent water in the body, all of them
with clear relationship to Tlaloc.

Chalchiuhtlicue la odisea de San Juan Teotihuacan al Mu-seo Nacional
Celia Zepeda Valdovinos

El dios de la lluvia en El Tajín
Martín Cruz Sánchez

Teotihuacán. Conservación y restauración de la pintura mural, un problema interdisciplinario
María Isabel Mercado Archila

Santa Lucía Cotzumalhuapa (or Cotzumalguapa) is the name of a pre-Columbian Maya archaeological zone dating mainly to the Late Classic period in Mesoamerican chronology, although it was occupied since the Middle Preclassic period and there is evidence of a major development during the Late Preclassic period.

Cuāuhtlahtoāni or Cuäuhtlahtoh is a titular office of governorship and political administration, used within certain city-states and provinces among the Aztecs of pre-Columbian central Mexico in the Late Postclassic period.

Skapande berättelse

Enligt Bodley Codex fanns det fyra jordgudar - Tlaltecuhtli, Coatlicue , Cihuacoatl och Tlazolteotl .

I Mexikas skapelseshistoria beskrivs Tlaltecuhtli som ett havsmonster (ibland kallat Cipactli ) som bodde i havet efter den fjärde stora översvämningen . Hon var en förkroppsligande av det kaos som rasade före skapelsen. En dag sjönk gudarna Quetzalcoatl och Tezcatlipoca från himlen i form av ormar och fann den monströsa Tlaltecuhtli ( Cipactli ) som satt på toppen av havet med jätte huggtänder, krokodilhud och gnisslande tänder och krävde kött att festa på. De två gudarna bestämde sig för att det femte kosmos inte kunde lyckas med en sådan hemsk varelse som strövade över världen, och därför gick de ut för att förstöra henne. För att locka henne använde Tezcatlipoca sin fot som bete, och Tlaltecuhtli åt den. I striden som följde förlorade Tezcatlipoca foten och Tlaltecuhtli förlorade sin underkäke och tog bort hennes förmåga att sjunka under vattenytan. Efter en lång kamp lyckades Tezcatlipoca och Quetzalcoatl riva hennes kropp i två - från den övre halvan kom himlen och från den nedre kom jorden. Hon förblev emellertid vid liv och krävde mänskligt blod som återbetalning för sitt offer.

De andra gudarna blev ilska över att höra om Tlaltecuhtlis behandling och förordnade att de olika delarna av hennes uppdelade kropp skulle bli särdrag i den nya världen. Hennes hud blev gräs och små blommor, hennes hår träd och örter, hennes ögon källor och källor, hennes näsa kullar och dalar, hennes axlar bergen och hennes mun grottorna och floderna.

Enligt en källa är alla jordens gudar kvinnliga, utom förespråket av Tezcatlipoca, som är Tepeyollotl , "hjärtat av kullen", och Tlaltecuthli, "herre jorden", som den senare bildas av mitten av kroppen av Cipactli , vilket är Det är tack vare sitt andra namn, Tlalticpaque, "världens herre". Tlaltecuhtli möter Coatlicue som en följeslagare som förtäraren, och Coatlicue som den som kontinuerligt föder nya varelser, människor och djur.


The following text discusses the idea of water, of fire and the feminine, essential elements in the pre-Hispanic world, as forces with the potential to create and destroy a culture.

In the first part, The feminine in the pre-Hispanic world: Traces of eroticism and the radical other, we argue that the "horror" coming from the radical otherness within the erotic experience is the feminine. The monstrous and hideous yet pervasive figures in the lives of pre-Hispanic people reflect the feminine within the erotic as expression of the radical other. The feminine represents what is wet, cavernous and dark. It also symbolizes transgression, distortion, bestiality, death (that itself constitutes all possibility of life), cruelty, as well as what is bloody, fetid and humid. The terrible depictions of pre-Hispanic goddesses such as Coatlicue or Cipactli are some of the greatest examples related to the power of the feminine in those cultures.

In the second part, American Atlantis: Mayan and Aztec catastrophes, we explain that myths reveal the creative work that is the basis of the cultural world. Using the point of view of Mircea Eliade as reference, we express that the myth of Atlantis helps us interpret the present world. Like in the myth of Atlantis, in the mayan tales of the Chilam Balam and the nahuatl ones from the Leyenda de los Soles, two elements collide: movement and water (ollin y atl). In that blend, the signals of cataclism are considered marks of renovation. Thus, the aim of this text is to recognize water catastrophes as symbol of movement that produces a cultural rebirth.

Finally, in Water and fire in the pre-Hispanic world, we declare that the acknowledgment of creation having its origin in water and fire is a foundational myth, universal to all societies. The aim of this part is to show how traditional societies, attached to land and agriculture, are the ones that direct their future with the help of their daydreams. This text uses Bachelard's conception of water and fire to analize a set of experiences in the pre-Hispanic world.

1. The Feminine in the pre-Hispanic World. Traces of Eroticism and the Radically Other

The feminine as the radically other

The pre-Hispanic rites of sacrifice are clear examples of the potential of the feminine which exists in the crossroads of the radically other and the erotic. For example, as we will see, the fertilization of Xilonen, a tender and virgin goddess who brings good harvests, is represented by the decapitation and extraction of the heart of a young girl who was sacrificed in the goddess' name. Concerning goddesses such as Xilonen, Ilamatecuhtli or Cipactli, to mention only a few, we find the representation of a cave or vagina associated with sexual weakening and fertility such as menstrual bleeding.

If in any place, it is clear that the feminine and the woman are not the same thing it is in the pre-Hispanic world. It suffices to read some of the huehuetlahtolli (wise words of the elders or great ones) to understand the place the woman occupied. She was the figure of warmth of the home, of surviving, affection, care, tenderness, of feeding (kitchen) and the protective clothing (weaving) while the cycle of the feminine is radically another thing. One example we can find of pre-Hispanic religiosity is in the worship of the goddess Tonantzin (our venerable mother). She seems to reveal in a very clear manner a double sense of the feminine. For example, that which is related to procreation, life, nourishment, upbringing, fertility and earth. Also, we could say tenderness as well as, which we have already mentioned, destruction, death, violence, the dryness of the old woman and the wetness of the young woman. In Tonantzin in the pre-Hispanic world, the ancient Mexicans found the synthesis of all their goddesses, as we have explained, besides the profound veneration for her, the pilgrimages to Tepeyac, the site where today one finds the Basilica of the Virgin of Guadalupe, from faraway regions such as Guatemala to those that they traveled more than 1,500 kilometers in (Nebel, 2013, p. 90).

Among the goddesses we can name and that one way or the other are related to Tonantzin are Llamatecuhtli (elderly woman), Cozcamiauh (necklace of wheat), Teteoinnan (mother of the gods), Toci (our grandmother), Ochpaniztli (goddess of ripe corn), Quilaztli (old goddess of the earth), Xochiquetzal (young goddess of the earth, goddess of flowers and love), Chicomecoatl (seven serpents), Cinteotl (goddess of corn), among many other goddesses. It is not strange that for the conquering Spanish, Tonan (our mother) or Tonantzin (our revered mother) was attractive enough to merit placing at her site one of the greatest icons of the Americas: the Virgin of Guadalupe, a goddess imported from Spain and naturalized in Mexico and throughout the continent. With indigenous characteristics and color, she is also known as the Black Virgin. Powerful early myth and still current, undoubtedly surpassing even the Catholicism that became rooted in these Americas, it refers to a universal myth that is firmly planted and which continues to generate not only a fervid faith and belief but also anthropological, sociological, and philosophical reflections.

The pre-Hispanic feminine, conceived as the erotic and radically other, can be observed in sacrificial rites. For example, the description that Sahagun gives of the rite of the goddess Toci curiously does not consist of the extraction of a heart or of decapitation, as was usual, but rather of taking an 'old' woman of forty years who tore at her skin, who was flayed, which means getting rid of earth or old skin, seeking a bodily and earthly renovation because they were related to the harvest. The link vidamuerte (lifedeath), of which we will discuss farther along, is best expressed in the figure of the feminine, including the relationship between the masculine and the feminine. In the pre-Hispanic world it is ambiguous, with the two genders being constantly mixed, and such relationship is seen in many myths or figures. As such, the difference between the masculine and the feminine tends to be very clear in certain myths or rites. Nonetheless, this aspect can, with difficulty, be observed from our Western condition. The unstructured character of the pre-Hispanic goddesses is a constitutive element of its otherness since time and space play an important role in its interpretation e.g. terrible, monstrous and spiteful gods can be in other circumstances mythical or the contrary, heroic and good-natured.

It is worth mentioning that in the pre-Hispanic world the feminine is not dependent on any biological condition. In the quality of being female there is a complete symbolic and cultural construction surrounding the feminine that permeates all of pre-Hispanic society. The feminine is one of the fundamental pillars of the entire pre-Hispanic society. If for Dumezil the trilogy of warriors, priests, and peasants is present in the foundation of all culture, perhaps we can say that for the ancient Mexicans the ingredient that empowered war, the divinities, and earth was the feminine extant in the crossroads of eroticism and the radically other.

The feminine, as all erotic action, is based on the destruction of its structure as a closed identity that is regularly (in its normal state) each one of the players of the game. A game of ball, for example, is a ludic, pre-sacrificial space in which exhaustion, pain, and blood are inevitable. It is the erotic game that causes death so that the flow of life continues. The players remain open. They tear and peel away any particular identity. Eroticism lies exposed to the community and is a collective service, its intimacy is communal. The above establishes a distance with this eroticism based on particularities of the private order. That was not the reason particularities in the Pre-Hispanic world did not exist. Their eroticized bodies formed part of a frenzied public. There was dissolution in hordes, perhaps something similar to the modern tumultuous rapes and hangings with the exception that those were linked to a sacred experience. Perhaps we are familiar with this sacred and erotic experience more closely in Chinese torture in which flaying, mutilation, and bleeding become altogether part of corporal punishment and offer the spectator a transmutation from the profane to the sacred where that which articulates this dissolution of identities and the body itself is the horror of the radically other found in the erotic experience.

Thinking of eroticism as a vital experience entails the breaking and monstrosity of the linked identities. When we speak of experience it brings to mind "the fragility of the identities, it reveals not only the precarious and lack of awareness of all regulation, the futility of actions, but also the muddiness and metamorphosis of identities" (Mier, 2006, p. 12). The muckiness and changeability of the situation breaks up the already precarious and varying identities. This brings up the radically other, that which is unexpected, awesome, chaotic, threatening and abysmal. Eroticism as a vital and funereal potential evidences the asymmetry of the identities enrolled in the erotic game, which, as an experience, travels and crosses frontiers of the known and the rules. In eroticism, as an experience, one establishes the link which allows "giving something to another". A giving that is arbitrary, gratuitous, and generous, a something that is nothing, that is anomalous and in progress, and an other that is asymmetrical, transfigured, and with its dissolved identity. The experience found in eroticism inhabits the place of absence where, gratuitously it gives the anomalous form to another asymmetry. Undoubtedly, this experience of which we speak has its correlation, its reference, clearly established by Marcel Mauss in the more savage societies whose comparison with the West cannot cease being an excess even though the radicality of its negativity is what allows us to think for ourselves, to confront ourselves. It is not about an illustrated look that, as we know, its luminosity is such that it blinds, but of a darkness that does not lie.

In experience, one demands of the other (with no importance who is one and who is the other) an unbridled answer, a transfiguration of one's own way of life. One is placed before the abysmal mystery of the deformation of the other. There is no encounter without a dissident and amazing rupture of and with identity, rules, and the way of life. In the erotic connection one responds to the fall of both one's own identity and that of another. A response understood as being in the place of loss, being in the place of absence, including being in the place of nostalgia. One responds to the other not to be responsible for her or him, but to confront her or his disfiguration, there before its developing form. A response with no limits and absolutely open that "at times is an invention, a transfiguration of the way of life [. ] and a promise of meaning" (Mier, 2006, p. 9). It is a response to pleasure and pain of the unfounded, unlimited and abysmal. The shapes of terrible lives established in figures of monsters so pertaining to the pre-Hispanics. They are the response demanded of the erotic experience. Mictlantecuhtli, Chaac, Coatlicue or even Tezcatlipoca comprise the abysmal mystery of deformation, they comprise the beautiful, silent disfiguration which is the radically other.

In the thresholds of the deformation abysm of the other is the encounter with the radically other. Radicalness understood both in its unstructured quality as in its negative character. It contains so much of the opposite, the contrary, diminishment and loss in its negative condition such as the infinite multiplicity, original and organic, in decomposition and rot, where the unit does not cease being combatted, fragmented and obstructed in the disposition of the 'rhizome" (image of thought). In that sustained horror in the pre-Hispanic sacrifices where they decapitated, flayed, took out hearts and whipped themselves, is the bloody and astonishment of eroticism. The radical allows confronting origins and the negation of "something". That "something" that turns out grotesque and horrible like Cipactli (the toothy vagina of the earth) that on the one hand is the dwelling place of the vital seed and on the other is that which castrates the germ of life. So when we refer to the radically other we talk about the "rhizome" and negation, which is the other. The feminine as the radically other is the line of fire of the condition of being another. The radicalness of the other is territory of the unfounded or abysmal, the zone of things becoming rare, of the missing, awesome and singularity. It is in the condition of being another where both the models and the pretense of being what one is not, live. This negative and unstructured quality subvert the accepted, assumed, and protected ways of life for social rules evidencing the monstrous, abject, malign, anomalous, devilish, and fatal character of life. From there the other gets its developing shape, mutation of the face, disfiguration, abysmal and "anomie" (condition of not providing moral guidance to individuals). The erotic link, like the radically other, confronts the rotting of identities and the disfiguration of the ways of life, decomposing and transgressing the rule. The link is made with the radically other, with that "rhizome" and negation that live in the open and emptiness of the world which is the feminine. The threat that is felt in the link with the radically other is not seeing or thinking of the boundaries of the site one inhabits. It is to inhabit the area of absence. The terror of the deformed monster "is not" in "any place" and "is nothing" or in any case "is", if we allow ourselves a positivity, in the heart of darkness as all those magnificent forms of life given by Coatlicue, which carries a necklace of hands and hearts and never becomes satiated of human cadavers or by Mictlantecuhtli, semi-defleshed, bathed in blood.

In a paradoxical manner one cannot ignore the rarity that eroticism reveals in its broad diversity because if there is something impossible to capture or sustain it is what we contradictorily call "erotic link or connection". Together with this dissolution, disfiguration and "anomie", great empires were founded that required order, institutions, rules, etc. To think that eroticism is a slow and progressive evolution of a wild state to another that is civilized is to defeat something most humane. If the West has made of horror a subtle, technical and delicate beauty, the American Indians made horror hunchbacked, monstrous, brusque, a radically other beautiful form of life.

It is from this unstructured negativity of the feminine as the radically other, so embedded in pre-Hispanic eroticism, that the creation or developing form has a true tension among destruction and construction, dissolution and fixed, life and death. We can find traces of this abysmal experience in pre-Hispanic eroticism.

If we understand eroticism to be, as Bataille says, the approbation of life until death, there is nothing better to illustrate this than the scarce records of the pre-Hispanic world, even though the latter entails a great complexity. And by the same token, if by Meso-America we refer to certain geographical coordinates, before anything else we are in agreement in that among the cultures in this vast region that were constituted up to our own day it was possible to find greater diversity than that which existed among the Polynesian indigenous and the eskimo, of course, prior to the Spanish conquest.

In that sense, the binary system for understanding the symbolical categories of the complementary opposites can also be useful and functional. However, there are doubts as to the results that these symbolical couples offer. For example, Lopez-Austin says, "in Meso-America the duos heat/cold, strength/weakness, sweet aroma/stench, and glory/sexuality" (Lopez-Austin in Arqueologia Mexicana, 2010, p. 29). (1)

Let us say that up to the opposition between sweet aroma/stench everything was clear, but when one relates as complementary opposites glory and sexuality, we cannot honestly do anything other than become puzzled. Perhaps here, from the "West", to relate sexual pleasure with a certain type of glory is nothing strange. It is more common to find the opposite--from glory to hell--even though it is also true that Christian glory is asexual and that in hell there may or may not be sex. From our Cartesian tradition we could attribute, rightly so, to glory that which is absent from sex and to hell that regarding sexual sins. It is here and precisely from the text of Lopez-Austin, Sexuality in the Meso-American tradition, that one initiates the search for Pre-Hispanic eroticism. 'Eroticism is established in pleasure, in sensuality, in the attraction of the sexes, in courtship. It is not possible to appreciate it fully in ancient Meso-America, which brings us near, for the most part, sources firmly conditioned by the perception of the conquering culture' (Lopez-Austin in Arqueologia Mexicana, 2010, p. 35). We agree with him when he establishes the difficulties that exist from certain Western conceptions about eroticism for taking up the matter of Meso-American cultures, especially in this serious confusion which associates simply and clearly the erotic with pleasure, with life, in a kind of negation, of oppositorum aeternum with pain and death just as a certain angle of Platonism interprets it. (2)

Of the body, the heart, and the sacred

Of course, we cannot elude or forget that eroticism is not synonymous with sexuality and even less with genitalia. It is not strange to recognize that somehow the Marquis de Sade or the ancient or modern pornography are the most emblematic of eroticism. A tear suffices, or a holy icon, a foot, a cadaver, an animal, food, a flower, a thought, a familiar image, a fantasy or anything or nothing to unleash the erotic experience.

Eroticism does not necessarily have a sexual or reproductive finality. It is not about discharging a biological force that invades us or about producing other lives in order to perpetuate the species such as with animals. Eroticism is a degree of exaltation, the constant tension between conscience and instinct, an extreme exuberance of life that can only be possible in its mortifying correlation. Live/death, more than simple opposites, are the same word lifedeath, and for this reason to engender another being, a dying being by principle, does not cease to represent an erotic activity, the human more humane. In other words, to procreate is to give life to death. The vital continuity is for us, as discontinuous mortal beings (individuals that die in a singular manner), a necessary condition of our existence. Precisely, the depletion of eroticism resides in the separation of life and death like of pleasure and pain.

Eroticism is associated with what we understand by culture in the sense that it bursts against all socially established rules and regularities. It is, in essence, rebellious or free-spirited, which does not imply that it does not impose some transitory laws on those who participate in erotic relations that can lead, even, to insanity and death.

It is not the purpose of this essay to delve deeply into the different forms of eroticism as a vital continuity, in a medium of rape and violence, but recurring to Bataille, we can establish three forms of eroticism which, undoubtedly, conform only one: that which refers to utility, to the benefit we obtain from our body and that of others, be it in direct sexual self-satisfaction such as masturbation or in singular fantasies which do not exclude anguish and misfortune, such as the pleasure/pain that we infringe upon other bodies and that is referred to as an enjoyment (3) with and for others. Undoubtedly, that which stimulates eroticism is violence and the most radical of all of those is death in the sense that there is no desire without a spirit of domination, of subjugation of the other's body, including the authority, of the submission we cause our own bodies.

From the utilitarian eroticism of bodies, which does not fail to have something sinister and terrible about it, we turn now to the affectionate, to lovers, that of the heart as Bataille calls it. If it is true that on occasions this form of eroticism stems from or is linked to bodies not necessarily dependent on them, their materiality, as one way to say it, becomes incarnate in the force of ethos, of circumstance, of chance, of custom, taste, beauty, of the affinity and the sublime. In that sense, sensual passion can be stronger than that of the bodies. There exists in it a transcendental motive that bursts like substantial violence in the chore of those who are amorous. It is about a cause, a proposition, an end that is beyond them themselves to such a degree that happiness is easily transmutable by suffering and pain and with a frequency associated with a Utopian promise of happiness, of plenty, but also in the previous self-recognition of fiasco, of impossibility. In both cases, one begins with "as if. One believes or feels that one wins even though in a relative manner one loses, but still one plays or the contrary, one experiments disillusion or loss although relatively one wins. The bet is to lose, but more importantly in one case or the other, it is to participate in the erotic game.

Eroticism is an exit toward our mortal and discontinued solitude, the tying of oneself to the impossible beloved being in order to become confused to the point of craziness, to form one sole heart even though the two who precede it disappear. At the height of the vital union, a particular death is inevitable. In such a manner that fright, risk, the danger of a definite separation are manifested as the conscience that guarantees the limits of each individual. As such the urge to kill, that which ties us to the public and ordinary, or to suicide in order to end the intolerable pain of the impossibility of extraordinary intimacy which is, as Bataille suggests, in the union of lovers, an effect of passion.

In the erotic experience, bodies disrobe and souls transfuse but in the sacrifice the victim is killed. It is true that the continuity of the species as humanity is not affected by death in the sense that it is for an individual, the opposite in fact. "I insist on the fact that as the continuity of the being lies in the origin of beings, death does not affect it. The continuity of the being is independent of it. Or even the contrary: death manifests if" (Bataille 2003, p. 27).

Sacrificial death is not a simple murder, an accident or the decrepitude that over time ends life, rather, it is about the destruction of someone so that life flows. Death is a gift, which means the sacrifice quits the erotic game only to allow, giving others the opportunity to continue playing. The victim of sacrifice says something, indicates a time and place, and reveals to us the sacred, due to its violent death.

These three forms of eroticism manifested in the body, in the heart and in what is sacred are laden with three important characteristics: the conscience of death, fecundity, and the monstrous. In the first one accepts eroticism as the last moment, the sublime moment of death in which we can laugh and cry. The erotic is affirmed in death as the unique port of the torments in this life. This clarity of the inevitable is the conscience of death. Fecundity is the fruit of the intoxication of lifedeath because in eroticism the voice of desire and the ecstasy of petite death, which is the orgasm, are heard. This exaltation of the vitality of the organ is that which breaks with reason, giving rein to the entrails of voluptuousness and delirium for unlimited horror. The erotic manifest in the orgasm is the uncontrolled desire of life through death, the poetic act both creative and productive, of overflowing life that achieves extreme insanity. In this poetic act resides the principle pro-creative, reproductive of sexual pleasure. Therefore, finally, the monstrous so manifests itself in interlaced bodies that, upon being suspended in the excessive appetite of life, express the intense pain of competition and the inevitable dying of the entrails as in the horrors of sacred eroticism, of sacrificial death where the monstrous is, paradoxically, the incarnation of the terrifying in fleshless bodies.

Characteristics of pre-Hispanic eroticism

Let us begin with affectionate eroticism which is sensuality, embodies taste, beauty and the sublime. If it is true we cannot find abundant traces of this type of eroticism in pre-Hispanic art, probably Kissing your lips next to the rails of the fence, a love song dedicated to a woman found in The songs of Dzitbalche (4) illustrate this kind of erotica:

To kiss the lips of the beloved maiden, of the woman who dresses up for her beloved to highlight her sensuality is the force of circumstance and of custom. It is the power of embellishment and of taste for whomever one loves. To contemplate the beauty of the beloved one is the sublime moment of happiness.

We said that the purpose of eroticism of the hearts, upon being beyond the loving, transforms happiness to profound sadness and great pain. We can observe this in Spell for attracting the beloved:

Eroticism of the heart provokes the separation of the will tossing to one side the "rational" and for another proper loving. The latter is that which accompanies the lover this is the presence of the goddess of pleasure and of love, of youthful femininity, beautiful and happy. In spite of the brotherhood of Xochiquetzal, to support this division of the heart, of the soul, fatigues, afflicts, and saddens the lovers. Perhaps the conquest of the beloved being, the affliction provoked by affectionate eroticism, is the most profound competition to be free of, including for a warrior.

Now, fecundity as a characteristic of pre-Hispanic eroticism can be appreciated in different rites. One of them that appears as representative is the great feast of the lords, also called HueyTecuilhuitl (6) where the sunset, lunar, nearly nighttime, the earth fecund, is the arrival of dampness, of the rains.

Xochipilli fertilizes Xilonen, (7) the lunar afternoon sun and the setting sun fertilize the crescent moon, the prince of flowers, of dance, of music, of the fecund pleasures of the tender virgin goddess who is ready to be taken and eaten.

Xochipilli, dressed as a parrot in this celebration of fecundity, represents dead warriors that have turned into birds, who now "spread and drank honey everywhere and sucked different flowers" (Graulich, 1999, p. 395). The flowered prince is the first who sucks, who tastes, who sucks the flower, the feminine sex and, as such, is the great one who fertilizes. From the intoxication of lifedeath where the ecstasy of orgasm is Xilonen is fertilized and offers some tasty corn. The tlaolli, (8) maize, is the fruit of eroticism with such unbridled desire of life through death. In the pleasure of life there is the pain of death. In the enjoyment of death there is the suffering of life. The sun dies, the moon lives, Xochipilli's seed, which is the origin, penetrates Xilonen's cave, which is the destiny, the semen dies and the ovule lives. A man dressed as a parrot, which incarnates Xochipilli, was sacrificed and flayed. A priest was adorned in the skin of the victim and with the emblems belonging to God. Additionally, a virgin slave personified Xilonen, the one who wandered and remained xilote, tender. After having danced happily in the site of the sacrifice, she was decapitated and then her heart was removed and offered to the goddess sculpture (Graulich, 1999, pp. 382-383). The feast of the lords is a gift for the afternoon sun, the setting star, the fertilizer of the lunar earth.

It is worth noting that parallel to this celebration was the feast for the end of the rainy season, the Tititl (9), honoring old women. In this feast a woman slave was sacrificed who represented the goddess Llamatecuhtli (10), old woman or Tonan, our mother. Unlike Xilonen, she danced crying before ascending the pyramid to be decapitated and have her heart torn out.

As such, we have two parallel celebrations, one dedicated to Xilonen, the young, the smile, dampness, and the other honoring Llamatecuhtli, the old one, the one who cries out, dryness. In both celebrations there was a flower race, xochipaina, which represented the female sex and menstruation, sign of fecundity. In both feasts, after the sacrifice, the men danced with women adorned with flowers. The girls were supposed to give their flowers to the gods and, finally, the men were supposed to run and pick up the flowers. In Llamatecuhtli's case, they were priests, men who took vows of chastity, the ones who ran to burn the flowers while in Xilonen's feast they were young, single men who got to the flowers to fertilize them. Therefore, in xochipaina, the flower race, there is the celebration of women's sex as fertility, dampness, birth, and youth just as sterility, dryness, death, and old age. Even though Llamatecuhtli is the old diminishing moon and Xilonen the rising moon, both are moons, caves or vaginas and were, just as the flowers, associated with menstruation and fecundity.

In xochipaina the bodies, both masculine and feminine, were used for giving pleasure. The men looked for the women, the female warriors, not for fertilizing but for exciting the pleasure of possessing and dominating a body. This eroticism of utility can be appreciated in the famous poem by Aquiauhtzin (11):

She seductively issues an invitation to taste the pleasure of the body. However, in spite of tiredness erotic siege occurs, the cheerful miss, ahuiani, challenges him to continue with more force, she knows how to excite him, to touch him, and how to let him caress her entrails. She does not give up even confronted with mistakes and teasing about not being penetrated. The bodies become intensely agitated approaching maximum ecstasy of the flesh. Little by little tiredness is felt. Blood flows strongly in the organs (13) and he is erect and she soaked by the spilled flowers. The ecstasy of the union has arrived, no xochitlacuilochichihualtzin, look my flowered painting my breasts, ma no matitechxinechonantiuh, now with your hands, take me, xonahuiacan, let us have pleasure. The bodies in pain and in ecstasy merge, lose their original shape, express the torture of the contest and the agony of their organs that inhabit the pinnacle of sexual pleasure, that incarnate the monstrous coupling, it is the crucible that fuses Chaac with the goddess Lunar. Peacefully the descent begins. They have given up before the erotic corporal seduction. Nic-hualihtoa, cuenonetl, I tell myself come girl, ma no ce nimiqui, even when despite everything I must die, ihuianxoconcochi, little by little give in to sleep. They know that coitus, as a vital climax, and life are a moment followed by the inevitable: death.

The eroticism of the body is also notable in the famous poem of Tlaltecatzin, in which, through dialog with an ahuiani, pleasure and anguish are interwoven for death:

The cornflower, the vulva, is sweet and a delight up to intoxication. The bodies become abandoned and lose themselves in pleasure still knowing they will end up fleshless within the embrace of death.

It is worth saying that Xochipilli also was one of the first to "cut the flower", in other words, became, as a celestial force, united with the earthly environment, just as Chaac possessed the goddess Lunar. "Cut the flower" is a metaphor that alludes to the lack of sex or sexual sin. It is what breaks, as we said, the social rules and regulations. As such, the cantor of lacking invites:

The flower in itself is a symbol of sexual excess which implies moving from an accepted and normalized state to an erotic one, denied and chaotic. Physical deformation, especially of the feet, is the pre-Hispanic metaphor to indicate sexual sin (Lopez and Echeverria, 2010, pp. 66 and 67). For example, we observe that in the crooked feet of Cihuateotl (Vaticanus Codice B, plate 79), in the volcanic glass mirror of Tezcatlipoca (Borgia Codice, plate 17) which substitutes one of his inferior limbs. Another clear example of this social crookedness, as the uncontained boldness toward eroticism, is the dislocated body of a tlamacazqui, priest, that along his maxtla, sling, one can allude to a phallic exaltation (Borgia Codice, plate 59).

We have seen that in the song of Aquiauhtzin the one causing the cheer suffers due to not being penetrated, a huelniquitotia in malacatl, I can no longer cause the spindle to dance, ahuelnocontlaza, in notzotzopaz, I can't position the weaving stick, Why can't I excite him? Would she be too sacred for him? Neither can he cause her to moisten, she's dry, nihcpichilama, I'm old with no juice, Why can't I get her hot? Is he also sacred to her? In corporal erotic copulation the orgasm, petite lifedeath, occurs but neither the spectacular death nor the life that Bataille refers to occurs. The great lifedeath is only possible in the erotic of the sacred. Certainly, in the eroticism of the body there is a certain grade of sacrifice, there is the refusal as such in giving oneself to another, including one tolerating the repugnant. Nevertheless, sacrificial death is a gift, as we have said a surrender that reveals the sacred, the one sacrificed exits the erotic game in order for the game to continue. If eroticism is ludic and its sacred form does not escape such a connotation, it is not mere chance to encounter so many pre-sacrificial games related to body eroticism that seek sexual weakening. For example, in Tezcatlipoca's feasts, the young man chosen due to his strength and physical beauty enjoyed a month prior to his sacrifice four women who embodied four goddesses representative of sexual pleasures: Xilonen, Xochiquetzal, Atlatonan, and Huixtocihuatl (Florentine Codice, part III in Duverger 1983, p. 122). They did not allow their victim to rest but rather led him to physical exhaustion. Or the fight started by the woman available for sacrifice along with other women during the feast called "sweeping of the roads". Or rather, the well-known ball game tlachtli (16), ball, for example, in which movement (17) is celebrated, a meeting of opposites, the lifedeath, is the spectacle of the sacred cult and finds its most profound meaning in sacrifice. This can be proved in the bas-reliefs of El Tajin and in lands of Chichen Itza. Sahagun says that in the teotlachco, "the land of the divine game" located at the foot of the Quetzalcoatl temple, "the victims' bodies were dragged throughout the land and was as if someone painted the ground with their blood" (Florentine Codice, part III in Duverger, 1983, p. 128). In the sacred erotic game there could have been acts of torture that could very well have offered features that motivated tolerating filth. Provoking plenty of cries at the moment of sacrifice was a good omen for rainy season, and for that it was the custom to pull off the children's nails to be sacrificed in honor of Tlalloc. In the feast of fire, in the month called Xocotluetzi, at the foot of the temple of Huitzilopochtli the nude captives awaited their death after having subjected their hands and ankles to the sword. A priest took them to the top of a pyramid and tossed them into the brazier.

Another example of the pre-sacrificial game as sacred eroticism is the rite called tlahuahuanaliztli, laceration, in which once the captive is bound at the waist by a rope whose other end was tied to the sacrificial stone and with four wooden mallets and a ridiculous mallet covered with feathers instead of shiny obsidian, is tossed to four warriors who should hurt him, cause him cruel and painful wounds without killing him. When the victim approached the threshold of death "they quickly tossed him, pushed him, lay him over the edge of the stone and there the high priest of XippeTotec opened his chest" (Florentine Codice, part III in Duverger, 1983, p. 132).

The crowd must tolerate the repugnant, the unimaginable pain of torture and death. Human sacrifice is the renouncement of life so that the game of life does not end. The coldness, darkness, and stench that sacrificial death can be reminds us of the pregnant uterus where the now corrupted semen served to create a new life. (18) The pre-sacrificial game frees the struggle of contrary forces and allows the brutal death which puts into practice the excitation and excess of lifedeath. The sacrificial death spreads vital energy ripping it and affirming the continuity of dying. Our pre-Hispanics were subjects dedicated to the ecstasy of death and as such consecrated their lives to eroticism.

In cruelty, the bloody and the astonishing of sacred eroticism emerges the monstrous which incarnates the horror of fleshless bodies. Coatlicue (19), Mictlantecutli (20), and Cipactli are only some of the representatives of the grotesque and terrifying. "Coatlicue is the creator of the gods and of humans. Her pyramidal shape, from ascending to descending, going from the bottom of the earth--the world of the dead--to the highest peak. She is all life and death the cosmic-dynamic force which gives life and that is maintained by death in the struggle of those of the contrary" (Leon-Portilla, 2006, pp. 118-119). The goddess "skirt of the serpents", also called Tonantzin, our venerated mother, and Teteoinan, mother of the gods, wears a necklace of hands and hearts that end with a human cranium hidden in her breast. Her feet and hands have claws with which to satiate herself with human cadavers. From her split head spew two streams of blood with the shape of a serpent and behind her she has snails, an attribute to the gods of the earth.

The sculpture of Mictlantecuhtli, god of the world of the dead, hailing from The House of the Eagles was bathed in blood. The god appears semi-fleshless, painted yellow and blue which represent the rotting of the body, its raised arms which end with claws and its hair which was inserted into the orifices of its head ended up causing people to tremble. From its womb hangs a liver from which place vigor, digestion, and sexuality are controlled.

Finally, Cipactli, lizard, voracious fish, related to Tlaltecuhtli, earth monster, toothed terrestrial vagina. Combines the ambivalence lifedeath, its telluric and toothy quality allows it, in one sense, to be the dwelling of the seed where life germinates, and in another sense to be the one who castrates the germ of life. Cipactli is compared with Xmucame, ancient concealer with a gigantic opening, of Popol Vuh, the Mayan hayal haltun can mean rocky and aqueous cavity where one dies (Baez in Arqueologia Mexicana, 2010, pp. 54-55). The vagina and the earth are places where life is engendered and death produced. Cipactli, as a telluric divinity, "represents feminine fertility and the germination of plants, coitus and sowing, semen and the seed, humans and maize" (Baez, in Arqueologia Mexicana, 2010, p. 55) and also symbolizes feminine sterility and masculine castration such as the end of plants, chastity and harvest, destiny and death.

There is no doubt that the pre-Hispanic world is erotic because life is linked to death. Otherwise, how does one explain that in less than 200 years the Mexican Empire emerged as a result of the rooting of its vigor in lifedeath, roots that undoubtedly all of its neighbors should possess in order to resist them. (21) Of course, in the Mexico of today traces of these original foundations still remain, perhaps in the singular manner in that now our relating ourselves to death is one of our erotic, more emblematic traces. Without this link in life with death, we lose the earth and the roots that sustain us we renounce both great and small death, which are a fascination for the extraordinary. Without any doubt, this manner in which we become familiar with lifedeath can cause trembles in that it reveals insolence and horror. In other words, death as eroticism is revealed in our monstrous being.

As such, how is it impossible not to feel a touch such as a caress or an injury, of the penis in the vagina? It is impossible not to feel the penetration of pre-Hispanic eroticism in our being and our being Mexicans. In some way, our peculiar way of being is made from the bones of the lifedeath that belonged to our ancestors. The traces of pre-Hispanic eroticism dwell in the extraordinary figure of Catrina. We are the ludic bones, seducers, deceivers, opposition, fatal ones, sensual ones, and the grotesque and lovable covered with something that now is not the maxtla. Despite the clothes and hat, we show our fleshless face. A look that reflects the permanent tension between conscience and instinct, the extreme and radical height that is possible only in that which is mortifying, in eroticism. To feel the reflection of the traces of those roots is a way of discovering ourselves like a find in itself and like being available to be discovered.

2. American Atlantis: Mayan and Aztec Catastrophes

If we consider the idea of catastrophe as a cyclical announced "chance or circumstance" that in a prophetical manner is working to temporarily resolve the things to come of the world with the aim of appeasing the uncertainty inherent to humans or if we assume that this will be overcome by the idea of progress and the ineluctable evolution of humanity, we will be on both sides of the same coin. On the one hand it is about a cyclicity that is convenient, opportunist, seeking to justify knowledge and powers that run from the commercial and absurd Hollywood-style melodrama to a mix of supposedly scientific arguments that produce collective apocalyptic states. And on the other, of the usual technological progress capable of facing any crisis whether it is earthly or heavenly.

In our article, one should understand catastrophe as a dynamic and unstable point in space and time, as a movement that on occasions we perceive to be cyclical and simultaneous such as an incessant lack of determination. The catastrophe does not announce the end of a particular time to be replaced by another and much less the fall of a great, founding empire born/created from nothing. The catastrophe as a myth, in short, reveals the absence of that which requires no presence because it has always been there.

Very little or nothing would help this present work if we did not recognize that the discussion about Atlantis has been limited by interests which range from the attempt to place the genesis of a culture other than the Jewish one in its surroundings, to the unfortunate archaeological, geographical or geological searches that equally can be carried out in the middle of the Atlantic Ocean as in the Crete of the Mediterranean Sea. For this reason we accept the thesis developed by Vidal-Naquet in the sense that "the war between Athenas and Atlantis was a war between Athenas and Athenas" furthermore, Plato, of course, does no other thing but make use of his rhetorical gimmicks to sustain his "logos" wrapped in the myth of Atlantis. We agree with Vidal-Naquet when he says that Plato disliked democratic and imperialistic Athens and preferred the Athens he represented in The Republic and in Laws therefore we assume the interpretation of the French historian regarding Atlantis in the Timeo and Critias.

Let us not get into the debate that positions Plato as a Hebrew speaking Greek or of the philosopher's intention to deny history or use it with a craftiness to justify his epistemic, pure ideas, neither in open or closed nationalisms which myth convokes, and we are even less interested in denying the strength of the myth. On the contrary, paraphrasing Castoriadis, we can affirm that the myth of Atlantis exists if and when we are capable of instituting it as a significant, social "imaginary". In that sense, we recognize that the myth of Atlantis is a real and true story. From this to supposing that the Mexicans are the heirs of the "Atlantes" (Vidal-Naquet, 2006, p. 88) just as some have suggested that there is a great distance between the Semitic and "Arian" peoples.

It is not enough that the word "atl" in nahautl means, among other things, water also, the founding emblem of the great Tenochtitlan is that of an island (like a model of Atlantis) where an eagle atop a "nopal" cactus devours a serpent. It is also not enough to find multiple similarities among words, symbols, rites and customs of villagers as strange as the Indians of the American west and the Melanesian natives that Mauss (1979) refers to in his theory of Don or as that likeness that Dumezil encounters in Peru, among the first six names of the numbers of the Indian language Quechua and its equivalent in Turkish. (Jimenez in Paya, 2010, p. 58) This is because one does not try to invent similarities or establish magical or fantastical analogies, but to show how the myth is simultaneously universal and singular.

It is why we prefer to stay with the Socratic irony:

What relevance does it represent to assume the relationship between the myth of Atlantis and the Mayan and Aztec myths to try and interpret our current reality? What is this potentiality of the myth? Let us see what Mircea Eliade says in this respect:

The catastrophe in the Mayan myth

On more than one occasion people have been talking about the lost continent, a prodigious culture that ended up getting lost in the depths of the sea, and here is where the quest begins, where every culture has created its own legends, creating a myth from those people that one day arrived at Mesoamerica, and this arrival is often attributed to the Mayan culture. The closest relationship with our American cultures is in the word Atl which in nahuatl means, among other things, water in fact it is said that from there its name comes and it is one of the most important statements that with some adventure places us as heirs. Therefore this is the reason why one tries to find different answers to the brightness of this culture of illustrious creations with perfect strokes. Finally that which the water swallowed remains in the deep and transpositions of the myth.

We are talking about an extraordinary civilization located in a vast region known as Mesoamerica. There it has remained, through its vestiges, an indelible mark as a sign of their various cultural demonstrations. Its territory covers what is now known as the Mexican southeast and parts of Central America. There had already been 3,000 years of history up to the arrival of the first Spanish. Contrary to what is generally thought, the Mayan culture was destroyed by a catastrophe, but refuses to disappear. Their descendants are still around and retain their languages and the potential of their greatness takes refuge in the allegories of the myth. Just as Atlantis we can now talk about the vastness of a culture with great scopes it was there and was inhabited by people of incessant creativity but was devastated by the appalling forces of water. That legacy remains today as a living expression of the significance of a language that continues nourishing the myth and is found waiting for its new heirs.

In the worldview of the Mayans we can see that the idea of a catastrophe, understood as change, is still present. (22) The references which we have available and which enable us to approximate what is described above, are in The Book of Books of Chilam Balam. It is enough to point to the Chilam Balam of Chumayel to exemplify this sequence of destruction. In it we have not only news of disasters that befell in some remote past and resulted in fundamental changes still lived and experience in the present, but we also find prophetic texts that tell us about events that equally will affect the stability of a given moment.

With this, we insist that the continuous movement announced from the beginning of our article, in other words, a perennial flow of an "everything", which still permeates in human nature. That is why when we read the stories of Chilam Balam about "signs of cataclysm" or "signs of destruction", we must always consider the foregoing signs of renewal.

Now, if we delve with comparatives around the nahuatl word atl, water and its pertinent relationship regarding movement, it is necessary not to forget the Mayan term -a', that precisely denotes: water. We need not to lose sight as regular and frequent disasters have been considered linked to this element and to the power of transformation that it suggests. From the start the Mayan people attribute a relationship of origin to water, to cloud water, as suggested by Lizana in The Matichu Chronicle (Chilam Balam, 1989, p. 29).

Thus, we can understand how it is that a group of people that attributes its origin to tiny water particles subordinates its whole conception of change and renewal to it. That is the reason for (and the fact that the Mayan world finds a parallel form of its aquatic origin should not surprise us) its destruction.

As we noted above, the Chilam Balam shows us two directions for the road of change of humankind that is, events of a past time are narrated and events that will happen in the future are described. Even though it seems absurd to say it, it is a future without time. To understand a little of what we have been talking about up to now, we consider it appropriate to bring to our text excerpts of Chilam Balam. First we must emphasize those who allude to events that have already occurred so we can then mention a few prophecies that are nothing more than the idea of change projected toward the future. The following forms a part of the Chilam Balam of Mani, which in turn is contained in the manuscript known as the Perez Codex:

It is curious that in the Chilam of Chumayel allusion is made to a very similar passage in which we observe the following:

In the above cases the stories are exemplified in a past time. And as we have already said we must also consider the movement toward an uncertain future. We can find this file in some prophetic texts such as 8 Ahau from the First prophetic wheel of a folder of Katunes, prophecy in a 13 Ahau from the prophetic Katunes Texts isolated or the Year [6th] 5 Muluc of CUCEB or the prophetic Wheel of tunes years of Katun 5 Ahau. (23)

Thus, renovation is evident. Catastrophe goes beyond a hastily disappearance without notice a breakdown of certain notions established in a precise time of misfortunes that release chaos in a village. The catastrophe is entirely a symbol of movement, of change, of cyclically professed rupture for this reason this is generated inside man himself and extrapolated in its surroundings, in the world in its entirety.

Catastrophe in the Aztec myth

It is well known that the Aztecs had human sacrifice as one of their most ingrained habits. For some this practice is contemptuous and disgusting, however, many of these positions towards the strange and "different" do not allow contemplating their richness and complexity. Sacrifices are, paradoxically, the extraordinary intentional manifestation of life. They are the embodiment of death that in its appearance, as evident and misleading, catastrophe sets the prosperity of life. This contradiction is the force that moves, changes, transforms the world. Within the names atl we can find this dissonant relationship.

According to the Legend of the Suns, which deals with the world's creation, we know that the fourth Sun, nahui atl, "four water" had to see the destruction of humankind by a terrible flood, a flood that would last 52 years, a xiuhmolpilli "ligature of years." Humanity who lived in Mesoamerica at the arrival of the Spanish, was the last, the fifth Sun called nahui ollin, "Four Movement". This was the humanity of the sacrifices that so impacted the Spanish and why they decided to do the annihilation. These were the men who witnessed the arrival of the other-stranger who could represent what had been predicted as the end of the fifth Sun, as the inevitable disappearance of humanity due to movement. On the one hand or the other, the catastrophe by movement, by ollin, was inevitable.

We should note that ollin, "movement", is present in the binding years of xiuhmolpilli, which occurred in nahui atl, just as in the same ollin of the fifth Sun. The ollin glyph is a knot, a tying, a tangle, ". in the pre-Columbian nahuatl world what is 'tied' and 'tangled' is precisely what is built, what one structures: what makes sense [. ] the same movement, ollin, that allows life, is a cardino-temporal 'knot'" (Johansson in Navarrete and Olivier, 2000, p. 57). "We can say that in ollin destruction makes construction possible, death is necessary for life. The Aztecs frequented death, it was not strange to them they assumed their agonizing beings. The macehualtin did not forget you were born to die and only live briefly. The tlamatinimeh taught or revealed the duality of the world vitally threatened with death, their greatness was in assuming the inevitable agony" (Leon-Portilla, 1997, p. 249). Death is closely linked with birth, a relationship given from the movement. The catastrophes in nahui atl and nahui ollin represent the movement between death and birth of humanity we could say that it regenerates in the atl-ollin conjunction, water and movement come together in a constant human rebirth. In this regard, it is interesting that the talents and visits of Tlalloc announced beneficial or harmful changes, because from the Tlallocan, (24) Tlalloc's abode, everything necessary for life could be sent, especially for agriculture, but also the god of rain can send lightning, storms, floods, threats of rivers, lakes and seas. An example of this rebirth can be appreciated in the famous passage from the Annals of Cuauhtitlan, of the divine rapture of Nezahualcoyotl:

It is important to say that this kidnapping happened after Ixtlixochitl's death, father of Nezahualcoyotl, when the prince and his brother, fleeing from the tepanecas, hid in a cave where they found them playing. In the divine rapture we can see the symbolic death of the child Nezahualcoyotzin (Contel in Olivier, 2008, p. 348) where the death of the appearing child causes the birth of a new kind of human being. So we notice three elements in this transformation, directly related to the first two deaths dedicated to Tlalloc (26) and the third linked to the revival of Nezahualcoyotl. The first is to take the prince to Poyauhtecatl "next to the fog that looks like smoke", the thick fog you see on the top of the mountains on stormy days, which is one of the entrances to Tlallocan, one of the places of Tlalloc worship, the place where children were sacrificed in honor of the god of water. The second, the divine anointing with water and something charred or scorched may allude to the donation, by the gods, of the secret of the conquest and war that metaphorically are called teoatl "divine water" and tlachinolli "burned" furthermore, this anointing may represent the blood and melted rubber with which children dedicated to Tlalloc were smeared. These two elements were a fundamental part of the feast of Atlcahualco, 'the halting of the waters', the third score of the rainy season dedicated to the tlaloques. It is known that the victims in this feast were infants and newborns, preferably one selected kids born under a favorable sign, belonging to the nobility and / or those who have two "swirls" of hair this is probably related to Pantitlan, the swirl or hole in Meixco's lagoon that absorbed the excess water and led to Tollan. Infants were adorned with green feathers, jade necklaces and bracelets and smeared their faces with rubber. They were then taken to the mountaintops to be offered to Tlalloc (Graulich, 1999, Ch. XI). This celebration marked the end of the rainy and wet season. It was a critical time of transition from wetness to dryness.

The dryness was placed on the scale to establish a delicate balance between rain and sunrise. Before reviewing the transformation or rebirth of Nezahualcoyotl, it seems important to address an aspect which, although not appearing in the "prince's divine rapture" is critical in the feast of Atlcahualco: the presence of the five trees. It is known that prior to the celebration of "the halting of the waters" they went to Colhuacan Mountain to cut the largest, straightest and thickest tree this was planted in front of the pyramid of Huitzilopochtli and Tlaloc around this tree were four smaller ones, finally the five trees were joined by cords and the bordering space was decorated like an artificial garden. Near the main tree they placed a girl dressed in blue representing Chalchiuhtlicue, the water goddess. Both were taken to Pantitlan, the tree was thrown into the water and the girl was decapitated. Well, these five trees can be related with the cosmic trees representing the Tamoanchan. According to Lopez-Austin (2011, p. 20) in both the Chilam Balam of Chumayel and the History of Mexican paintings the creation of four cosmic posts that were put in place after the flood to sustain the sky is narrated. Said trees can be represented, in Atlcahualco, by the four little trees that surround the main one. And the fifth, the one in the center, can symbolize the same Tamoanchan which is both the axis of the cosmos as the cluster of trees. The Tamoanchan like the Tlallocan, ". is a place of fog, it reveals itself as a fundamental part of a cosmic of circulation of the divine forces that were necessary to give movement and continuity to the beings in the world of man. " (Lopez-Austin, 2011, p. 223). Within the cosmic tree trunks inhabits the braid of malinalli, lives the union of knots that move life, that upon being ollin, destruction enables construction. We can say that Atlcahualco, as the crucial moment of transition from wetness to dryness, is the celebration for malinalli and ollin, for the helical movement that weaves death and life. In the feast the roads upon which the world's vital energy traveled could not be dispensed with, the onslaught and flow of opposites could not be missing. The halting of the waters is the moment of transformation.

Regarding the re-birth of Nezahualcoyotl, his presence or ending as the king of Tetzcuco, the wonder of Itzcohuatzin is inevitable because he found himself directly with the transformation of the son of Ixtlixochitl. In this narrative we can see the origin of the king of Tetzcuco, who takes into account his own death and creation in other words, the idea of origin is an encounter with the death and creation of the appearance. The appearance of the prince-child dies in order for the appearance of the man-king to be born. And this is an act of transformation, renovation or rebirth. Undoubtedly, the death of the appearances is strongly linked with that imagination of origin which contains the body of alternative images that fill the unknown absence of what could be. Poyauhtecatl, the divine water and charred thing are extraordinary and unknown elements, qualities of the imagination of the origin of King Nezahualcoyotl.

The birth of the "new" human forms is possible due to the return to the depths of self and conscience, in the broadest sense of the word, the wear and tearing of the adjectives that have sustained the "old" figures of the human being. They are the disasters that happened at the end of each of the five Suns. It is the experience of change that inhabits the word cahuitl "which is leaving us." The initial weakness of the prince, as a fugitive and orphan, is supplemented by powers that enable him to fulfill his task, in this case the demolition of the Tepaneca Empire. When there is no sense of being and being as you are and living, then the transformation can occur. It is no coincidence that the meaning of life, for example, becomes a motivation when life loses its meaning. At the time that Nezahualcoyotl becomes a fugitive, the initial transformation loses meaning. All the rebirth process of the prince takes place in the domains of Tlalloc: the cave as a metaphor for the original matrix announces the re-birth, and even Tlalloc can mean "subterranean road or long cave" (Duran in Lopez-Austin, 2011, p. 181) the hilltop may refer both to Poyauhtecatl, which is the name given to the sacrificed child, and to Poyauhtlan, which is the temple or place on the hill where the children were sacrificed as well as, of course, water.

The atl-ollin conjunction, water-movement, where coexist death and birth allows us to refer to Tlallocan, or Tlalloc's place and the tlaloques, servant gods of the rain god. The Tlallocan is the place of abundance and the dead it is the kingdom of Tlalloc where the dead and the sustenance of life coexist. This is described as such in the text of Sahagun's informants:

Indeed in the second score of the rainy season, devoted to tlaloques, they celebrate a feast called Atemoztli, "falling water or rainfall" in which they sacrificed people suffering from an illness attributed to the rain gods just as those who had been saved from drowning (Graulich, 1999, Ch. VIII). Although Sahagun does not indicate the sacrifice in Atemoztli these sacrifices took place and were carried out in the same places where the tlaloques lived: meaning the top of the mountains, in the lagoons, rivers, oceans, and particularly in Pantitlan, that whirlpool in the lagoon of Mexico. In Atemoztli, the feast to honor the tlaloques, they remembered the flood (30) that killed humanity in nahui atl. At any rate this event was used both to obtain the rains as to prevent the floods they implored the gods to prevent disasters due to both a lack and excess of water. During full rainy season they commemorated the flood which they prayed not to have.

One of the names of the tlaloques is tlamacazque that can literally mean "givers" or "priests" in the sense of offering. The tlaloques, as divinities of Tlalloc, have both the power to supply and to remove the three treasures of Tlalloc (Lopez-Austin, 2011, p. 186): a) water and wind, b) force for growing, and c) seeds or hearts of the vegetable beings. These divinities are the administrators of the Tlallocan and as such determine the agricultural cycles.

Tlalloc, in whom dwells atl-ollin, is present at the beginning and / or end of the cycles of life. It is a dual god that in the death-life link enables the rebirth. He carries this apparent contradiction in his own name and domain. His name, the word Tlalloc, is composed of tlalli, which means "land", and onoc, which translates as "is lying down, elongated" so literally Tlalloc could be "the one that is made from earth" and, therefore, Tlallocan as the place of Tlalloc is "the place made of earth". Paradoxically this god's domain "made of earth" is water, rain. This place made of earth that possesses water is the altepetl, or "mountain water", the mountain full of water where life is based: "the city" or "town" (Simeon, 2007). Altepetl tends its roots in the opposing and complementary forces that produce the energy to move the city. Tlalloc is the god that with its dual nature, tlalli--atl, moves the world, ollin.

As we saw disaster not only means destruction but the constant renewal of life it is a tense movement between indetermination and determination, between chaos and cosmos in an imaginary time that occasionally overflows with fantasies and some others, embodied in the human.

Mayans and Aztecs represent with their myths and culture a way of reaffirming the sacred and supernatural form in this world. If Tenochtitlan is to Mexicans what the Atlantis of Plato is to the Athenians, the myth does not speak to us of anything else but of our own existence. If it is certain that it would be futile to attempt to mechanically move the beliefs and customs of other times, it is also certain that we cannot fail to recognize many of the explanations we try to give to our world, the persistence of mythical elements capable of giving meaning to our desires and intentions.

Myths cannot be understood, in general, by their positive or material verification or their logical demonstration, but instead by their vital force, emotional and their autopoietic capability that allows them to link themselves and form a part of certain cultures.

Nothing more strange to our idea of myth than the conception of an origin or a predictable, foreseen and calculable end neither is it about a hermeneutic understanding that allows infinite interpretation of things in the world either by analogy, sympathy, empathy or emulation. Much less is it a matter of traceable and binary structures, as either significant or discursive elements.

The myth is a complex phenomenon that involves the body (such as blood, sweat and tears), feelings, emotions, the logos it is a way to mean our social evolution.

We cannot forget to recognize the close relationship between history and myth, the myth makes history as history makes the myth, so we do not intend to argue in favor of a causal explanation where one is the effect of the other on the contrary, one accepts the proper life of the myth hence, its wild condition, but neither does one fail to acknowledge the friction in which one encounters reality (Jimenez in Paya, 2010).

The American Atlantis is, in short, a sample of the universal character and necessary, of the imagination incorporated in the potentiality of myths without them catastrophes would be only natural events which one would have to respond to like ants in their ant bed against rain. As this is not the case, the mythical narratives not only explain but also share among their participants epics that announce the difference, the radically other.

3. Water and Fire in the pre-Hispanic World

Foundation and destruction

The recognition that the Creation has its origin in water and fire is a universal myth, basic for all humanity. The aim of this text is to show how the villages that have lived close to their traditions, the land, and agriculture are those that, beyond the dynamics that dreaming produces, control a part of their destiny as a result of their fantasies. Disagreeing with that which Freud suggests when he affirms that dreaming is a continuation of sleeplessness, for us, to the contrary, the importance of daytime life is the continuation of sleep through fantasy or images. In other words, not only are we thankful we sleep, but also that awake, living with others, we dream that life is possible. That way we can confirm it with the ancestral rites of the agricultural communities that discover in traditions, in myths, in fantasies and in legends an explanation for their everyday world. Perhaps in Western Europe and in North America people have left off these resources related to fantasizing. The assertions of Bachelard become overwhelming for those villages that, despite scientific and technological development, keep alive their link with these four vital elements: earth, wind, water and fire, which allow us to understand ourselves in a different mode.

With no doubt we continue being "the Other" of the West, even though we share geopolitical borders, the same currency and are cybernetically globalized. It goes without saying that there have been historical barriers such as the Great Wall of China, the Berlin Wall, and that one which every day gets constructed along the border between Mexico and the United States, which is not only a symbol of backwardness and progress, savagery and civility, but overall of distinct ways of living, of seeing life and of conceiving the world.

The hypothesis that we start with we recuperate from the affirmation Bachelard makes concerning the lesson that fire gives us, so true as he states:

So that our villages, "free of the instincts of intellectual development", with all that this signifies, can continue being considered uncivilized savages with no promising future in this globalization. If the same European Union is a motive for suspicions, thinking of the union of the American continent would be another absurdity. Although our villages and their pre-Hispanic origins have in their roots the experience of losing all to win all, of losing fire to gain water or to gain water in order to lose fire.

We agree with Bachelard concerning the creative potential of the union between water and fire. It is nothing new to recognize that in the majority of the myths the masculine is represented by fire, what is hot and dry, while the feminine by water, what is cold and wet. What we are interested in is the link between fire and water. The polarity water-fire, in the ancient pre-Hispanic times, includes the entire cosmos, from the body to social environment, including covering the religious. An example of this can be those divine words of the myth of Macuiltonatiuh, The Five Suns:

Water Sun and Rain Sun are metaphors that entail the union of opposite degrees of heat. They are signs, "itonal", that mark and conduct life, signs of destiny that empowers life and death. In the sign in which we now live, 4-Movement, the transformation like death that offers life and life that grants death, or rain that with its drops of fire burns, is unavoidable. In the "Legend of the Suns" we find not only the link between opposite degrees of heat and vital signs, but rather a marriage between fire-water, heat-cold, with life-death. Sun-Movement represents the force of change that destroys and of the metamorphosis it creates. Let's say that Sun-Movement vitally perturbs the stillness of death. Sun-Water, Sun-Rain and Sun-Movement make it impossible to speak of cold without heat, of water without fire and of death without life as such, it is inevitable to consider "heatcold" without "lifedeath".

Tension between water and fire

"Considering the virility of fire, the femininity of water is irremediable and cannot make itself virile. Together, both elements create everything" (Bachelard, 2005, p. 133). For us this knot is not exclusively of harmony and equilibrium, but implies tension and reveals the chaos stemming from that which both elements come from. The connection between fire and water is a creative power. With fire and with water total destruction at the same time as the generation of everything becomes possible. This tie "life and death", "fire and water", is the greatest power of Creation. The violence and death of the pre-Hispanic villages which the Westerners so frightened (as if they would not have produced their own slaughterhouses for other purposes) represented for those villages unsuspecting forms of creation. In fewer than 200 years and from "nothing" a complete empire was generated: the Mexicans.

In the link of opposites, which is not necessarily antagonistic but on occasions even complementary, the human being conceived of his presence in the world from the imbalance there was between cold and hot, water and fire, the damp and the dry, and from there the constant search for stability between these polarities. The Mexican man, throughout his life, had to make a great effort to be in harmony with the stability of the cosmos. He accepted that existence on earth led to suffering, disorder, and disorientation. As such, under this premise, a fragment of the Song of the fleeing by Nezahualcoyotl:

To live on earth is to assume the imbalance that entails human existence. It is to accept the permanent fatigue that the procuration of harmony requires. It is the tonalli as equilibrium between cold and heat, as symmetry between life and death. Tonalli is that mental entity which gives life and movement to gods, animals, plants, things and, of course, the human body. This mental entity is found in the mental center tonal (31) which is the irradiation contained in the body. Let's consider that a mental center is 'the part of the human organism in which there supposedly exists a concentration of mental forces, of vital substances, and in which basic impulses of the direction of the processes that give life and movement to the organism are generated (Lopez-Austin, 1980, p. 197). Tonalli is that force, that substance, that mobile and vital process through which organisms live. It is worth noting that the tonal does not position itself in just any part of the organism in other words, it does not get positioned in the heart (yol, yollo), in the liver (el), in the hair (tzon), or on the face (ix), as do other mental centers. Tonal, as irradiation contained in the body, and ihio, as breath, are perhaps the two mental centers that are not found in any place of the body.

Throwing off vital energy is the quality of tonal and generally one relates it to the hot temperature of the body. From there the noun tonalli derives from the verb tona, meaning "irradiate", "make hot or sun". Tonalli is a glow in the form of shade contained in the organism. It is a force like breath or energy that gives the individual vigor, warmth and courage, allowing him to mature. The heat quality of tonalli causes the sun and fire to be its main carrier, which is why doctors turn to them when the human body loses its equilibrium for lack of tonalli. The lack of tonalli provokes serious illnesses and even death. In the Mexican world heat and cold were intimately associated with illnesses for example, the so-called pink eye is nothing more than heat enclosed or irritated blood. Or then the heat provoked by a transitory physical state that

Furthermore, the tonalli could benefit from "aguardiente" or firewater. As Bachelard indicates, one of the substantial waters for the spirit is one that 'burns' or "aguardiente". In the Mexican world we cannot discard the importance of one of the main qualities of the gods: the alcoholic beverage (from the agave plant) pulque. Among the divine qualities was the pulque: "the gods said among themselves: look here man will be sad there if we don't do something to cheer him up, and have him glad to be living on earth and praising us singing and dancing. What I hear from the god Ehecatl, god of air, that in his heart he was thinking of where he could find liquor to give to man to cheer him up" (Lopez-Austin, 1980, p. 279). Or as the song of Nezahualpilli goes:

And even though it is true, as Lopez Austin indicates, that all the worldly goods including pulque should be used in moderation given that in the Mexican world drunkenness was severely punished. It is also true that, as Bachelard says, we could not understand these pre-Hispanic villagers sans alcoholic beverages.

Particularly, the unaware alcoholic is a profound reality. The one who imagines that alcohol is to simply excite spiritual possibilities is deceived. One incorporates, as one way to say it, that which makes an effort to express itself. With plentiful evidence, alcohol is a language factor that enriches vocabulary and frees syntax (Bachelard, 2005, pp. 145-146).

The social character of fire and water

It is interesting to emphasize how Bachelard recognizes in fire not only a cultural principle, but rather an origin placed in relation, in contact or in human bodies touching. It does not mean a mere logical attribution of social fire but, overall, a personal experience of eroticism. For Bachelard, "fire is in effect l'Ag-nis, l'Agile, but what is primitively agile is the human cause of the produced phenomenon, the hand that pushes the stick in the slot imitating the most intimate caresses. Before becoming the son of wood, fire is the son of man" (Bachelard, 2005, p. 46).

For the Mexican world, sacrifice, the relationship with the sacred, was an issue linked to eroticism and, of course, a basic in one's social life. Provoking pain at the same time with pleasure was a component of social ties. For example, in the song of Aquiauhtzin (32) the "happy girl" (prostitute) suffers because she is not penetrated, ahuel nocontlaza in notzotzopaz, I can't put the stick in the loom. Plus he cannot manage to wet her, she's dry, nihcpichilama, I'm old and without juice, she says. The experience with fire comes from sexual relations, from rubbing between the bodies, from penetration and from rubbing which habitually produces a warmth that is pleasurable but not always pain-free.

As such, water, for our author, is the Mrs. who links and makes language possible "she's the Mrs. of fluent language, of a language without dispute, of a continuous language, of a language that lightens rhythm, that give a uniform substance to different rhythms" (Bachelard, 2005, p. 235). For example, just as a poem by Tecayehuatzin, named "At the beginning of dialogue," says:

Man creates fire, this is the human creation. Only afterward does one form something sacred that re-leagues, that ties up human beings creating societies, creating the link between the intimate and the social, between the home and the family and public space, between thought, knowledge, ignorance and error.

By the same token, if it is certain that water is not a human creation, water is not the daughter of man, rather to the contrary, we come from water. Without it the language as a tie that flows and builds community through words would not be possible. Language as fluid is definitely a human creation.

The social tie placed in water and in fire is clearly expressed by Johansson:

The long trip that the Mexicans made in order to finally establish themselves in their own place, given loop between "life and death", "water and fire", is comprised of two central myths. One refers to Tleatl (composed of tletl which means fire and atl that means water, and the other to Copil (son of the goddess Malinalli (33) and nephew of Huitzilopochtli. (34)

Of the first one, and in accord with what we have mentioned from the beginning about the basic myths, it is worth highlighting that water and fire are ties that unite the Mexican peoples. The myth goes like this: By order of Huitzlopochtli the Mexicans should have settled in a place in which they witnessed many wonders, a white cypress tree, a white willow tree, a white frog, a white snake.

The other mythical experience, full of violence, is found in the tale in which Copil is killed by a group of priests under orders of Huitzilopochtli, tearing out his heart that is buried on an island where a nopal tree, whose fruit are prickly pears, will sprout. At this time Copil will be named Tenochtli, which means "hard prickly pears". It is about recognition of two antagonistic forces in which one destroys the other without completely eliminating it, just as we have said that of the tie between life and death arises something different. Then we can see how this killer is linked to water and fire like a great power of creation "that Mexico Tenochtitlan, the place where the eagle screams, spreads out and eats, the place where the fish swim, the place where the serpent is released" (Fernando Alvarado Tezozomoc, 1998, p. 65).

Why not identify the pre-Hispanic cultures, including others with fire if "Fire is well-being and respect. It is a protective, terrible God (as Tezcatlipoca (35)), generous and evil. He can contradict Himself: that is why He is one of the principles of universal explanation" (Bachelard, 1966, p. 18). To suppose that there everything was sadness, desolation, unhappiness, anguish, mistreatment, is to believe that only in the Christian world is life, happiness, tranquility and well-being possible.

There is nothing more social than fire. It is not natural but that which appears as one of the first cultural creations. And what is more, water is presented as a natural creation from which we are born. One cannot forget that the farthest traces of dreaming refer to a pleasurable state, to a humid space, liquid, from which we are expelled while fire is one of our first teachings and an object of wisdom, fear, sexuality, security and respect. Fire and water have wanted to be seen by certain anthropology as utilitarian resources for the satisfaction of individual or collective needs. There are other studies of culture that see in these elements a symbolic tool tied to logical and universal structures, a binary system. Neither the one nor the other of these last two explanations can serve to show that "we create fire" and "we come from water" not because of an evolutive or practical question but for pleasure, desire, happiness, hatred, war, pain for the affected ones who populate the world with sense. "The conquest of the superfluous produces a spiritual excitement greater than the conquest of the necessary. Man is a creation of desire, not a creation of necessity" (Bachelard, 1966, p. 31).

As we have said water and fire are main elements that have created and destroyed culture. The social tie that these elements generate with life and death is undeniable. Both water and fire generate life and purify just as they kill and destroy. One of the singular axes, intimate, universal and social of the Mexican peoples was exactly this link extant between water and fire with life and death, just as with illness and purification.

If indeed we are born of water and we create fire, we also die in the water and fire kills us. Because as Bachelard says, "water is the true supporting material of death [. ] death is the universal hydra" (Bachelard, 2005, p. 89). The repulsive Mexican sacrifices were a source of life that flowed, like water, via the spilling of blood and of torn bodies. The village should tolerate the stench, the horror and fright of the laments. For example, Sahagun says that in the teotlachco, "the land of the divine game" located at the foot of the Quetzalcoatl Temple, "the bodies of the victims were dragged all around, and it was as if they painted the ground with blood" (Duverger, 1983, p. 128). For Mexicans the life of the Sun god is considered to be blood that keeps human beings alive as such, if one wastes divine blood one loses vital energy that can provoke death of the community and of each person. War, as a fundamental element in Mexican thought and cosmic vision, was created to maintain this flow of life. What provoked being in a permanent state of war was the way of being of the Mexican people. This made it possible to obtain, among other things, the victims for their bloody sacrifices. Blood is a vital liquid that should flow among the community. And even Poe has written:

In contrast to what Bachelard affirms with respect to Poe about blood never being happy, the Mexican sacrifices, as social acts, were not linked with happiness or sadness, but with life and death, with pleasure and pain. This denies neither terror nor fear since simultaneously they provided a sense of community, of enthusiasm, and guaranteed the permanence of life beyond the individuality of a body.

Just as Bachelard himself says, there also fits a poetic of courageous blood, like that which Paul Claudel would encourage, "all water is desirable to us and, indeed, more than the virgin and blue sea, appeals to what exists inside us, between flesh and the soul, our human water laden with virtue and spirit, the hot dark blood" (Bachelard, 2005, p. 84). Blood as liquor of war, fluent and organic for the belligerent drunkenness, which is the topic of Nezahualpilli:

The Mexicans made the war seem like terror, the beauty of the war and of life. It was not for anything that their wars were called Xochiyaoyoltl, "flowered wars". Paradoxical conclusion for us that from the Christian world we see these curtains of blood which seem to show only horror, misery, sadness, evil and destruction.

"Death in the flame is the least solitary of deaths. It is truly a cosmic death in that an entire universe is annihilated with the thinker. The bonfire is a companion of evolution" (Bachelard, 2005, p. 37). This thought seems to be a rule in the daily activities of the Mexicans. Being the chosen people of the Sun their destiny was written, live for fire, die for fire. As we have already mentioned the 5th Sun, Sun-Movement, is the one in which we will all die, nothing compared with Sun-Water nor Sun-Jaguar, nor Sun-Rain, nor with Sun-Wind. This myth seems to contradict the Meso-American cosmogony that does not present any final end, but rather a dialectical of fire in which life and death are eternal. Notwithstanding, the arrival of the Spanish confirm the total destruction of Tenochtitlan. It was with the fire of the arms of Castilla that they killed with, with fire they burned the city, with fire they destroyed the most prized of Mexican culture.

Fire destroys in combat, fire provokes disaster. The Mexican culture was founded on fire and war thus the devastation caused by different events was not odd. The Spanish soldiers, which pyromaniacs, which prehistoric men, placed in history the mythical well-known destiny of the Mexican people. Odd coincidence between the mythical and awaited destruction and the conquest by the Europeans. The myth, as always, in its way became reality. The 5th Sun-Movement was as this fragment from The last days of the site of Tenochtitlan narrates:

We consider it important to recognize the almost impossibility to penetrate, from our referents, in a world like the pre-Hispanic one. Not only for the fact that having an experience, a way of life, in alphabetical order the energy of a culture was brutally reduced, but over all because we cannot avoid our own horizon, from here and now, in order to think about those meanings of life. Although this could be applicable to any mythology, there is no doubt that the Greek and Roman are the bases for our way of thinking. If we compare the idea that we have Zeus with Tezcatlipoca or Athena with Hutzilopochtli, even though there is no absence of interpretations in any case, the surest thing is we have greater clarity in relation to the Greek or Roman gods while in what refers to Mexican divinities the multiplicity of attributions, meanings or references is unembraceable. For example, when Brother Bernardino of Sahagun solicited some informant or cuicapique, to say it in natuatl, regarding the interpretation of his glyphs, this depended on the place, time, proposal and other qualities of the indigenous world. Anyway, what is logical, steadfast, chronological, rational, given or positive in the Western mentality is, on occasions, illogical, mobile, irrational, multiple or magical in pre-Hispanic thought and experience.

All of the above does not mean that the pre-Hispanic world is inaccessible. Or that one does not think of that world with practicality as we do today in other words, from a certain relation among words and things that could make perfect sense and be clearly delimited. But how can one recognize a vast and powerful empire militarily and economically such as the Mexican one? How can one think of its administration? We know that the mathematics, calculus, geometry and astronomy of the pre-Hispanic world were much more precise than those at the time were developed in the West.

We ask ourselves, thinking of Bachelard: What formations of dreaming, of imagination made a world such as the Mexican one possible, one so different from ours? We are convinced, as was said at the beginning, that despite the multiple devastations that the cultures of the American continent have experienced, especially the one that has created the current globalization, there still persists a way to dream, to imagine, different from Western Europe and North America.

Bachelard invites us to approach from other referents these trances so typical of Latin American and other parts of the world such as Western Europe, to recognize the diversity not as "another" that should be tolerated or like folklore, but to the contrary: thanks to these radical differences the humane is possible. The horror, monstrous, sickening, and the strange have allowed sustaining the radical other, have made life possible. Each time a language, a rite, a myth disappears from the world it is similar to the destruction of a planet teeming with life, customs, and dreaming.

It is not about the romantic recognition of the pre-Hispanic world as if it had been a paradise full of daydreamers, of creating a pure description of such a world, but rather the possibility of thinking of the descriptions anthropology has made beyond a functional, pragmatic, and symbolical end, from the creative imagination which Bachelard offers us. Neither is it about denying scientific thought and the technological achievements belonging to the West, but rather that this is the only thing that allows us to understand ourselves. Bachelard's force, considering this, is the possibility of depicting the world poetically. As converting Dracula into a show typical of Disneyland or the Mayas into a publicity-seeking melodrama puts aside the creative value of the myths and with them the humane.

Based on the above, what is attempted in this writing is to look at water and fire beyond their physical and chemical conditions or beyond their anthropological referents, and see a substance typical of the desires and the affections of the universal imagination of man. Water and fire do not only merge and destroy, but become tense they have a social character or they kill, but they also allow us to invoke ourselves poetically and recognize ourselves in our myths.

Thanks to Michael Peters and Georgina Stewart for the editorial support to publish this text. It is important to say that a first version of this writing was published in French in the Symbolon magazine, directed by Ionel Buse, of the University of Craiova and the University of Lyon.

(1.) Ometeotl is a clear example of the sense of the divine duality. Ometeotl is the divine couple of the Creation. "God that is 2", "Mr. and Mrs. 2", "Mr. and Mrs. of our flesh" is the masculine-feminine couple that unites all the opposites of the Universe. The masculine is high, igneous, luminous, heavenly and aerial. The feminine is low, matter, darkness, earthly and watery.

(2.) We don't believe in overly forcing our reading of Plato's Laws where pain and pleasure are proposed as opposites in that in order to have pain one requires pleasure and vice versa. They are circumstantial not only in logical terms but also corporal. Pleasure and pain as life and death are linked, and are both sides of the coin. Just as well, we can extrapolate this interpretation to the topic of homosexuality that Plato rejected in his Laws.

(3.) Of course by "enjoyment" we don't understand "pleasure" but that which Freud calls "beyond the principle of pleasure", which is in other words between Eros and Thanatos.

(4.) The songs of Dzitbalche include most of the ancient lyric Mayan poetry that has survived. The original title of the page is "The book of dances of the Ancient Men that was the custom to carry out here in the villages when there were no white men". The title, "The songs of Dzitbalche" was given to the collection by the first Spanish translator, Alfredo Barrera Vasquez, and it is generally known by this name [. ]. The manuscript as such was probably written in the 18th Century, nonetheless, it could be a copy of an earlier manuscript. Part of the material it contains is obviously more ancient, probably from the 15th Century (Codice Dresde, 2010).

(5.) Kissing your lip next to the rails of the fence/ They put on their best clothes/ the day of happiness has come/ comb the tangles out of their hair/ They put on their most attractive clothes/ and put on their beautiful shoes/ They hang their big earrings in/ their ears, put on/a nice belt, put on/ necklaces for their beautiful neck/ put on coils and adorn the plump part of their arms/ so that they'll be seen/ more beautiful than any/ here in this village, in the seat of Dzitbalche.// We love you beautiful ma'am/ I want you to be seen/ it's true you are very attractive/ I compare you with the starry air/ because I desire you to the moon/ and in the flowers of the countryside/ pure and white are their clothes/ maiden/go and grant happiness with your smile/ put goodness in their heart because/ today/ is the moment of happiness/ everyone places their goodness in you (Codice Dresde, 2010).

(6.) Composed of huey which means big, tecutlin, which means noble, lord, and ilhuitl, which means feast or party. As such, the collection HueyTecuilhuitl means "the great feast of the lords".

(7.) Xilonen is composed of xilotl, tender corn ready to eat, and nenetl, vulva, it can mean either uterus of the corn or she who lived as a virgin or tender. Therefore, Xilonen is both virgin and the mother of maize (Simeon, 2007, p. 766).

(8.) As we well know maize was the main food crop of our ancient Mexicans. It is noteworthy that, according to Simeon, in order for the maize to be tastier and healthier, it was perfumed by certain flowers (Simeon, 2007, p. 629).

(9.) This is the name of the collection and it has multiple interpretations. For example, Torquemada translates it as "narrowing, contraction or shrinkage". Molina thinks it comes from titichoa, which is to "cut or shrink something' or titicana 'stretch or lengthen whatever is shrunk or wrinkled". Veytia thinks of titi (to-ititl) 'uterus we come out of' and this latter meaning is precisely appropriate for the rites in the feast of Tititl. In this sense Tititl can mean "our old wrinkled and folded uterus, the old mother earth-moon, the restoration of the world after the Flood" (Graulich, 1999, pp. 233-236).

(10.) Perhaps it is worth noting that together with Llamatecuhtli, Chantico-Ciahuacoatl, the woman warrior, the eagle woman, was celebrated. And the same as Athena in Greece, she is the goddess of war and of domestic fire.

(11.) In this poem the "chalcas" sing. Their enthralling songs defeated the Mexican men. It is known that the "chalcas" provoked Axayacatl, Mexican lord from 1469 to 1481 and successor to Motecuhzomallhuicamina, upon his listening to the Chalca Cihuacuicatl, the song of the women of Chalco, challenging him to prove his masculinity before the women who enthralled him. The "chalcas", sans shields or arrows, defeated Axayacatl who became delighted with women's song, which he adopted as an incentive for happiness, according to the chronicler Chimalpahin (Leon-Portilla, 1994, pp. 296-300).

(12.) Here they are extended, here they are extended/ the flowers of fire and water/ the ones the men fancy/ the ones that are pleasant:/ flowers of war [. ]/ It indeed you are a man, here you have where to toil./ By chance you shall not continue, continue strongly?/Do it in my hot vessel,/ make it after much time to ignite./ Come to mix, to mix:/ it is my happiness./ Give me the little one now, let it position itself. [. ]/ Me, I'm trapped,/ my little hand turns round,/ come now, come now./ Do you want to touch my breasts, / almost my heart. [. ]/ I tell myself, come girl,/ even though despite all I must die. [. ]/ I cannot now make the spindle dance,/ I can't position the weaving stick:/ boy of mine,/ you tease me. [. ]/ Knead me like corn mush,/ you, sir, little Axayacatl,/ I completely offer myself to you,/ it is I, my boy, It is I, my boy,/ Cheer up, our worm becomes erect. [. ]/ Perhaps it's what your heart wants,/ that's the way little by little,/ we tire. [. ]/ I've come to give pleasure/ to my flowered vulva [. ]/ look, my flowered painting,/ look, my flowered painting: my breasts. [. ]/ now Mexicans. BNM, fols. 72r-73v (Leon-Portilla, 1994, pp. 305-317).

(13.) It is the goddess Tahi(n) Higiny, of the mixes who acts inside the veins of the penis. (Lopez-Austin, 2001, p. 32).

(14.) Oh mother!/ Sweet, tasty woman,/ precious flower of toasted corn,/ you only lend yourself, / you will be abandoned,/ you must go,/ you will be fleshless. [. ]/ If my heart wishes,/ my life would become intoxicated [. ]/ I only have to go away,/ someday it will be, /only I go, /I will go lose myself./ I abandon myself,/ Oh, my God!/ I say: go I,/ like the dead will be shrouded,/so be it. Ms Mexican Songs, BNM, fols. 30r y v., and Romances of the men of New Spain, fols. 7 r.- 8r (Leon-Portilla, 1994, pp. 77-79).

(15.) There, they tell me:/ cut, cut flowers,/ the ones you want,/ cheer up, you, cantor,/you will come to give them up,/ to our friends, the men,/ to the ones who please the Owner of the Earth. [. ]/ We will always come here to cut/ the precious, varied, fragrant flowers/ and to drink/ the varied and beautiful songs. Mexican Songs, f. 1r.- 2v (Leon-Portilla, 2008, p. 99).

(16.) Derived from tlachia which means seeing or contemplating since tlachtli can be translated as spectacle.

(17.) We know that the oilcloth ball used in tlachtli is called ollin, a sign of movement.

(18.) That's the way Lopez-Austin refers to the pregnant uterus: "upon the woman falls all the weight of the sexual life, particularly that of reproduction. Sexuality, then, is associated with the classifying categories of the earthly, cold, death, including the malodorous, rotten and darkness of the pregnant womb" (Lopez-Austin, 2010, p. 32).

(19.) Her name derives from coatl, serpent, and cueitl, skirt.

(20.) Stems from mictlantli, which alludes to the place of the dead, and tecutli which means noble or lord.

(21.) Without attempting to talk about a Meso-American structure, it is necessary to point out that in the diversity of cultures that inhabits this continent, an identifying trait (in the sense of identity and difference) that consists of a link between life and death was spread, not only through sacrificial rituals but beyond those thus extending the erotic link in food, games, feasts, etc. In any case, what one can talk of is a mythical and ritualistic system that as a heavenly constellation causes the confluence of multiple experiences of eroticism.

(22.) According to the introduction made in the text mentioned the "so-called books of the Chilam Balam are one of the most important sections of the Mexican indigenous literature. They were written after the Spanish conquest, thus, their writing and shape are European. That is, their writing is the one that Spanish Friars adapted to the phonology of the Maya tongue in Yucatan and the paper used--at least in the copies available so far--is European too, creating booklets." In Alfredo Barrera and Silvia Rendon (translators of their own parallel texts) (Chilam Balam, 1989).

(23.) To know the content of each one of the prophecies here mentioned (Chilam Balam, 1989, pp. 61, 87, 104-105).

(24.) Tlallocan can also mean "where is Tlalloc' or 'when is Tlalloc".

(25.) It is important to say that we agree with Lesbre regarding the importance this diz has that seems to point to the transcription of a popular oral tradition, and the nahuatl writer considered it interesting enough not to lose it. This diz corresponds to the se-dice that are spontaneously transmitted from mouth to mouth and that have been gathered in the Annals of Cuauhtitlan, are related with the essence of the word of the myth.

(26.) An interesting study on the sacrifice myths on children devoted to Tlaloques can be the subsection XI of the text: Graulich, 1999).

(28.) The person who suffers impetigo.

(30.) It is interesting that Atemoztli is bound to Tititl and Izcalli, parties that commemorate wind and fire respectively. This bond among parties is because on them people remember the destructions due to water, wind and fire, of course, related also, to the Suns: nauhecatl, four winds, nahui quiyauitl, four rains--of fire--, and nahui atl, four waters (Graulich, 1999, p. 231).

(31.) Our attention is directed to the fact that this Nahuatl word Tonal refers to tono in Spanish, tone in English and doubtlessly refers to something very similar which is to be "a tono" which means keeping one's balance. The word Atl in Nahuatl means water, which directly refers to Atlantida. Another interesting similarity is the Nahuatl word Teo which, same as the Greek Theo, means God.

(32.) In this poem the Chalcas, who with their enthralling songs conquered the Mexican men, sing. It is known that the Chalcas provoked Axayacatl, Mexican lord from 1469 to 1481 and successor of Motecuhzoma Ilhuicamina, upon listening to Chalca Cihuacuicatl, the song of the women of Chalco, challenging him to prove if he was such a man before the women who enthralled him. The Chalcas, sans shields or arrows, conquered Axayacatl who became overjoyed with the women's song, which he adopted as an incentive to happiness, according to chronicler Chimalpahin (Leon-Portilla, 1994, pp. 296-300).

(33.) Malinalli is, among other things, a goddess that represents the helicoidal movement that braids the Tamoanchan and Tlalocan which are foggy places that are revealed as basic parts of a cosmic circulation process of divine forces that were necessary to cause movement and continuity of the beings of the world of man (Lopez-Austin, 2011, p. 223).

(34.) Main Mexican god of war whose name could mean sinister hummingbird.

(35.) Protective god of the Mexicans that literally could mean smoky mirror.

Arqueologia Mexicana (2007). Mexico, Editorial Raices, Nov.-Dec., Vol. XV, no. 88.

Arqueologia Mexicana (2010). Mexico, Editorial Raices, July-Aug., Vol. XVIII, no. 104.

Bachelard, G. (1996). Psicoandlisis del Fuego. Madrid: Alianza.

Bachelard, G. (2005). El aguay los suehos. Mexico: FCE.

Bataille, G. (2003). El erotismo. Mexico: Tusquets.

Chilam Balam (1989). Mexico: FCE.

Codice Borgia, in Fundacion para el Avance de los Estudios Mesoamericanos Inc. (FAMSI), http://www.famsi.org/spanish/research/curl/dzitbalche_intro.html. Accessed on 27 Dec. 2010.

Codice Dresde, in Fundacion para el Avance de los Estudios Mesoamericanos Inc. (FAMSI), http://www.famsi.org/spanish/research/curl/dzitbalche_intro.html. Accessed on 27 Dec. 2010.

Codice Vaticanus, in Fundacion para el Avance de los Estudios Mesoamericanos Inc. (FAMSI) http://www.famsi.org/spanish/research/curl/dzitbalche_intro.html. Accessed on 27 Dec. 2010.

Duverger, Ch. (1983). La flor letal. Economia del sacrificio azteca. Mexico: FCE.

Eliade, M. (1978). Mito y realidad. Madrid: Guadarrama.

Fernando Alvarado Tezozomoc (1998). Cronicas Mexicayotl. Mexico: UNAM.

Gonzalbo P., and Escalante P. (eds.) (2009). Historia de la vida cotidiana en Mexico I.

Mesaoamerica y los ambitos indigenas de la Nueva Espana. Mexico: Colegio de Mexico y FCE.

Graulich, M. (1999). Fiesta de los pueblos indigenas. Ritos aztecas. Las fiestas de las veintenas. Mexico: Instituto Nacional Indigenista.

Mier, R. (2006). "Notas para una reflexon sobre el sentido 'estetica radical,'" En Pensamiento de los confines, 18 July, Buenos Aires, FCE.

Paya, V. (2010). Sociologia y antropologia. Pensar las ciencias sociales. Mexico: FES Acatlan UNAM-Casa Juan Pablos.

Navarrete, F., and Olivier, G. (eds.) (2000). El heroe entre el mito y la historia. Mexico: IIH-UNAM.

Johansson, P. (2007). Lapalabra, la imagen y el manuscrito. Mexico: IIH-UNAM.

Leon-Portilla, M. (1997). El destino de la palabra. De la oralidad y los codices mesoamericanos a la escritura alfabetica. Mexico: Colegio Nacional, FCE.

Leon-Portilla, M. (2008). La tinta negra y roja. Antologia de poesia nahuatl. Mexico: Era, El Colegio Nacional, Galaxia Gutenberg.

Leon-Portilla M. (2006). La filosofia nahuatl estudiada en sus fuentes. Mexico: UNAM.

Leon-Portilla M. (1994). Quince poetas del mundo nahuatl. Mexico: Diana.

Lopez-Austin, A. (1980). Cuerpo humano e ideologia. Las concepciones de los antiguos nahuas. Mexico: IIA-UNAM.

Lopez-Austin, A. (2011). Tamoanchan y Tlalocan. Mexico: FCE.

Mauss. M. (1979). Sociologia y antropologia. Madrid: Tecnos.

Navarrete, F. and Olivier, G. (eds.) (2000). El heroe entre el mito y la historia. Mexico: UNAM.

Nebel, R. (2013). Santa Maria Tonantzin. Virgen de Guadalupe. Continuidad y transformacion religiosa en Mexico. Mexico: FCE.

Olivier, G. (ed.) (2008). Simbolos de poder en Mesoamerica. Mexico: UNAM-IIH.

Paya, V. (ed.) (2010). Sociologia y antropologia. Pensar las humanidades. Mexico: FES Acatlan-UNAM, Casa Juan Pablos.

Simeon, R. (2007). Diccionario de la lengua nahuatl o mexicana. Mexico: Siglo XXI.

Vidal-Naquet, P. (2006). La Atlantida. Pequena historia de un mito platonico. Madrid: Akal.

National Autonomous University of Mexico (UN AM)

National Autonomous University of Mexico (UNAM)

Caption: Chaac with the goddess Lunar. The position of both suggests copulation. Dresde Codice plate 68c

Caption: Priest with an erection touches the breast of Xochiquetzal while Xochipilli grasps his hair. Borgia Codice plate 24

Please Note: Illustration(s) are not available due to copyright restrictions.

Tlaltecuhtli, El Tajin - History

Anuncian apertura de museos y zonas arqueológicas.

La restauración y renovación museográfica de los recintos que fueron sede del movimiento independentista, la apertura al público de tres nuevas zonas arqueológicas en Querétaro, Guanajuato y Oaxaca, así como la creación del primer museo que funda el INAH dedicado a la Revolución Mexicana, forman parte de algunos de los proyectos prioritarios que esta institución desarrollará este año, como parte de las conmemoraciones por el Bicentenario de la Independencia y el Centenario de la Revolución.

A lo anterior se sumará un amplio programa de exposiciones que se presentarán en los principales museos nacionales y regionales del INAH, distribuidos en el país, entre las que destacan Moana. Los Mares del Sur Moctezuma II Amanecer de una nación: De Nueva España a México 1765 &ndash 1836 La Revolución Mexicana en fotografías, música, testimonios y documentos, y Culturas originarias de Canadá, esta última con motivo de la próxima reapertura del Museo Nacional de las Culturas, en cuya reestructuración total se han invertido alrededor de 21 millones de pesos.

Así lo anunció Alfonso de Maria y Campos, director general del Instituto Nacional de Antropología e Historia (INAH), al presentar este martes el plan general de trabajo de la institución para 2010.

En el acto, efectuado en el Museo Nacional de Antropología, dio a conocer que antes de septiembre se realizará la reapertura de los museos alojados en inmuebles históricos que conforman la Ruta del Bicentenario de la Independencia: Museo Casa de Hidalgo &ldquoLa Francia Chiquita&rdquo, Casa de Hidalgo, Ex Curato de Dolores y Museo Regional de Guanajuato &ldquoAlhóndiga de Granaditas&rdquo, además del Museo Regional Michoacano, en cuyas remodelaciones se invertirán 12.5 millones de pesos.

A los anteriores se suma el Museo de Artes e Industrias Populares, de Pátzcuaro. Estas reaperturas son parte del programa de rehabilitación de museos que lleva a cabo el INAH desde hace tres años y que este 2010 concluirá con aquellos espacios de la Ruta del Bicentenario y el Centenario que están pendientes.

En tanto, destacó, que el Museo Histórico Ex Aduana de Juárez, de Ciudad Juárez, Chihuahua, se somete a una renovación integral para ser convertido en el primer museo que funda el INAH dedicado exclusivamente a la Revolución Mexicana.

En materia de arqueología, De Maria y Campos adelantó que durante 2010 se abrirán tres nuevos sitios arqueológicos, en los que especialistas del INAH han llevado a cabo en los últimos años el rescate, exploración y puesta en valor de las edificaciones prehispánicas. Se trata de Cañada de la Virgen, en Guanajuato Tancama, en Querétaro, y Bocana del Río Copalita, en Oaxaca. Los recursos destinados para la habilitación de estos lugares suman 30 millones de pesos.

&ldquoEstas zonas arqueológicas forman parte de las diez anunciadas por el presidente Felipe Calderón al principio de su administración, que se abrirán antes de 2012 para el disfrute de los mexicanos. De este listado, y como parte de las celebraciones del 70 aniversario del INAH, en 2008 y 2009 se abrieron los sitios Peralta, en Guanajuato Tehuacalco, en Guerrero, y Chiapa de Corzo, en Chiapas&rdquo.

Además, dijo, se continuará con los proyectos de investigación que se vienen realizando en diversas zonas arqueológicas del país, como en Calakmul, Campeche el Templo de Quetzalcóatl, en Teotihuacan la Subestructura localizada en Chichén Itzá la exploración de monumentos piramidales en Ichkabal, en un área ignota del sur de Quintana Roo.

Al igual que la continuidad del trabajo que se realiza en el Conjunto Ajaracas, del Templo Mayor, encaminado a la conservación integral del monolito de la diosa Tlaltecuhtli, para su probable exhibición al público por primera vez, en ocasión del montaje de la exposición Moctezuma II, en el Templo Mayor. En este mismo rubro de arqueología, De Maria y Campos informó que en 2009 se concluyeron 20 planes de manejo de igual número de zonas arqueológicas, entre ellos el de Teotihuacan, el cual fue enviado a la UNESCO para su evaluación.

El titular del INAH también destacó que como parte de las políticas instrumentadas por el Gobierno Federal como alternativa a la crisis económica, este año continuará la aplicación del Programa de Empleo Temporal (PET), con un presupuesto de más de 100 millones de pesos, con los que se desarrollarán 293 proyectos de mantenimiento menor en zonas arqueológicas y museos, con la generación de 13 mil empleos.

Recordó que el año pasado, el INAH y la Secretaría de Desarrollo Social aplicaron recursos del PET del orden de 55 millones de pesos en 280 proyectos que beneficiaron a nueve mil personas de 29 estados de la República y el Distrito Federal.

Programa de exposiciones nacionales e internacionales

Ante la comunidad académica y científica de la institución, Alfonso de Maria y Campos expuso que en el rubro de exposiciones nacionales e internacionales, a lo largo de este año se montarán más de una decena de exhibiciones, algunas de ellas con motivo del Bicentenario de la Independencia y el Centenario de la Revolución.

Entre ellas anunció Moana. Los Mares del Sur, que se presentará en el MNA como parte del ciclo Grandes Civilizaciones, que ofrecerá al público mexicano una visión del contexto cultural y físico de las islas del Pacífico, a través de objetos de las colecciones del Field Museum de Chicago, del Museo de Young de San Francisco y del Peabody Museum de Harvard.

El papel del papel y Amanecer de una nación: De Nueva España a México 1765-1836, serán otras dos exposiciones que el INAH organiza con motivo de las conmemoraciones nacionales, la primera estará conformada por grabados, litografías y fotografías que darán cuenta de cómo se fue construyendo la imagen e identidad de los mexicanos durante los siglos XIX y XX será montada en el Museo Nacional de Antropología (MNA).

La segunda tendrá como sede el Museo Nacional de Historia &ldquoCastillo de Chapultepec&rdquo, y abordará la génesis de la nación mexicana a través de escapularios, banderas históricas, monedas, trajes y otros objetos que pertenecieron a gente que luchó y murió en la batalla.

De Maria y Campos destacó que también se presentará la exposición La Revolución Mexicana en fotografías, música, testimonios y documentos, que se exhibirá en los museos de El Carmen, de la Ciudad de México en el Histórico Ex Aduana, de Ciudad Juárez, Chihuahua, y 30 recintos más en el país de manera simultánea, con la cual el INAH recordará el aniversario del inicio de la revolución en todo el país.

Alfonso de Maria informó que el Museo Nacional de Antropología será sede de la muestra Las grandes ciudades del México antiguo, que mostrará al público la concepción y la adaptación del medio ambiente por parte de los constructores de las urbes mesoamericanas, entre las que destacan Teotihuacan, Palenque, Chichén Itzá y Monte Albán.

Este mismo recinto, dijo, a partir de esta semana y hasta abril, presentará la muestra fotográfica Maya Puuc, de Tomás Casademunt, que se compone de imágenes de palacios mayas de la región de Yucatán, captadas de noche sin el uso de iluminación, únicamente con la luz de la luna.

Otra muestra que destacó el titular del INAH, es Moctezuma II, la cual llegará a México después de su exitosa presentación en el Museo Británico de Londres, donde registró una afluencia de 210 mil visitantes fascinados por la antigua cultura mexica. Se presentará en el Museo del Templo Mayor y posiblemente incluya como pieza estelar la escultura de Tlaltecuhtli, el único monolito mexica que conserva su color original, mismo que está en tratamiento para su preservación.

Añadió que en esta muestra dedicada al último jerarca mexica se exhibirán algunas piezas rescatadas en las últimas excavaciones realizadas por el Programa de Arqueología Urbana (PAU), en lugares adyacentes a Ajaracas, donde se descubrió a la Tlaltecuhtli.

El historiador anunció que luego de un año de intervención mayor, en fecha próxima será reabierto el Museo Nacional de las Culturas, en el Centro Histórico de la Ciudad de México, &ldquodonde con una inversión cercana a los 21 millones de pesos, el INAH emprendió el ambicioso proyecto de restaurar el edificio histórico y renovar totalmente la museografía.

&ldquoLa renovación total del inmueble incluyó la incorporación de nuevos elementos estructurales, rehabilitación de pisos y acabados, sustitución de instalaciones eléctricas, hidráulicas y sanitarias, y la implantación de nuevos sistemas de seguridad, con tecnología de punta, además de que se recuperaron 600 metros de espacio que se encontraba ocupado por áreas del Palacio Nacional, detalló.

La reinauguración de este recinto se hará con la presentación de una exposición de corte internacional Culturas originarias de Canadá, que estará compuesta por 150 objetos provenientes del Museo Canadiense de la Civilización.

Finalmente, Alfonso de Maria y Campos abundó que en este 2010 el INAH destinará alrededor de 20 millones de pesos en diversos proyectos de conservación y restauración, entre los que destacan los ex conventos de la Mixteca Alta, Oaxaca, incluidos los retablos que albergan los templos de Coixtlahuaca y Yanhuitlán la preservación de las pinturas rupestres de Oxtotitlán, Guerrero de los murales y elementos decorativos de El Tajín, Veracruz.

Además de la conservación arqueológica en Cholula, Puebla Palenque, Bonampak y Yaxchilán, Chiapas La Pintada, Sonora Cacaxtla, Tlaxcala Chichén Itzá, Yucatán en el Templo de Quetzalcóatl, Teotihuacan, Estado de México, y la Caja de Agua en Tlatelolco, entre otros.

Watch the video: El Tajín, Ancient City of Mystery: Mexico Unexplained (January 2022).