Me And Wilcott Essay

1550 words - 6 pages

What is culture? Who are the Mayas and what problems do they face today? In the text below these questions and concerns will be explored and articulated in greater depth regarding Mayan communities and their freedoms in Latin America.Culture is an ideology of language, beliefs, and social organization. Culture is energetic, despite the fact that it is constantly evolving. However, it is this continuous evolution culture that tends to keep the essential sameness. This sameness is what people identify with and hold true for themselves and their families.The Mayan culture began five thousand years ago in what is now: Southern Mexico, Honduras, El Salvador, Belize, and Guatemala. The Maya founded ideas pertaining to the number zero mathematically, five hundred years before inhabitants of India. Mayan astronomers are said to have constructed the most precise calendar in existence prior to the introduction of modern astronomy. The Maya domesticated corn, rubber, and chocolate. Furthering their studies in holistic medicines, mathematics, architecture, and astronomy.Mayan culture has been growing around the just and unjust circumstances that the Maya have endured for generations upon generations. Although it still remains nearly the same culture that was developed thousands of years ago. The original form of their culture has changed but the essence remains the same.Mayan shamanism plays a key role in Mayan culture. The Maya believe that there is a spiritual contract between the living and the Gods. Mayans thought that If remembrance were lost then life and this world would cease as confirmed by Prechtel: "This world can only continue as long as the living payhomage to the gods. The gods gave man life and this world on a basis that man would not neglect to perform sacred rituals in the god's honor, for gods seek remembrance" (Prechtel pg57).Shamans have no special uniform, they practice either alone or with an apprentice. Shamans perform rituals in private or at special mountains hrines that are well secluded. Shamans are said to be frail and frightened.They were not "blessed" with human spiritual amnesia. They remember and see the worlds they previously inhabited in snippets. Mayans are "scared" of their previous lives or their previous selves, instead of the world they currently inhabit. This world is said to be far too rigid, scary, and sharp for a shaman's soul to bear. To become a Mayan Shaman is a birthright, to be a Shaman is not a social position one would seek. The positions parents most wanted for their children included: farmers, canoe carvers,and people of great strength. Being able to carry heavy loads was of prestige status. The strength a man had could determine social status. When a child was born and they appeared "dazed" and "distant" wordwould get around, sometimes these children would become sickened by "visions." A shaman would be sent for and if symptoms were correct then the Shaman would...

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