Life in the Mayan civilization revolved around their religious beliefs, the fight against good and evil had a divine character in the Mayan cultureThis is how the gods of good generated good things such as abundant harvests, while the gods of evil produced negative things, attributing to them natural disasters, the loss of crops or some calamity that happened; within this context the sacrifices represented the appeasement of the gods or the offering to obtain some benefit from them, discover below the mystery behind their sacrificial rituals.

Although the Mayans made sacrifices and offerings to avoid or receive favors from the gods, a common way of doing so was using the sacred cenotes, since according to them the god Chac lived in its depths. In the Chichén Itzá archaeological zone there is a Sacred Cenote where skeletal remains were found, the explorations in which the National Institute of Anthropology and History of Mexico participated resulted in the discovery of at least 42 subjects, highlighting the fact that most of the people sacrificed were not womenthere were also men, demystifying the belief that the Mayan civilization only sacrificed maidens.

Archaeologist Carmen Sandoval explained the following “There were various techniques of human sacrifice: the extraction of the heart, decapitation, arrow shooting and drowning in cenotes. It is believed that the victims could ingest psychotropic substances, but archaeologically it is not possible to corroborate it. Among the objectives of the sacrifice were obtaining the precious liquid, that is, the blood, extracting the heart as well as the head of the victim. As post-sacrifice processes, the victims could be skinned, that is, remove their skin, and some of their parts could be ingested, as a type of ritual cannibalism.”

In the mural paintings of the Mayan temple of Bonampak you can see images of how women, men and children were feted and purified with the sole purpose of being sacrificed. The rain god Chaac was revered for attracting the essential rainfall for cultivation, to him the sacrifices of children were offered, in which those who had whirlpools in their hair or those who cried a lot were chosen; The children were also chosen for the ceremonial extraction of the heart and what looked like a bundle of feathers or what would be the adornment of the ceremonial knife was stuck into their chest.

A Spanish friar named Diego De Landa, narrated that as a sign of offering to his gods the Mayans injured themselves in various parts of their body, among the most common were ears, cheeks, tongue, genitals and arms; the practice of arrowing consisted of the sacrificed being painted blue and tied to a wooden post, during this ritual the men danced around him, then a priest inflicted a wound on his genitals, the blood that spilled victim was scattered on the idols, at a signal the dancers began to shoot arrows pointing directly to the heart.

Although human sacrifices constitute the most controversial practice of this civilization, its main objective was to receive life, health and sustenance; and although there is no proof that they obtained these results, it is perhaps the only part of Mayan history that many would like to change.