Shamans, Curanderas and Bone Setters
What is a Maya Shaman?
When '"knowledgeable people" took the Ihaumiuts completely away from their sustaining diet of deer meat and the fats necessary for their ability to live in the Barrens. The first "industry" introduced to the natives was the need for white fox pelts. Hunting the deer, their main food staple became secondary. Later, the fishing industry employed these people in the seaside towns until other resources became more lucrattive, By the time the Ihaumiuts returned to their lands they had lost much of their ability to hunt.
Shamans, whose main role is to create a cooperative atmosphere, were the primitive psychologists, who conducted ceremonies for the dead, [i.e. deaths, of a child, wife or mother; celebrated the birth of a child], created an atmosphere of public confessions [not of sins, but of broken taboos] when bad times struck the tribes; acted as local physicians [as Curanderas]; or as those who dealt with broken bones [as Bone Setters.]
Jawbone Staff of
Authoity for Shaman
A symbol of their position in a tribe is sometimes demonstrated by a staff, [such as the one illustrated here], a magnetic stone; a magic bone; a special tone of a single drum, or of many drums during group dancing or a solitary shuffling dance of the shaman him/herself.
The Temple of the Inscriptions appears to have been the temple of oracles since it contained a tube from the burial room of Pacal to the top of the stairs [hidden under a huge stone slab.] Oracles have to come from somewhere sacred. It cannot just be a priestly incantation, the speaking tube from the tomb, fit the bill perfectly.
Castillo-Torre, José (1955) Por la Señal de Hunab Ku: Reflejos de la Vida de los Antiguos Mayas. Mexico DF, Mexico: Libreria de Manuel Porrúa, SA.
Knorozou, |. V. (1963) Writing Indian Maya / Uzdatelbctvo Akademia Hayk, CCCP [Edition Nzdatelbctvo Akademia Hayk, CCCP.}