Sunday, December 26, 2010

Gods And Goddesses: Mayahuel

Mayahuel is the Aztec goddess of the maguey plant, fertility, alcohol and an alcoholic drink known as pulque which was made from maguey itself.  Mayahuel is also associated with the moon.

Mayahuel is also one of the parents of the Centzon Totchtin, “Four Hundred Rabbits, whom the god of healing and fertility, Patecatl, is the father. Mayahuel also feeds the Centzon Totchtin with her breasts which fed them all an alcoholic drink and has been imaged feeding Centzon Totchtin with her breasts. Mayahuel is often depicted as a young woman wearing a blouse maguey plants coming out of her body, a jade ring piecing on her nose and carrying a flowering maguey plant.

A story tells how Mayahuel and the god Quetzalcoatl descended to earth and were escaping from star demons known as tzitzimime sent by Mayahuel‘s grandmother Tzitzimitl. The two tried to disguise themselves as the branches of trees but Mayahuel was recognised and torn to small pieces by the tzitzimime. Mayahuel was buried by Quetzalcoatl and it was the very pieces buried that sprouted the first maguey plants.

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