South And Central American Indian Gods  

Posted by Stella Clark

South And Central American Indian Gods Cover

AUCHIMALGEN (Araucanian, Chile)

Moond goddess, wife of the sun. Only Auchimalgen cares anything for the human race, all the rest of the gods being utterly malevolent. Auchimalgen wards off evil spirits and turns red when some important person is about to die.


BACABS (Maya)

The gods of the four points of the compass, who hold up the sky. The lords of the seasons.


CAMAZOTZ (Maya)

Bat god, demon of the underworld.


CHAC (Mayan)

"Lightening," "the Cutter," "Lord of the nine generations." Rain god. One of the four Bacabs, the Lord of the East. Portrayed as a red man with a long nose. Revered particularly by farmers.


CUPARA (Jivaro)

Cupara and his wife are the parents of the sun, for whom they created the moon from mud to be his mate. The children of the sun and moon are the animals, and among the animals is the sloth, who was the ancestor of the Jivaro.


EK CHUA

God of merchants and cacao growers. Black faced with a huge nose.


EVAKI (Bakairi)

Goddess of night. Evaki places the sun in a pot every night and moves the sun back to its starting point in the east every day. Evaki stole sleep from the eyes of the lizards and shared it with all the other living creatures.


HUNAB KU, also KINEBAHAN (Maya)

"Eyes and mouth of the sun." The Great God without Form, existing only in spirit. The chief god of the Mayan pantheon.


HURAKAN (Maya)

God of thunderstorms and the whirlwind. His name gave us the word "hurricane." At the behest of his friend Gucumatz, son of the Sun and the Moon, Hurakan created the world, the animals, men and fire.

IMAHMANA VIRACOCHA and TOCAPO VIRACHOCHA (Inca)

Son of the creator Viracocha. After the Great Flood and the Creation, Viracocha sent his son Imaymana Viracocha together with his brother Tocapo Viracocha to visit the tribes and see if they still followed the commandments they had been given. As they went, Imaymana and Tocapo gave names to all the trees, flowers, fruits and herbs, and taught the people which of these could be eaten, which could cure, and which could kill.


INTI (Inca)

Sun god. Inti's image is a golden disk with a human face surrounded by bright rays. Every day Inti soars across the sky to the western horizon, plunges into the sea, and swims under the earth back to the east. Inti's sons are Wirakocha, Pachacomac, and Manco Capac.


ITZAMNA (Maya)

"Lizard House." Sky god and healer, son of Hunab Ku. Founder of the Mayan capital city of Mayapan. God of drawing and letters, patron of learning and the sciences. Itzamna can bring the dead back to life. His symbol is a red hand to which the ill pray for healing.


IX CHEL (Maya)

"Lady Rainbow." Consort of Itzamna. Goddess of the moon, of weaving and of medicine. Her hands and feet are claws, and there are snakes in her hair. Except for Hunab Ku, all the other gods are the progeny of Ix Chel an Itzamna.


IXTAB (Maya)

Goddess who rules the paradise of the blessed, who are served magnificent food and drink in the shade of the tree Yaxche. For reasons completely obscure, Ixtab is portrayed as a hanged woman with a noose around her neck.

KAMI and KERI (South American generally)

Kami and Keri were born into the sky world as the sons of the jaguar Oka and a woman created by magic. Their mother was killed by Mero, the jaguar's mother, and in revenge, Kami and Keri burned her and themselves up in a great fire. Bringing themselves back to life, they came to earth as human beings where the separated the heavens from the earth, stole fire from the eyes of Fox, and made the rivers with water stolen from the Great Snake. After teaching humans how to live together, their work was done, and they climbed to a mountain peak where they disappeared.


KONIRA WIRAKOCHA (Inca)

The great god Wirkocha disguised as a traveler in rags. A trickster, a prankster. No one knew who he was, and the people he passed called him names. Yet as he walked, he created. With a word he made the fields and terraced hillsides. Dropping a reed blossom, he made water flow.


KUKULCAN (Maya)

"The Feathered Serpent.) Serpent god. The city of Quirigua was dedicated to his service. Roughly similar to Quetzalcoatl of the Aztecs. He is said to have built the great city of Chicen Itza.


MAMA QUILLA (Inca)

Goddess of the moon. Protector of married women. Her image is a silver disc with a human face.


MANCO CAPAC (Inca)

The son of Inti, also a solar god. The youngest of four brothers, Manco Capac defied the eldest brother who greedily demanded all of creation for himself. Sealing the eldest brother forever in a cave, Manco Capac murdered another and frightened the third into fleeing, never to be seen again. Thus gaining power over all the world, Manco Capac founded the city of Cuzco and was worshipped as the Son of the Sun.


NGURVILU (Araucanian, Chile)

God of lakes and seas. Ngurvilu prowls about the waters in the form of a wild cat. It's tail ends in a huge claw, with which Ngurvilu might attack any human out of sheer maliciousness.


PACHAMAC (Inca)

God of the earth, creator god. Prior to the Incan conquest, the Peruvians worshipped Pachamac as the supreme being. For political purposes, the Incas were forced to adopt Pachamac into their own pantheon, but his position was never very secure. The great Inca Atahualpa treated Pachamac's priests with cold indifference, explaining to the Spanish conquistador Francisco Pizarro that the god's oracle had made three ruinously inaccurate prophecies. The Great Sun King even incited the Spaniards to defile and loot the god's temple. They accepted the invitation enthusiastically.


PILLAN (Araucanian, Chile)

God of fire, thunder, and war, chief of all the gods. Aided by brigades of evil spirits, pillan causes earthquakes and volcanic eruptions, blights crops, creates storms and sends war.


SUPAI (Inca)

God of death. A god of insatiable greed. The Incas sacrificed over a hundred children a year to Supai and still he would not leave them alone.


TONAPA, also TONAPA VIRACOCHA NIPACACHAN

The great god Viracocha in human form, traveling in disguise as an old man with a staff, preaching virtue to the people, working miracles, sleeping in the fields with nothing but his tunic for cover. Failing more often than succeeding, widely despised, Tonapa departed across the sea.


TUPAN (Tupinamba, Brazil)

God of thunder and lightening. A bulky young man with wavy hair. Tupan likes to visit his mother often, and when he does the passage of his boat causes storms. The Tupinamba respect but do not worship Tupan.


VIRACOCHA (Inca)

Literally, Sea-Foam. The Creator. The teacher of the world. After the Great Flood, which covered even the highest mountains and destroyed all life, Virococha molded new people out of clay at Tia Huanaco. On each figure of clay he painted the many features, clothes and hairstyles of the many nations, and gave to them their languages, their songs and the seeds they were to plant. Bringing them to life, Viracocha ordered them to travel underground and emerge at different places on the earth. Then Viracocha made the sun and the moon and the stars, and assigned them to their places in the sky. Raising up smaller Viracocha, the God ordered them to go about the world and call forth the people, and see to it that they multiplied and followed the commandments they had been given. Some of the little viracocha went south, some went southeast, while the God's two sons traveled northeast and northwest. Viracocha himself traveled straight north. Some tribes had rebelled, and these Viracocha punished by turning the people into stone. At Pucara, forty leagues north of Cuzco, Viracocha called down fire from the sky upon those who had disobeyed his commandments. Arriving at last at Cuzco and the seacoast, Viracocha gathered together his two sons and all the little viracocah, and they walked across the water until they disappeared.

The preceding information was compiled and is copyrighted 1994 by D.W. Owens. Distribution is allowed if credit is given.

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