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Friday, March 11, 2016

those sacred mayans

Hydrotherapy

The Mayans understood the healing properties of water.  Herb baths were used to cleanse the body of a particular malady.   The herbs were mashed and salt was added to help release the oils. If using dried herbs, hot water was poured over them to make the plant release its vibrational field. The types of plants and herbs used in the bath depended on the illness, and prayers were often said over the individual as they bathed.   

Cacao
The Mayans are well known for their love of chocolate.  It is believed the Mayans were consuming chocolate as far back as 2,600 years ago, and incorporated the ancient superfood cacao into their diet regularly to maintain good health.  It was also used as a medicine - cacao is packed with flavanols, an antioxidant shown to benefit heart and brain health, and is high in magnesium, calcium, iron, copper, zinc, and potassium. The Mayans believed the cacao bean had magical or even divine properties, suitable for use in the most sacred rituals of birth, marriage and death.
They consumed chocolate by first harvesting the seeds, or beans, from cacao trees. They fermented and dried them, roasted them, removed their shells, and ground them into paste. They often combined this paste with water, cornmeal, chili peppers, and other spices.   Many ancient Mayan artefacts are decorated with paintings of the people gathering, preparing, or drinking cacao. It appears to have been a truly integral part of their religious and social lives.

Sweat baths
Saunas are not just a modern-day luxury. They are known to have a number of important health benefits, including flushing out toxins, cleansing the skin, improving cardiovascular performances, and relieving muscular aches.  
Seen as a purification method, the Mayans used sweat baths, or temezcal, which were achieved through saunas constructed out of stone. Water was poured over hot rocks to produce steam, thus encouraging the patient to sweat out his or her impurities. Sweat baths were seen as particularly useful for women who were pregnant. 


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Ancient Fisherman

- Norval Morrisseau's Prime Period [1970's] "The fish, sacred trout, was the most respected of all fish. The trout gave the Indian life in abundance and according to Ojibwa Indian mythology it represented his soul carrier. The trout carried the Indian soul through transmigration into an other existence in the supernatural or reincarnation. All this belief worked for the betterment of the Indian food in reality - faith in the supernatural."