Those who wish to visit the magical country of Peru may notice how its inhabitants have great respect for Nature and ecology. Their beliefs are strongly rooted in their religion, culture, and worldview. Especially in the Andean regions, where certain beliefs date back hundreds of years if not thousands. These traditions are still being practiced these days despite the arrival of the conquerors and the continuous globalization. We are talking about the belief of the Pachamama, one of the first deities to appear in pre-Hispanic cultures. An offering to the Pachamanca is one of the oldest and most sacred rituals in Peru. And for this reason, together with the travel experts of Machu Travel Peru, we have prepared a small article about Pachamama. So that when you arrive in the country, you will not be surprised by the many rituals that take place in the surroundings.
PACHAMAMA: Beliefs before the conquerors
- What is Pachamama’s meaning?
- Andean culture
- Pachamama history
- Holidays and festivities
- Relevance in the present day
WHAT IS PACHAMAMA’S MEANING?
Since long before the Incas, the Pachamama was the deity that represented Nature in general. So what is the Pachamama meaning? The word translates to Mother Earth from the ancient Quechua language. The word Pacha can be translated into various words such as the universe, world, or earth, while Mama translates to Mother. But in general, Pachamama translates to Mother Earth or Mother Nature. If you wonder what language is spoken in Peru, Spanish is your answer. Although Quechua is still quite alive in the interactions of many inhabitants of the Andes. In ancient times the Pachamama has been venerated as a fertility goddess. It is the Pachamama who gives farmers their crops of potatoes, corn, and Coca leaves, among other things. Pachamama is also the spirit that embodies the snowy mountains or Apus. She is the one in charge of bringing rains, droughts, and thunder if necessary. In conclusion, we could say that the Pachamama is the omnipresent deity of the Peruvian Andes that has the power to destroy or give life.
In the Andean culture, an offering to the Pachamama was a way that the peasant could deliver what he was taking away. It is a ritual of reciprocity between the material and the spiritual world. The rituals of the Pachamama were a way of thanking and balancing the relationship between man and nature. So that later man could take back his crops and fruits of the land. The Incas believe that Pachamama is a God who protects mankind, whose purpose is to ensure that people are full and enjoy a high quality of life. According to the ancient cultural traditions in Cusco, the reason why it is still praised is to ensure that the relationship between the Pachamama and the people. The celebration is an appreciation of nature and a way for humans to say that they don’t take it for granted. It is believed that this tradition of giving and receiving can maintain order and harmony between man and nature.
Inca religion and worldview were formed thousands of years ago. As for “Pachamama” or “Mother Earth”, she is the female soul of nature, which is why the Incas regard her as the provider of everything: life, food, animals, water, atmospheric and geological phenomena, fertility, etc. It could be said that the Incas took various influences from numerous pre-Hispanic cultures to shape their religion and worldview. With the conquest of the surrounding cultures, the Incas were taking influences and other religious aspects that were later incorporated into their culture in general. The entire Inca economy is based on agriculture, so you can understand the importance of Mother Earth in their culture.
HOLIDAYS AND FESTIVITIES
If you are looking for reasons on why visit Cusco city, the Pachamama Raymi festivities can be a great opportunity to discover more of the Inca culture. On August 1, some offerings are prepared for Mother Earth which includes: candies, wine, coca leaves, Huayruro seeds, Chicha de Jora, and other beverages. Each product has a different appetizer, and some options are paired with wheat, barley beer, or sweet wine. The Andean priest offers a series of products and offerings to give thanks and ask for protection, fertility, and other intentions that are related to the next harvest. If you want to participate in the celebration of Pachamama Raymi, make sure to visit Cusco on August 1st.
RELEVANCE IN THE PRESENT DAY
These days where the planet suffers a clear and severe ecological crisis, the view of the Incas in nature proves to be one of the best-posed philosophies for these contemporary times. If you are planning to visit Peru, you should go to Cusco where you can witness the wise ways of the Incas related to the environment.
Keep in mind that the rituals of gratitude to the Pachamama can be done at any time of the year. You can usually take part in these rituals if you consult a tour operator like us. Those who are in charge of leading these ceremonies are Shamans who claim to have powers of communication and connection with the protective energy of the earth. Within the Peru tourist map, you will be able to visit numerous archaeological sites where these rituals are performed in the surroundings.
“EARTH WAS CREATED FOR ALL OF US, NOT SOME OF US.”
As you can see, the cult of Pachamama is still very much alive in our times. Being able to be part of a traditional celebration is a great way to get to know the ancient culture of the Incas. If you want to know more about our tours in Peru, you can consult with our qualified advisers. Together with Machu Travel Peru, we hope to have satisfied your curiosity.