Maya Mythology

Hello! I’m back, with more under-developed connections to mythology. I’ve seen a lot of talk in the last few days on the references to Xibalba, and since the prominence of Maya mythology now seems pretty certain, I thought I’d make a place to compile more potential connections and ponder what it all might mean.[li]

Maize is very central to the Maya narrative; the first ancestors of humanity are made from maize dough and there is a story of a maize hero defeating gods of Thunder and Lightning. In the conclusion of the humanity-creation story, there is a mountain containing all maize/corn/sustenance. The gods of Lightning then send down a thunderbolt, striking the mountain open and allowing people access to its secrets.

The sacred wells of Chichen Itza were for sacrifices to Chaac, a rain god. (In some versions of the myth, according to a poorly-referenced Wikipedia article, he commits adultery with the wife of his brother, the Sun; his tears of regret at this action become the rain.) Furthermore, one of the primary gods of the underworld was called Vucub Came, or Seven-Death.

So, basically, we have the Mountain and the Storm God and Mr. Eaten all mixed up, and I’m not really sure how any of it fits together. I didn’t find anything about God-Eaters, so I’m not sure how they figure in. Given their name, one would expect them to eat a God, not Mr. Eaten; and besides, Mr. Eaten seems to have been stabbed through the heart and drowned in a well. Besides, if the Bazaar’s location has been the skull of a dead god since before the Third City, there may be yet another weather god in the mix. 'Tis all very confusing. Perhaps I just haven’t advanced far enough in the relevant storylines for it to make any sense to me. Thoughts?

Mutton Island is an interesting place. They leave jugs of corn beer at the well mouth ‘because wells are sacred.’ The wind is strong there and has been known to scream ‘like a god cut in half.’

[spoiler]And the locals meet on a cliff-top, around a priest in a feathered head-dress, with a clay tablet and offerings of corn and beer. Then they push one of their number into the zee.

It’s like something out of a dream. But in the dream, the thunder catches you and makes you promises.[/spoiler]

What I’m getting at is that Mutton Island is also a place where maize and sacred wells and storm gods get mixed up, which to me suggests you’re on the right track here. I used to think the Thunder and Mr Eaten belonged to different chapters in the history of the Neath; now I think they’re very much intertwined.

Is it possible that they are called the ‘God-Eaters’ because…

They, understandably, mistook The Drowned Man for a god?

Another interesting though tenuous connection. I was drawn to the snippet describing the Tomb Colonies. The first line reads, &quotMore Mictlan than Milan&quot. Mictlan is the underworld of Aztec mythology. I quote:[li]

&quotMost people who died went to Mictlan, though other possibilities existed… Mictlan, far to the north, consisted of nine district levels. The journey from the first level to the ninth was difficult and took four years, but the dead were aided by the psychopomp, Xolotl. The dead had to pass many challenges, such as crossing a mountain range where the mountains crashed into each other, a field with wind that blew flesh-scraping knives, and a river of blood with fearsome jaguars.&quot

Emphasis mine.