Wednesday, 11 February 2009

Spring initiated with pre Inca ritual

Lima - 20 September 2008 – Today spring was initiated in the huaca (temple) Paraiso with rituals dating from the times of the Incas and earlier. The huaca Paraiso in the north of Lima, in the valley of the river Chillón, is one of the oldest in Peru and dates from the year 2000 before Christ.

The huaca is maintained by a female shaman, originally from the northern province Ancash, with help of the local population. The last decades millions of Peruvians have left the provinces to move to Lima looking for a better existence or fleeing the terrorism of Shining Path, making Lima a metropolis with circa 9 million inhabitants. They took their rituals with them. The shamana got her knowledge from her grandparents. She thinks it important to apply this knowledge in a time where a lot of values have disappeared.

The spring equinox on the southern hemisphere takes place on September 20th. This is the day for the celebration called Qapaq Warmi Kuraq Raymi or Qoya Raymi Killa, where the rituals focus on spiritual cleansing, a ´fresh´ start of the new year and personal renovation. At the same time this a moment for initiation rituals for girls to become women. The girls that participate state that they are not ashamed for these rituals but that they´re proud of their own culture.

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