By Elizabeth Graham
Based on her research of archaeological proof from the excavations of Maya church buildings at Tipu and Lamanai, Elizabeth Graham seeks to appreciate why the Maya occasionally actively embraced Catholicism in the course of the interval of ecu conquest and persevered to worship during this means even after the top of Spanish occupation.
The Maya in Belize seem to have persisted to bury their useless in Christian churchyards lengthy after the church buildings themselves had fallen into disuse. additionally they appear to have hidden pre-Hispanic items of worship in Christian sacred areas during periods of persecution, and excavations demonstrate the fashion of the early church buildings to be unmistakably Franciscan. The proof means that the Maya remained Christian after 1700, while Spaniards have been not up to the mark, which demanding situations the frequent assumption that simply because Christianity was once imposed via strength it used to be by no means correctly assimilated by means of indigenous peoples.
Combining old and archaeological information together with her event of getting been raised as a Roman Catholic, Graham proposes a fashion of assessing the concept that of non secular adventure and strategies of conversion that takes into consideration the fabric, visible, sensual, or even olfactory manifestations of the sacred.
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Additional info for Maya Christians and Their Churches in Sixteenth-Century Belize
The concern could encompass not only the ideas held by people in the past and what these ideas led to, but also the archaeologist’s ideas and how his or her thinking stimulates particular lines of inquiry. 62 I am curious about how the Spaniards affected the Mayas’ views of the world or the cosmos and their place in it, and how the Maya affected the Spaniards’ views. 63 I then explore these avenues more fully, and reach conclusions about social processes and cultural change during contact and Conquest.
25 Thus, the Maya were encouraged to express territorially what in pre-Columbian times need not have been expressed as such, owing to the existence of widely recognized practices concerning political and economic obligations. ” 27 The lords themselves, and other lesser officials, made ritual circuits of the land which each lord was said to control. These actions seem on the surface to confirm the importance of land “boundedness” as a source of political power, but this may have depended on the eye of the beholder.
My view as a child of objects and images in the process of learning the catechism was very different from what would become the view held by my archaeological self, a self who catalogues Venetian glass beads as “Small Finds” and describes images as effigies or figurines. To us children at St. Mike’s, the pictures and medallions were “holy,” and the images helped us to remember stories about beloved angels or saints (fig. 11). How could two such disparate views exist side by side in the same mind—mine?