Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Pachatata sunrise

Pachatata sunrise
yachac offers Inti
red and yellow flowers

On the twin peaks of Amantani Isla in Titicaca Cocha, there are two temples, one to Pachamama, Earth Mother, and one to Pachatata, Earth Father. We begin our climb to Pachatata temple at 4:30 am in order to arrive before dawn. At the ancient stone temple, our Inka medicine men prepare for the sunrise ceremony. They have brought their flutes, yachac headdresses, and bags of coca leaves and kutata blossoms. They gather petals from a yellow wildflower growing on the hillside, thanking each flower for its offering. With the flowers they create a beautiful pattern on the ground in front of the temple gate, forming a double circle with the yellow petals to represent Inti, the Sun god, and a double heart with the tubular red blossoms for Pachamama, Inti's wife. As the rays of the sun stream out between the sapphire lake and the blue-gray clouds, Amaru leads us in a ceremony to greet the life-giving light.

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