Advances in Anthropology

Volume 10, Issue 1 (February 2020)

ISSN Print: 2163-9353   ISSN Online: 2163-9361

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The “Xochitlalli System”, an Adoration Ritual to Mother Earth among the Sierra de Zongolica Nahuas in Veracruz, Mexico

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DOI: 10.4236/aa.2020.101003    279 Downloads   456 Views   Citations


The Nahua population from the “Sierra Zongolica” in Veracruz, Mexico, has built a type of communication with a supra-human deity with capacities, which from its majesty can give, remove, help, harm, create or destroy, the Mother Earth entity to whom it’s spoken through the worship ritual known as Xochitlalli (from xochitl “flower” and tlalli “earth”). Xochitlalli is a ritual practice that involves a series of steps through which a space is sacralized to establish communication between the man and the earth goddess, and although no Xochitlalli is equal to another, all meet a series of regular events: 1) Demarcation of place and space; 2) Petition, gratitude and apologies; 3) Dialogue from prayers and to give drinks and food to Mother Earth. In this context the research question was: what is the explanatory mechanism that allows us to understand the validity of the Xochitlalli ritual practice among the Nahua communities from the Zongolica mountain range in Veracruz, Mexico? The phenomenon has been observed as a system, in which the Xochitlalli System, understood as a generative mechanism, is distinguished invariable elements that give organization and class identity to it, based on the cultural references that the Nahuas from the montauin range have. The invariable elements present in all the rituals are: to give food and, in the case of drinks, sharing them with the deity; performing the Xochitlalli, using ritual objects; and offering apologies, thanks and petitions through prayers in the Nahuatl language.

Cite this paper

Sevilla, R. , Licona, N. and de la Luz Sevilla González, M. (2020) The “Xochitlalli System”, an Adoration Ritual to Mother Earth among the Sierra de Zongolica Nahuas in Veracruz, Mexico. Advances in Anthropology, 10, 33-47. doi: 10.4236/aa.2020.101003.

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