What the Maya Did

The first part of the mural shows the establishment of order to the world.

The world is propped up by trees with roots leading to the underworld and branches holding up the sky, Saturno said.

Four deities, who are representations of the maize god’s son, provide a blood sacrifice and a unique offering before each tree.

“The story starts with this deity, who is patron of kings, standing in water. He’s running a large spear through his own penis, letting blood. Blood is squirting all over the place,” Saturno said.

See photo and story here.

What I find interesting here isn’t the visual sophistication of the Mayan mural but the time/space gap between it and the Dresden Codex (13th Century), which should open a significant path of research in history and archaeology. What does the mural invite not about what happened between it and the codex date but prior to its own time. What can we infer about the context of kingly rule for the Maya? It’s development of comology and expression, its mythology? The mural displays written expression, as well. So much more to think about.