AZTECA was successfully funded on Kickstarter.com in August of last year, after 86 grueling days of fundraising wonder. In the end, 45 wonderful people contributed the funds to make the series possible, and we still owe a huge thank you to those folks.
The following is part 1 of Tonalpohualli and 2012, an update that series creator Enrica Jang wrote for the campaign, discussing the mythology behind the story. Though the project campaign was funded, you can still take a look at how the campaign evolved last summer by visting the AZTECA page on Kickstarter.com.
For our new readers who just want to know more about AZTECA mythology, the story continues…
“The world is always on the brink of going under in a spiritual war, a war of gods competing for supreme power. To prevent this from happening, the gods have been given their own space, their own time, their own social groups, etcetera, to rule over. The tonalpohualli tells us how time is divided among the gods.” (www.aztecacalendar.com)
From our video you learn that Nicho’s beliefs are a combination of Aztec mythology and catholic mysticism–particularly as both relate to the end of days. He believes that human blood sacrifice is necessary to keep the world from being destroyed in spiritual and cosmic holocaust. The twist for Nicho is who’s blood requires sacrifice.
Some of you may know that the world is scheduled to end in 2012. Maybe you don’t know why. But you’re here so you’re just a little internet and/or media savvy and therefore you’ve either clicked through a random news link, or seen a bad John Cusack movie, or you’re Christian and have heard this riff on Revelations before. Really, isn’t the world ALWAYS about to end? The last time I really gave this as much thought I was partying because it was 1999 (remember Y2K anyone?) 2012 on deck.
“So, there’s this calendar and, like, all these years are on it, and, like, it just…stops. In 2012.” Well, actually….
The thing to realize about this end-of-days business is that, if the Aztecs are to be believed, the world is ALWAYS on the brink of disaster. It’s imminent, forever. The only thing keeping it from happening is adherence to a very special calendar of ritual. Today’s history lesson is brought to you by the letter T–for Tonalpohualli.
Tonalpohualli is actually one of two Aztec calendars. It divines a year of 260 days—twenty weeks, fourteen days apiece. Each week is reserved for the worship and sacrifice to one Aztec god. (read more on this subject at azteccalendar.com) In this way tonalpohualli is an almanac detailing the who/how/what/why rituals necessary to maintain some semblance of peace on Earth as the Aztecs knew it. The catch is that the Aztecs were infamous for human sacrifice and bloody cruelty: rending human hearts from living chests, decapitating and dismembering children, virgins, virile young men in their own communities, not just enemy tribes. Savaging neighboring peoples, enslaving millions, that sort of thing. They were one of the cruelest warrior cultures ever to exist…that is, until the Conquistadors came along. Someone, say, on the wrong end of a sacrificial altar may have felt that personal evisceration was a steep price to pay to perpetuate a world controlled by Aztecs.
Where 2012 comes in is a little complicated…
Part 2 on it’s way! if you’re enjoying the updates and new pages, we’d love to hear from you, either here or on AZTECA’s Facebook Page. And please tell your friends to push the green button!
We’ll post part 2 next week! Discuss this segment in the comments box below.