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Cenotes: A Door to the Unknown

For many years it was believed that the ancient Mayas made sacrifices only of women and that they only chose virgins for this type of ritual

For many years it was believed that the ancient Mayas made sacrifices only of women and that they only chose virgins for this type of ritual; some recent findings reveal that sacrifices were not exclusive to women. The Mayas brought men, women and even children with the aim of communicating with the gods to ask them if the year that was about to begin would be good or bad.

The evidence gathered during several investigations shows that men and boys of various ages were part of more rituals than women, and different artifacts were found that complemented the rituals. Remains of animals related to the underworld have been found, as well as the instruments used to perform the sacrifice.

The ways the Mayans made offerings to their gods depended on what they wanted to ask their deities – this implied different types of sacrifice, most of which ended in drowning in the cenotes representative of their culture.

The cenotes were of great importance to the Mayas; they symbolized life, death, rebirth and fertility and they believed that these water deposits possessed mythical beings.

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