marzo 27, 2009

Rabinal Achí

El Rabinal Achí es una obra literaria representativa de la cultura maya prehispánica. Fue declarada Obra Maestra de la tradición Oral e Intangible de la Humanidad, en 2005 por la Unesco.

El nombre original en maya del Rabinal Achí es Xajooj Tun, que significa Danza del Tun (tambor). Es un drama dinástico de los Maya Kek’ que data del siglo XV, y un ejemplo raro de las tradiciones prehispánicas. En él se mezclan mitos del origen del pueblo Q'eqchi' y las relaciones político-sociales del pueblo de Rabinal, Baja Verapaz, Guatemala, que son expresados por medio de máscaras, danza, teatro y música. Este drama sobrevivió en la clandestinidad desde 1625 hasta 1856, hasta que el sacerdote francés Charles Étienne Brasseur de Bourbourg lo tradujo, según la narración en Achí de Bartolo Sis.

La tradición oral y escrita es representada por un grupo de personajes, quienes aparecen en un escenario que representa aldeas mayas, particularmente Kajyub’, la capital regional de los Rabinaleb’ en el siglo XIV. La narrativa se divide en cuatro actos, y trata el conflicto entre dos entidades políticas importantes en la región, los Rabinaleb’ y los K’iche’, según explica Alain Breton, en su libro Un drama dinástico maya del siglo XV.

Los personajes principales son dos príncipes: el Rabinal Achí y el K’iche Achí. Otros personajes son: El Rey de Rabinaleb’, Job’Toj, y sus sirvientes: Achij Mun, e Ixoq Mun, quienes representan al hombre y la mujer. La madre con plumas verdes es Uchuch Q’uq’, y trece águilas y trece jaguares, que representa a los guerreros de la fortaleza de Kajyub’. El K’iche’ Achí es capturado y llevado a juicio por haber intentado secuestrar a niños de Rabinaleb’, un delito muy grave en la ley maya.

El K'iche' Achi, con sus tropas, destruyó cuatro poblaciones Rabinaleb' y obligó a sus habitantes a pagar tributos. Después de batallar días enteros, el rey k'iche' es capturado y llevado al palacio de Job'Toj, para ser juzgado.

Al cautivo se le permite ir a despedirse de su pueblo. Antes de su ejecución, se le concede bailar al ritmo del Tun con la princesa de Rabinal y disfrutar de bebidas reales. Hoy, 500 años después, los Rabinaleb' creen que los espíritus de los guerreros muertos en esa batalla, que habitan en los montes circundantes, están presentes también en la danza.

Desde la colonización, en el siglo XVI, el Rabinal Achí ha sido representado durante la fiesta de Rabinal el 25 de enero el día de San Pablo. El festival es coordinado por los miembros de las cofradías, hermandades locales responsables de dirigir a la comunidad. Al tomar parte de la obra, los vivos entran en contacto con los muertos (los rajawales), los antepasados que se representan con máscaras. Para los Achís del Rabinal moderno, el recordar a sus ancestros no es sólo el perpetuar la herencia ancestral. Es también una visión al futuro, el día en que ellos se reunirán con sus antepasados.
(wikipedia)

marzo 12, 2009

Asian and European Dragons


Asian dragons
Chinese dragon Lóng
The Chinese dragon, is a mythical Chinese creature that also appears in other Asian cultures, and is sometimes called the Oriental (or Eastern) dragon. Depicted as a long, snake-like creature with four claws, it has long been a potent symbol of auspicious power in Chinese folklore and art.
Indian dragon Nāga A serpentine dragon common to all cultures influenced by Hinduism. They are often hooded like a cobra and may have several heads depending on their rank. They usually have no arms or legs but those with limbs resemble the Chinese dragon.
Indonesian/Malay dragon Naga or Nogo Derived from the Indian nāga, belief in the Indo-Malay dragon spread throughout the entire Malay Peninsula along with Hinduism. The word naga is still the common Malay term for dragons in general. Like its Indian counterpart, the naga is considered divine in nature, benevolent, and often associated with sacred mountains, forests, or certain parts of the sea
Japanese dragon Ryū
Similar to Chinese dragons, with three claws instead of four. They are usually benevolent, associated with water, and may grant wishes.
Khmer Dragon Neak
The Khmer dragon, or neak is derived from the Indian nāga. Like its Indian counterpart, the neak is often depicted with cobra like characteristics such as a hood. The number of heads can be as high as nine, the higher the number signifies rank. Odd-headed dragons are symbolic of male energy while even headed dragons symbolize female energy. Traditionally, a neak is distinguished from the often serpentine Makar and Tao, the former possessing crocodilian traits and the latter possessing feline traits. A dragon princess is the heroine of the creation myth of Cambodia.
Korean dragon Yong (Mireu) A sky dragon, essentially the same as the Chinese lóng. Like the lóng, yong and the other Korean dragons are associated with water and weather. In pure Korean, it is also known as 'mireu'.
Imoogi A hornless ocean dragon, sometimes equated with a sea serpent. Imoogi literary means, "Great Lizard". The legend of the Imoogi says that the sun god gave the Imoogi their power through a human girl, which would be transformed into the Imoogi on her 17th birthday. Legend also told of a dragon-shaped mark would be found on the shoulder of the girl, revealing that she was the Imoogi in human form.
Gyo A mountain dragon. In fact, the Chinese character for this word is also used for the imoogi.
Philippine Dragon Bakunawa

The Bakunawa appears as a gigantic serpent that lives in the sea. Ancient natives believed that the Bakunawa caused the moon or the sun to disappear during an eclipse. It is said that during certain times of the year, the bakunawa arises from the ocean and proceeds to swallow the moon whole. To keep the Bakunawa from completely eating the moon, the natives would go out of their houses with pots and pans in hand and make a noise barrage in order to scare the Bakunawa into spitting out the moon back into the sky. Some say that the Bakunawa is known to kill people by imagining their death and remote in eye contact.
Vietnamese dragon Rồng or Long
(Ly dynasty, Daiviet X)
These dragons' bodies curve lithely, in sine shape, with 12 sections, symbolising 12 months in the year. They are able to change the weather, and are responsible for crops. On the dragon's back are little, uninterrupted, regular fins. The head has a long mane, beard, prominent eyes, crest on nose, but no horns. The jaw is large and opened, with a long, thin tongue; they always keep a châu (gem/jewel) in their mouths (a symbol of humanity, nobility and knowledge).

European dragons
Catalan dragon drac Catalan dragons are serpent-like creatures with two legs (rarely four) and, sometimes, a pair of wings. Their faces can resemble that of other animals, like lions or cattle. They have a burning breath. Their breath is also poisonous, the reason by which dracs are able to rot everything with their stench. A víbria is a female dragon.
French dragons Dragon
The French representation of dragons spans much of European history, and has even given its name to the dragoons, a type of cavalry.
Sardinian dragon scultone The dragon named "scultone" or "ascultone" was a legend in Sardinia, Italy for many a millennium. It had the power to kill human beings with its gaze. It was a sort of basilisk, lived in the bush and was immortal.
Scandinavian & Germanic dragons Lindworm
(early Vandal)
Lindworms are serpent-like dragons with either two or no legs. In Nordic and Germanic heraldry, the lindworm looks the same as a wyvern. The dragon Fafnir was a lindworm.
English dragons Wyvern Wyverns are common in medieval heraldry. Their usual blazon is statant. Wyverns are normally shown as dragons with two legs and two wings.
Welsh dragons Y Ddraig Goch
In Welsh mythology, after a long battle (which the Welsh King Vortigern witnesses) a red dragon defeats a white dragon; Merlin explains to the Vortigern that the red dragon symbolizes the Welsh, and the white dragon symbolizes the Saxons — thus foretelling the ultimate defeat of the English by the Welsh. The draig goch appears on the Welsh national flag.
Celtic Dragons (Irish and Scottish) Bheithir In Celtic Mythology Ben Vair in Scotland takes its name from the Dragon that used to live in a great hollow in the face of a mountain known as Corrie Lia. The dragon was tricked into walking along a pontoon bridge with hidden spikes.
Hungarian dragons (Sárkányok) zomok A great snake living in a swamp, which regularly kills pigs or sheep. A group of shepherds can easily kill them.
sárkánykígyó A giant winged snake, which is in fact a full-grown zomok. It often serves as flying mount of the garabonciás (a kind of magician). The sárkánykígyó rules over storms and bad weather.
sárkány A dragon in human form. Most of them are giants with multiple heads. Their strength is held in their heads. They become gradually weaker as they lose their heads.
In contemporary Hungarian the word sárkány is used to mean all kinds of dragons.
Slavic dragons zmey, zmiy, żmij, змей, or zmaj, or drak, or smok


Smok Wawelski from Sebastian Münster's Cosmographie Universalis, 1544
Similar to the conventional European dragon, but multi-headed. They breathe fire and/or leave fiery wakes as they fly. In Slavic and related tradition, dragons symbolize evil. Specific dragons are often given Turkic names (see Zilant, below), symbolizing the long-standing conflict between the Slavs and Turks. However, in Serbian and Bulgarian folklore, dragons are defenders of the crops in their home regions, fighting against a destructive demon Ala, whom they shoot with lightning.
Armenian dragon Vishap Related to European dragons
Siberian dragon Yilbegan Related to European Turkic and Slavic dragons
Romanian dragons Balaur Balaur are very similar to the Slavic zmey: very large, with fins and multiple heads.
Chuvash dragons Vere Celen Chuvash dragons represent the pre-Islamic mythology of the same region.
Asturian and Leonese dragons Cuélebre In Asturias and León mythology the Cuélebres are giant winged serpents, which live in caves where they guard treasures and kidnapped xanas. They can live for centuries and, when they grow really old, they use their wings to fly. Their breath is poisonous and they often kill cattle to eat. Leonese language term Cuelebre comes from Latin colŭbra, i.e. snake.
Albanian Dragon Dragua In the Albanian mythology the Draguas have four legs and two bat wings.They have a single horn in their head and they have big ears.They live in the forests and cannot be seen unless they want to be. A Dragua can live up to 100 years and cannot be killed by humans. After the Ottoman invasion, the Draguas became protectors of the highlanders.
Portuguese dragons Coca In Portuguese mythology coca is a female dragon that fights with Saint George. She loses her strength when Saint George cuts off one of her ears.
Greek dragons Drakōn - δράκων
Cadmus fighting the dragon is a legendary story from the Greek lore dating to before ca. 560–550 BC.
Tatar dragons Zilant
Really closer to a wyvern, the Zilant is the symbol of Kazan. Zilant itself is a Russian rendering of Tatar yılan, i.e. snake.
Turkish dragons Ejderha or Evren The Turkish dragon secretes flames from its tail, and there is no mention in any legends of its having wings, or even legs. In fact, most Turkish (and later, Islamic) sources describe dragons as gigantic snakes.
Lithuanian Dragons Drakonas This dragon is more of a hydra with multiple heads, though sometimes they do appear with one head.
Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...