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This debate took place in the conversations forums of Discovery Channel, since this forum are erased afer certain time, I save them and put it here.

Please go there to see the most recent conversations.

by buela,
Fri Mar 13 18:05:53 1998
To arrive at a true understanding of historical events... It is best to see that event from many sides. A part of the Aztec and Inca history has been lost forever because there was little consideration for the REST OF THE STORY in our history books. We have depended on these history books to teach us and teach our children. Let us be challenged to investigate...for the sake of the WHOLE TRUE STORY so we can ALL LEARN MORE. Buela



by prodigy,
Fri Mar 13 19:33:54 1998
I think there is no other story But I see your objective. The Spanish suppositely destroyed the Inca and Aztec. The history books end soon after the execution of the Monarchs. It is not possible that the Inca's and Aztec were wiped out. Why? There were many natives. The natives had the higher grounds. The natives were more amusing to the spanish than anything else. the spanish weren't in vast numbers. They had protective gear. They took the natives by surpise. It doesn't mix. How could people driven by God attack?
by polly,
Sat Mar 14 02:30:04 1998
Consider this...the Spanish Conquistadores (i.e. Hernan Cortes) were financed by the SPANISH INQUISITION.... this is black page in history for certain. It was supposed to defend the purity of the faith...In reality, a person was accused, usually by the Dominican friars, the most often accused were Muslin or Jewish. Simple things like even smiling at the name of the Virgin Mary could cause you to be brought before the inquisitors. You could be tortured, and of course...all of your property would be seized...Half going to the government and Half going to the accuser. Yes the Inquisition is what funded these voyages to "conquer" the New World pagans. This was the "god" that drove the inquisition. The god that drove Cortes might be thought to be the same "god" as his king...Gold... One has to wonder if the Aztecs had NO silver and NO gold or riches for the Spanish to claim...what would have happened? They might have established missions to spread the True Gospel of Jesus Christ! Just think about it folks...
by alice,
Sat Mar 14 14:55:27 1998
I watch a program not long ago about the Aztecs and Icans in which the narrator stated that they did survive. They gist of the show was about decendants of same that still florish in remote areas. I agree with prodigy. I find in hard to believe that ALL were killed.
by alice,
Sat Mar 14 15:01:33 1998
Sorry about all the typos and errors. I have a bandaid on my finger.
by imitra,
Sat Mar 14 20:40:24 1998
In the case of the Aztecs, Cortez could not have deffeated the Aztec warriors without the aid of the surrounding tribes who were enslaved by the Aztec system. It was beautiful, brutal and cold booded,

The loss of the Inca culture is a great one. Some say all of this was inevitable. I think not. But I do not think it has anything to do with the will of God. God did not attack. People did. I do not know where you get that the Inqisition financed it.

Ido not see animal and human sacrifice as examples of high spiituality, or religion. Man's inhumanity to man, is not the will of God. The higher spiitual teachings are the sacrifice of the lower nature to the higher. The old self dies the new self is reborn daily. This idea is inherent in Hinduism, Budhism, and Christianiy, it stems from ancient yoga teachings of the mystic masters of the east and west. Some of the higher teachings were perverted and became diabolical. The eternal verities remaine.
by polly,
Sun Mar 15 19:25:21 1998
IMITRA: When it speaks in the Old Testament, book of Ecclesiastes...That He (God) has also set eternity in the heart of men." There is evidence in many cultures that In other words, hasn't the God who prepared the gospel, the Messiah for all peoples, also prepared all peoples for the gospel?

If this is true...then the current assumption, held by literally millions of people that "pagan" people (like the INCAS and the AZTECS)..cannot even understand and generally do not WANT to receive the Christian Gospel...and that it is unfair to "try to reason" to get them to understand and accept the Gospel....THIS must be a false assemption.

Legends abound. CONSIDER THE FOLLOWING... If Akhenaten's (Egypt) sun worship was a step above idolatry... Discovering a man like Pachacuti's choice of a One-True-God above sun god worship among the Incas...challenges our 'brainwashed brains' don't you think? Pachacuti took his testimony from creation itself and aligned it with his own culture's almost extinct memory of VIRACOCHA - this was the Lord, the omnipotent Creator of all things. There was a shrine dedicated to this one-true-God...QUISHUARCANCHA..located in the upper Vilcanota Valley. His own father, (Hatun Tupac) received revelation in a dream that Viracocha was really the Creator of all things. Hatan Tupac, renamed his ownself..CREATOR OF ALL THINGS.

VARACOCHA was probably of great antiquity. Worship of Inti and other gods, was only a RECENT DEPARTURE from the purer original belief system. Did you know that VIRACOCHA-like figures are prominent in Indian Cultures from Alaska to Tierra del Fuego,...sun worship appears in very few cultures. Pachacuti commanded that prayer be directed to Viracocha with the deepest awe and humility. He composed songs. The priests who had directed worship toward Inti (the sun god) were not happy.

Here is where Pachacuti made his mistake...he confined the worship of Viracocha to be confined to the ruling caste, for it was too subtle and sublime for ordinary folk to understand...Let them continue to worship the sun-god...Inti.

If the 15th century explorers knew this history of the INCAS....would they have presumed them all to be ignorant of the One-True-God? Did they care? If religious conversion was the goal of these Explorers... conversations about the Inca's legends and religious history would have exposed this truth... Incas themselves believed a vague prophecy that one day VIRACOCHA would bring the blessing from the west i.e. sea. Unfortunate that compassionate Christian messengers were not sent. In there place came a HEARTLESS POLITICAL CONQUEROR AND COMMERCIALIST....PIZARRO....AND HIS RAPACIOUS ARMY. He was PRETENDING that he was acting in God's name, Pizarro approached Peru by sea and exploited the Incan MONOTHEISTIC EXPECTATIONS...Never would the Incas have submitted, had they not believed what their leader KingPachacuti passed on to them.. These facts can be checked out...Will you find them in your college textbooks??? How about the Library?? This is the Inca Story...and the missing kingpin...
by beulah,
Mon Mar 16 03:34:02 1998
There is alot of information on this subject. Some have mentioned a few books which relate to the accurate account of Aztec life. We welcome a Book Reference List. My contribution is ETERNITY IN THEIR HEARTS by Don Richardson (It may have been Polly's source as well) It is believed that the Aztecs would never, never, never have bowed to Cortes..if they did not think he was a messenger from the One-true-God they had anticipated. Beula
by kyria,
Wed Mar 25 17:22:48 1998
Montezuma was suffering deeply from depression. He believed in the signs and portents. The Aztects could easily have dfeated the Spanish, but they waited to long. Those they had suppresed joined the invaders. The Spanish killed their opponets out right. The Aztects, captured alive with intention to sacrifice later. That stategy also contributed to defeat.

I do not know enough about the Incas. My reaction in high school, reading about this was. Spank Spain!
by beula,
Thu Mar 26 02:01:19 1998
Kyria... We can do more than "spank" Spain. If we don't learn the TRUE HISTORY of the World, or the USA...we cannot value the struggle of ideas and people that took place. So long as our textbooks hide from us the roles that people of color, the natives, played in exploration, they encourage us to look to Europe and its extensions as the Seat of All Knowledge and Intelligence. We have to teach both side of these exploits.

Another issue, we cannot judge these explorers by standards from our own time.

As far back as 1517, we have an account written to King Ferdinand by Pedro de Cordoba.

[ commenting on the effects of the ENCOMIENDA system whereby Indian villages were assigned to individual colonists or groups of colonists for FORCED-LABOR. Since it was not called slavery it escaped the moral censure that slavery received. Spain made it official policy on Haiti in 1502 and other conquistadors subsequently introduced it to Mexico, Peru and Florida.]

This is what he writes: "As a result of the sufferings and hard labor they endured, the Indians choose and have chosen suicide. Occasionally a hundred have committed mass suicide. The women, exhausted by labor, have shunned conception and childbirth many whenpregnant, have taken something to abort and have aborted. Others after delivery have killed their children with their own hands, so as not to leave them in such oppressive slavery."

Economically, exploiting the Americas (North, Central & South) transformed Europe, enriching first SPAIN, then ...other nations.

European religious and political leaders quickly amassed so much gold that they applied gold leaf to the ceiling of their churches and palaces.

By accepting the this limited viewpoint, our history textbooks never invite us to THINK about what happened to reduce or extinquish the mainland Indian populations, whose great wealth and cities...awed the Spanish. This theft impoverishes US, you and I, keeping us ignorant of what has caused the world to develop as it has.

by kyria,
Thu Mar 26 02:56:38 1998
Beula: You have many good points. But remember the so called indians {natives}. were also pretty good at exploiting one another. that is a very general statement. It is the common theme of humanity. Man's [humankind's] inhumanity to man.
by ginny,
Sun Mar 29 17:06:03 1998
I've always read everything I have come across about these civilizations. Watch every documentary. Too much is missing, thus our fascination and conjecture about what really happened. Thanks for all your research and comments.
by beula,
Sun Mar 29 18:10:16 1998
Kyria: In response to your comment about man's inhumanity to man, that is very true. Slave trade exists even today in parts of Africa. What some of the explorers did to the natives cannot be excused by this. Some or most of the early explorers to the Americas were SUPPOSE to be bringing the GOSPEL OF JESUS CHRIST to America. Some did just that...Sadly, Most of them did not.

In Conclusion: When we teach our children about History, shouldn't we include all aspects of the struggle so that THEY can understand the world they are living in today? What many of the textbooks have done is water down the bad side of our (American) history so we might have Heros. Isn't is better to have heros who are "real", rather than to have heros that are placed up on a pedestal? I am not talking about de-valuing their character but of telling the whole story.

I have a personal opinion why the schools have had to make "heros" for our children...and most of the responsiblity lies squarely on the shoulders of the parents. I am a parent, so I can honestly judge my group of people. The easiest thing in the world to do is just let someone else, teach History to our children. The hardest thing that I have ever done, thus far in my life is to teach History to my sons and to myself. To know the facts, people and dates is of little value if we have nothing to "hang" these ideas upon. Let us go to the public library, do some research for ourselves and learn alongside with our children. Whenever possible....GO TO ORIGINAL SOURCE DOCUMENTS. If that is not possible, read materials that were written at the time period you are studying.

A book that I would suggest, along with ETERNITY IN THEIR HEARTS by Don Richardson,.... read LIES MY TEACHER TOLD ME by James W. Loewen

I hope we can continue to keep this thread open next month.
by latino,
Thu Apr 2 22:56:06 1998
I wish I paid more attention to my history class while in 8th grade. We touched all this civilizations( more than 20 yrs ago). One thing I do remember was that the Spaniards had a hard time taking over (fighting) the Incas. Their message system (running messangers and hidden trails) had an advantage over the Spaniards to be prepared for fighting or hidding before they could arrive to the next village. Thats why I also agree that I do not beleive all Incas were massacre. I'll try to dig out something. Should return ASAP.
by imitra,
Sun Apr 5 07:46:50 1998
When Vasgo de Gamma reached India, he thought the hindus had already been converted to Christ. That is because there was a language barrier. he could only observe the customs of the people, he saw them as Christian.

This did not prevent him from trade, or attack if he felt necessary.
AZTECS & INCAS..... part I
by javierd,
Sat Apr 11 03:34:27 1998
This are some testimonies from the conquered, recopiled in the book "El otro lado de la conquista" by Miguel Leon portilla. First this is from the aztecs ,

this was writen some years after the conquest when it was clear they were no gods.
And when they had given then the gifts, they appeared to smile, to rejoice excedenly and take great pleasure. Like monkeys they sized upon gold..

It was as if they were satisfied, sated and gladdened. For in truth they thirsted mightily for gold: they stuffed themlselves with it, and starved and lusted for it like pigs [Sahagun 1955:31]

The next one is an anonimous poem probably from 1523:
The weeping extends, tears flow there in Tlatelolco.
By water went the meshicas;
like women; runing was general.
Were are we going?.
oh Friends!, then, is truth?
They are abandoning Mexico city;
the smokes is going away;
fog is extending;
With weeping they hail,
the Huitznahuacatl Motehuilzin,
the Tlaltelacals Tlacoltin,
the Tlacatecuhtli Oquitzin...
Cry my friends,
you must understand that with this doings,
we have lost the Mexican nation.
Water has corrupted,
food has corrupted!
This is what the giver of life has done in Tlatelolco.

Withouth reserve Motehultzin and Tlacotzin are taken away.
With songs, they get courage one to another in Acachinango,
ah, when they were put to test there in Coyoacan.

AZTECS & INCAS.....part II
by javierd,
Sat Apr 11 03:37:34 1998
A more touching cronicle is from the "Coloquio de los doce". In 1524 12 priest were sent from Spain to teach. In the recently built "convent of San Francisco" they denounce to a group of surviving aztec lords their religion. After the lesson, an Aztec lord asked permision to speak, he showed his disgust about what he heard, since he was not a wise man, he asked permision to take some surviving priest to discuse, some days later, the surving aztec priest and wise men appeared, this is something about what they said:

Lords, respected lords: You have travelled much to get to this land.

Here in front of you,
we contemplate you, we ignorant people...

And now, what are we going to tell you?
What is what we must address to your hears?
Are we something indeed?
We are just vulgar people...

By means of a translator we will answer,
we will return the breath and the word
about the lord of the near and far.
(ometeotl /omecihualt)
It's by his word, that we risk ourselves,
that we put ourselves in danger...

Maybe this is our loss,
maybe is our destruction,
where are going to be taken?

Where should we go?

We are vulgar people
we are perishable, we are mortal.

Let us die, let us perish,
since our gods are dead.
But there should be peace on your
hearts and your body,
we will break a little,
we will show a little,
the secret, the ark of the lord, our god
You said
that we did not know
abbout the lord of the near and far,
about of one who created earth and sky.
you said

That our gods are not true.

This is a new word,
this that you spoken.
This is why we are disturbed,
this is why we are annoyed.

Because our ancestors,
the ones that had been,
the ones that had lived on this earth,
they did not speak like that.

They give us the ways of life,
they take by true,
they give cult,
they honored the gods......
they teach us the ways of the cult,
all the ways to honored the gods.

That way we put the mouth on earth,
by them we bleed us,
we acomplished our votes,
we burn copal
and offered sacrifice.

We know to whom we owe life.
To whom we owe birth,
to whom we owe to be begget
to whom we owe to grow,
and how to invoke...


Hear milords
do not harm your people.
Do not let disgrace to be carried,
to let it perish...

tranquils, and friendly,
take this acount, milords,
of what is needed.


Here are the one who rule us,
the ones that take us,
the one that have the world in charge.

Is it not enought that we are defeated?
that we are taken away?
that we are taken from our rulers?

If in this place we are to stand,
we will be prissioners.

So Do with us what you want,
This is what we have spoken,
what we answered,
to your breath,
to your word,
oh lords!

The original of this acount had 30 chapters, only 14 survive and were discovered in 1912 in the secret files of the Vatican.

We did not know what hapeneed to the Aztec priest after this, but all their teachings were wiped, and the native were forbitten to learn, not only their culture, but also from read and write in any language.

Another acount comes from the Maya, from the books of Chilam Balam. This books were writen after the conquest, as a means to recopilate all the books burned by the spanish, so the writers did know the cristian teachings... and how the doings of the soldiers had nothing to do with it.

"Sad will be the word of Hunab Ku,
The only god between us,
when the word of the God from the skys
will extend through the land....

Our god will be gone.
This true god will only speak of sin,
Of sin will be their teachings.
Inhumans will be their soldiers,
cruel will by their dogs...."

AZTECS & INCAS...Part III (and last :-))
by javierd,
Sat Apr 11 03:41:04 1998
finally this is an acount from the quechuas (incas). This is the "prologue to cristian readers" from Guaman Poma, this was written about 30 years after the conquest, in spanish and quechua:

See here, christian, all the good and evil ways.
Now christian reader take this in to parts,
the evil take it away, to be punished , and the good
to be offered to god and his majesty.

Christian reader you will see all in the cristian ways,
since Ihave not found the indians to have greed for gold
and silver. I have not found no one between them, who
debt a hundred pesos, nor lied, nor player, nor laziness,
nor whore, nor thief.

That you have all that is inobedient to your father and mother
and priest and king, and negate to God. All this you have
and teach it to poor indians. You said when you skin (steal?)
between you and much more the poor indians, that you will
take it back, but i don't see that you take it back,
nor in life, nor in death. I looks to me christian,
that all of you are to be condemned to hell.....


And again I ask for an apology for my english
by beula,
Sat Apr 11 05:59:14 1998
Thank you for sharing all of these writings with us. It gives us all a great deal to consider.

by latino,
Sun Apr 12 13:34:09 1998
Thanks JavierD!!!

by cja,
Wed Apr 15 15:18:07 1998
This is a terrible example of what happended to native populations all over the earth.To think that all the destroyed and burnt written history is lost forever is too painful to even think about.These religions or gods have been arounf sine the beginning of "these peoples time".There was also much stuff destroyed in north america.Has anyone heard of a native american book called the "black book"?Which was destroyed by the early european explorers.?I think christianity and the europeans made up version of the virgin , is one of the reasons things are the way for the natives people in the Americas.Everytime I see something on the news about, "some statue crying blood", or some mysterous picture or shadow of the virgin appearing somewhere, and the people coming in mass to witness this miracle.I say to myself,"dame, the europeans have the indians spooked up too.Christianity has a lot of blacks superstitious in north american also.They have everyone afraid of ,"going to hell" but themselves they are not afraid.They do now and have always did what they wanted to do , to people, animals, the earth, themselves.


by javierd,
Thu Apr 16 13:46:19 1998
The great tragedy was not the "conquista", It was not the first time a civilization was conquered, the aztec had been doing that themselves, but they expected (as the other prehispanic civilization) to had to pay tribute and to have to serve the sapnish.

What they never expected is that their culture was going to be purposefully wiped. With all that was good and bad.

Some prehispanic priests adopted cristianims readilly, because it provided them with some answers they were looking, but this was not enough, as the prologue by Guaman Poman shows.

Let us hope that this will never happen again.

by beula,
Sun Apr 26 16:14:58 1998
Unless our history books contain the different perspectives of a will our children understand? Wouldn't it be wonderful if there were school history textbooks with the two or more perspectives published within the same textbook? We see conflict all around us...everyday. When our children read some of the 'watered-down' history in their school it really surprising that they cannot connect "today" with "history"? There needs to be a connection.

by kyria,
Mon Apr 27 08:01:27 1998
Seekers of wisom and truth are everywhere. Just as there is good and bad in everyone and everything. "The only thing that is evercertain is change."

by honeybee,
Mon Apr 27 13:01:30 1998
JavierD, I add my thanks to those of others. Your English is better than my Spanish these days; please, don't apologize for the help you are providing!

I agree, Beulah, that many perspectives ought to be included in today's history books. Sadly, "history is written by the victor," even today. And still most often it has been the history of upper-"class" European male society. Not only are the native peoples not represented, or presented in biased fashion, but where are the women?!

Kyria, you are correct! All contain good/ill, positive/negative--everything and everyone. There must be balance, not polarity.

As for the message that to the Native Peoples, the gods and goddesses were simply aspects of The One, I believe as a neo-pagan (witch--that is "bruja" to you, Javier!) much the same. That there is one Abiding Spirit which underlies all beliefs and is the Source of all life, manifest in all things material, animate or not. How wise these aboriginal peoples become from a Spiritual perspective, although I do deplore the use of human sacrifice or animal for that matter.

BTW: the Old Testament is filled with instances of and exhortations to engage in animal sacrifice. And I think the Christians ought to have looked into a mirror before condemning human sacrifice in other cultures. Was Jesus not a human sacrifice?

Speaking of Jesus, has some interesting materials on their recent series on the early development of Christianity. I personally feel that it has been among the most brutal of religions, a religion of hypocrisy, in light of its own purported teachings--but that's another thread!!!

Blessed Be

by kyria,
Mon Apr 27 22:08:58 1998
Honeybee: That is the negative force that you are speeking of. It is insidious and can pop up even in the best of places. Stay in the LIGHT.

by honeybee,
Tue Apr 28 07:37:26 1998
Kyria, I am simply stating historical fact, that some of the most evil, brutal acts over the centuries have been committed by those who claimed to be acting on behalf of "God" or under "His" direction. I am not personally turning from the light, Light, LIGHT, as you seem to imply, just continuing with the thought you instigated with your comment on "MAN'S INHUMANITY TO MAN." Witness the Inquisition, which began in Spain and spread throughout Europe, killing countless people in the name of "saving their souls." The conquest of the New World provided an excuse for a continuation of the same manner of brutality and exploitation. 'If this native knows not MY God, he is less than me, and I can kill, rape, pillage with impunity' seems to have been the mindset of the conquistadores, and the EXCUSE provided by the Catholic Church of the time was a "Mission from God" to "save the souls" of those who knew not their Christ. Dark Days in Human History, indeed.

by viper_,
Thu Apr 30 21:03:26 1998
Honeybee, I must say that I'm quickly becoming a fan of yours in this discussion and others. Don't stop! :)

To all: I'm interested in finding out more about Ixtab, the Aztec goddess of suicide. Does anyone have any books or references concerning her?

by cptboogerbob,
Thu Apr 30 22:18:11 1998
I have in my posession, sitting here looking at me, the tibia of a ten-year-old child who was flayed alived in honor of the rain-god Tlaloc on March 15, 1403, cut up, and eaten by Tlaloc's priests. You politically correct asses can crawl back up in your dorm rooms and digest that. I hope if we ever meet another society like the Aztecs we have another Scipio Africanus at hand to tear down every block they have built and salt the earth behind so nothing ever grows in such a disgraceful place again.

by javierd,
Fri May 1 13:25:32 1998
Hi cptboogerbob,

Do you know what is Drawing and chartering, the old english penalty for treason?

Do you know that until xix century in europe most crimes were punished with death, mutilation and torture.

Jail was reserved to Noble and rich.

Have you here of the inquisition?

Have you heard of Vlad Tepes, the champion of crhistians and how he order to impalled thousand of muslims, while he was having breakfast (this is a death worst death than this children)

Unfortunatelly, cruelty was not a speciallity of aztecs or the other prehispanic civilization, just look at the history.

Last year, there was an exposition here in Mexico City. "Instrumentos de Tortura medioeval". Nothing in the aztecs was so sofiticated than that.

Fortunatelly AFAIK, only tlaloc, and Xipe totec demand the sufering of their victims the usual method was faster and in some cases, it was voluntary. And don,t be carried away by the own aztec propaganda, they could not make phisically make so many sacrifices as they claim.

And since crying and faint was severilly punished during the Tlaloc sacrifices, i can assure you that Aztec population did not enjoy that.

Think that by this account most civiliztion on earth should have been destroyed, but i can sure you that even Cartagus this not deserve that end.

If only some of their writings had survive and not only those of centenial enemies, the Romans, maybe we could see the other side of their history.

Even aztecs were appalled by the cruelty of spaniards, and they though that they were cannibals.

Remember that there is no evidence of aztec canibalism, if you look carefully in the cronicles, you will only two accounts of aztec cannibalism, one in the Books of "La verdadera historia de la conquista" writen 40 years after the conquiest, and in the acounds of Diego Duran, who was trying to prove that aztecs were one of the lost tribes of Israel, because "the aztecs, like jews have blood sacrifices". Most Europenas of that times tought that jews made human sacrifices.

On the other hand in the sahagun recopilation you only see an aztec being eaten by an barbarian tribe (chichimecas)

I Recommend to everyone the book "the mith of man eating man" by W. Arens.

And last, it seems that there is capacity for cruelty on every human being, but ont the other side the is capacity for love also. When i read history, i can see that slowly, but surely, humanity is going in the right direction.

So let us forget hate and never speak of destruction.

by javierd,
Fri May 1 21:30:19 1998
By the way, today about 20,000,000 mexicans live in the same place, it would not be a goo idea to destroy it... :-)

by cptjack,
Sun May 3 13:53:38 1998

(Finally got my screen name straightened out)

I suppose salted earth would make for some very unhappy city dwellers.

Of course I know who Vlad was, also Gilles de Laval Comte de Retz. The period following the great plague seems to have provided history with a basketfull of madmen the same as the 20th Century have given us Hitler, Stalin, Pol Pot, etc.

The reason the Romans so despised the Carthaginians was because they worshipped Baal and practised child sacrifice, in fact every time someone built a new building it was customary for the builder to sacrifice his youngest and enclose the body in the masonry of the structure---this would probably explain the Roman determination to tear down the city to the last stone.

I'm guite aware of the penalty of drawing and quartering. Reserved for cases of high treason (as in the case of William Walys) it is probably about the most vicous thing that English Law has to offer.

When I was an undergraduate I had a law book printed in Frankfurt a.M. in 1572. It went into the process of torture quite deeply and also got into some pretty gruesome punishments for various crimes eg. Premeditated homocide--breaking on the wheel (even worse, an hour before the execution the city of Frankfurt was responsible for providing the relatives of the deceased with a pan of hot coals and pliers and pinchers so they could get revenge. Abortion--Drownding. Theft--hanging or decapitation depending on the status of the malefactor, etc.,etc.

I believe that the destruction of the Inca Culture was a terrible inexcusable crime (I have read B. de las Casas) but I certainly understand the Conquistidores outrage when they encountered the Aztecs. And I understand that for people who mainly considered war as a vehicle to take coup and prisoners the Spaniards approach must have seemed utterly barbaric.

Further investigation seems to indicate that the figure on the bone is going to be Huzilipotchli(sp?).

by javierd,
Mon May 4 00:37:47 1998
No, the Romans hate the Carthagens because they were their principal competitors for expansion and space. Remember the punic wars. I doubt the could care less about human sacrifice, if that would have been the case, they would have to wipe half europe. They thought that christians also sacrifice children, but they prosecute christians for their political thoughs (they refuse to acept the state gods, so the they were considered as traitors).

And the conquistadores did not despised Aztec, if you read "Las cartas de Relacion" you will find that Cortez admired aztecs, he was ,in fact very impressed with the piety and humility of aztec priests, specially if he compared them with the priests he had, that care more for gold than helping the souls of their companions.

I was not until the new priests from spain arrived that the process of destruction of prehispanic culture began.

And for the number of sacrifices, Bernal Diaz, reports 130,000 skull in the stack of Tlatelolco, but in the excavations only 127 were found.

Andres Tapia another conquistador, also report 136,000 skulls in the stacks of the "Templo mayor" in tenochtitlan. Five skulls for linear meter, that would made a stack of 136 kilometers long !!!

Probably we can't trust the conquistadores in maters of aritmetics....

If the bone is a child, probably was dedicated to Tlaloc, or Xilonen. Huitzilopochtli (the left humming bird) need captives from battle. Usually captives were well treated, since they were considered messenguer to their god. When an aztec warrior make a capture, he exclame, "welcome my son". Then he had to treat the captive with respect. This sounds strange to our culture, and i don't want this things to happen again.

--- Probably one of the paradoxes of human sacrifice, in any culture is that it's an act of piety. Destruction to aplacate, or comunicate to a God. Like Abraham who was determinated to sacrifice his son, the people who commit human sacrifice really thinks they are doing something good.

The sad thing is that they are only destroying something more precious...

As Icomment earlier, probably the aztecs priests already have realized this. Some of the Aztec poetry from that time relects a state of doubt about the nahuatl religion:

"Is it true...
We only came to dream?
Do we really live on earth?
Do the flowers and songs will
live in the house of the giver of life?

Will i live again on earth?

Until we go to the land of deads,
we only have each other."

When Moctezuma, hear that Quetzalcoatl
has arrive he was frighten, because that god
had forbid human sacrifice.

I you have interest in this topic, i recomend to you " The human sacrifice, from antiquity to our days" from Nigel Davies.


viper, Ixtab does not sound a nahuatl name, i looks more like maya, but if you have patience, next week i will check in my father library.

by imitra,
Mon May 4 08:22:50 1998
To be in the Light is to be centered in truth. It is best that the light shine in all the dark quarters of human history.

It is my understanding that Montexuma was kept under a kind of friendly house arrest for almost a year.

A feast was given in honor of the Spaniards. Cortez was not there. Remember the Spanish were greatly outnumber. They hardend rogues, but they were terrified. Cortez burned his ship to keep his men from fleeing and heading back to Cuba. At the feast they were seved roasted human infant, sprinkeled with the blood of fresh sacrifices. It was intended as a great honor. The Spanish went bezerk and slew the hosts, robbing them of many treasues in the process. This was the begining of the final battle.

Montezuma was stoned by his own people. They fought to the death to save there Empire. But they had many enimies of the tribes they exploited. The Spanish, {Cortez} had great respect for the beauty of the Aztec culture.

The prayer temples that were used for human sacrifice, were ordered whitewashed. Flowers, the Madonna and Child were placed in stead.

There was no rapeing of the women. The soldiers were allowed only to be with women who were baptised. These were ruthless, macho, good catholic boys.

A few hundred years of peace followed. But not happines everafter.

by javierd,
Mon May 4 11:51:41 1998
When Cortez was honored by Moctezuma, he asked to stop human sacrifices, and Moctezuma agreed, No humans sacrifices were made after that. The spanish did not witnessed any human sacrifice in Tenochtitlan.

When Cortez left Tenochtitlan, a great festivity happen, the aztecs invited the spanish , but the spaniards asked in return that all the people were unarmed. The aztec agree. But when the festivity was taken place. The spanish close the gates and kill all people in the festivity, men and women , to get their gold. This is "La matanza de templo mayor". Most of the upper aztec class were killed, the aztec society was almost headless, after that Moctezuma could not control the aztecs.

When cortez arrive, he was shattered by the news.

And who killed Moctezuma?, this depends on which version you read, the aztecs cronicles say it was hanged by the spanish, who really knows?.

by javierd,
Mon May 4 19:45:55 1998
This is the aztec acount of the Main Temple masacre, from the "codice florentino, Sahagun": -----------------------------------------------

So, all was prepared, while they were enjoying the festivity,
there was the dance, there was the song, there was a song
followed by other song, and the songs are like the sound
of the waves, in this precise moment, the people from Castilla
make the decision to kill the people. Then the all came to here, all
with weapons of war.

They came to close the Eagle way, in the minor palace;
then the Acatl way, then Tezcacˇac. And after they close,
in all they they put guards: Nobody could came out.

Prepared all the things, inmediately the enter the sacred
hall to kill the people. they go on foot, their wood shields and
some have their metal shields.

Inmediately they went close to the ones that were dancing, they went
to the place of the drums: With a cut to the musicician,
they cut him his arms, then they cut his head. Away went his head.

In the moment to all pass trough the knife, the laced people, they
cut, with swords they make damage. Some tried to atack, inmediately
the fell with they instestins in the floor. To other the hit them
in the head, they cut their head, entirely destroyed
was their head.

To other made cuts in the shoulders:
great openings, dismemberd were their bodies.
To others cut them their legs, their anlkes, to other in the abdomen.
All the intestins went to the floor. Some tried in vain to run.
they went with their intestins falling, whith their legs rolling
trough their instestins. Some whishing, to be saved, did not know where to

Other tried to go out: those in the door were passed the trough the knife.
Other tried to climb the walls but they could not save their life.

Other hide beteween the dead, pretending to be dead,
so they could save their life,
but if someone move, they inmediatelly go there and stab him

The blood of the warriors went like water: like water that stay still,
and the smell of the blood was on the air, and the intestins look like they
move by themselves.

....When all was known, the shouting began.
Mexican captains... come here!
All who had weapons, shield, darts, ensigns.
Come here quickly, run.

Dead are the captains,
dead are the warriors,
they have been aniquilated oh!, mexican captains.


And the fathers and mothers went crying, the were cryied,
and there was the sorrow for the dead. To Each one they take to
home, but then they take them again to the sacred hall:
they put all the dead there, then they cremated the bodies
in Cuauhxicalco. Other were cremated in the house of the young


by kyria,
Wed May 6 09:01:47 1998
Javierd: Thankyou for shareing your perspective of history with us. It gives a clearer picture and is appreciated.

by honeybee,
Wed May 6 09:11:34 1998
Back to the fray.

As usual, JavierD, you have provided us with much information and much to ponder. You present a well-balanced picture of life in Mexico at the time of the conquests. Muchas gracias, amigo.

Viper, I thank you for your vote of confidence. I do like a good debate! You or SaharaDancer will have to be president of the "Honeybee Fan Club!" <chuckle> As for your question on IXTAB: I have consulted Michael Jordan's (no, not THAT Michael Jordan!!!) "Encyclopedia of the GODS" and found only a brief reference to her. She was, as JavierD suggests, a Mayan goddess, the tutelary of suicides. Unfortunately, this is all the info given; I'm afraid Jordan has serious limitations as a source. JavierD, we look to you for enlightenment once again.

cptwhomever, I do hope you realize that no one of us is actually championing the Azteca as a social ideal. None would wish to return to that particular social structure, nor to that of los conquistadores, nor to any of the multitude of cultures whose practices included blood sacrifice, torture, brutality. However, I think the point is well-made by Javier that many cultures have and do practice "inhuman and inhumane treatment of man," that there are few if any who cannot trace if they would their ancestry to at least one guilty of atrocities of one description or another.

Modern history is fraught with examples into the very present: war crimes in both WW's, VietNam, Bosnia-Herzegovina; ethnic cleansing in the latter, in Iraq, in Iran; "holy wars" throughout the ages. Bravo, to the example of Abraham & Isaac! The accusation of human and particularly of child sacrifice, and of cannibalism, has been made against each and every group of individuals whose power the catholic church, or whatever group holds sway at any particular time/place, whose power the would-be controllers had cause to fear. This was true of the Jews and Moors during the Spanish Inquisition, of those accused of witchcraft throughout Europe in the Middle Ages, of indiginous peoples at all times and places, to provide an excuse to destroy them in the "name of God." How often and in how many cultures that phrase has been used to justify pain and bloodshed! How tragic that we cannot all look at such horror, whomever is the culprit, and stop, now and forever, the bickering over who was worse! and get on with the process of BECOMING a more sane, humane, tolerant society in every way.

Yes, the Aztecs practiced human sacrifice, as did the Maya. Did that fact justify the absolute erasure of their culture, with its beautiful art and poetry, examples of which JavierD has been kind enough to provide? Were the Spaniards sincerely performing their atrocious acts in the cause of their own god, or was their motive gold!? I tend to think the former was camoflage for the latter, myself.

I agree that the accounts written by Bernal Diaz, et al, leave much to be desired in their accuracy. So do accounts of the Romans as relates to the Celts, for that matter, to gnaw my own figurative bone. We must remember in reading these "histories" that they were written by the victor, for consumption by an audience of their fellows! Yes, the numbers are likely greatly exaggerated!!! It was NOT exactly unbiased journalism, folks.

I hope, along with JavierD and Viper, that we as HUMANITY are headed in the right direction, that we can truly become a non-violent people, wherever and whomever we are. That we can learn to tolerate one another's differences, and not only tolerate, but REJOICE in those differences. It would be a sad and very boring planet were we all alike.

A toast,then, to cultural diversity and to ideological & religious tolerance! <cheers>

In Her Love & Light, Bright Blessings to one and all. *Honeybee
by javierd,
Wed May 6 16:10:59 1998
hi honeybee,

You are right, if we view from our actual standard, we cannot justify most of the old civilizations. How the fanatism, and ignorace have justify many wrongs. When people think that only his/her way of life is the only valid way, the may commint many wrongs.

In the book of W. Arens, we learn that Romans though that christians were canibal. Africans tough europeans were canibals, chinneese though coreans were cannibals, and coreans tough chinnese were canibals. Aztec though that chichimecas (the north american indians) were cannibal.

All this were mere justification, if you degrade you enemy to something less than human, you can justify many things.

We must learn, not to tolerate all, but view always the other side, and learn whatever we can. This is the only way to grew together.

by fredr,
Thu May 7 22:28:17 1998
I've spent much time {hours?} reading the discussion on this subject. javierd and honeybee are good examples of enlightened tolerance on a period gone by.

A time when Europeans with superior weapons, won the wars, burned the culture, paintings, etc. Changed the religion, relegated the citizens to stations of lowest class. Each group had plenty of things wrong with it by our moralistic standards, just as our own standards will be scrutinized by future generations.

I will leave with a thought: If your fast-held beliefs at 40 are the same as they were at 20, you've wasted 20 years!

by javierd,
Thu May 7 23:34:36 1998
hi fredr,

How did you know i am 40 ...

You are right, we do not have the same beliefs all our life, we (ussually) keep learning all our life.

But at the same time we cannot live in a total state of change, in my case, one of my most important classes at highscholl (more than 20 years ago) was ethics, our teacher insisted in show us the diference between ethics and moral.

Ussually moral changes a lot with times, since it,s based on customs. Just 50 years ago it was inmoral to use a skirt above the knee.

Ethics is subjet to less changes, although not always covers all. And sometimes the ethics of a person confronts his/her moral.

Probably all of us has a core of ethics that suffers little change trough our life, is just that no allways we tough about it.

And maybe i am too optimistic, but when I read history, i see a slow but steady change in the ethics of people, litle by litle we give human life a greater value.

Sometime there are setbacks.

A hundred years ago, there were still places where a cow or a horse were more valuable than a human life. Even now, goverments try to hide torture, when two hundred year ago, they there were public amusements.

And when I get depresed, i remeber a cite by Arthur C Clarke:

"Of course there are extraterrestrial life watching us, but they are not going to go down, until they could stop laughing...."

Javier Delgado

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