Friday, July 17, 2009

Are there any similarities between Christianity and the Mayan religion?

-- Are there any other similarities between Christianity and the Mayan religion?

Alejandro Murgula in “Why Not Teach Maya Creation Story, Too?” argues: “Some of the Popul Vuh will resonate deeply with those familiar with the Bible. A tremendous flood washes away an early race of humans; there is an overarching trinity of life, death and resurrection; good and evil are powerful forces, and man is central to creation.”

In some respects the creation myth in the Popul Vuh—one of the most important Mayan religious texts—resembles that of Genesis. The earth is engulfed by silence and the dark. Only God and his subordinate deities possess light. They decide they need a world of trees, plants, animals—all lead by humanity. They struggle to find the right building material for the first man and woman. They settle on white and yellow corn, and the first man and woman emerge out of the first dawn.

In Genesis too God brings Light and creates the world, molding Adam out of dust, clay and God’s divine breath. Eve, God forms out of Adam’s rib. Humanity is to be the master of that newly invented world.

Then, of course, many Christian and Jewish sects that believe the Maya and other native Americans are in fact a Lost Tribe of Israel.

Some scholars argue that one reason Mexico’s native population adopted Christianity with so much passion and commitment was that the native religion and Christianity had much in common. Among other things, the Maya practiced human sacrifice, and many of them viewed Christ’s death in that light, honoring his immolation in their Fiesta of the Dead.


  1. Mr. Gleason,

    You seem to have hit upon the obvious connection between the two cultures separated by 300+ years. The similarities are to numerous to ignore unless you are a conventional scientist who wears blinders. If one does what you did, and removes the blinders of a conventional education, one must admit that there is more in common than not, and either the Mayan's are the lost tribe (meaning accolades of Christ traveled across the seas to land in South America 1100 years before Columbus) or Christ reincarnated in this blood thirsty land to act as both a cooling hand, and path to his truth, which would come 1200 years later. It fits. I see no flaw in that logic. Can I prove it? No, not really, but the proposition is as valid a theory and any out there! Personally, I like it very much. Well done.

  2. The fact that Quetzalcoatl himself was in some ways a Christ-like figure has been proposed by Robert Gleason on radio and TV. It's an interesting concept because like Christ, Quetzalcoatl was a man of peace in a savage world -- Christ, of course, is most often pictured as bearded because he naturally would have been for his time and place -- an interesting aspect about Quetzalcoatl is that while facial hair was rare among indigenous Americans, the legend of Quetzalcoatl is that of a man with a full beard -- a redheaded man, at that, another rarity for the time and place.