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Thirteen Heavens

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Thirteen Heavens

The Nahua people such as the Aztecs, Chichimecs and the Toltecs believed that the heavens were constructed and separated into 13 levels. Each level had from one to many Lords (gods) living in and ruling them.

Aztec mythology

Tlahuiztlampa, East hemisphere with its respective trees, temples, patron deities and divinatory signs.
Mictlampa, North hemisphere with its respective trees, temples, patron deities and divinatory signs.

In Aztec mythology, the Thirteen Heavens were formed out of Cipactli's head when the gods made creation out of its body, whereas Tlaltipac, the earth, was made from its center and the nine levels of the underworld (Mictlan) from its tail.[1]

The most important of these heavens was Omeyocan (Place of Two), where Ometeotl - the dual Lord, creator of the Dual-Genesis who, as male, takes the name Ometecuhtli (Two Lord), and as female is named Omecihuatl (Two Lady) - resided.

Cihuatlampa, West hemisphere with its respective trees, temples, patron deities and divinatory signs.
Huitztlampa, South hemisphere with its respective trees, temples, patron deities and divinatory signs.
Thirteen Heavens
Name Dwellers
1 "Sky where the moon moves"
  • As lunar phases
    • Tlazolteotl, goddess of lust and illicit affairs, patron of sexual incontinence, adultery, sex, passions, carnality and moral transgressions.
    • Tiacapan, goddess
    • Ixcuina, goddess
    • Tecotzin or Teicu, goddess
  • Tlaloc, god of thunder, rain and the earth. Here he pierces the "clouds' bellies" to make them rain.
  • Ehecatl, god of the wind. Here he blows the clouds with his breath (breezes) to make them move.

Here the moon and the clouds are in motion.
2 "Where the stars move"
Here the stars are in motion.
3 "Where the Sun moves"
Western abode of the yellow god, to where the sun travels before submerging into the Mictlan underworld.
4 "The sky of the Big Star"
The way of Venus.
5 "Sky that is sinking or being drilled"
Here the comets (called citlallinpopoca or also citlalmina or xihuitl, depending on their shape) are in motion.
6 "Dark green space"
  • Tezcatlipoca, god of providence, of the material, of the intangible and ubiquity, patron of Ursa major and the night, ruler of the North.

Place from where the night comes and spreads.
7 "Region of blue"
  • Huitzilopochtli, god of the sun and will, patron of war and its tactics, of battles and fire, ruler of the South.

Here the sun shows its face at dawn. Sky that is seeing during the day.
8 "Where the obsidian knives are creaking"
Place of storms. Heavenly abode of the god of death from where the darkness comes.
9 "Region of white"
  • Quetzalcoatl, god of life, of light, of wisdom, of fertility and knowledge, patron of the winds and the day, ruler of the West.
  • Tzitzimime, stellar spirits.

Abode of the white god and stellar spirits.
10 "Region of yellow"
Eastern abode of the Yellow God where he comes from and goes to the west.
11 "Region of red"
Abode of the red god. Red sky with rays of light to express that the first creation of the world was the earthly fire.
12 "Sky that is the place of the gods"
Abode of the gods. Ruled by the Four Creator Lords or Tezcatlipocas.

Eminently divine place where the deities remain and project themselves to be in other places. Where the gods take on faces, and where they put on masks to become others while still being themselves. Where they are born, reborn and feed in their quality of eternal and mutating beings.[1]

13 "Place of Two", "Place of Duality"
  • Ometeotl
    • Ometecuhtli, originating god of sustenance, of the furtive, of the inert and the inherent, patron of maintenance and ruler of the cycle of life.
    • Omecihuatl, originating goddess of sustenance, of the furtive, of the inert and the inherent, patron of maintenance and ruler of the cycle of life.

Residence or mansion of the creator couple; source of the gods and the creation of the universe, where the generating principle of all that exists is conceived.

Notes

  1. ^ a b

References

See also


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