The rabbit on the face of the moon: mythology in the mesoamerican tradition
Eighteen essays provide an accessible, entertaining look into a system of millennia-old legends and beliefs.
Mythology is one of the great creations of humankind. It forms the core of sacred books and reflects the deepest preoccupations of human beings, their most intimate secrets, their glories, and their infamies.
In 1990, Alfredo López Austin, one of the foremost scholars of ancient Mesoamerican thought, began a series of essays about mythology in the Mesoamerican tradition, published in México Indígena. Although his articles were written for general readers, they were also intended to engage specialists. They span a divers subject matter: myths and names, eclipses, stars, left and right, Méxican origins, Aztec incantations, animals, and the incorporation of Christian elements into the living mythologies of Mexico. The title essay relates the Mesoamerican myth explaining why there is a rabbit o the moon’s face to a Buddhist image and suggests the importance of the profound mythical concepts presented by each image.
The eighteen essays in this volume are unified by their basis in Mesoamerican tradition and provide an accessible, entertaining look into a system of millennia-old legends and beliefs.
3 pages matching Tlaloc in this book
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LibraryThing ReviewUser Review - LibraryThing
Most people are familiar with the Japanese folklore of Tsuki no Usagi (especially fans of the show Sailor Moon, in which the protagonist's name is "Tsukino Usagi"). This mythic creature is also called the Jade Rabbit by the Chinese. However, you probably weren't aware (unless you've studied Aztec culture) that this creature goes by a different name south of the US border, and a bit further back in time: Tecciztecatl. Born the son of Tlaloc (sky water) and Chalchiuhtlicue (ground water). The story goes that his desire to be the sun god was less than his fear of the sun's fire, and as such, the true sun god, cast him into the moon while he was in the shape of a rabbit. Great stuff, huh? While this book will most likely be of interest to a student of Aztec mythology, it may also be of interest to students of comparative mythology. The author spends a great deal of time discussing parallels of mythology and folklore of nations separated by hemispheres, and makes some interesting conclusions drawn from that. Highly recommended for Mesoamerican studies.
Review: The Rabbit on the Face of the Moon: Mythology in the Mesoamerican TraditionUser Review - Goodreads
I read this as research for world-building in one of my books, so my enjoyment and rating of it is based on that premise. I can't speak to the *accuracy* of much of what Austin says, but I can say that it was inspiring and definitely interesting.
The Rabbit on the Face of the Moon
Three representations of the moon as a vessel containing a rabbit
Mixtec representation of the moon
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