The Aztec myth of the unlikeliest sun god – Kay Almere Read


Nanahuatl, weakest of the Aztec gods,
sickly and covered in pimples, had been chosen to form a new world. There had already been four worlds, each
set in motion by its own “Lord Sun,” and each, in turn, destroyed: the first by jaguars, the next by winds, the next by rains of fire,
and the fourth by floods. To establish the Fifth Sun, Lord Quetzalcoatl,
the “Feathered Serpent,” had gone to the underworld and
returned with the bones of earlier people, nourishing them with his own
blood to create new life. But for them to have a world to live in, another god had to leap into the
great bonfire and become the fifth sun. The Lord of Sustenance and the Lord of
Fire had chosen Nanahuatl for this task, while the Lord of Rain and
the Lord of the Four Quarters had picked their own offering:
the proud, rich Tecciztecatl. First, the chosen ones had to complete a
four-day fasting and bloodletting ritual. Nanahuatl had nothing but cactus thorns
with which to bleed himself, and fir branches to paint
with his red offering, but he resolved to try his best. Meanwhile, Tecciztecatl flaunted
his riches, using magnificent jade spines and branches
adorned with iridescent quetzal feathers for his own blood offering. When four days had passed,
the fire was roaring high. Four times proud Tecciztecatl
approached the flames, and four times he pulled back in fear. Humble Nanahuatl stepped forward. The other gods painted him chalky
white and glued feathers to him. Without hesitation, he threw himself
into the flames. A fire-blackened eagle
swooped over the fire, grabbed Nanahuatl and carried
him into the sky. There, Lord and Lady Sustenance
bathed him, sat him on a feathered throne, and
wrapped a red band around his head. Inspired by Nanahuatl, Tecciztecatl threw himself into what
was left of the fire: cooled ashes. A jaguar jumped over the fire pit, but
couldn’t carry Tecciztecatl into the sky. When Tecciztecatl reached the horizon, a
band of goddesses dressed him in rags. Still, he shined just as brightly
as Nanahuatl. But since he had shown far less bravery
and much more pride, one of the gods picked up a rabbit
and tossed it in his face, dimming his light. But the fifth world still wasn’t
truly established. Nanahuatl, Lord Sun,
shined for four days straight without moving through the sky like
all the previous suns had moved. Back in their home, Teotihuacan,
the gods began to worry. They sent Obsidian Hawk up
to ask what was wrong. Nanahuatl replied that just as he had
sacrificed himself to become Lord Sun, he now needed the nourishing
blood of the other gods in order to move through the sky. Enraged at this suggestion, Lord Dawn
stepped up and shot an arrow at Lord Sun. Lord Sun shot back, and his quetzal-feathered arrows
struck Lord Dawn in the face, turning him to frost. Before anyone else could act rashly, the other gods turned to each
other to discuss what to do. Of course, no one wanted to
sacrifice themselves, but nor did anyone want to
act like Lord Dawn. Besides, Nanahuatl had held up his end of
the bargain to nourish the earth— how could they refuse to
nourish him in return? They remembered how even
the wimpy Tecciztecatl had eventually managed to
emulate Nanahuatl’s bravery. At long last, five other gods agreed
to sacrifice themselves. One by one, Lord Death stabbed them
in the heart with an obsidian knife, offering their bodies to
their new Lord Sun. As the last god made the sacrifice, Lord Quetzalcoatl blew the embers
of the great fire back to life, and the sun began to move
through the sky at last, ushering in the fifth age. Thanks to a pimply weakling whose
fortitude inspired all the other gods, the sun moves along its daily path, the rabbit-faced moon
following in its wake.

100 comments

  1. The concept of a god having to sacrifice himself in fire to create a new sun and a new age after the end of the previous age was used in Dark Souls, wasn't it?

  2. monotheism:
    Why is raining?
    Because god wants.

    politheism:
    Why is raining?
    Because a long time ago…

    MONOTHEISM IS BORING

  3. Well, this was quite a complicated tale to follow. These gods come up with the weirdest things.

  4. 2:14
    Oh hey that’s pretty cool! Hearing that made me do a quick internet search and look into it a bit more, but it was pretty neat learning China (and other East Asian countries influenced by China) weren’t the only ones with myths about rabbits in the moon.

  5. Wow..the moon god of Aztec myth is also related to rabbit?! In my country(Korea), there are legends that rabbits are living on moon. What a coincidence!

  6. But i don't understand how could they possibly make up stories like that about the universe and actually believe it without any evidence backing it up ?

  7. Please do the Hindu mythology of Samudra manthan (समुद्रमंथन) from the Bhagavad purana and Vishnu purana

  8. World 4 and Sun 4: Exists
    Tezcatlipoca: I'm going to end this world's career.
    *Makes the sun cry of blood

  9. Aztec 1:how do you think the sun is dimmer than the moon?
    Aztec 2:the gods must have thrown a rabbit at it

  10. These are so interesting but like who came up with that like what the heck. He had a rabbit thrown at him to dim him. Like what the heck

  11. And thats why, aztecs made so much human and blood sacrifices. To retrieve their blood offered by the gods to make the sun move again.

  12. Typical when rich and powerful always sacrifice the weak for their own benefit but when it is needed from them then they show ultimate cowardace.

  13. Tecciztecatl was so mad that a rabbit was thrown in his face that he went red, right?

    because Blood Moons

  14. Soo… No ones gonna mention how the animation was done in thorned pieces of cartons/Pappschachtel? It's mesmerizing actually.

  15. And let just get this out for a sec, the flood that destroyed the 4th world is made entirely out of blood

  16. Shoot an arrow at lord sun, shoot a feathered arrow back, throwing a rabbit at someone’s face, pimple god, Jaguars, Y’know just Aztec things.

  17. DAMN why were the Aztec so obsessed with blood rituals?
    no surprise other tribes hated them and helped the europeans, the Aztec killed many just for the fun of their rituals.

  18. Umm..the animation is so so so beautiful?? And it matches the content of the video so much it creates an eerie and hunting atmoshere

  19. No tan impresionantes como las Deidades Guerraras de las mitologias escandinavas, Pero igual no carente de belleza y cierta poesia.

  20. Water, Jaguar, Fire, Air
    Long ago, the four nations lived together in harmony. Then, everything changed when the fire nation attacked. Only the god of pimples, master of all four elements, could stop them, but when the world needed him most, he vanished.

  21. QUETZALCOATL
     
    Main God of Aztec Mythology, Creator of man and the fifth sun.

    Quetzalcoatl is the main mythological god of Mexico.
    Just as the Greeks have Zeus, the Nordics to Odin, the Egyptians have Amon-Ra.
    We Mexicans have Quetzalcoalt.
    His legend is still alive in the Mexican town, it is common to find in Mexico monuments, statues, paintings, figures, even Quetzalcoalt tattoos.

  22. For a more hilarious version try Overly Sarcastic Productions': https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dfupAlon_8k

  23. In Chinese myth, a man call 后羿 shoot the sun because the sun don't want to moving.

    Also, Chinese myth also believe that there's got a rabbit on the moon.

    Coincidence? Interesting 🤔

  24. dude , have you seen the Aztec art? coulda use all in animation it’s an animation itself , woah still quite accurate;)

  25. For Gods those seem to be fairly limited and with a lot of issues it seams like all gods were doing some serious drugs

  26. The Sun God is Huitzilopochtli, the reason it moves through the sky is because the Moon tries to eat it. And blood is the only thing that gives it strength. Huitzilopochtli is also a god of war, and the jaguar god.

  27. Found earlier this year, 2019. The tomb of Quetzalcoatl. I'm John Fann, unearthedassets1, owner of weunearthassets4you. Pics are on my Instagram page.

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