An elaborate crypt at least 2,500 years old was found in the Mexican state of Chiapas. The remains are believed to be an early ruler of the Zoque people.
The Zoque are generally thought to be descended from early emigrants from the Olmec culture. The tomb was near the top of a three-story pyramid at the site of Chiapa de Corzo, about 60 miles southeast of the Olmec coastal city of La Venta on the Gulf of Mexico.
“For so long, the Olmec people have been considered the ‘Mother Culture’ where everything started in Mesoamerica,” said archaeologist Carl Wendt of Cal State Fullerton, who was not involved in the research. “This find is showing that complexity is not necessarily confined to the Olmec area.”
The multi-layered universe of the Mesoamerian culture has been taught and appears in books as if it has been proven. Jesper Nielsen’s article Dante’s heritage: questioning the multi-layered model of the Mesoamerican universe questions this notion.
It appears the pre-conquest model of the universe was of the cardinal directions, the center, the upper world and Underworld thus making for a three tiered universe. The different levels were divided into different regions and on each of the levels these different regions correspond to the four cardinal directions.
The number nine is prominent. It is represented by a god in the center and two gods at each of the four cardinal directions. These added up equal nine.
After the conquest, it appears there was a mixture of the cosmological ideas from Dante’s The Divine Comedy brought by the Franciscan friars with the ideas of the native Indian’s resulting in a skewed view of their universe which is how it is taught now and not seriously questioned.
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