Actun Tunichil Muknal, Maya Branding

Foundation of Mayan society and philosophy was their spiritual way of life. They believed the underworld is holy and that’s where performance of many important and sacred ceremonies occurred many years ago. Today, we are able to see numerous ancient offerings Mayan’s left behind. These include artifacts, pottery, carvings, skeletons of sacrificial victims, cathedral-like halls and much more.

I have recently visited Actun Tunichil Muknal’s “Cave of the Stone Sepulcher” – described as one of the most remarkable caves in the Maya Lowland, located in the beautiful Belizean Rainforest. It is believed Mayan’s first entered the cave during the early classic period (300­­­­­­–600AD). The ATM Cave is a wet cave ­­­you enter by swimming at first, then walk, climb or scramble over rocks and stones, through ankle-to-neck high water, before reaching the dry part of the cave. Dry chamber is a maze you must scramble in order to reach the so-called cathedral-like main hall, filled with artifacts, astonishing bloodletting altars and sacrificial human remains. These precious items are over a thousand years old, and haven’t been touched or removed. It’s somewhat a “living museum.”

One of the things that amazed me most and a reason I wanted to share this story with you are pictures enclosed. Take a look at the very first two photos – these were Mayan logos. Branding seems to have existed even 300-­600AD. Today we are faced with about 1500 brands on a daily basis and it’s impressive to know how people, even so long ago, tried to distinguish “their products.” If you ever visit Belize, this adventure is a must. Any similar stories to share?

Author: Marina Kaljaj


One response to “Actun Tunichil Muknal, Maya Branding

  1. Pingback: Actun Tunichil Muknal and Mayan Branding | cayoscoop

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