A Sacrifice Preserved

When you hear about Mummies, the automated response that most people would give is “Oh! Egypt?” Well, not that they are wrong, but most of them come from their limited knowledge of King Tut or Cleopatra. That, you’ll have to thank Hollywood for their poor representation in "The Return of the Mummy" saga and other remakes of the franchise.

However, Egyptians were clearly not the only civilisation who practiced the art of mummification, also known as embalming. Several different types of Mummies are found almost worldwide like Italy with their catacombs in Rome and Sicily. All these embalming are man-made. Naturally preserved mummies are rare and usually left in their original environment so as to prevent any external damage. These natural mummification is from the Inca tribe.

Inca Tribe

All the way from the home of Machu Picchu, Peru, are the Inca Tribe, whose civilisation flourished from 1400-1533 CE. They believe in the spirits that live within nature, and they give their highest worship to the highest of them all, the Mountain spirits. The Incans believe that the Mountains were the ones in control of their land and the weather, hence in order to appease the spirits, they engage in a ritual which consist of trekking up the high mountains with their sacrifice; children. They were chosen by the emperor in order to bring appeasement to the gods, where it may be considered as an honourable moment.  the child had to walk up the mountain wrapped in textiles and also fattened up with elite food before getting brutally killed as sacrifice. Most of them are between the ages 4 and 14 according to Scientists. Alongside them were tiny gold and silver llama structures and also dolls to keep them company in their 'heaven' (the mountains).

I'm not all for child sacrifices, but one reason is because, unlike adults, they are thought to be pure for the gods. Well I think the reason is that children at that age are easily convinced and submit to authority. I mean, which adult would willingly sacrifice themselves without an struggle.

Yes I suppose that some where in the rural parts of this world that we live, this gruesome practice still exists. But could you imagine though, if child sacrifices are still practiced in modern world? How would people react? Would it be revered? Would the respect for their religion be present as opposed to human rights activism? I'm guessing probably the latter.

All in all, the Inca Tribe did give us something to ponder about. The need for sacrifice to appease higher beings as a valid reason, isn't that what our modern world is facing? With the current issue of bringing peace to a world with no borders. Isn't that what the Inca tribes did? Sacrificial of the pure for the greater good. How strange that we see a reflection of history in our modern times.