Principal beliefs concerning the origins of the universe:
* The driving creation beliefs of the Aztec religion begin with the dual god, Ometecuhtli/Omecihuatl. * This god created itself and it was both male and female, bad and good and, chaos and order. * The Aztecs believed that the contrasting aspects in the world would create balance and unite the origins of the world. * The god had four children and each of them represented the four directions of the world north, south, east and west. * The Aztecs believed that their empire was at the centre of the universe and therefore the directions mentioned in the creation story link to this. * The four gods created the water and then other gods who then created Cipactli a creature who was part crocodile and part fish. * This creature begun to eat all the creations made by the gods and were eaten. * The four direction gods attacked the Cipactli and stretched him into the four corners and the world was created when it was defeated. * It is believed that the head contained the 13 heavens, the body contained the world and tail held the 9 underworlds
Principal beliefs of the Aztecs:
* The Aztecs beliefs were based upon the theme of nature
* Aztecs believed that the gods needed to be nourished by humans and therefore sacrifice is an integral aspect of Aztec tradition * They believed that the world was divided into five eras, or suns. Each previous era had been governed by one deity and it had ended with the destruction of the elements or phenomena after which it had been named. They believed they were living in the fifth and last era. They believed this era was the era of movement as they believed an earthquake would end the world and time would come to an end. * The Aztecs believed in an underworld and a paradise where in which there were 13 heavens and 9 hells in which one could go after death * The sun fought against the darkness every night and rose to save mankind * The Aztecs saw the Earth as a giant flat circular disk (sometimes imagined to be an enormous alligator, whose scales were mountains), surrounded by water as far as the distant horizon, where it joined the sky
Identify and describe the role of the supernatural powers and deities in the religion: * The Aztec tradition is a polytheistic religion and is credited over 100 gods and creatures that possess supernatural powers. * They worshipped many gods and goddesses, each of whom ruled one or more human activities or aspects of nature. * Many of the gods were agricultural based as the Aztec period was heavily based on farming * Some of the deities were benevolent while others had terrifying characteristics and feared the people * The deities needed to be fed fresh blood in order for the chaos in the world to be avoided. If this was not done the Aztecs believed they would wither and die. * They believed that the processes that make life possible like the rain or solar energy and that the destiny of people depended on the will of these gods * Many of the Aztec deities belonged to a number of tribes, cultures and regions
Discuss the relationship between sacred spaces and the beliefs of the religion * Aztecs called their temples Teocalli and they were used to worship, pray and make offerings to the Gods. * Some spaces were built purely for specific celebrations of the Aztecs * Many of their sacred spaces were used to carry out the blood offering to the Gods. * The temples were a dwelling place on earth for a particular deity and hence why the sacrifices were chosen to be done within this space * The Aztecs believed that once an area is used as a sacred space it is incredibly important and essential that it remains this way * The size of the space which was used for worship was not relevant as long as it was sacred and remained separate and was distinct to the...