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Maya Cosmology Workshop

Maya cosmology is the core cultural knowledge that brings a scientific understanding of the structure of the universe. This course is designed to train participants to become Maya cosmologists, giving them a complete understanding of Maya cosmology, Maya cultures ancient and modern and giving them the tools to be able  to dominate all the arts that indigenous Maya priests practice today, which includes calendar day keeping and interpretation. 

How to change the world: Transcriptions of interviews from the documentary "The seed of a new world"

The following is a trascription from interviews that will be on the documentary "THE SEED OF A NEW WORLD, THE CANDELARIA MADIDI ECOLOGICO COMUNITY". As I did the translation from spanish, I felt it was very unique written material and that it should be avaiable on the internet. That's the reason for this post. I hope you read it and it interests you.

So I'm going to tell you a story, to you, you three, the most important thing is that you three hear it, not so much that the camera records it, it's also important for the camera to record it, but the most important thing is that you connect with me so the story can be told, if you don't connect, then it's more difficult to tell the story.

What is most important is the inner work, to work towards the inside, not towards the outside. But at the same time we have certain degree of responsibility as humans to work towards the outside also.

There are many people of the "new age" that uses this information but is not consistent enough with what they say; they don't do what they say, because they keep living in the system.
They keep consuming chemicals, they continue polluting the planet, they use cars that consume gasoline, and that hurts the earth. Every time you use gasoline, that you use transportation, you hurt the earth, and that's what needs to be changed.

In the city, there is not much food, not much life, there's social and political disorder, there's a lot of crime. Before there wasn't so much, today it begins to exist. All of that you begin to think and ask yourself: in what world am I? What world do I want for this country? What world do I want for my children? What world can I have for my family? So you begin to say, why can' I create a new one, a new model of community, to prove, --hey we've achieved it! -- So that has been the idea

The idea is a dream. If you follow your dreams and you believe faithfully then things begin to happen little by little. Because sometimes in the big cities you are imposed with many fears, like "this dream is too utopian, you're not going to be able to achieve it, how does it occur to you to live in a community" I don't know, my parents tell me: Community life doesn't exist. You have to have your home, your partner, your dog, you plant a tree, you write a book and you have your life made. 

When we created the community we were three, two women and I. The community is composed of more women than men. It's interesting, because women seem to be more interested in conservation than men

The people that are part of the community that now live in Ixiamas are 30 to 35 people. Now we have Julian that has the same vision, and Cyborg, who has the same vision

This place, from the Andes, from Titicaca lake, to this place that is precisely the Gateway of Madidi, to the most virgin part that remains in this part of the amazon, the last place that remains where there is no road that cuts between the flood land savannahs here to the north and the high Andean peaks, the glaciers, there is no humans. It is the last remaining place where this connection remains that has not been interrupted by humans

This is a very special place, there are plants here that still have no name, don't have a discoverer. We have worked here with a biologist and we have discovered that here exists the greatest diversity of trees, of birds, and jaguars. 

The essence of the community is that: this area needs to be kept this way

We speak for the trees, if you see this tree here, for the community member; it has a value, of say 2000 bolivianos. The businessman will add his value, say 6000 bolivianos, it's tempting and easy, to say, where there's a greater quantity of trees, there's a greater quantity of resources. But what is happening in Ixiamas is that, it's being deforested. 

In the years we have been here making studies there was a greater quantity of birds, we have been coming every year and there's less, every time less, what does that mean, that is really affecting the environment

I wish that my daughter can still see this place like this, and the species that exist, that kids form other countries don't get to see this in a documentary as "this existed in the past" but rather "it still exists"  

Since I was a child I became involved in social issues that had to do with children in situations of vulnerability with their families. Since then I began to have dreams, that one day I could create an adoption center.

In one of those casual moments I met Julián, who began to tell me about the Candelaria project, of what the Ecovillage is about. I realized that we had the same philosophical principles, ideas and vision in life. A life in harmony with nature, with ourselves, a life with true contact with nature. From this, to create an environment that will facilitate people living in community, in a true community where everyone helps each other. We are all one, the community is a whole. So I shared that idea with Julian. Julian said, hey, why don't you come with us on this expedition we are making. Upa chalupa

The design we are making here is a design, we believe that many people can live here, everyone with food, with all the types of food that exist, that can be grown, with everything a society needs, theater, school, workshops where everything is produced, all the tools, so that nothing needs to be bought from the outside. Initially we will need to bring things, but the idea is that everything that is used is produced here  

We have everything here, clay to make pots, metals, there is gold, there are stones. There is all the biogenetics you need, all the medicines, all the substances you can imagine.

For example these bunas they are the best (remedy) if you have arthritis.–What are bunas?- They are giant ants that are poisonous. These poisons alleviate pain; they improve the lives of those who have arthritis.  

We collect leaves, snakes, poisons, all kinds of poisons, and we keep that for those who need it. For example when we kill jochi (paca, agouti) we keep the gull, so in case you are bit by a snake, you take a spoon of that and that neutralizes the poison. There's another plant we can collect, we chew it and we apply it to a wound, that was the best. We also have the sting ray that helps to improve the lives off all miners, when they work in mines

The area is very big. It ranges from the Ñavijaja river, all the headwaters of the El tigre community, and all the east bank of the Madidi river, it's 32,000 hectares

There were many people that claimed the area, they were going to split it to all those who wanted a piece. The proposal was that I told them that an area should be declared as intangible, where logging can't be done and where large scale settlements can't be made. 

I named it Candelaria Madidi Ecologico Community. We made a big meeting, we socialized the importance that this area has, many organizations were present, and they accepted.

Why do we want to promote tourism for later?, because we are people that do not have resources to protect the area, the government is not going to give us resources either. We can't say "we are going to protect this area" if we don't have resources, logistics, people that want to volunteer. That's when the idea is born of doing tourism so this project can be sustainable.

We will build a settlement no bigger than 15 hectares to be able to receive the visitors that are going to come and they can get to know this place.

More than building a tourism Ecovillage, which is the initial part of the Project, and which we are presenting, there will be cabins, there will be crops, workshops, all kind of recreational activities, trails on the tree canopy, boats to travel on the river, where the attraction is the village, not only the forest and the animals, but to participate in an Ecovillage, in a system of life. This is the ecotourism project but beyond that there is another big project which is the initiatory center, a spiritual center for a new humanity, a center for investigations I call it too.

There's a prophecy, called the prophecy of Tiwanaku, that speaks of two initiatory centers, two schools for a new era. Two great initiatory centers, more than universities,   it's a spiritual initiation, a magical initiation. One has to be on Titicaca Lake and the other one here.  I was hoping someone was doing this already, but no, there is no one.

One I arrived here I realized that the rainforest has a lot to give, lots of teaching. I don't believe in teachers that can teach you, nor do I believe in religions. I believe the teacher is here, that the plant can teach you a lot, the river has a lot of wisdom, everything that you touch, the earth, the sky, everything in this place has a lot of wisdom, but one has to be attentive to be able to hear it and make the best of it.  

In this case we have the mission of creating a system, because I could live here alone with my family and I enlighten myself and that's it, I'm gone, but I didn't come to do that, I know I came to make the world get better. That's the way I want to do it, creating this system of life.

The five pillars are first, the food system, the education, health, study and work. With these five pillars we want to build the community. We want nothing missing, that everyone has education, has water, has food. All of that is going to help in making a community work.

Now why do indigenous communities need to be improved?

When I used to live with the Chimanes and Mosetenes, it was very different. We only had to grow food, you didn't need to worry about anything because nature gives you everything, there's no need to work, only that there's no money on that side. Because they lived off the fish, off the fruits, off life itself, off the rainforest, they didn't even need to bring crafts to the nearby places, they were happy like that.

There was a time when the wood loggers came, they made chimanes become addicts. They would bring them alcohol, cigarettes.

They would sell us, to say, American clothing, they would sell it for 5 salaries. A good pair of shoes we would have to pay for five months, one year, that's the way we had to pay. That's when nature and human beings began to be destroyed.

That has allowed that all the beings that I have met, Chimanes and Mosetenes, all of them have suffered, because they are alcoholics.

We have all split from one family, and each one created their lives. Some further north, others further south. To the east, to Beni have gone some, others have gone to Peru. All of that has happened. That's why I would like to change.

If we want to create people that are more human, we need to have more human contexts, surroundings that are more human, that will facilitate this process. If at the end no one wants to adopt these children, then the children can feel part of a community, and they can create there their own home, their families, they can be part of the community we are creating.  

So this place is going to be more free, it's not going to be such an institutionalized place, where the children have to obey certain rules, where they all have to dress the same way as it happens in many places, that in the end makes the children want to escape instead of wanting to include themselves in the place where they are.

I didn't want to have a child in this world, I preferred not to have one, because… he is only going to suffer… now they exploit them, they suffer , they abuse them, it's all wrong. When we arrive to Ixiamas we will see many native children being exploited, many sons that are paid poorly, that's the way it is here. It's not right, it's not fair.

When I go defend the children, I tell (to the offenders) I will bewitch you. So the only thing I do is a psychology to help them. So that helps sometimes. Since I'm an authority they say "Cyborg must be a sorcerer" so, in past times, my ancestors would say, "we have to bewitch them", so that's what they are afraid of. Sometimes laws don't work here, only money works for those who have it.

You have to educate people in a different way, you have to achieve raising a child with a totally different program, with a completely different educational system, where his curiosity is not being killed, his creativity is not being killed, and where the earth is not being killed.

It is very difficult for people to understand this, because all of us are completely subdued, hypnotized by this system, and that's on purpose. Maybe in these places, far from civilization it is easier to disconnect, but since we were children, education itself, how our parents treated us, it segmented our consciousness, it distorts what is natural, when we are overprotected, when we are taught macho ideologies, so many things that is psychologically programed from childhood, to close our minds, to have our energies blocked, so we don't believe in anything, so we are no longer curious. A child needs to explore, to fall down and pick himself up, when a child is overprotected, they don't allow him to fall, if he falls they pick him up. If they take away his curiosity, he begins believing only in what they tell him. "that's dangerous" and that's it, he believes that and never again touches it. But what if that is not dangerous "oh look, it's not, they are lying, it's not dangerous I can touch it, it does nothing" So it's a very complex control system, that also has a chemical part, for example, in vaccines they inject us heavy metals, in medicine

Children nowadays don't learn, because they give them a prototype of studies, math, chemistry, social sciences, that's from the roman era. All of those teachings come from that era

Any educational system is based on a cosmology, which is the understanding of how the universe Works. That cosmology, how it should be, it should integrate the spiritual, scientific and philosophic part. Modern science separates cosmology; there is religious cosmology, philosophical cosmology and physical cosmology, those who study the cosmos. But whoever advances in that study will discover that those three things gather, you can't separate them. And that knowledge exists, for example I teach Maya cosmology. Andean cosmology also has a great knowledge. 

Since everything grows, everything improves, it's necessary that these indigenous cosmologies change, that they regenerate, that they agree with each other and for them to include the rest of the knowledge there is from other cultures, everything needs to gather again. That's the purpose of the Muxuq Nina Project, a philosophical, spiritual, and cosmological investigation of how the universe works 

because at the end this is the real world, this is what has been created for us. The capital system is an invention of few men, but this was created for the whole of mankind and it wasn't created by few men, it was created by ancestral energies.

Everyone will have their home, each one of the 30 people, 70 families that are inscribed will have their homes 

We are all going to build everyone's home because we all have to achieve everyone's dream

The (main) cabin is planned to be built around the tree, and the tree will be in the center of the cabin. It's like… from the middle of the house a tree comes out, but the tree will not be hurt

So much large size construction is not necessary. In a small hut you can have the same type of great insight and enlightenment, you don't need a pyramid.

I don't know how, but a round and spiral house. I imagine it like that, with everything being natural and the materials being taken from the same place, from nature, maybe with bamboo sticks, with the hey roof that is used here. I would like to have hanging beds, so you can swing when you sleep. –like a hammock- sure, like a hammock or a bed that hangs only, so you are in touch

The community doesn't have a limit, where say we're going to divide in
pieces the land, for people that want to feel "this piece is mine". This is everyone's

If you like the environment and nature, you can come

you can see the reality that exists here, it is different, it's integrated into nature

The idea of being in a community is to put your life in the community, I believe it that way, I believe I will come to live here until I grow old

May Chileans come, may Japanese come, may Germans come, may French come, may them come from Austria, may they come from the United States, and the possibility that extraterrestrials come, together we can work to build this world

If we didn't organize, if we didn't create this community, this area would be already settled. There would be people living here and all the flora and fauna would be like in the other communities, where all they do is to exploit the forest's resources, cutting trees.

We are in the process of presenting this project, of tourism Ecovillage, at the same time we are presenting other type of projects, one for housing and one for land titling. It is very important that this happens soon, because we have discovered that in the area they are hunting, they could be illegally logging inside our area. I wish this documentary; this video serves as a call to people, to those that are interested in conservation and especially of the most critical and possibly most biodiverse place on earth, that they can help to preserve this place, supporting the Candelaria Madidi Community

Now maybe you see it as only a story, as an idea, as an intention. But maybe in a few years here you will be seeing a big town, under the trees, a great center, a great tribe, but first we must live here to achieve that. That's why this project is small, the way it's beginning. I call it organic, because it's like a plant that grows from small to large. You can't transplant a large tree like this one. This can seem small, but we really are talking about something very big and you, you are all part of this, it's not mine, it's yours .

Upcoming documentary: The seed of a new world, The Candelaria Madidi Ecológico Comunity


Journey to the heart of the Lacandon Jungle

Journey to the heart of the Lacandon Jungle

Duration: 6 days 5 nights
Activities: Visit to archeological sites of Lacanja & Bonampak • Swimming in waterfalls • Interaction with native Lacandon People • White clay spa • Maya cosmology workshop • Native ceremony • Visit to native Elder sage• Wildlife observation• Interaction with rainforest plants • Canoeing • Swimming in crystal clear lagoon • Landscape photography
Visited ecosystems: Tropical lowland Rainforest
Cultural Interaction with: Maya Lacandon
Type of accommodation: Rustic or deluxe cabins (you may choose)  3 nights & Camping (2 nights)
Group size: 2-9
Departure from: Palenque, Chiapas


The northern most remnant of the south and Central American tropical rainforest biomass is the Montes Azules (Blue Mountains) biosphere reserve, otherwise called the Lacandon Jungle, in the Mexican state of Chiapas.

Compared to rainforest reserves in famous Costa Rica, this reservoir is far larger (680,000 hectares) and so allows the existence of all the wildlife species that exist in this type of habitat, some of which require large areas to exist (jaguars require 10,000 hectares each).

But having the possibility to see jaguars and quetzals is not the only fact of what makes this area unique. The forest is spilled with infinite ladders of waterfalls, Caribbean-blue freshwater lakes with white-sand bottoms, and endless unexplored ancient Maya archeological sites. Earth has never concentrated so much beauty, natural and cultural richness in one place.


This journey takes you to the heart of the Lacandon rainforest, far from the touristy places, and to the remote corners where wildlife encounters become possible. Unexplored and unexcavated ruins, vivid colored maya murals, infinite waterfall ladders and undiscovered Caribbean-blue freshwater lagoons with pyramids in the middle, are just some of the natural and cultural marvels that people are missing out on.

Complimentary to an insuperable natural experience, is the deep cultural and therapeutical experience this journey has to offer. We hike, eat and sleep in the Lacandon jungle accompanied by native Lacandon Maya. Our tour leader Julián Katari is the perfect intercultural translator that allows a deep interaction and understanding with the local Maya people, their cosmology, lifestyle and nature.

We will have time to carry out ceremonies, do therapeutical workshops based on maya cosmology and do spa treatments in the virginity of the forest. The journey is short, complete, affordable and balanced, spending twon nights camping in the forest and the other three nights sleeping in very comfortable cabins in the Lacandon village. It is suitable for any age and type of person


Day 1. Meeting at Palenque City. Transport to Lacanjá community. Short hike to waterfalls, rest.

Day 2. Hike through the forest to Bonampak archeological site and murals. Visit to Maya elder sage and ceremony. Return to village. Workshops in the evening.

Day 3. Hike to Lacanjá Lagoon. Stop at Lacanjá unexcavated archeological site. We cross the lagoon on a Canoe to a pyramid island in the middle where we set up camp.

Day 4. We spend all day swimming, exploring and enjoying the lagoon. Applying white clay, and doing  Maya cosmology workshops.

Day 5. Hike back to Lacanja village. Wildlife observation and interaction with plants.

DÍA 6. Interaction with Maya family. Return to Palenque.

  •  Backpack
  • Camping tent (optional)
  • Camping Matress (optional)
  • Sleeping Bag
  • Canteen
  • Personal first aid kit (optional)
  • Comfortable hiking shoes
  • Personal Hygene equipment (toilet paper, soap, etc)
  • Rain coat
  • Swimming gear

  • Ground transportation
  • Intercultural tour leader
  • Accommodation in rustic cabins or more luxurious cabins
  • Native Lacandon guides
  • Camping equipment
  • Complete high quality meals, drinks and snacks
  • Entrances to archeological zones and natural reserves
  • Ceremony and visit with Maya Elder
  • Therapies and materials for workshop

  • Alcoholic beverages
  • Tips


Per person, in US dollars, based on a 2 person group. Price reduces 10% for 4+ persons

  • shared bathroom
  • $ 432
  • per day  $72

  • private bathroom
  •  $ 504
  • per day  $84


This trip can be adapted according to the necessity or interest of the group. It can be reduced or increased in length, camping in the lagoon can be taken out so all hikes return to the comfortable cabins, or more serious trekking across the reserve can be made, with as many days of length as desired. More remote places can be visited, etc.

Relevant to this journey: One of Julian's experiences was to live for two years in the Lacandon Jungle, where he built a house with forest materials, and carried out a native Lacandon lifestyle. This experience allows him to speak first handedly when he talks about Lacandon lifestyle and spirituality, and to feel at home when he guides people into the rainforest and helps translate between visitors and Native Lacandon Maya.