On Hallowed Ground
By Malcolm Callister
Friends, Fun and 4x4’s
With two friends, and two 4x4's we left the LaPenita RV Park and headed into the jungle. We wanted to see the 4000-year-old Altavista Petroglyphs. This was dry season, the best time to try and reach them. The petroglyphs are carved in rock, deep in the jungle of western Mexico. Tecoxquines people, using stone tools carve their prayer markings along a one-kilometer jungle trail.
The Tecoxquines people, inhabited this rejoin 2000 BC. They considered the natural calm of this jungle creek to be a place sanctified by their gods.
It is within this calm and peaceful creek that the Tecoxquines carved their symbols as prayers to their gods and performed human sacrifices.
The Tecoxquines people considered the upper pool additionally sacred.
Today’s Indigenous Descendants
The Huichol people are today's indigenous descendants of these Tecoxquines people. The Huichol people still make the trek to this traditional holly site to make supplications and leave an offering to their gods. Gods of Fertility, Fire, and Water. Today they also pray for obtaining work when they travel to the United States.
To reach the foot of the Altavista’s Petroglyph trail we had taken an old jungle trail. Our trail route followed stream beds and mountain ridges through dense jungle. This would likely have been a similar route taken by the petroglyph carvers, the Tecoxquines people, of 4000 years ago.
But they walked, we drove a Fun in the Sun rented 4X4 off-road vehicles.
We walked and climbed the last kilometer over green, lichen covered boulders that litter the old trail. The deep greens colors of thriving jungle vegetation formed a primeval tunnel. A tunnel that we had to climb and walk through. The evil of human sacrifice still haunts this place. The sacrificial rocks have been rearranged by earthquakes and rolled off into the jungle.
At the upper holy pool, Juan, our native guide told us, "It is likely that this pool was used as a place of ritual bathing for both priest and sacrificial victim, before the beheading sacrifice. The head was later offered to the gods. Today, my people come and meditate by this pool."
A Time to Meditate
As you stand on the smooth gray rocks and study the many Tecoxquines ancient carvings and recent Huichol hallowed offerings. Your senses become alive, the only smell, that musty, humid smell of being near water in a tropical jungle. The only sound is that of water cascading over the river-worn rocks of the creek. Not even the sound of birds singing can be heard in these woods. Just the rhythmic, hypnotic harmony of water over rocks. It is a feeling of complete peace.
Instinctively you know you are on Hallowed Ground. With this ride and hike we were given an insight into one of Mexico sacred places.
Fun in the Sun Rentals. Web site https://explorenayarit.com/business/fun-in-the-sun-rentals/
LaPenita RV Park Mexico www.lapenitarvpark.com