72 pages 2 hours read


Popol Vuh

Nonfiction | Scripture | Adult | Published in 1554

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Creation and Destruction

Since the beginning of the earth’s creation in the Popol Vuh, there has been destruction. The duality of these forces is necessary to strike a balance in the newly-formed world. After the landscape of the earth has been framed and shaped, the animals and first people of the world are both created and destroyed in order for the gods to grow closer to the vision of what they hope to achieve in the world. When the animals fail to be capable of speech necessary for adequate worship, the creator deities tell them, “You shall be replaced because you were not successful (65). Just as the animals are created to tend to the earth, their statuses are destroyed to make room for the creation of people.

The subsequent attempts at creating people also depict an increasing tension between creation and destruction. As the gods grow closer to creating fit people to worship them, their destruction of them becomes more dramatic and brutal. When the first mud person is made, they realize that while the mud person is capable of speech, they do not possess any knowledge. Thus, the Framer and the Shaper “undid it” and “toppled what they had framed, what they had shaped” (67).