a reply to: Mianeye
Yes you are right, I tend to equate it with the classical western view of empire such as the Roman model were the majority of city's were colony's of
rome founded after it and the rest were conquered but then Romanized, you know all road's lead to Rome that sort of thing.
Though maybe there calander is not fully understood the Mayan's were definitely among the greatest astronomers of the ancient world as well and
though they never used or perhaps knew the arch there architecture remains beautiful and powerful even today, they are a fantastic subject to study
and I can certainly understant your fascination with them but like other meso-american cultures I am put off by there human sacrifice's, sadly
something most ancient human cultures around the world and indeed not just the America's indulged in, even the Roman's had some human sacrifice though
they mostly frowned on the practice and indeed wrote scathingly of lesser civilization's that performed it.
(example of that is how the portrayed the Druid's of the Gealic people's, wise men of learning but savage whom indulged in mass human sacrifice and
of course the Celt's whom may also still have practiced head hunting as well but they left out the fact that Woman in the Gaul/Celt culture had equal
right's and standing to the men and the fact the Celt's actually DID have road's as discovered at several archeaological sites in western europe
though unlike the more durable roman road's they when paved were made of oak or other wood).
In fact in many way's the Mayan's were more sophisticated than most pre-Roman period European culture's and despite there obvious religiously
motivated wars to capture men for sacrifice (like the later Aztec's) they may even have been less savage, I suspect that other than the bloody step's
of there pyramid's that there city's were once very beautiful to behold.
Just going off on a tangent for a moment as this has brought it to mind, not related at all but still just a thought.
Even in Buddhism sacrifice has a place but not sacrifice of other's but of the self.
There was a village (I saw this on a documentary some time ago on the TV) in the lower Himalaya's on the Chinese side and they had a legend about a
Buddhist monk whom had come among them at a time of great suffering, the village was suffering a great famine and many disasters so the monk had
compassion on them and retreated to a cave, he instructed the people to seal him in and there he meditated taking on there karma (suffering) upon
himself and sheltering them with his GOOD Karma and the village was saved.
In the mid twentieth century the monk was found in his tomb still in a cross legged kneeling praying position holding his prayer bead's were he had
died like that many century's ago and the Chinese official's removed his body and were going to send it off to a distant university for research but
when they removed it the valley started to suffer natural disasters almost immediately, the river broke it's bank's and the village pleaded with the
official's to return his body which they then did and his tomb was resealed as life went back to normal for the people of that valley.
Not the same thing but a kind of sacrifice of the self for the sake of other's is probably more enlightened than the way that the Mayan and other
people did it but the fact that so many have believed in sacrifice over the ages is almost as if the suffering of the sacrifice was used to appease
something that needed the negativity to feed on.
Just a thought.