When the gods fall in love

A love to remember

The Legend of Ixchel and Itzamná

Legend has it that in the days when the gods were still mortals there existed a love so deep and pure that its strength created the sun and the moon, the day and the nights and the stars that shine above. Would you like to hear the story?

 

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A long time ago, in a land far away, there lived a beautiful woman named Ixchel, whose beauty charmed many men across the lands, including our young hero Itzamná. The charming Itzamná began to dazzle the beautiful and coveted Ixchel and in both grew a mutual love whose destiny was written in the skies.

 

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One sunny day in paradise, a young stranger arrived into the village and was instantly smitten by the dazzling beauty of Ixchel and proclaimed his love for the young woman.

Without knowing the growing love between Ixchel and Itzamná, Ixchel’s sister Ixtab, convened a fight between the two young men that would fight to the death for the love of the young maiden. The day of the big fight, Itzamná was destined to become the triumphant winner but fate did not account for a cheating move from Itzamná’s opponent who at the hero’s first neglect wounded Itzamná in the back, causing him to drop dead. Seeing his beloved dead, Ixchel ran to him and commended her soul to Ixtab, taking her own life. Entrusted to take the soul of her sister, Ixtab became the goddess of suicide. Ixtab cursed the dirty tricks of the opponent and his name was never heard again.

 

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The two young lovers traveled to the heavens to celebrate their love for the rest of time. Itzamná was reborn as the sun god and his eternal love, Ixchel, became the goddess of the moon. To celebrate the eternal love for his beloved, Itzamná gave Ixchel the brightness of the night as a gift in the shape of the stars, maidens who die at a young age and travel to the heavens to shine for eternity.

 

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It is believed that in each new fire, the goddess Ixchel is reborn and allows her maiden stars to fall in love and from the fruit of that love, they give birth to a son. This is why Ixchel is also considered the goddess of childbirth and fertility.

Have you heard any other Mayan legends? Share them with us in the comments.