<span id="hs_cos_wrapper_name" class="hs_cos_wrapper hs_cos_wrapper_meta_field hs_cos_wrapper_type_text" style="" data-hs-cos-general-type="meta_field" data-hs-cos-type="text" >Maya Myth: The Owl, Wise Counsellor</span>

Maya Myth: The Owl, Wise Counsellor

04 may 2019
2 min. de lectura
One good day, the birds in the land of the Mayab prepared a sumptuous banquet in honor of their king, Tunkuluchú, the peacock. All the birds were invited to the fiesta, and they named a special committee to escort Tunkuluchú, the owl.


The owl detested these banquets; however, the members of the committee, fearing the rage of the king, convinced the owl that, as the wise advisor of the court, he was obligated to preside over the banquet. The king had reserved a place at his side for the wise owl, and as soon as the owl arrived, the festivities began: the waiters served the food served in fresh green leaves, and in front of each anxious guest, they placed flower petals, which simulated vases full of dew.


A short time later, all the guests, with the exception of the owl, were celebrating and enjoying themselves. The owl, unable to stand the shouting and behavior of all the rest, tried to slip away, and was seen by the king, who ordered him to return. The owl obeyed the royal command, but – perched on a high branch – he turned his back on all the noisy and happy guests.


The peacock, thinking that the snub was directed at him, resolved to use his authority to force the owl to take part in the festivity, and immediately ordered him to dance with the others and to unite his voice to the raucous chorus of the others. The owl felt humiliated with the cruel taunts that the other birds made after the celebration. Neither the natural need to find food, nor the pleas of his friends, caused him to leave his den.


Motivated by the wish to expose his king to ridicule, as the king had done to him, the wise owl consulted the sacred book of the Maya, where he learned how the peacock had once tricked the ingenuous Puhuy, the woodland turkey, when he stole his magnificent plumage for himself. So, the owl invited all the birds of the forest of the Mayab to a grand assembly, and, upon addressing the guests, he realized that he could not read one word. Then, with a great shout of despair, the parchment fell to the floor.


The days he spent in the interior of his dwelling caused his eyes to become accustomed to the dark. Now the bright light of the morning blinded him. From that moment on, he was rarely seen during the daytime. His longing for vengeance against the king was punished by the gods.


First published in Yucatán Today magazine in May 2010.


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