San Juan Chamula

San Juan Chamula is bar far one of the most interesting places we have visited in mexico. Virtually the entire population is indigenous and speak their own language. The towns main industries are agriculture and wool textiles. In a way it is completely separated from the rest of Mexico, it has its own police force and no outside police or military are allowed, they even still have the death penalty for serious crimes although the crime rate is incredibly low.

It is difficult to take pictures here as the population do not like being photographed and if caught trying to take a picture of a religious ceremony you can be kicked out of town.

We came here to learn about the unique traditions and beliefs of the town which are fascinating. The people practice their own blend of ancient beliefs mixed with bits of the catholic religion as makes sense to them. The catholic priests have long been removed from the town and a visit to the church is a must. Inside you will see the floor covered with pine needles and people sitting and preying surrounded by many lit candles. You may even see a shaman sacrificing a chicken and performing a ritual for a individual.

The town has elected spiritual leaders who serve one year in the role and look after a saint in their home. We were lucky to be invited in to witness a ceremony with musicians and fireworks. The sound of fireworks can be heard across the town all throughout the day as various ceremonies take place.

As well as our pictures we have included a couple inside the church we found on google to give you an idea of what it was like.

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