- Title: Bolivians raise their hands towards the sun to usher in the Aymara New Year
- Date: 21st June 2017
- Summary: LA PAZ, BOLIVIA (JUNE 21, 2017) (REUTERS) ***WARNING CONTAINS FLASH PHOTOGRAPHY*** INDIGENOUS MAN BLOWING A TRADITIONAL INSTRUMENT KNOWN AS "PUTUTU" WOMEN WAITING IN THE COLD AND DARK FOR THE SUN TO RISE VARIOUS OF FIRST RAYS OF SUN RISING OVER CITY OF TIWANAKU, NEXT TO MONOLITH VARIOUS OF PEOPLE RAISING HANDS TO RECEIVE FIRST RAYS OF THE SUN GENERAL OF PEOPLE GATHERED AROUND SHRINE OF KALASASAYA, RAISING HANDS (SOUNDBITE) (Spanish) NICOLAS YUJRA QUISPE, AMAUTA (AYMARAN PRIEST), SAYING: "We're receiving the sun's rays right now. For us it means living well, to rest peacefully of heart so we get a good harvest so we have a direct and clear path. That is why we raise our hands. As our constellations say, it's our way and the three principles are: Sun, sky, earth and pachamama [Mother Earth]." GENERAL VIEW OF GATHERING VARIOUS OF BOLIVIAN VICE-PRESIDENT, ALVARO GARCIA LINERA, TAKING PART IN ANDEAN RITUALS STANDING AROUND A FIRE WITH OFFERINGS FOR MOTHER EARTH OR PACHAMAMA OFFERING WITH LLAMA FETUS BURNING VARIOUS OF CEREMONY WITH AMAUTAS OFFERING / GATHERING FIRE / AMAUTAS VARIOUS OF TEMPLE OF KALASASAYA IN THE RUINS OF TIWANAKU (SOUNDBITE) (Spanish) LUCAS CHOQUE APAZA, LEADER OF THE BOLIVIAN AMAUTAS (AYMARAN PRIESTS), SAYING: "We're celebrating the return of father sun, the beginning of the Andean Amazonian New Year. Starting today, father sun comes back to the south. So, it is the Andean Amazonian New Year and we are entering the year 5525. "
- Embargoed: 5th July 2017 18:01
- Keywords: Aymara New Year welcome year 5525 indigenous rays sun Lake Titicaca Aymara Tiwanaku
- Location: LA PAZ, BOLIVIA
- City: LA PAZ, BOLIVIA
- Country: Bolivia
- Topics: Human Interest / Brights / Odd News,Society/Social Issues
- Reuters ID: LVA0016M82ZIB
- Aspect Ratio: 16:9
- Story Text: As dawn broke over the city of Tiwanaku in Bolivia's La Paz on Wednesday (June 21), indigenous Aymara raised their hands towards the first rays of the morning sun to welcome the Aymara New Year, 5525.
The celebrations in the religion of the Tiwanakota culture began at dawn in cold temperatures as followers warmed to the first rays of the winter solstice sun.
The celebration took place amid the ruins of the ancient city of Tiwanaku, with religious monuments such as the Akapana Pyramid and the Ponce monolith creating the backdrop for the festivities, which included dances and offerings to Mother Earth or Pachamama, so that crops and the earth will bear fruit in the New Year.
Bolivian Vice-President Alvaro Garcia Linera was in attendance this year and led the ceremonies along with traditional Aymara religious priests.
The Aymara believe 'father sun', "Al Tata Inti," gives his warmth to Earth on the New Year, heralding the onset of spring. In pre-Hispanic America, native people depended much on agriculture, and many of their rites are aimed at obtaining the blessing of the gods to ensure an abundant crop. Quechuas and Aymaras hold two festivals annually for sowing and harvesting, which coincide with the summer and winter solstices.
The calculation of the year 5525 results from the sum of the five cycles, each of which last a thousand years of social history of the original peoples until the arrival of Christopher Columbus in Abya Yala (present-day America) in 1492. Those 5,000 years plus 525 years of the arrival of the Spaniards total the 5,525 years.
Similar ceremonies are held in the northern hemisphere on this day where people celebrate the summer solstice in locations such as the U.K.'s Stonehenge.
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