Friday, December 10, 2010

Colca Dignity: the rebelion of the incas

by Anthropologist Mariella Sanchez.

The rebelion of the incas has started in Colca Canyon. Tired of the abuses done by irresponsible travel agencies from Arequipa ,an association of local tour guides from Colca Canyon called ASGUIP TUCAY (Association of tour guides from Caylloma Province) has created a movement called COLCA DIGNITY ,a movement whose main goal is to defend the rights of the locals in order to have a sustainable tourism in the area.
COLCA DIGNITY movement has at the moment many followers in the Colca Valley and the Colca Canyon area ,and it was organized according to the incan principles.
The creator and the leader of the movement is the Mallku Jaqe or Condor Man ,a mestizo leader who has inherited the inca knowledge from a woman elder Maria Asunta Ninataypi ,born in Yanque village in Colca valley area,straight line descendant from Diego Goro Inca Ninataypi.
The Mallku Jaqe is a Chaka -Runa , a "man bridge". According to the inca tradition,somebody that keeps the knowledge of the mother (inca) culture, and the best of the father (spanish) culture. Somebody who joins two civilizations.
The presence of "the bridge peoples" was prophetised by the inca priests in the legend of the 5th generation.
The mission of these elders is to pass the lost knowledge to the natives, knowledge that the conquerors tried to prohibit and to abolish, a knowledge they could not dissappear at all. After the conquest TAKI ONQOY movement appeared,a movement of rejection against the catholic religion and the abuse done by the spanish authorities.
Taki Onqoy or "sick dance" movement had many folllowers in those times. The ceremonials were performed on the top of the sacred mountains and they asked their inca gods to take the white devils away. After the rituals they performed the "sick dance", an in trance dance.
Catholic church fought Taki Onqoy movement and it was kept secret until 1970! Simply incredible.
Nowadays that we have freedom of speech,little by little the keepers of the ancient ways from the different ethnic groups are coming back to give the knowledge back to their peoples who have forgotten to "live in armony with nature".
According to the Mallku Jaqe,the inca knowledge is not for making money but to live life. It is terrible that travel agencies are turning our sacred land into a circus,our culture is used to cheat tourists who are looking for the true traditions,our peoples are exploited,many of them are being taken to other countries to give speeches and to perform rituals and the representatives exploit our people.We don´t want that anymore -said the Mallku Jaqe.
As a man bridge he was chosen by the elders as spokesperson and representative of his people.
The actual situation is critical for the locals of Colca Valley and Colca Canyon and the presence of the Mallku Jaqe is important for the people.The Mallku Jaqe is protected by his local followers and his name is kept secret like in the old times.
The local authorities have to work more in order to preserve the traditions and culture of peoples in Colca Canyon. It is necessary to protect the environment from contamination provoked by tourism.In order to have responsible tourism the needs of the locals should be taken into consideration. In that way tourism will really benefit the people of Colca Canyon,so the new authorities have much to do now!
Good luck Mallku Jaqe. You have all our support and thanks for all.

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