The Importance of Religion to Ones Civilization and Its Role on the Spanish Conquest of Mexico Essay

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Religion is a key aspect to a civilization and its society and plays an important role to the people of the civilization. Over time, various civilizations People throughout periods of time have practiced many different types of religion, believing in one or more gods or goddess. To the Mexica people, religion was very important and powerful 1 “that penetrated every aspect of life and shaped their world in innumerable ways.”The Mexica people would praise many different gods and goddess and have a different a god or goddess for each focal point of their lives, whether it was the god of the wind or god of the rain but 2 two of the most important gods of the Mexica people were Tonatiuh, the sun god, and Tezcatlipoca, god of the sky, 3“the Mexica believed that the gods, especially the sun god, required ‘precious water,’ or human blood, to nourish them.” Whether it was sacrifices or dancing rituals the Mexica people offered for their gods, the Spanish conquerors had a different point of view towards the way the natives would practice their religion. When the Spanish people witnessed some rituals that were done by the Mexica people, they were very skeptical and couldn’t believe some of the scenes they witnessed. The Spaniards 4“looked with fear and horror at the great temple of Tenochtitlan,” where most sacrifices were done and rituals were practiced. The Spaniards were Roman Catholic, unlike having more than one god to believe in, the Spanish believed in only one God. 1. Stuart B. Schwartz, Victors and the Vanquished: Spanish and Nahua Views of the Conquest of Mexico, (Boston and New York: Bedford/St. Martin's, 2000), pg 6 2. Schwartz “Victors and the Vanquished” pg 9 3. Schwartz “Victors and the Vanquished” pg 11 4. Bernal Diaz, "The True History of the Conquest of New Spain," in Victors and the Vanquished: Spanish and Nahua Views of the Conquest of Mexico, ed.

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