In the article “Mexico finds water tunnels under Pakal tomb in Palenque”, archaeologists discovered an underground water tunnel under an ancient Mayan tomb. This water tunnel passes through the tomb and flows out onto the esplanade in front of the temple and is thought to take Pakal’s spirit to the underworld. Much speculation about the carvings on the sarcophagus say it depicts the ancient ruler at the controls of a spaceship but other carvings later discovered state that a god “will guide the dead toward the underworld, by submerging (them) into the water so they will be received there.” This means that Pakal was essentially swept through the underground water tunnel. This discovery has huge significance in comparison with Teotihuacan because there was a similar water tunnel found there. This new discovery now reinforces the importance of water to the Mayan people and its meaning in the afterlife. It is believed by the Mayans that water will carry the souls of the dead to the afterlife. This type of symbolism is also related to the emerging importance of ceremonial burials that we began to see in Teotihuacan when the archaeologists found the skeletal remains of people that were showered with extravagant gifts. Just like the people who were buried under the shrine at Teotihuacan, the people of Palenque held a ceremonial burial in this tomb for their ruler.
Source: Archaeology News Network
Article: “Mexico finds water tunnels under Pakal tomb in Palenque”
Author: Mark Stevenson
Date Published: 25 July 2016
Date Accessed: 28 July 2016