Text and photos by Robert Bradley
Thousands of celebrants from Ecuador’s Andean and Amazonian regions joined together in Cuenca on Saturday to celebrate Killa Raymi or Fiesta de la Luna and pay tribute to the fertility of the Pacha Mama or Mother Earth.
Organized by the Prefecture of Azuay, the Ministry of Culture and Heritage, and the Federation of Indigenous and Peasant Organizations of Azuay (FOA), this Andean celebration represents the union and effort to work the land, which will then be sown and will finally bear fruit.
” What we do today will depend on the next few days, if today we are generous with food, joys and feelings, Mama Killa will also give us good harvests generously …” said Yaku Pérez, prefect of Azuay.
And he added: “Today is women’s day in reality because the moon symbolizes femininity, fertility, all that powerful matrix from where we come from, where we come from and where we are going .”
The Canaris highlight fertility and femininity because they were matriarchal societies, belonged to the lunar dynasty and that is why there is the lunisolar calendar whose year is composed of 13 months divided into 28 days.
These celebrations coincide with the end of the preparation of soils for the beginning of the crops, mainly, of the corn, grain symbol of the life in the Andean cosmic vision and basic food of the communities.