Pachi Mama, Patchi-Mama or Pachimama is the Quechan or Inca word for “Mother Earth” or more accurately “our mother in space and time”. Most cultures have an Earth Mother concept and those of South America are no exception.
But the word “Pachamama” goes beyond the name of a single Goddess, it encompasses an entire world view and way of life. It involves the belief that the Earth is a living being and the mother of all of Earth’s life.
In traditional societies, grown children were expected to take care of their parents and thus, it should be expected that we all care for Pachamama. Pachamama cares for her children as a mother cares for her young and does not turn away from them. If she fails to provide, it is because she is not well.
In modern times, Pachamama is often associated with the Virgin Mary and the median between the polar opposites of Heaven and Hell, God and Satan in the blended Catholic and Native traditions of South America.
Unfortunately, many Evangelical groups are still today working very hard to wipe Pachamama from their theology altogether.
Images of Pachamama often have three heads, a turtle on her front, a frog on her back, and a snake around her legs. She is Bolivia’s Patron of las brujas (witches/herbalists/traditional healers).
The growing season- spring through fall, is associated with Pachamama, while the dry season is associated with Pachatata.
Offerings to Pachamama
Appropriate offerings to Pachamama include corn and grains, bread, and sweet pastries, as well as herding animals (llamas in Bolivia) but She is most pleased by those who live in accordance with Her ways. The golden rule of the Inca is Ama suwa, ama llula, ama q’ella “Do not steal, do not lie, do not be lazy”. Honoring Pachamama needs no mention.
Here is an account of an Aymara woman’s worship (The Aymara and Inca have lived side by side for millennia. The Aymara may have been there first. They are traditional herding people of the Andes).
Here is a little song to use when worshiping Pachamama
Huaca Pacha Mama,
Huaca Yachaq runa,
Huaca Munaq Runa
Temple of the Earth Mother,
Temple of the Speckled Hawk,
Temple of the Wise One,
Temple of the Loving One