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Aztec Human Sacrifice, Codex Florentine, 16th Century

Parents, civil rights groups try to stop Aztec prayers in California public schools

California civil rights groups and parents have asked a court to stop Aztec prayers in public classrooms.

The prayers are part of an Education’s Ethnic Studies Model Curriculum that includes a section on “Affirmation, Chants and Energizers.” Among these is the “In Lak Ech Affirmation,” which invokes five Aztec deities –Tezkatlipoka, Quetzalcoatl, Huitzilopochtli, Xipe Totek and Hunab Ku. The pagan prayers address the deities both by name and traditional titles, recognize them as sources of power and knowledge, invoke their assistance, and give them thanks.

“Our clients are not opposed to having students learn about different cultures and religions, including the practices of the Aztecs,” said Paul Jonna, partner at LiMandri & Jonna LLP and special counsel for the Thomas More Society, a national public interest law firm. “But the California State Board of Education’s approved Ethnic Studies Model Curriculum goes far beyond that by directing students to pray to Aztec deities.”

According to the legal complaint, the State Board of Education appointed R. Tolteka Cuauhtin, co-author of the 2019 book “Rethinking Ethnic Studies,” to chair a committee tasked with developing an “ethnic studies model curriculum. In his book, Cuauhtin demonstrates an animus toward Christianity and Catholics, claiming that Christians committed ‘theocide’ (i.e., killing gods) against indigenous tribes.”

The Aztec warrior civilization was one of the most violent, according to anthropologists. The Science journal ScienceSource states that human sacrifice was a regular religious practice of the Aztec civilization. “The Aztecs had 18 months in one cycle, and for each of the 18 months there was ritual sacrifice. The victim would be painted as a part of the ritual, they would be placed on a slab where their heart would be removed and held up to the sun. The body would be thrown down the stairs of the temple, the limbs were removed and later cooked. It’s estimated that 20,000 humans were sacrificed by the Aztecs every year.” Many of the victims were children or women.

The board of education approved the curriculum in March. It also includes the “Ashe Affirmation,” which “invokes the divine forces of the Yoruba religion four times — honoring this divine force and seeking assistance for the school day,” the complaint states. Yoruba is “an ancient philosophical concept that is the root of many pagan religions, including santeria and Haitian vodou or voodoo,” according to the Thomas More Society. It reportedly has 100 million believers worldwide in West Africa, Brazil, Colombia, Cuba, Puerto Rico, Guyana and in Caribbean nations.

The U.S Supreme Court has ruled that teacher-led Christian or other religious prayers are unconstitutional.

–Alan Goforth | Metro Voice