CARTA Mundurukú of the ancient knowledge and reaffirms demands

CARTA Mundurukú of the ancient knowledge and reaffirms demands

June 10, 2013 – 14:32

Written by Newsroom

Publication talks about the history of the people and the problems faced today.

The leaders of the people Mundurukú issued a letter to the Federal Government which displays the history of ethnicity and how knowledge is passed between the natives and even ask for an explanation from the government on the current events that have involved the Indians, especially because of the construction of power plants dams in the northern region of the country.

Check out the full document.


The Mundurukú is the most numerous people of the southern region of the state of Pará, are currently 12,000 individuals. In times past, we Mundurukú, were feared due to the fame of the art of war on gangs and strategies we used to attack our enemies. There would give up so easily pursue our enemies and our trophies were the human head, which symbolized the power. Hardly, we Mundurukú, on an expedition of war we lost a warrior even in battle. Atacávamos enemies by surprise, so vencíamos our rivals and did not let anyone out alive, only children who wanted to get to the village, which we adopted and we included in our clan to keep the family relationship.

Uksa was considered a sacred house (the barracks of men), it was forbidden for women in this environment, but their duty was to prepare their food and serve them to please, out of respect for them. Because there were present very important leaders: storytellers, handles, singers, players reeds and flutes, spiritual leaders shamans, hunters, craftsmen, knowledgeable of medicinal plants, interpretation of dreams (prodrome), messengers, warriors (divided into five platoons). Each person had a very essential usefulness to society. The tasks of the women was taking care of the house chores, making food, washing clothes, weeding gardens, making meals, taking care of children, teaching children to be prepared and able to live in the world, during the age of 12 years can now have responsibility and have their own family, and likewise the girls learn self-care and care for your partner to not be dependent when they reach adulthood.

The degree kinship, when the child is born, whether boy or girl, birth is already compromised. Therefore, when it comes to the age of 10 can now marry without problem. This can happen at the first menstruation, after going through a ritual. Only the mother has the right to compromise (the) sons (as) that she is suffering from the early stage of pregnancy. All the treatments with herbs is the obligation of the mother. It is up to the parent the right to hunt to feed their children and everything they need for their livelihoods and for their safety. To adulthood we Mundurukú not abandon our children, they are still living in the same house. When parents want the child to go to the men’s house, decide the fate of the child to join to follow the rules (standards), the ritual of Mundurukú. Even if the young person does not have the capacity or skill in any art, the shamans teach the knowledge existing for millions of years. Thither is wise and intelligent connoisseurs of all the medicines, cosmology, history, science, sorcery, all the sciences of knowledge, beyond our capacity …! The shamans tend the workings of the ecosystem of the planet’s life so nothing can happen, they maintain the balance of perfect functioning of nature.

We know how the law of nature through the teachings of the elders and how we should respect it. And the animals help us because they teach us things we do not know, and we can interpret the messages we convey, this is very important. So we respect and they also respect us, that’s how we live in harmony with nature. Animals teach us, warn us of the dangers that will happen, whether good or bad thing. The no Indians would say this is a bad omen, for us it is real. People who disrespect nature, they will have to suffer the consequences due to their actions. You should not play with nature and this is very dangerous for us, so we respect that. All animals have one to care for them, hence they have mothers, whether fish are animals, birds, plants, fire, earth, wind, water, even spiritual beings, all have lives. They need respect and are sacred. We have sacred sites along our river Tapajós that we Mundurukú not mexemos these places.

The city of Belém (Kabia’ip): for us, Mundurukú, is the weather, is a phenomenon of the control of the summer season. It’s a stick that is in the sea, where a person can drag a few centimeters cause and effect, a change of climate. One should never drag beyond the limit, serious problem may happen in a season. We noticed this phenomenon when summer is very intense.

The city Macapa (Mukapap): for us means “passage”, where our ancestors had to go through to the other side of the river where the pigs that were transformed when they were people, the Karosakaybu the transformed because of negligence.

Guanabara Bay (Murekodoybu): Cobra Grande, the old warrior who taught the art of war to Karodaybi. His agitation is perceived with the phenomenon of sea air, when the waves get rough and who can hear her voice is the spiritual leader, the shaman. Not any time the vessel can cross the bay, any carelessness can be fatal, leading to sinking the vessel and also to dangerous when the plane passes by.

Alter do Chão (Co’anũnũ’a) is a mountain where Mundurukú were observing the presence of the Portuguese when they emerged from the lower Tapajós, and the summit of the mountain is perceived and announced through a type of instrument horn blowing, emitted sounds to warn that the Portuguese troops were heading toward the Mundurukú. In the first contacts with whites, the Mundurukú faced the troops in Rio Troops, and the first fights the Portuguese had lost the battle, but the second time, more troops arrived to confront the Mundurukú, and this time the Mundurukú failed to defeat troops and came to make peace settlement and the site of confrontation was on the river in what is now called River of troops, in the mid-eighteenth century.

Strait (Dajekapap) is the passage of pigs, is a sacred place. This place exists below the old Capuchin Mission Bacabal called mountain. There, in the summer, you can see the trail carved into the rock, which is the trail of marks foot Karosakaybu when he got there as soon as his son had been taken to the other side of the Tapajós by pigs and he had given up looking your son. On the right margin of the Tapajós you can see the rock starting-shaped ditch, is the passage of the “pigs”, is the way by which they descended. The Karosakaybu, in disgust, was greatly felt by the loss of his son decided to let a snake so that nobody could do for God. Left a bushmaster snake to bite anyone who passed by that place. And in that same place has an image of a saint, and this was discovered by a scout at the time, but he did not know that place was sacred and was bitten by that snake and died, and to this day can be very dangerous for who pass that way. Another site called dry land (Thin Waist) which is the same phenomenon, which is between 180 km and small mining village called Vila Rabello, the BR-230’s transamazônica. In that place, for that reason, many accidents happened because the Indians did not violate that sacred place.

São Luiz do Tapajós (Joropari Kobie): Former local existence Mundurukú, who lived there at that waterfall. Whites know nothing of that place. There is a hole in the middle of the waterfall that some former residents who are not Mundurukú, say there is a huge hole that is called the Devil’s Throat, is there anyone who sucked on that stream, and is swallowed up and never ever appear no one will see. Can not move the waterfall and misfortune can happen. There is the mother fish shaped like a dolphin and some people who live there at the site have seen this animal. Then the fish are happy to see her and tapirs often fall into the water at that location where the mother. According to the spiritual leader, the shaman, warned that there can not be any way to make a change and move or destroy that sacred place, the mother fish, misfortunes may happen to people’s lives, is a risk to all companies . Therefore, the non-Indian will never understand.

The Great Snake (Sarakaka) located there in the former headquarters of Funai in Itaituba, at the mouth of the stream of Bom Jardim. Lived there in the Mundurukú regatão season, when they went to Bethlehem to find your goods and there were camp. The Sarakaka was the great spiritual leader who had great riches and goods, not approached people who were not shaman and was highly respected. Even today one can see the traces in that place and can still see the plantations left by him, which are banana trees. This place is a haven where sank the Sarakaka.

The backwater of Anta (Yukpitapodog’ap Dicõð): It is a backwater where Peresoatpu when we were, headed across the river to the other bank of the Tapajós River. He had to become anta to cross the river. Your nephew was hunting with his uncle when he had not turned into an animal. Every time Peresoatpu invited his nephew to hunt and left alone, this would tell the boy who would defecate. This boy moved away and soon turned into a tapir, the boy cried to see her Uncle, but he did not answer. When he came to the village had for her grandmother and she asked why not shot an arrow. Then the grandmother told the boy to go hunting with his uncle, and that this time should not shout at him. The grandmother advised that saw the tapir and this time, it was necessary to get his anta with his own hands. The only way to get it was to put his hand in her anus to take their guts. And so it did. But it (the tapir), held the boy’s hand and leaving the prisoner was dragging him toward the river. When dropped into water, the boy did not have a lot of stamina and his uncle (anta) said that it lacked breath was just biting her ear that he would drown.

The Mountain of the Apes (Deko Ka’a): It is a rocky mountain on the bank of the Tapajós River, which is considered sacred to the monkey house. They breed in holes that are on the rock wall, very impressive. Just seeing it to believe it. Sits above the river Crepori (Kerepodi), which in our language means river of Japus.

Writing Muraycoko (Surabudodot), which sits on the river Crepuri. The writings are carved into the walls nearly a hundred feet high. It is a puzzle designed and very skillful warrior left at the time. One of the very interesting things that left was: and who decipher this riddle will become very smart and wise will be endowed with wisdom, honor, wealth and power. The craziest Mundurukú keep this secret and neither endangers his treasure of divinity is kept and the man to get to this secret before it needs to be conquered and cleanse all your filthiness, and we call “Diðrewat”.

Chacorão (nomu): It is a waterfall Chacorão which has a centuries-old tree right in the middle of the island, according to the most ancient warriors is a sacred untouchable. It is the place where they fish Karosakaybu. A little further up that has a waterfall whirlpool, we call the oven (Waen). Vessels that pass by are in danger of being swallowed by it. This phenomenon is very beautiful and interesting. Waterfall in the same place known for “Marakace” the Karosakaybu used to go to this place flechar fish when it would get “bamboo” arrows and this time enjoyed fishing.

St. Benedict (stubbed Duk’a): It is a mountain that lies on the left bank of the Tapajós River, where the saint is high up on the rock. If you pass by it without offering a greeting or not paying promise may suffer crash in vessel. If you go near it, have to give greeting. For the sake of passenger safety. Who would climb up there could go: a detail that has been impure who could not get up there and could not look down, you run the danger of falling from high to low.

The Seven Falls waterfall (Paribixexe): It is a beautiful waterfall with seven falls in the form of stairs. It is the place where the dead are living, the sky of the dead, or the living world, the realm of the dead. It is a sacred site for Mundurukú, Kayabi and Apiaká, where also the fish and breed various species and all sizes, which is the mother fish. Walls containing the petroglyphs left by Muraycoko (father of writing), writing left to Mundurukú through written surabudodot, long remote. There are also urns buried at the site, the burial of our old warriors. There exists also a portal that is not seen by the common man and is seen only by spiritual leaders shamans, who can travel to another world unknown unnoticed. The waterfall is very beautiful, by the way, one of the seven wonders of the world, the largest Brazilian cultural heritage. She is on the Teles Pires River, where it intends to build a hydroelectric plant in the state of Mato Grosso.

Waterfall (Kerepoca): A waterfall is in Cururu River, near the village Santa Maria. One of the most beautiful waterfalls, there occurs the phenomenon of peeped in the period between April and May. Not only minnows but also other fish species, matrinchãs, Sugar-pacu, pacu, piau and other species. The above waterfall is 30 meters high and the swallows build their nests inside the waterfall and they have to go through the wall of water (water layer) and the waterfall is beautiful. Here you can not report all the holy places that exist within Mundurukú. There are other, more.

In the vicinity of the Sierra Pipe has noticed the existence of uncontacted Indians, the villagers of the old airstrip Army could report that there traces of isolates that region, they saw tracks bigger than normal people and seasonally dry summer saw signs of them because there were signs of smoke that made them realize why they had burned a part of the natural. In Cururu River tributary.

Elsewhere the existence of uncontacted Indians in the region is the river Kabitutu. A hunter Mundurukú in his hunting expedition was captured by them. Stayed with them for a period of about three days. Did not know to identify them. He said the Indians had characteristics Nambikoara containing one drilled hole in the tip of the nose with a wand. To release him, painted and made back their village. The captured Mundurukú said he had offered and lit a lighter and they refused to receive and they showed their more rustic and advanced techniques when they rubbed just a bat and fire had ignited immediately. These Indians are isolated between the river and the river Kabitutu troops, the less explored by Mundurukú.

All Mundurukú possess the knowledge stored in them. This knowledge passed on orally by the ancestors to not fade the cultural value and ancient knowledge. All elders are endowed with knowledge, for young people to acquire the knowledge you need to meet strict standards Mundurukú, nothing is impossible when you want to achieve perfection. We know people when they lie when they deceive us, when cunning, ambitious, and greedy. We know what are their interests, economic interests, has no love life. Because we love the people we know to respect, sharing know, for us there are poor people, we are all equal, we know share with those who do not have. There are rich and poor in the midst of our indigenous society, we make no respecter of persons and many less discriminate. In our world this is not, only love, respect, peace, humility, sincerity. Live happily without having money, without having mansions to live in, without material possessions. Life is more important, money does not bring happiness, only misery. When we have money, then we forget our relatives, makes us selfish, most do not care about anyone. Thus begins disrespect to people, we become individualism. When we said that no longer depend on anyone is pure lie. Money is a curse, that makes you forget to look to ourselves and to others. People do not have time for families, are only eyeing his business, employment. Get stressed, get worried, do not sleep right, can not have a dialogue with the family. It is because they forget their close loved ones, are concerned only with their business. When we stop to think, we begin to look within our interior and it does open our eyes and begin to see ahead of us and brings relief to our spirit, and this is so nice. We Mundurukú, we thus give value to what is around us.

Are all in nature, the knowledge that humanity seeks millions of years ago. They become so much research, involving scientists, intellects, people endowed with scientific knowledge, but nothing and still discover hidden precious things that interest us. Increasingly nature moves away and hides from us because we destroyed it. People want to turn into a business so precious wealth that we have. Where we want to go with this destruction, when we preserve and destroyers say to us that we maintain a balance in nature that are ravaging nature. Totally contrary to our way of thinking. Because we never destroy our natural resources, so only we care to guard not to be destroyed. The man is not only destroying nature, is destroying its own human nature, that they do not understand, are destroying yourself. That is why we see disasters happen in the life of the planet, we see climate change, floods, droughts, and many other miseries in the world.

All our villages are on the river, the gardens also lakes for fishing in the winter is very difficult to get the fish. Only in summer season gets sick of fish, which are formed by the ponds. Are 120 villages along the banks of the Troops, Rio Kabitutu, Kadiriri River, the Rio Tapajos, the Teles Pires River Cururu, Rio Anipiri and Waredi River and several tributaries. The ancient Mundurukú lived on land in savannas, due to difficulties at the time we had to move to the banks of the Tapajos. Only there is a traditional village, the village Kaboro’a, and the other are the riverbanks.

Dear sirs,

Given these facts reported about our situation, we announce that we are disgusted by the way the Brazilian government is treating us. We see the disrespect to our people, the Constitution being torn, making it invalid, not having our rights guaranteed by it. Now, our own territory became the battlefield where we are being exterminated, shot dead by the military government. We have no more rights to shout to be heard and no one comes to our aid as we are asking for help. The officers of the Armed Forces should give us security to protect us. We are seeing that this is not happening, is everything opposite. The government is using violence to forcibly perform studies of researchers to build their projects on indigenous lands. Were never consulted, and no one informed us about government projects in our areas. And when the government talks about dialogue, is already building the hydropower plants in our rivers. When we stand against the government’s decision, he says he does not accept our decision, what counts is the government’s decision. That’s what the minister himself Gilberto Carvalho said at the meeting of Tuesday, June 4: “Whether or not wanting will be built the hydroelectric plants of São Luiz do Tapajós, Belo Monte and Teles Pires.” So what good is being queried if our decision is not taken into consideration? Where is our right, the right to respect?

Until the law that protects the environment does not exist anymore, environmental permits being issued even though the works will impact and that will destroy nature, including impact the lives of people who will be affected, and this is not taken into account, the risk that they will suffer, and life will never be the same for them. The life of animals in danger of extinction, as much as the fish life and biodiversity. The population Mundurukú and other residents who depend on natural resources, the livelihood from the river and forest. We want to be guaranteed our right, respect for our lives, respect for our land, respect for culture. Which institution is the one that releases the Permit License functioning, and it is the body that protects the environment.

Why do they want to destroy us, we are not Brazilian citizens? We are so insignificant? What the government is saying to us? Is declaring war for us to run out after surrender our land to the landowners and agribusiness, hydropower and mining? The government’s plan to take away from us because we are not making a profit for him.

We already know that the course of the Teles Pires River was diverted to the construction of hydroelectric power plant in Waterfall Seven Falls. We are calling for the government to stop these illegal constructions on the territory Mundurukú.

We ask the authorities to expedite the trial process of the Belo Monte Dam on the Xingu and Teles Pires also from São Luiz do Tapajós, Pará At no time were we consulted, but studies are already underway in our territories. If there were no studies we know that. That our demands are met in an emergency:

. Leaving the Armed Forces of our lands.

. To stop the research studies.

. To stop the construction of dams.

. We explain everything that will happen in our land and will listen and respect our decision.

Signed by:

the Leadership Mundurukú,

Brasilia, June 8, 2013.



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