Archaeoastronomical phenomenon welcomes summer in Las Labradas, Sinaloa

The Labradasa site of singular beauty due to the rock carvings that are distributed along the Pacific coast line, south of Sinaloawill welcome summer. The ancient human figures in ecstasy that appear on its rocks are testimony to the consecration of this place to the solstice, a phenomenon that is more visible due to its proximity to the Tropic of Cancer, an imaginary line that is 30 kilometers to the south.

The researcher of the National Institute of Anthropology and History (INAH), Joel Santos Ramírez, reports that during sunset between June 20 and 23, when the summer solstice occurs, from Las Labradas –located in the municipality of San Ignacio– it is possible to observe on the horizon, during the sunset, the maximum stopping point that the sun reaches in its annual cycle from south to north.

Symbolically, the allusive solar elements in the geometric and anthropomorphic figures represented in the petroglyphs of The Labradas, suggest rites around this moment, so that the star is shown “in its spatial and geometric aspect as center, origin and place of convergence; in the natural aspects of it: as light, fire, heat, wave motion, and metaphysical: as an object of contemplation, worship, adoration, exaltation and transformation”.

He is also director of Las Labradas Archaeological Project He elaborated on these aspects in the cycle of conferences “Social appropriation of Sinaloa’s cultural heritage”, broadcast by INAH TV, on YouTube.

“The days of June are the longest of the year, the light and heat reach their maximum level. In this region of the country, the solstice heralds the beginning of the rainy season and the period of fertility and regeneration. According to researchers, the solstices are part of the oldest worldviews of humanity, prior to agricultural calendars.

“This supports our thesis that Las Labradas possibly dates back to the archaic era”, a hypothesis that, notes the archaeologist, is also supported by the findings recorded at the nearby site called La Flor del Oceano, including 60 points of projectile and other stone artifacts, whose antiquity is estimated between 2500-1000 BC, which is why it represents the most remote located, until now, in Sinaloa.

In the absence of writing and historical references to recognize the possible name of its creators, this culture has been called Chicayota, alluding to the stream on which the ancient settlements in the region depended.

The Labradas It is the site with the largest number of petroglyphs – around 600 – in the south of Sinaloa and north of Nayarit, although there are others, of lesser characteristics, in the area. The designs were made with hammers and modeled with various polishes on basalt, one of the hardest rocks that exist, since it is classified between values ​​5 and 7 on the Mohs scale, a list of 10 minerals ordered by their hardness, of lesser to older.

The solstices are part of the oldest worldviews of humanity, prior to agricultural calendars. Photo EE: Courtesy Joel Santos / INAH

In the opinion of the expert INAH Sinaloa Center There have been several achievements since the beginning of the investigations at the site, in 2009, among them, its declaration as an Archaeological Monuments Zone, its public opening and its inclusion in the Indicative List of Mexico before UNESCO, in order to search for its eventual inclusion in the World Heritage List, as a Mixed Property, that is, cultural and natural.

“That is Las Labradas, a site – so to speak – that remains beyond the reach of civilization, cared for and protected by the INAH, and where academic, artistic and recreational activities are carried out, such as the celebration of the ball game. , known in the region as ulama, which allow their appropriation by the population”, he concludes.

The archaeological zone, located 60 kilometers north of Mazatlán, Sinaloa (approximately an hour away by road), is open to the public every day, from 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., depending on weather conditions.

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