As we prepare for the two ceremonies of Late May (Full moon on May 19th-20th and Sirik on May 26th-27th) I want to share more research info about Sirik that has been revealed by the noted Boricua scholar Angel Rodriguez concerning the Pleiades Constellation. In this presentation Rodriguez offers an analysis of the most recently discovered archeological site near Ponce, Boriken (Puerto Rico). This site is called Jacana and it has not been fully researched yet. Nevertheless he has already made important observations about how the alignment of the standing stones at Jacana indicate very well-developed astronomical observation by the ancient Tainos, including an understanding of the first rising of the Pleiades constellation just ahead of the sun on May 29. Here is an excerpt from Rodriguez's presentation ARCHAEOASTRONOMY AT JACANA, PUERTO RICO EVALUATING THE EVIDENCE FROM THE ARCHAEOLOGICAL INVESTIGATIONS 2007:
"The Milky Way was considered by many groups to be a celestial snake, a heavenly river or a road of clouds in the heavens according to Bingham (2004:84). Over the skies of the Antilles, certain stars on the Milky Way were important for the ancient Taino people because they could have served as seasonal indicators for the dry and rainy season. The most important of all was the Pleiades which marked the rainy season. Rodriguez (2008A:233) in his study of the alignment of the ballcourts and ceremonial plazas on the Antilles has found that the walls of some of these structures were intentionally aligned toward the heliacal (early morning) rise of the Pleiades. At Jacana, the Pleiades rises heliacally on May, 29 according to the program Culture Diff (2013). Also the date of this astronomical event coincides with an increase in the rainfall for the West Indies and indicates the coming of the Summer Solstice (June 21). Results at Jacana indicate that the North and South walls (Figure 2) were aligned toward the heliacal rising of the Pleiades on May 29 that occurs at an azimuth of 64º. A similar alignment was reported by Rodriguez (2008A:214) on Plaza B at the prehistoric site of Caguana, in the Municipality of Utuado. Also, the petroglyphs along the West Wall at Jacana are aligned toward this astronomical event (Figure 2). Additionally, Scorpius and the Pleiades are visible on opposed regions in the sky on May 29 at Jacana. While the Pleiades rise heliacally at 64º, Scorpius set at 235º before sunrise. Both astronomical events coincided with the heaviest period of rain for Puerto Rico according to Rodriguez (2008A:262). It is important to point out that by May (Figure 3), most parts of the Milky Way remain under the horizon until sunset according to the program CyberSky (1995-2009). The
Milky Way stretched approximately from Cassiopea to Canis Major or about 100º of celestial space. At Jacana, we found a relation between water during the rainy season and rise of the Milky Way in the Sky after sunset on May. The emergence of the Milky Way (Figure 3) from beneath the horizon into the night sky could have been associated by the ancient Taino people with an increase of atmospheric moisture that announced the approach of rain. In order to understand the basic system we have described, we have only to combine it with the account compiled by Ramon Pane (Roman Paner). Accompanying Columbus on his second voyage to the New World in 1494 was a Catalan friar named Ramón Pané (Roman Paner). Columbus assigned Pane to live among the Taino people that were recently “discovered” on the island of Hispaniola (today the island shared by Haiti and the Dominican Republic), to learn their language, and to write a record of their lives and beliefs. Pane in Gaylord (1906: 318-338) pointed out that according to the natives, incipient humanity came from a cave in a mythic mountain, and also the sun and the moon. The sea and its creatures came to be when a gourd broke open. In keeping with this image, the ancient Taino saw their world as a Universe Womb or the notion that the reproductive anatomy of a woman replicates into the structure of their Primordial Universe. As a result, Incipient Humanity was housed and protected in the Womb of Mother Earth (Mother Earth embodied in Itiba Tahuuaua in the Pane (in Gaylord (1906:323) account and metaphorphized in a womb-cave called Cacibagiagua (Pane in Gaylord (1906:320). From Cacibagiagua, Incipient Humanity emerged to populate the rivers and valleys of the Antilles. Within the Taino perception of their Primordial Universe, nourishment came through the flow of a Universe (Cosmic) River. We pointed out that at Jacana, the Universe River is symbolized by the Milky Way in the night sky and represented on earth on the Portugues River. According to Rodriguez (2009), the ancient Taíno view the world enveloped in a continuous river or sea, in which the Celestial Waters above mix with the earthly ones below on the horizon. As a result, the heavenly bodies move on the night sky in the Celestial Waters and during the day in the Cosmic Sea below (Figure 4). At Jacana, there is a metaphor in this cosmic circulation of water between the Milky Way and the clouds during the rainy season (May); it could be seen as the river of clouds in the sky feeds the Milky Way underneath before sunrise (Figure 3). At the same time, the Milky Way as a Cosmic River feeds the water flow of the Portugués River during this period, and the Portugues' waters flows into the sea. In this way, the celestial river of clouds, the Milky Way as a Cosmic River beneath acts in concert to feed the Portugués River and recycle water. As a result, water is the medium element because cycled through the three components: clouds, Milky Way and the Portugues River. Figure 4. Taino wordview based on the Pane's account. Angel Rodriguez (2013). North Wall: As mentioned before, North and South walls were aligned intentionally toward the heliacal rising of the Pleiades on May 29 (Figure 2). However, petroglyphs along the North Wall are facing 150º. These motives are generally aligned toward the heliacal rising of the Southern Cross (Crux) before sunrise on November 7 according to the program Culture Diff (2013)."
To read the whole presentation please download this PDF file by clicking this LINK.