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Related to Mayas: Incas, Aztecs


1. In Hinduism, Buddhism, and certain other East Asian religions, the transitory, manifold appearance of the sensible world, which obscures the undifferentiated spiritual reality from which it originates; the illusory appearance of the sensible world.
2. Hinduism The power of a god or demon to transform a concept into an element of the sensible world.

[Sanskrit māyā.]


n. pl. Maya or Ma·yas
a. A member of a Mesoamerican Indian people inhabiting southeast Mexico, Guatemala, and Belize, whose civilization reached its height around ad 300-900. The Maya are noted for their architecture and city planning, their mathematics and calendar, and their hieroglyphic writing system.
b. A modern-day descendant of this people.
2. Any of the Mayan languages, especially Quiché and Yucatec.


Ma′ya adj.
American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition. Copyright © 2016 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
ThesaurusAntonymsRelated WordsSynonymsLegend:
Noun1.Mayas - an ethnic minority speaking Mayan languages and living in Yucatan and adjacent areas
ethnic minority - a group that has different national or cultural traditions from the majority of the population
Based on WordNet 3.0, Farlex clipart collection. © 2003-2012 Princeton University, Farlex Inc.
References in classic literature ?
"Well, Mayan refers to the Mayas, an aboriginal people of Yucatan.
The neutral tint is better adapted to the sister in whose eyes all things are Maya -- illusion.
To Him the Way, the Law, apart, Whom Maya held beneath her heart, Ananda's Lord, the Bodhisat.
The results suggest that the Mayas were an advanced civilisation comparable more to sophisticated cultures such as ancient Greece or China than the scattered and sparsely populated city states ground-based research had long suggested.Slovaks examining Maya civilisationKova, from the Faculty of Arts of the Comenius University, and his multi-disciplinary team, have been doing research on the political and environmental context of Uaxactun in Guatemala since 2009.
Ultimately then, "Hbaatab kaaswelah" is a story that allegorizes cultural control, depicting Mayas' and foreigners' struggles to establish cultural hegemony materially and ideologically over Maya cultural elements.
In their discussions about Mayaness they inscribe a "cultural authenticity" to rural subjects based on what they consider are the geographical and historical origins of the Mayas, not considering the opinions and perspectives of the people they study and observe; what in anthropology is known as "etic" perspective (Arnedo, 96).