To appease the storm god and end a drought, men and women dressed as tigers mercilessly submit to each other in an ancient ritual in southern Mexico. In the past, this 300-year-old indigenous ceremony, meant to bring rain and bountiful harvests, was reserved for men. But today, women also want to help keep the three-century-old tradition alive, even if the lashings hurt. According to tradition, the blood spilled during the May 5 ritual, called Atsatsilistli, is an offering to the rain god Tlaloc. The sound of each lash represents a thunderclap, the yellow color of the costumes a drought and the whip a tiger's tail.
Mexican tiger fight ritual draws blood to bring rain
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