TRADITIONAL MINGA IN THE VILLAGE OF SARAYAKU IN THE ECUADORIAN AMAZON
The spirit of the traditional minga is living together, sharing, learning, living in community, maintaining unity and, above all, strengthening the ties between ayllus (families).
Sarayaku, is one of the Kichwa indigenous peoples that is characterized and recognized for its constant struggle to protect the living forest, being a complement to sustain this struggle and its recognition, keeping culture and traditions alive on a daily basis; one of these is the traditional minga of the Sarayaku People.
the minga It is one of the living and daily traditions in the Sarayaku people, sharing with the family (ayllus), working collectively, voluntarily and reciprocally with the ayllus is the special bond that strengthens the unity of a people.
In Sarayaku there are two types of mingas, family and community.
The traditional family minga is organized a week in advance, and for this the work is divided with the couple of the house; that is, the man is responsible for providing the food for the day of the minga and feeding the mingueros or assistants, and the woman is in charge of preparing the chicha, which is the drink that will accompany the entire process of the minga. minga. Working as a couple is very important for everything to be successful.
The invitation to the traditional minga is made one day in advance by the couple, this is in order to have the necessary support for the work that has been planned. This is a rewarding space, because in addition to being able to fulfill the objective, it is an opportunity to share, to learn, to laugh.
In the community or general minga, the entire town (the 7 communities that make up Sarayaku) participate. The preparation of this minga has another procedure, since it is coordinated by the Government Council and the 7 Kuragas (traditional authorities of each community). This minga is planned a month in advance, since the work that is going to be carried out is for a common good, such as: cleaning the neighborhood roads, the central square, the cemetery, among others.
This minga is led by two very important people, the kuraga (traditional authority) and the kuraga mama (couple of the traditional authority) of each community. The couple is in charge of preparing the chicha, but this preparation is shared, the man carrying the yucca home and the woman in the process of preparing it for fermentation.
Like the family minga, the kuraga is in charge of calling the ayllus one day in advance, men and women from their community to participate in the minga to be held.
On the day of the minga we all participate, and after the work we have done, each kuraga invites his people to his house for that special moment, sharing the chicha. This is a time of celebration, sharing, laughing and above all, dancing to the rhythm of the drum (box) with which the men of Sarayaku play.
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