Mayan masks had a wide variety of uses, and the importance of the masks dictated how intricate the designs on various masks were. The most sacred Mayan masks featured complex and delicate mosaics made out of jade.
Ancient Mayan Masks Types
Some of the most complex masks were used to adorn the faces of the dead and thus some bodies which were excavated from the tombs were found wearing one of the most intricate masks.
Some masks which were simple in style were worn by the Mayans during important events like Battles. However these has been a lot of debate among the archaeologists considering their function as to whether they were meant to protect the wearer physically, or whether these masks were meant to intimidate the enemy, or whether the function was ethereal in nature.
Mayan masks endowed the rulers with the status of a divine being as the "Tree of the Universe". Even during his lifetime, the ruler had the duty to be the interlocutor between men and the gods, asking them to intervene in the wellbeing of his people. Funeral masks were elaborated with the greatest skill in Mayan art, assembling them in form of mosaics of jade, which was considered by the Mayans to be the most precious stone, and combined them with turquoise, mother of pearl and obsidian.
The funeral masks protected them while descending into the underworld "Xibalba" in order to defeat the gods of death and to be able to ascend as the Mayan "God of the Corn". Mayan masks used in funerary rituals and those made of stucco are full of Mayan glyphs and Mayan symbols that reveal the relation that Mayans had, and still have, with the supernatural realm. Mayan masks were created to represent deities like the god Chak who controlled rain, but there were also masks designed to portray the visages of more earthly beings.
The Mayan's also used masks for entertainment as well.
There is an original Mayan Ceremonial Crystal Skull Mask that has recently been discovered in an archeological site south of the famous Tikal region of Guatemala. The mask measures 14,3 centimeters (5.3 inches) by 11,3 centimeters (4.4 inches) width and consists of a rare green stone called "guatemalita" which is only found in Guatemala (traditional Mayan country).
This mask symbolizes Kemé, a very special grandfather that taught the mystery of death and the dimensional doors that it opens. He also teaches us to transform what needs to be transmuted so that it can be reborn in harmony.