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This is the only church in San Juan Chamula, a town in the highlands of the Mexican state of Chiapas, with about 50,000 Tzotzil Maya inhabitants.
The interior of the church is filled with candles and smoke from burning copal resin incense.
The local form of catholicism is a blend of pre-conquest Maya customs, Spanish catholic traditions and subsequent innovations.
There are no pews in the church, and the floor is covered with a carpet of green pine boughs and Coca Cola bottles.
"Curanderos" (medicine men) diagnose "evil-eye" afflictions. Chamula families kneel on the floor with sacrificial items, stick candles to the floor with melted wax, drink cups of "posh" (sugar cane liquor) and chant prayers in an archaic dialect. Unfortunately, photos are strictly prohibited. This photo was a daring action. They might have taken my camera away.
The town enjoys unique autonomous status within Mexico. No outside police or military are allowed in the village.

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