APU

Classification: Gods (Extra-Dimensionals/Immortals)

Location/Base of Operations: Hanan Pacha (Higher Earth in Quechua); Ucu Pacha was the Realm of the Dead which was linked to this realm or Hurin Pacha via lakes, oasis and caves.

Known Members: Catequil (god of thunder & lightning), Chasca (goddess of the dawn & twilight), Inti (god of the sun), Kon (god of wind & rain), Mama Cocha (goddess of the sea), Mama Quilla (goddess of the moon), Okoronote, Pachamama (Gaea), Supay (god of death), Urcuchillay (god of animals), Viracocha (god of the sky & heavens);
possibly Peliali

Affiliations: Other races of Gods

Worshipped by the peoples of Incan Peru, Bolivia and Chile, and as far east as parts of Brazil

Aliases: Inca gods

First Appearance: (Mentioned) Thor I#300 (October, 1980); (seen) Thor I#301 (November, 1980)

Powers/Abilities/Traits: The Apu all possess certain superhuman physical attributes. They are true immortals who cease to age upon reaching adulthood, and they cannot die by conventional means. The Apu are immune to all terrestrial diseases and are resistant to conventional injury. If an Apu is wounded, his or her godly life force will enable him or her to recover at a superhuman rate. It would take an injury of such magnitude that it incinerates an Apu or disperses a major portion of his or her bodily molecules to cause him or her to die. Even then, it may be possible for a god of greater or equal power, or several gods acting together, to revive the deceased god before the god's life essence is beyond resurrection. Apu flesh and bone are about two-and-a-half times denser than similar human tissue, contributing to the gods' superhuman strength and weight. An average male god can lift about 25 tons; an average goddess can lift about 20 tons. The gods' metabolism gives them superhuman endurance in all physical activities. Many Apu also possess additional superhuman powers. For instance, the thunder & lightning god Catequil can control atmospheric conditions by slinging enchanted stones into the clouds.

History: (Thor & Hercules: Encyclopedia Mythologica) - The Apu have been worshipped by the Inca as well as other Aymaran- and Quechuan-speaking peoples of the Andes Mountains from as early as 2000 BC to the 16th century AD. Most of the Apu dwell in Hanan Pacha, the "Higher World," a small "pocket" dimension adjacent to Earth; an interdimensional nexus between Hanan Pacha and Earth exists somewhere in Lake Titicaca, between the modern-day nations of Bolivia and Peru. The death god Supay dwells in the netherworld of Uku Pacha, the "Lower World." The Apu are called different names by their human worshippers; for example, the Sky Father Viracocha is also known as "Wiraqutra" and "Huiracocha" by his mortal worshippers. For the most part, worship of the Apu ended in the 16th century when their mortal devotees were either killed or converted to Christianity by Spanish conquistadors. However, some secluded populations, such as the inhabitants of the hidden city of el Dorado, still worship the Apu into modern times.

The precise origin of the Apu, like that of all Earth's pantheon of gods, is shrouded in legend. According to ancient myths, the Sky Father Viracocha arose from the depths of Lake Titicaca during a time of primordial darkness. With assistance from the Earth Mother Gaea (known to the Inca as "Pachamama"), Viracocha brought life to a race of giants. These giants, sculpted in Viracocha's own image, lived in total darkness and inhabited the city of Tiahuanaco (modern-day Tiwanaku, Bolivia). However, these giants soon defied their creators, prompting Viracocha to transform them back into stone. With Gaea preoccupied elsewhere, Viracocha next created the sea goddess Mama Cocha to serve as his companion. He and Mama Cocha decided to bring light to the world, and came ashore on the "Island of the Sun" (modern-day Isla del Sol, Bolivia), where they created the sun god Inti. They next traveled to the nearby "Island of the Moon" (modern-day Isla de la Luna, Bolivia), where they created the moon goddess Mama Quilla. Other gods soon followed, such as the death god Supay and the thunder god Catequil. With the world now sufficiently illuminated, Viracocha created a second race of mortals, known as humans. Viracocha eventually returned to his extradimensional realm of Hanan Pacha, leaving his son Inti in charge of the affairs of the Earth realm.

(Eternals I#2 (fb) ) - Sometime prior to 1000 AD, Ajak the Eternal arrived in the Andean city of Qutimbo (within modern-day Peru), where he began to make preparations for the coming of the Eternals' creators, the extraterrestrial Celestials. Although not a true god, Ajak adopted the name "Tecumotzin, Lord of Flight" and came to be worshipped by the local mortals as a deity, much to the dismay of the Inca gods. Ajak further alarmed the Inca gods by overseeing the construction of the "City of the Space Gods," a network of temples in the Andes Mountains intended to serve as the Celestial Third Host's base of operations upon its arrival.

(Thor I#300 (fb) ) - In approximately 1000 AD, Viracocha convened at a meeting of the Council of Godheads to discuss the threat posed by the Celestial Third Host and their Eternal servants.

(Thor Annual#7 (fb) ) - Shortly after, the megalomaniacal Eternal known as Druig released Dromedan, a powerful psychic Deviant mutate who had been imprisoned within the Andes Mountains by his fellow Deviants. Dromedan overpowered Druig with his formidable psychic abilities and proceeded to enslave the local population. Ajak, assisted by his fellow Eternals Valkin and Virako as well as the Asgardian thunder god Thor, defeated Dromedan, thus earning the trust of the Inca gods.

(Incredible Hercules#117 (fb) ) - Afterwards, the Deviants joined forces with the Inca death god Supay and his demonic henchmen of Uku Pacha and plotted against the Inca people on several occasions - but Ajak joined forces with the Inca gods to oppose them.

(Eternals I#2 (fb) ) - However, following the departure of the Celestial Third Host, Ajak sealed himself within the City of the Space Gods to immerse himself in Celestial studies.

(Thor & Hercules: Encyclopedia Mythologica) - When the 16th century Spanish incursion decimated their worshippers, the Inca gods retreated to their extradimensional realm of Hanan Pacha.

(Thor I#301) - In modern times, when the life essences of all Asgardians except the thunder god Thor were extinguished by the Celestial Fourth Host, Thor ventured to Hanan Pacha, where Viracocha granted him a portion of his own life essence to revive the Asgardians.

(Incredible Hercules#116-117) - Later, when the Olympian goddess of wisdom Athena convened a meeting of the Council of Godheads to address the threat posed to Earth by the extraterrestrial Skrull gods, Inti was among the Earth gods who attended. In response to Athena's warning, Inti (on behalf of the Aztec, Inca and Maya pantheons) presented Ajak to accompany Hercules on a preemptive assault against the Skrull gods.

Comments:

Sambana was identified as the god of rains by an unidentified South American village and associated with a mystical ruby. However, it is yet to be confirmed if this was indeed the Apu god Kon. 

The name of the realm for the Incan gods has never really been revealed; El Dorado was actually the Spanish name of a mythical city of gold presumably somewhere in the jungles of South America. The name historically refers to a man who in Incan practices was covered in a layer of gold dust.

Of the Kamekeri Gods, Guecufu and Kulamina are Arawak/Arauca gods from Guiana. As yet, there seems to be no mythological basis for Aiomum Kondi, Konassa (except as a title for Koniraya's wife), Kuat, Okonorote or Peliali (who may be based on the Oceanic goddess Pele.)

Thanks to Gonzalo García for pointing out the Base of Opearations for the Incan Gods.

The main image in this profile is by Kevin Sharpe.


images:
Thor & Hercules: Encyclopedia Mythologica, p11


Last updated: 08/18/11

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