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The prehistoric era

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The prehistoric era for many people is marked with rituals that had a particular meaning for the people who practiced it. For almost all nations of the world, they had their way of living and most of them practiced a number of rituals which the citizens were bond to abide by them one of such country is Columbia. Pre-Columbian life was associated with many rituals and every ritual had a purpose that it served for its populace. The ball game in pre-Columbia which was played for more than 3000 years had different versions in different localities though it had commonalities on what it used to serve (Alana, 1982, pp 55-59).

The most common ritual associated with the ball game is associated with the war fare and from archeological point of view, it is not only captives who faced the wath of losing in a ball game but also kings were not left behind. This is a clear indication that the ball game was used to determine who were to be punished by facing death and it is believed to some extent that the games were not fair but were rather rigged (Barbara, 2000, pp 296-300). In other occasions, the rituals in ball game were used to settle disputes as well as resolving conflicts and this can be supported by the way the ball courts were distributed in the whole country. The Aztec empire for example was considered to be strong and had few enemies and correlates well with few ball courts they had, meaning they had few conflicts to settle. The use of ball games is rather considered to have been used in settling the conflicts rather than engaging in real war fare (Ali, 1976 ppp 95).

The fertility element is also associated with the ballgame where the looser of the game was sacrificed. This is believed to symbolize the battle between the gods of the sky and the lords of the worldly things. Sometimes, the skull of defeated player was used to make the ball which symbolized continuity of human life. In most ruined cities the ball courts were found , signifying the use of the game in sorting out human differences. In a conclusion, ballgame had many rituals associated with it including settling of disputes and showing of powers among different kingdoms. The bouncing of the ball represented the movement of the sun whereas sacrificing the ballplayer symbolized the sunset which was believed to rise the following day.

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