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Alan is twenty-five years old and is looking for the reason of his existence, the meaning of life. A camera and a notebook filled with questions are the only items he needs to set off on a journey to the Andes range. With Placido, an Andean paqo (“priest”), he will be taken on an introspective journey such as has never been documented before.

Inka Wisdom
Inka Wisdom
Quechua Terms

Glosary of Quechua terms used in Spiritual settings

Alto Misayoq (alto-meez-eye-yoke) High Priest.  An Andean Priest of the third level.

Apachekta (ah-pah chek-tah) An ancient prayer of thanks spoken upon arrival at the top of a mountain, meaning roughly, “lord surely you must have carried me.” 

Apachita (ah-pah chee-tah) A modern transliteration of apachekta, apachita now refers to the large stone houses often erected at the peaks of mountains to mark one’s passing and honor the spirits.

Apu  (Ah-pooh)  Lord. Mountain spirit. The tutelary nature deity of a village or region, inhabiting the peaks of the highest Mountain.  Classically there are twelve tutelary mountain spirits of Cuzco city:   APU AUSANGATE, APU SALKANTAY, MAMA SIMONA, APU PIKOL, APU MANUEL PINTA, APU WANAKAURI, APU PACHATUSAN, APU PIJCHU, APU SAQSAYWAMAN, APU WIRAQOCHAN, APU PUKIN, APU SENQ’A. Apus are generally considered male nature energies, except for a few aberrant females like Mama Simona in Cuzco, Veronica in the Sacred Valley, and Putukusi in Machu Pijchu.

Apu Sinak’ara   (Ah-pooh see-nak-ara) Tutelary Mountain Spirit of the Q’ollorit’i Festival.

Atawalpa (ah-ta-wal-pah) twelth ruler of the Inka Culture.  Son of Wayna Qapaq and his Equadorian Queen.  He waged war against his brother half brother,Waskar, and lost his ruling power.  Because he and Waskar inherited the Inka culture and did not return one to their children, they broke the law of ayni, therefore becoming full of heavy energy and sinking to the underworld.  Myth states that he and Waskar are in the underworld now teaching ayni to the beings there until they can return to this world.

Ayllu (eye-lyoo) family and/or spiritual community to which one belongs.

Ayllu kausay   (eye-lyu cowz-eye) Collective energy. 

Ayllu Apu  (eye-lyu ah-pooh) A local tutelary mountain spirit who oversees a small village or community, related with the first level of the Andean path.

Ayni (eye-nee) Sacred reciprocity.  If you give you will receive and if you receive you must give back.  This is the one law of the Andean Mystical Tradition still often witnessed in small mountain villages today.  A way of life founded by the Inkas upon which, in the high Andes, one’s very survival depends.

Chontah (chon-tah) A dark and extremely hard wood from the jungle

Chullo (choo-lyo) A traditional Andean woven wool hat with earflaps, often sporting colorful tassles and intricate bead work.

Chumpi (Choom-peeh) Belt.  In Andean mysticism this term also refers to the belts of living energy that surround the human body and make up the human ‘bubble’ or energy field.

Chumpi Paqo  In Andean Mysticism this refers to a special designation of mystical priest initiated in the art of the chumpi's, or, opening the energy belts.

Chuno (choon-yo)  A dry, hard, small black potatoe that has been freeze-dried Inka style.

Ch’uncho (choon-cho)  A traditional hourglass design in Q’ero weaving, it is a symbol of the jungle dancer.

Despacho (des-pah-cho)  A Spanish word popularly used to refer to the traditional Andean offering of thanks or supplication sent to the Nature Spirits. Despachos can contain up to 200 different ingredients and are made in a ceremony performed by Andean Priests.  This offering is traditionally burned, buried, or sunk in a lake or other body of water depending on the meaning and purpose of the offering. HAYWARISQA is the actual quecua term.

Haika (Hi-kah) A quechua bartering term that means “how much?”

Haku (Ha-koo) means “come on” or “let’s go.”

Hanpiq (hom-pek) To cure.

Hanpiq Runa (hom-pek roo-nah) Curandero.  Healer.

Hanpuy (hon-pwee) Command form of the verb  to come used by Andean Priests to call the spirit of a person, god, teacher, or a nature being.  COME!

Hanak Pacha (hah-nak  pah-cha)  The upper or superior world, defined by it’s abundance of super-refined energy or sami.

Hapu (ha-pooh)  SACRED COUPLE-finest form of Yanantin.  A sacred couple who have both reached full development of the three human powers: mind, heart, and body.

Hatun (Hah-toon) Great, big, or high.  See Hatun Karapy and/or Hatun Q’eros

Hatun Karpay (hah-toon kar-pie) The Great or High Initiation or Transmission.Hatun Q’eros (hah-toon keros)  High Q’eros.  This town serves as the ceremonial center, umbilicus or Qosqo of the Q’ero Nation.

Haywarisqa (Hi-wa-ree-ska) traditional Andean offering to the Gods, Despacho.

Hoocha (hoo-chah) Heavy energy.  Mistranslated by the Spanish as “sin.”

Hoocha Mikhuy (hoo-chah meekh-hwee)  To eat and digest heavy energy with the spiritual stomach.  This is the central spiritual practice of the Andean Priest.

Huanka (wahn-kah)  Sacred Song. Also spelled Wanka.  The Se~nor de Wanka or “Lord of the Sacred Song” is an important healing sanctuary in the Cuzco area.

Huinioch Rumi (ween-yoke roo-meeh) Growing rock, refers to the living energy and changing nature of rock.

Illia (ee-lee-ya) lightning, also enlightenment.

Illiasca (ee-lee-ya-ska) an illumned person.

Inka (in-kah)  a ruling class of people inhabiting the Cuzco valley in the late 1100’s to 1532 A. D.  Possibly comes from ancient word enqa which means “black hole” or one who can absorb all the living energies.

Inka Mallku (in-kah mal-koo)  A male initiate of the fifth-level.  One who can heal every illness, every time, with only a single touch.  The female counterpart is Nust’a.
Mallku comes from the root word meaning tree, thus Inka Mallky also means “one connected to the spiritual geneaology of the Inkas.”

Inti (in-tee)  The living being we call the Sun.

Inti Tayta (in-teeh ti-tah) Father Sun.

Itu Apu (eeh-too ah-pooh) masculine spirit of one’s place of birth, also known as the “guiding star.” 

  • Don Benito spent hours scrying in a cosmic plate to communicate with his guiding star. It makes you part of a larger cosmic system. 

K’intu (keen-too)  Sacred coca leaves, generally a bundle of three perfect coca leaves, chosen as an offering to the Nature Spirits. K’intu are generally used in multiples of three when making despachos.

Kamasqa (kah-mas-kah) Unique type of fourth-level priest who receives kurak akulleq initiation (fourth level) directly from God or Wiraqocha.

Karpay (kar-pie) Initiation or Transmission. See Hatun Karpay.

Kaq’cha (kak-chah) The state of being blinded or stupefied by a brilliant light.  In mystical terms this light usually refers to the light or living energy of anothers’ soul.

Kausay (cowz-eye) Living energy.

Kausay Pacha (cowz-eye pah-chah)  The world of living energies.  The energy universe.

Kausay Poq’po (cowz-eye poke-poh) The bubble of living energy around a human, plant, animal, town, mountain, or nature being.

Kay Pacha (kai pah-cha)  The world of material consciousness.  The “middle” world, filled with both heavy and refined living energies, typically symbolized by the Puma.

Khipu (key-pooh) series of knotted cords used by the ancient Inkas for accounting.

Khuya  (koo-yah) impassioned love

Khuya Rumi (koo-yah roo-mee) gift stone of teacher to disciple

K’intu (k’ een- tooh)  a bundle of three perfect coca leaves used to make an offering to the Nature Spirits.  K’intu are a central element in the despacho and are generally used in multiples of three.

Kurak Akulleq (koo-rock  akool-yek)  Great chewer of coca leaves, this term refers to a fourth-level priest.Llanqay (lyon-kai)  The power of the body, industriousness. The power of physical work.

Llaqta Apu (lyak-tah ah-pooh) This is a medium-sized tutelary Mountain Spirit related with the second level of the Andean Path.

Lliklla (lyeek-lyuh)  a small rectangular cloth woven from alpaca and used to to wrap the Andean Priests collection of power objects (the mesa).

Lloque (Lyo-kay) Left-hand side of the path. Relates to the magical knowledge or application of spiritual knowledge in the physical world.  Healing, magic, therapy, remedies, all are considered gifts of the left-hand side of the path.  The complement is pana, or right–hand knowledge (see pana)

Mama Qocha (Mama-ko-chah) Female spirit of the great ocean, water,
mother of all waters.

Masintin  (mahs-een-teen)  Harmonious relationship between similar things, homolgous.

Masy (mass-eeh) Equal

Masychakuy  (mah-sa-cha-kwee) The act of joining two similar energy bubbles. (See Yanachakuy)

Mesa (may-suh)  A Spanish word signifying the collection of khuyas or power objects given by the teacher or Nature Spirits to the paqo (initiate).  The  mesa is a physical extension of the Andean Priests power and is used in almost all ceremonies.

Mikhuy (meekh-wee) To eat and digest living energy.  Hoocha Mikhuy is the practice of eating and digesting heavy energy.

Miskayani (mis-kai-ya-nee)  The mythical city inhabited by highly evolved and extremely beautiful spiritual women, revealed in Q’ero mythology.  The female counterpart to the myth of Paititi.

Muju   (Moo-hoo) Seed. Can  be a literal seed for planting, or the spiritual seed within each person.  The Hatun Karpay provides the living energy necessary to germinate the seed.

Mullu Khuya (mool-yoo koo-yah) A specific set of five stones, progressively carved with one to five humps, used to open the human energy belts.  These are the tools of the chumpi paqo.

Munay (Moo-nai)  The power of love and will together.

Nust’a  (nyu-stah) Female nature spirit, Inka princess, female of 5th level.

Pachakuti (pah-cha-koo-tee) literally world turned upside down.  In Inka history this terms refers to a cosmic transmutation occuring between one era and the next.

Pachakuteq (pah-cha koo-tek) Ninth Inka Ruler attributed with building most of the Inka Culture.

Pachakamaq (pa-cha-ka-mak) Creator.  He who puts order in the world.  A temple outside of Lima where the philosophy of yanantin was born.

Pachamama   (pa-cha-mah-mah) Mother Earth.

Paititi (pie-tee-tee)  The Mythical “City of Gold” or El Dorado spoken of in many historical writings on the Inkas.  The Spanish were searching to plunder “El Dorado” but more than likely misunderstood the spiritual significance of “gold” to the Inka.

Pampa Misayoq (pahm-pah mee-sigh-yoke) An Andean priest who specializes in rituals like performing despachos or coca leaf readings.

Panaka (pah-nah-kah) In Inka times this word refers to the twelve royal lineages of Inka families that competed in Wiraqocha Temple to become the next Sapa Inka or ruler of the Culture.

Paqarina (pah-ka-ree-nah) female nature spirit who is the guardian of one’s birthplace.  Most prominent feminine aspect of the natural geography at one’s birth site.  Female counterpart of the Itu Apu.

Paqo (pah-ko)  Initiate or student of the Andean Path.

Pana (pa-nya) right handside of the path, relating to mystical knowledge.  The cold, rational, objective and structured side of the path governing initiation and ritual.  Known as “the road to God.”

Phausi Runa (pow-see roo-nah)  Little nature deities inhabiting running water:  streams, creeks, and waterfalls.

Phutuy  (pooh-tooh-ee) Flowering of a plant or of the spiritual seed of the initiate.

Poq’po (poke-poh)  Literally means “bubble” and refers to the field of living energy surrounding the human body.

Pukllay  (poohk-ly-eye) The play of children, lovers, or the playing out of a ritual.

Putukusi (pooh-tooh-kooh-see) The name of the female mountain just at the entrance to the ruins of Machu Pijchu.  Her name means “Flowering Joy.”

Qawaq  (cow-wak)  Clairvoyant, or “seer of living energy.”

Qayqa (kay-kah) A psychic or energetic knot of energy released through healing, ritual or intiation work, often causing the initiate or patient to choke or dry heave.

Qochamoqo (ko-cha-mo-koh)  Literally mountain/lake this is the name of one of the highest altitude Q’ero villages.

Qollana (koy-ya-na)  Excellence.  In mystical training this refers to the student who keeps the teacher honest by continually pointing out inconsistencies or contradictions in their teaching.  Teacher’s Pet Inka style!

Qorimoqo (ko-ree-mo-koh)  Golden Mountain.  This is the Apu that watches over Hatun Q’eros.

Q’ollorit’i (kol-yo-ree-tee) An ancient festival in the high Andes attended by more than eighty-thousand indigenous people.  Literally the word means “white as snow,”  or “purity.” 

Qosqo (kos-koh)  Spiritual Stomach.  Also, the ancient name for the Inka capital, meaning “navel of the world.”  In mystical terms qosqo refers to the energy center located near the physical navel.  It’s function is to eat and digest living energy.

Qoya (koy-yah) Queen. Female or Priestess of the sixth level.

Killa (keel-yah)  Moon, or the female living energy or consciousness of the moon, oftened referred to as Mama killya, Mother Moon.

Ranti (ran-teeh) Equivalent.

Rumi (roo-mee) Stone.

Runa (roo-nah) Man, human, or being.

Runa Simi (rooh-nah see-mee)  The tongue of man, the language of the Inkas.

Saiwa (sigh-wah)  A tall column of stones built by an Andean Priest to represent his/her power, or a column of living energy.

Sami (sah-mee) refined energy

Sapa (Sah-pah) Unique, the one and only.

Sapa Inka (sah-pah een-kah) The Inka ruler.

Seqe  (say-kay)  Line of living energy running through the earth, or between two ritual sites.

Seqe Rumi  (say-kay  room-ee)  Stone of living energy lines.  A sacred shrine in Hatun Q’eros.

Simi  (see-mee)  Tongue or language.

Sinak’ara (see-nah-ke-ara) The overlighting mountain deity of the Q’ollorit’i Festival.

Soq’a (sohk-hah)  Twisted female nature spirit.  More accurately, a third level initiates vision of a powerful female nature spirit.  When fear is conquered, the frightening Soq’a transforms into a beautiful Nust’a.

Suyu Apu (soo-yoo ah-pooh)  A large-sized tutelary Mountain Spirit overseeing an entire region, related with the third level of the Andean Path.

Taki Ongoy (tah-kee on-goy)  Collective delirium brought about by singing.  In Inka history the Taki Ongoy refers to the National Inka Movement of the 1700’s that nearly overthrew the Spanish.

Taripaypacha (tah-ree-pie-pah-cha) Literally meaning “encounter with the universe,”  in Andean Prophecy this word refers to a new golden era in the human experience.  It is known as the “age of meeting ourselves again”—and heralds coming together again of the Andean people, and the recreation of a new and better Inka Culture.

Taytacha (tie-tah-cha)  Father, Lord.

Taytacha Temblores  (tie-tah-cha tem-blo-rayz) Lord of the Earthquakes.  This refers to an icon (statue) of the black Christ given to the city of Cuzco by Charles the fifth of Spain.  It was paraded around Cuzco during a terrible earthquake and is considered by the people to have the power to stop earthquakes.  This is a powerful guiding star for many Andean Priests.

Taytanchis Ranti (tie-than-chees rahn-tee) Equivalent to God on Earth.  This term refers to the powers and capacity of the seventh level initiate in the Andean system of psychospiritual development.  According to Inka prophecy the seventh level priest will be capable of ressurecting their own physical bodies after death.

Tawantin (tah-wahn-teen) Four.

Tawantinsuyu (tah-wahn-tin soo-yoo)  Four corners, or four regions.  The ancient quechua name of the Inka Culture.

Taqe (tah-kay) To join forces, or join energy bubbles.  To bring together in harmony.

Tinkuy (teen-kwee) Encounter, meeting.

Tukuy (too-kwee) Complete, fully developed.

Tukuymunayniyoq (too-kwee-moo-nie-nee-yoke) The fully developed power of the heart.

Tukuyyachayniyoq (too-kwee-ya-chai-nee-yoke)  The fully developed power of the mind.

Tukuyllanqayniyoq (too-kwee-lyonk-eye-nee-yoke)  The fully developed power of the body.

Tukuy Hanpiq (too-kwee hon-peek)  The fully developed or complete healing power.  Refers to the fifth level of psycho-spiritual development and the healing abilities of the Inka Mallku.

Tupay (too-pie) Conflict.  Spiritual sparring of two Andean priests.

Tupaq (too-pok) Challenge. As a title “One who challenges.”

Ukhu Pacha (oohk-hoo pah-cha) Interior world, lower world, underworld, unconscious, or inside of the planet.  The world within, traditionally symbolized by the serpent.

Ukuku (ooh-kooh-koo) The bear men or spiritual warriors of the taripaypacha, or new era.  The “police” or keepers of order at the Q’ollorit’i Festival.

Unkhu (oohn-khoo)  Traditional black Inka ceremonial shirt with a red seam made of alpaca and woven left-handed for spiritual power.

Unu Kausay (ooh-noo cowz-eye)  The living energy of water.  Water spirit.

Wacho  (wah-cho) Lineage.  Row of earth dug to plant seeds.  The waking spiritual seed in people.

Waka (wah-kah) Sacred.  Often spelled “huaca” this also refers to any sacred object or place of the Inkas.

Wanka (whan-kah) Sacred song.  The Se~nor de Wanka (Huanca) is an important sanctuary for healing outside the city of Cuzco.

Warmi  (war-mee) Woman.

Waskar  (wah-skar) The son of Huayna Qapaq and the last “officially selected” ruler of the Inka Culture.

Wanu (wah-noo)  Death, or life after life.

Wayra Kausay (why-rha cowz-eye) The living energy or spirit of the wind.

Winay (win-yay)  Germination.  Again this refers to plant germination as well as the spiritual germination of the initiates “seed.”

Willka (veel-kah) Sacred and dangerous.

Willka Nust’a (veel-kah nyoo-stah)  Princess of the black light.  Ancient name of the Urubamba River.

Wiraqocha (wee-rah-ko-cha) Lord. God. Creator. Title of respect.  The Q’ero use this term to refer to one another meaning something like “good sir.”

Yachay (yah-chai)  The power of the mind.

Yanachakuy (yah-nah-cha-kwee) The Andean ritual for joining together two different energy bubbles.

Yanantin (Yah-nahn-teen) harmonious relationship between different things.  What we usually conceive as opposites the Inkas conceive as complements, i.e., male and female, light and dark, right and left.

* Source: Journey to Q'eros: Golden Cradle of the Inka by Elizabeth B. Jenkins


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