Temazcal and spirituality in San Cristobal

The spiritual offer for personal development, therapies, emotional and physical healing etc. in San Cristobal de Las Casas is unlimited and inexhaustible. It is one of these places where alternative people meet up, share, experience, and fight for a better world, for conscience and love. In this difficult time, the activities in some places did not stop, since, as they say: “It is now when we need, more than ever, to pray for the world, to raise the vibrations, to deal with our fears.” One of the activities that cannot be done online and continues is the temazcal, of which there are several in San Cristobal and it is an activity that personally has taught me a lot, has helped me a lot and I recommend it to our travelers.

What is a temazcal? for the first-timers

The temazcal is an ancient tradition of indigenous people of America. The structure is a small dome made with folded hazel sticks and covered with blankets so it creates a perfectly sealed cycle space inside, except for the door that can also be covered. Once the group is assembled within the temazcal, the red-hot stones are introduced with a shovel and placed in the center of the temazcal. Everything is closed and water is poured on the stones, creating intense clouds of vapor that make the place an authentic challenge to overcome thresholds of heat and sweat. Then, the chants, teachings and prayers are shared and more stones are introduced, pouring water and aromatic herbs and more and more heat until one need to surrender to overcome the suffocation. The Temazcal is an allegory to the womb of the woman. It is the same womb of the mother Earth, into which we enter naked and come out purified.

What is a temazcal? interpretation of the guide, Arturo Huerta Lopez

Today I want to share fragments of a chat – interview on temazcal with Arturo Huerta Lopez. Arturo is an anthropologist and biologist but also a ritual specialist: guide to the temazcales.

“Arturo, are you a shaman then?” – I ask.

“There are no shamans here! – Arturo laughs – Shamans are in Siberia, and me, as an anthropologist, cut it short: here are the ritual specialists. The true healers that I know, not even one calls himself a healer. They are peasants, they are humble people who learned with their grandparents, uncles and one starts as an errand boy, the one who goes to buy the herbs, the things and thus learns. That’s how I learned since I was a little boy, with my mom and my aunts. ”

“Arturo, what is a temazcal?” – I ask him.

“It is a construction that can be made of mud, stones, bars. – Arturo laughs,this introduction is just a joke – The temazcal, as its name says is the house of sweat also name from the North as: inipi. “

“Temazcal is an allegory to the womb of mother earth, where those who enter are born again. The temazcal is a scientific bath of light: steam and heat are laser rays that enter our body. The temazcal is an ancient and current hospital as well as a center of higher studies because in the temazcal we learn and receive lessons.

The temazcal is also a center for agreements: the former rulers, before ruling, used to sit in a super hot temazcal to learn to lower the ego, to learn to be humble.

The temazcal is also a birth center because before it was used for giving birth and now it is being used for births again .

So for me, it is a multidimensional center. It is a place where I can also cry, sing, express my feelings, where I can hear the voice of my friends, my brothers, or a stranger who will help me, who will remind me of something I need for my life …

Temazcal today is one of the great technologies that is helping to get people and nations out of chaos. It is a medicine that broke borders: there are already temazcales all over the world. It is necessary that the people who are doing it, approach elders, people of tradition, who’ve been doing it for years, so that they do things better and better. So it is not just a show, because it can become a show only, it can be business. ”

Arturo guides temazcales on Sundays in the ecological park of Grutas de Mamut, startimg approximately 2 p.m. and I assure you, Arturo does not do it for business …

Here I share a list of temazcales and other spiritual centers in San Cristobal.


  • Sundays 2pm, parque ecoturistico de las Grutas de Mamut  (entering the park, cross the small river and follow to your right), for details contact Arturo.
  • Sundays 12pm, Montaña de Don Lauro, calle Prolongación Insurgentes 279, reserva Ecologica el Mirador.
  • Wedensdays 2pm, Akal, Centro de Sanacion, calle Maria Adelina Flores 58.
  • Saturdays, 12pm, Nahual-Ha, Centro de Medicina Alternativa y Spa – Calzada Daniel Sarmiento Rojas #40, Los Alcanfores.
  • Full moon, temazcales for women at Akal and other spaces.



These are just main centers: there are many more activities shared by different groups and specialists.