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The Virgin de Guadalupe – the Brown-Skinned Madonna of Mexico

The Virgin of Guadalupe – savior of the indigenous or Spanish invention?

The Virgin of Guadalupe is a brown-skinned Maria, no less, perhaps the only image of the mother living in Palestine who doesn’t look like a Portuguese maid.

Funnily enough, the Guadalupe Virgin turned up just as the Spanish conquistadores were having trouble in making the local indigenous folk swallow the whole Christianity myth. Does that mean it was all a set-up? Or was it just a collective unconscious manifestation of the locals, needing some way to accept this strange, macabre religion from across the seas?

Today, the Virgin of Guadalupe is the most popular icon in Mexico and Mexicans make deals with her to secure favours e.g. they promise to crawl on their knees to her church once a year for the next decade and in return she prevents their teenage daughter from getting pregnant.