TEKOA YAKÃ ITA KÜI’I VILLAGE

Tekoa Yakã Ita Küi’i was originally called the Rio d’Areia village.

It is located in the municipality of Inácio Martins / PR, 45 km from the city, which is made by a dirt road through the mixed forests of pine and eucalyptus cultivated for industries and native vegetation.

According to Dona Maria Conceição, a former resident of the village, around 1930 a group of Mbyá Guarani came from various places, at the time had no political leadership between them and families lived as Xamoi ordered, [Xamoi is the leader community spirit] lived together, farmed together, helped everyone to support them all. Much of the Guarani’s livelihood came from hunting, fishing, and gathering honey. They shared everything they found with the community at Opy’i.

Yerba mate has always been abundant in the forest and is sacred to the Guarani. Yerba mate establishes a ‘link’ between the material and the spiritual worlds, an element that facilitates communication with the supernatural. From the popularization of yerba mate as a drink for non-indigenous people, today is the main source of income and livelihood of families in the village; that commercialize the leaves in natura and make the agroforestry management of the herbal in the forest.

The origin of the use of yerba mate is told by all Guarani, having some variations among the ethnic groups, however, sacred to all.

One day they were visited by a traveler who spent the night in the cabin receiving his best treatment. The young woman sang for the visitor to fall asleep and have a peaceful sleep, singing a soft and sad song. At dawn the traveler confessing to be an envoy of Tupa and wanted to repay their hospitality by saying that he would fulfill any wish, even the most remote.

The old warrior, knowing that his young daughter would not marry so as not to abandon him, asked that his forces be returned, so that Yari could become free. The messenger of Tupa gave the old man a tree branch of Caa, and taught him how to prepare an infusion that would restore all his vigor.

She also made Yari, the goddess of herbs and protector of the Guarani, being called Caá-Yari, the goddess of yerba mate. And so, the grass was used by all warriors, making them stronger and braver. Just like making the body stay strong and the mind clear for many years.