Guatemala’s Q’eqchi’-Maya employ the past to construct their identity. In modern states, leaders like Mussolini or Hitler appropriated the past to shape national identities. Unlike these top-down approaches, the Q’eqchi’ offer a bottom-up perspective. In the Guatemalan highlands, Q’eqchi’ ritual practices involve the tzuul taq’a’s, supernatural beings linked to mountains and owners of the land. Recently many Q’eqchi’ migrated into the tropical lowlands and settled among Classic Maya ruins. Through questionnaires and interviews we reconstruct the complex ways in which Q’eqchi’ transfer the tzuul taq’a’ to the lowlands and appropriate their new surroundings both ideologically and physically.