4 Aq’ab’al (3rd December 2016)

4 Aq'ab'alAfter the possible turbulence of the day 3 Iq’, comes a day where is is really possible to bring things together. 4 Aq’ab’al is a wonderful day to start a new project, to ground a dream into physical reality.

Whilst the full light of the new day is still shrouded in darkness, the clarity of dawn has arrived. Of course, we don’t know yet exactly how the day will pan out, but we can see a clear sky and we have the potential for a beautiful day.

If there is something you have been dreaming of for a while, or something you are inspired to do, today is the day to start to create a concept from the dream. It may not necessarily be the emergence of the concept into the real world just yet, it still needs to gestate. It could be that you were dreaming about making a journey, if so, today is the day to book the tickets. In one sense, you have begun the journey, you have moved it into the physical, yet you have not taken a first step yet. Booking the tickets for the journey is one metaphor we can use to describe the essence of this day, but we can apply this idea in many ways. It is a day to make the preliminary sketches for your masterpiece, or to write up your business plan. Romantically, it is also a great day pluck up the courage to make that first date! It is a day where you can begin to bring stability to the new light you can bring to your life and to the world.

Dawn over Lake Atitlan, 21st February 2016, as seen from the garden of Flower House, San Pablo La Laguna. Picture by Mark Elmy
Dawn over Lake Atitlan, 21st February 2016, as seen from the garden of Flower House, San Pablo La Laguna. Picture by Mark Elmy

In the K’iche language, the word aq’ab means night. The suffix -al changes the meaning slightly, to hint at change and alludes to the dawning of the day, the time between darkness and light, night and day. Just as birth is the beginning of the mortal journey, Aq’ab’al is the beginning of the day, although the detail of the day may still be obscured. Aq’ab’al is representative of new things, things which are not yet fully formed. While in Santiago Atitlan one day, a friend explained to me the different parts of a weaving in process on a backstrap loom. Aq’ab’al is the warp (the vertical threads), B’atz is the weft (the horizontal threads) which creates the whole cloth, and the newly woven cloth is Kawok. In order for the weaver to create, first she has an idea in her head or a dream. She sets out the dream on her loom by setting up the warp. Thus, the design has passed from being just an idea, to the beginnings of a woven reality, although it still requires creative input before it becomes whole. Aq’ab’al can also represent conception, the fertilised egg is far from ready to be born, but has passed from the dream or spirit world into the physical.

Aq’ab’al days are great days for the start of new things, particularly new relationships – Aq’ab’al has a strong affinity with marriage. It is also a perfect day for starting new projects, or at least bringing them into the world of light from the world of dreams and ideas.

The number 4 is very important within Mayan mythology. Four represents the cardinal points, the four colours of maize, the four carriers of the year, the two equinoxes and two solstices, as well as midnight, sunrise, midday and sunset. The number four is representative of the four first men, who raised the sky from the sea to create the world we live on. In Mayan myth it is four pillars that support the sky from the Earth. As you can imagine, four is a number which represents stability, a solar number. Even though it is still low, it is thought of as a good number.

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