All posts by Mark Elmy

6 Ix (28th March 2020)

6 IxThe nawal representing the spirit of Mother Earth combines with the number which draws on the energy of the sky and Earth in order to manifest into the physical plane. It is a day to stabilise your connection with Mother Earth.

Days carrying the number 6 often feel very well balanced. This is as expected, being as the are in the middle of the range between 1 to 13, however, there is a little more to them than just that. The 6 acts as a focal point for what it is attached to, empowering the nawal with the essences of the Heart of the Sky and the Heart of the Earth, allowing it to project or manifest into the physical world. It is much like the number 4, but with the embellishment of the divine masculine and divine feminine principals.

The energy of the nawal Ix strongly associates with our ability to commune with the spirit of mother Earth. This ability allows us to bring what we need into this world. It can be seen as our “magic”, but really it is just a more aware state of being, one where we understand the dynamic which exists between us an our environment. We ask, we receive, we thank.

The day 6 Ix is a day to give thanks for the wealth or abundance which nurtures your family, and a day to stabilise your connection to mother nature and ask her for what you need in life. It is a day to understand how to use your own abilities to manifest, to stabilise your magic.

A dancing shaman transforms himself into a jaguar. From a late classic era vase found at Altar de Sacrificios. Source http://shortstreet.net/Maya/mayapaintedvases.htm
A dancing shaman transforms himself into a jaguar. From a late classic era vase found at Altar de Sacrificios. Source http://shortstreet.net/Maya/mayapaintedvases.htm

Ix is possibly the most feminine of the nawales. It represents the spirit of Mother Earth and could easily be seen as a Mayan representation of Gaia. Ix can be seen as a mothering energy, nurturing all things, but this should not be confused with weakness – the animal totem of Ix is the jaguar and it is as the jaguar that Ix is often known. The jaguar is, of course, powerful and stealthy. Ix also embodies these qualities. The jaguar is an animal of the night, slipping magically through the darkness, the spots of her back a representation of the milky way. She carries the sun on it’s nightly journey through the underworld.

Industrialised societies tend to see the Earth as an inanimate source of material wealth. Non-industrialised societies see her as a living entity with whom we can interact, and she carries the nawal Ix. So, it is on Ix days that prayers are offered at her places, the shrines and altars, her ears, to ask for what we need in our world.

The connection Ix has with the Earth gives it the ability to manifest material wealth. In the Mayan cross astrological configuration, Kame evolves to Ix. In the Popol Vuh, the sacred book of the Maya, the Hero Twins sacrificed themselves in the underworld (Kame) and then were resurrected as a pair of catfish, later to become travelling magicians (Ix.) They cut the heads off animals, then resurrected them, they even cut off each others heads and brought each other back to life. In these scenes they are shown with patches of jaguar skin on their clothing, a symbolism denoting that the wearer is a shaman. Thus through the symbolic death or sacrifice, the shamanic power emerges.

Whilst Ix has the power to engage with the magic of the Earth, it also has a tendency towards illness. This is particularly strong when the vain, ungrateful side of Ix emerges. The magic that runs through this nawal comes so easily, that sometimes it forgets that everything really comes from the Earth and it is to the Earth that we must show our gratitude. Ix is also the nawal of natural shrines and altars, the places where fire ceremonies are made to give thanks. A spirit of gratitude and humility keeps Ix healthy. Ix is of course deeply connected with the natural world and it is here that they find their wisdom, power and wealth. This is a day to give thanks, to remember gratitude, and a day to engage with your magic.

The number six is said to be the number of ultimate stability. It is the first of the three middle numbers of the cycle, the balance point neither too strong nor too weak. It is a day frequently used for ceremony thanks to its conducive energy. It represents the four directions with the Heart of the Sky and the Heart of the Earth. It also represents family, relating to the six qualities that nourish and hold families together – health, understanding, property, employment, friendship and actions.

The cross at the top of the central hill, Paclom, in Momostenango. Paclom is known as "the six place" and the two armed cross represents the four directions combining with the Heart of the Earth and the Heart of the Sky. This picture was taken on Wajxakib B'atz, February 2010.

5 Aj (27th March 2020)

5 AjPutting energy into the sustenance of our home or community benefits both ourselves and those around us. The day 5 Aj brings together these aspects to give a day where this type of work flourishes.

The nawal Aj is related to the spinal column. It holds us upright, brings us the strength and courage to do the right thing. It holds everything in its rightful place. However, it may not have always been like that. It gains strength as it is used, the wisdom it holds comes through experience. Whilst Aj is very much a leadership nawal, it is almost reluctant in stepping forward, preferring to guide gently rather than exercise the authority it also carries. These qualities of Aj are a blessing for all and are achieved through the experience of the work of life.

The day 5 Aj is a great day to be doing some form of work on behalf of your community, your work and your input will bring great nourishment to those around you. It is a day for selfless work, a day within the Toj trecena, where we have the opportunity to pay back the support our families, friends and communities show to us. However, it may also be a day when efforts to guide or lead may be rather more challenging than expected, especially if you feel yourself rushing into things.

The Temple of the Foliated Cross. This small and unassuming temple houses one of the most remarkable and beautiful friezes, the Foliated Cross, the featured image of this article. Together with those of the Temple of the Sun and the Temple of the Cross, this forms an architectural version of a codex, showing both mythic and historical accounts of the ruling dynasty. The three temples together form the cross group, the sacred heart of the beautiful site of Palenque. Picture by Mark Elmy

The nawal Aj is related to many things which generally revolve around leadership on an earthly level. It is sometimes known as the cornstalk, sometimes the staff of life. It represents the spinal column within the body, that which allows us to stand tall, proud and brave. As the cornstalk, it has its roots in the Earth, and it’s head in the sky. As we are the people of maize, if we wish to lead in a just manner, we should cultivate our connection with the Heart of the Sky and the Heart of the Earth.

Foliated crossThis is a picture of the carving at the top of one of my favourite Mayan temples, the Temple of the Foliated Cross on the site of Palenque (Bàakʼ) in Chiapas, Mexico. At the top of the tablet you see a bird, which represents the Heart of the Sky, the face with the large rectangular (crossed) eyes at the base of the cross represents the Heart of the Earth. The foliated cross is a stylised maize plant with the heads of humans emerging. This is Aj bringing life to the world. It is the central pillar, that which supports life. It is represented by the staffs carried by the elders of Mayan communities to this day. 

Aj is an authority, it is gentle, yet noble. It works quietly for the community it leads. It does not seek the limelight. This is a day that seeks sustenance for it’s people, that keeps everything in it’s rightful place. It is a day where we ask for the courage and bravery to stand up straight and tall, to do the right thing.

The Sacred Mayan calendar is often said to be a calendar of human life, and parts of it can be seen as a microcosm of the human body. The number five is one of these parts. It is representative of the hand with it’s five digits. It is with our hands that we work, and with what we earn for that work that we pay our debts. Five is also a number that relates to the sacred fire where we pay our debts with offerings and prayers. Five might be so busy working that it fails to remember what it is working for. It can also signify that what it is attached to becomes work, or is “hard work”.

4 E’ (26th March 2020)

4 EThe energy of the journey of discovery comes down to Earth today as the nawal E’ combines with the number 4. This is a day which highlights the physical journey.

E’ days always have an auspicious energy about them when it comes to travelling. On E’ days our life path makes its presence known, and sometimes this is not what we were planning at that point with our conscious minds. Synchronicity steps in and puts us back on track. Maybe we see a signpost, or maybe we meet someone on the road that fulfils that role and takes us in a different direction.

Today, the combination with the number 4 brings that concept very much into the physical realm. It is a day of physical journeys and to pay attention to the physical markers on your path. E’ is the discoverer, not just of the way or the path, but also of the understanding of how things work. As such today is a great day to get really grounded with your understanding of where you are going and why. It may be a day on which your physical destination helps to ground the discoveries you have made so far along your journey.

FootprintsNawal E’ represents the journey of discovery, the life path in both its physical and spiritual aspects. E’ is the explorer, it craves novelty. It inspires travel to understand different cultures and ways of life, it is a seeker of experience. It can be a thrill seeker, and sometimes will take risks to understand what it is examining. Whilst it gains experience and understanding through physical travel, E’ also drives us to explore our inner world, helping us to understand our own minds and hearts, and those of others. E’ sometimes creates a restlessness, the desire to find new things within the world means that E’ finds it difficult to sit still.

E’ can sometimes cause us to explore simply for the sake of exploration, we seek the new experience because it is there. This can give rise to a lack of direction, aimless wandering. However, even in it’s wanderings E’ is discovering. It may not know exactly where it is going, but it will when it gets there. In it’s best aspect, E’ seeks out knowledge and experience in order to form an understanding which brings wisdom. E’ enjoys sharing the wisdom gained with it’s peers, for the enrichment of the community.

E’ is another of the classic  carriers of the year, or year lords. It is said that E’ years tend to be some of the more gentle and favourable years. E’  is seen as a good natured nawal. E’ days are considered to be good days on which to travel and explore, whether that be externally or internally. It is a day to find or remember your path, a day to ask for your path to be cleared of obstructions, and a day to ask for guidance and protection on your path.

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.

3 B’atz (25th March 2020)

3 B'atzWhilst the brilliant creative nature of the energy of B’atz cannot be denied, the outgoing nature of the energy may be subdued by the energy of the number 3, bringing an internal focus.

This might be considered to be a rather conflicted day of B’atz, and possibly the only one. B’atz is always thought of as being outgoing, fun loving and talented, but it could be that today things seem a bit flat. The jokes don’t quite work, the audience doesn’t respond as expected, the fingers don’t stretch to make the chord happen likre they normally do. It’s not to say don’t try, just that external expressions of creativity may be a far more challenging activity than normal.

However, there is a focus which may prove beneficial – in the home and on inner creativity. This may prove to be an excellent day for creation within the home environment, beautifying your inner world. It is more of a planning day, than an action day, allowing your inner creativity to weave ideas within you to manifest to the external world on a more conducive day.

Images of weaving using a backstrap loom, from the Madrid Codex

There are two nawales which bestow incredible talents, one of which is B’atz. B’atz is the nawal of artisans and of weavers, but this is not just creation and weaving on the Earthly level. B’atz weaves the threads of time together to create reality. B’atz is the nawal of the sacred calendar, which could be considered to be the fabric created from these individual threads of time. If B’atz is clever enough to weave time into order, then of course it is clever enough to create more down to Earth trinkets. B’atz is the master artisan, creating whatever it chooses, at will. It is just as comfortable painting, as it is playing music or writing. The arts come naturally to this nawal. However, this can lead to issues when B’atz has to deal with those less talented than itself. This can lead to a certain arrogance around those who fail to achieve their standard of excellence.

Their talent draws attention, which is something B’atz craves. It is the nawal of the born entertainer, who can sing, dance and play all at once. This nawal is the life and soul of the party, it also makes excellent teachers, who hold the attention of students through entertaining them. It is a particularly fun loving nawal that feeds on the adoration of the crowd that it pleases.

It is a day to create, especially within the fields of the arts. It is also a day to weave your reality the way you see fit. Where Aq’ab’al was the conception, B’atz is the gestation. Now is the time to incorporate what you wish into the pattern before it is birthed.

There are various myths about the creation which link with the number 3. One is that at the time of creation, three stone jumped out of the fireplace and formed the new world. These three stones are called the hearthstones, and are still seen in many Maya homes today, on the fire supporting the tortilla griddle. From an astronomical point of view, the stones are the stars Alnitak, Saiph and Rigel in the constellation we call Orion, and the Smoky Fireplace is the Great Orion Nebula (M42)

A (slightly crude) montage showing a proposed correlation between the constellation of Orion and the triadic structure of Maya pyramids. This one is "El Tigre" at the El Mirador site. Photo and montage by Mark Elmy
A (slightly crude) montage showing a proposed correlation between the constellation of Orion and the triadic structure of Maya pyramids. This one is “El Tigre” at the El Mirador site. Photo and montage by Mark Elmy

The number 3 is still in the low end of the range of numbers. It does not have much energy yet, and it is also an odd number. It can represent the home, relating to the three hearthstones laid by the creators, and this is probably a good focus for a 3 day. However, it is possibly the most troublesome of the numbers to deal with, it lacks stability and represents challenges and obstructions. The number three brings up internal/external dilemma. The lack of stability in the physical, external world that it brings suggests that the more appropriate action is to look to the internal world, both of the home and of yourself.

2 Tz’i (24th March 2020)

2 Tz'iThe day 2 Tz’i can be seen as a day which is very strongly linked to trust, fidelity and loyalty within relationships. Whilst it may be true that trust and fidelity issues may become apparent on this day, it may also bring out the best sides of these qualities.

There are many aspects highlighted today by both the energy of the nawal Tz’i and the number 2. Some of these are positive, but there is also scope for a great deal of betrayal. This can be an issue with both the Tz’i aspects of infidelity and the indecisive nature associated with the number 2. It may lead to some confusion between loyalty and instinct, throwing out some possibly difficult choices. Similarly, the same could be said regarding the law, that today more than others, the laws of society may seem a little more open to interpretation than usual. The issue is not just the potentially fickle nature of the energy, it is the unpredictable application.

However, there are also some really good positive aspects to Tz’i days and the energy of the number 2 focuses them on to relationships. This may be a day where you experience a higher than usual demonstration of faith and loyalty from your partner. It is a day to look to them for guidance, and have faith in where they lead you. It is a day to sacrifice the needs of the self, a day to embrace your partner with unconditional love.

The dog sits by the cauldron, from the Madrid Codex

Tz’i is possibly the nawal with the most colourful reputation. Some describe it as the nawal of “sex, drugs and rock and roll” and it has the possibility to live up to that label. One of the functions an Aj Q’ij (Mayan spiritual guide) performs is divination, usually using red seeds called Tz’ite. If a question is asked about a relationship and Tz’i comes up in the reading, it is seen as a sign of  infidelity. Tz’i is instinctual, and closes its ears to reason when it gets an idea, particularly when it is hormonally driven. This is the worst possible aspect of Tz’i and when it falls down, it does so spectacularly, which is why it tends to be remembered for those events.

However, what is sometimes forgotten is the other side of Tz’i, which is the side more frequently displayed. Just as Tz’i can represent infidelity, it also represents faith and loyalty, and just as it can be the trouble maker, it also represents law. It is the nawal of police, lawyers and judges. Tz’i is unwavering faith, unconditional loyalty. The totem animal of Tz’i is the dog, and through the actions of dogs we can understand both the loyalty aspect, and the instinctual. Tz’i is also the guide and protector on life’s path, ensuring that it’s charge travels safely. It is a day when your faith or loyalty may be tested,  where your instincts are stimulated. The positive traits of this day give rise to to some of the greatest displays of friendship, but be aware that your loyalty may be tested by temptation.

The number 2 is representative of duality, of polarity. Although it is a low number it has surprising strength as it is said to be able to call upon both aspects or polarities of what it is attached to. It is said to be the number of lovers, it signifies relationships and self-sacrifice. Whilst it can lend itself to mediation, seeing both sides of the story, it also can be indecisive.

The Trecena of Toj (23rd March – 4th April 2020)

The trecena of Toj is a time to give back, to spend some of your resources, time and energy on the sources which have supported your progress and growth. It is a time to be of service to your family and your community.

If you wish to make a donation to help the people of San Pablo la Laguna in this time of need, please check out http://www.odimguatemala.org/

If you wish to make a donation to help the people of San Marcos la Laguna in this time of need, you can find information on how to do so to a reputable source here: https://www.facebook.com/jtabsny/posts/10159684837022796

1 Toj (23rd March 2020)

1 TojThe day 1 Toj is a day to begin to restore the balance in life. If there is a debt, either financial or energetic, which has been weighing heavily for some time, today is a day to start to do something about it.

Following on from the possibility of receiving the great bounty on 13 Q’anil, finishing up the trecena of Ajmak, we move into the trecena of Toj. Sometimes the trecena may have a theme such as creativity (B’atz) or unconditional love (Tz’i), sometimes it will be a little tougher, such as forgiveness (Ajmak) or payment (Toj.) It is not that these things are bad, they are just a little less inviting, the “work” aspect of life, but necessary work it is.

Today is the day to start this process of rebalancing. It is a day to begin the repayment of outstanding debts. This may be financial, it may be through work, or it may be through charitable means. Much can be achieved with a selfless act, a random act of kindness towards no one in particular. Today an act such as this may begin to bring harmony, possibly even where you never expected it.

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Life proceeds through energetic interactions. We consume energy in one form or another and then we return it, often in a different form. Even when it comes down to the air we breathe or the water we drink, there is some form of exchange going on. To come to a state of harmony within the world that we live, balance must be achieved. In this modern world, sometimes we defer these debts, whether they are financial or not. We take something, often with the intention of resolving the imbalance as soon as we can, but then end up forgetting these debts, especially the small. Individually this is not always too much of a problem,we can proceed with a small imbalance, but many small items eventually cause us to fall out of harmony. This in turn may lead to a state of disease and an illness may occur.

Toj days remind us to keep our promises, to make our payments in whatever form they might take. They might be physical or financial, or they might be words of gratitude, whether to our physical providers or to our environment. These simple acts help to keep us healthy, it is in our own interests to make these exchanges, to return what we have used.

The nawal Toj represents offerings and payment. It is part of the name Tojil, a Mayan god who gave fire to the people, although this was not a free gift. Tojil asked in return for sacrifice to be made. This is a day of payment and sacrifice, a day to resolve debts, both in the physical and spiritual realms. Toj is the nawal of the sacred fire, and it is to the fire that we make offerings in order to burn away what would commonly be known as karmic debts. In this way we restore balance, we bring our accounts back to zero.

Toj carries with it a form of divine protection, which is enhanced through selfless acts. These acts might involve a sacrifice of our time or energy in order to strengthen our community. We can choose to act or we can choose to ignore, but be aware – ignoring an opportunity to make a payment on a Toj day might bring a ill fortune, the removal of the protection. Payment should be made with an open heart, thanks might not be quickly forthcoming, and may not come at all. Your sacrifice could be something as simple as picking up litter in your neighbourhood, it doesn’t have to be something elaborate.

The number 1 is representative of the seed, of unity. It represents birth and beginnings. It is a low and odd number, which usually represents something challenging. However, the seed can grow into a mighty tree, it is full of potential. It just needs the correct nutrients and conditions to germinate and develop, just as sometimes we need encouragement to develop our ideas.

13 Q’anil (22nd March 2020)

13 Q'anilThe energy of the nawal Q’anil ripens that which brings us abundance, and the number 13 suggests a powerful influence from the spirit world.

If the trecena of Ajmak is about redemption, the day 13 Q’anil could be seen as bringing the outcome of our efforts. If we ask Ajmak to bring the sweetness into life, Q’anil can easily be seen as this. Here we see a hand of the ancestors, or of the other world assisting, the ripening process. It may be that something you are trying to bring to maturity receives help from the unseen world. It is that unexpected push, a surprising gift which seems to drop at your feet, just at the most appropriate time, providing you have cleared its path through forgiveness. This could be inspiration of how to finish a project which comes to you in a flash, particularly relating to the arts or plant world.

Q’anil days are connected with the plant kingdom, and are often great days to be sowing something which you wish to bring to its full ripeness. On this particular occasion, you could find your hands and senses guided by spirit to assist you in this task. For many, our ancestors were more in touch with growing their food, today is a day to tap into that spirit.

With the energy of the 13 around, this is a good day to ask for guidance from your ancestors with regards to how to bring a project to its full fertility and abundance. It is a day to bring out its full brightness.

Q’anil represents the ripening of the seed, the crop coming to maturity. The Kiché word Q’an means yellow, and the -il suffix is rather like the English -ing. Q’anil represents the golden head of maize at it’s perfection of ripeness, ready to be picked. In the Mayan creation story, humans were fashioned from maize dough, we are Ixim Achi, the people of the corn. The maize in this part of the world has a 260 day growth season between planting (conception) and harvest (birth.) This connects maize with both the sacred calendar and with the period of human gestation.

It is in the fields and gardens that Q’anil’s light shines particularly brightly, it is the nawal of farmers, gardeners and herbalists. But just as it is at home around plants, Q’anil has the possibility to shine anywhere. Q’anil has talent, it’s beautiful golden light illuminates that which it comes into contact with, Q’anil people light up the room with their presence. Q’anil is about achieving full potential, and this relates to all of our activities. It does have an affinity to the arts, but in general is a day of bounty for all life projects.

However, when an energy is so fertile and prosperous, life can become too easy. Q’anil also appreciates the rewards of it’s talent – sometimes a little too much. Q’anil is prone to overindulge in the sensual, in particular with regards to intoxication.

The number 13 is the final number. It represents the spirit world. It is said that on Halloween, the veil between the worlds is the thinnest. However within the sacred calendar, this thinning happens every 13 days. This connection with the spirit world creates a powerful day, where both the positive and negative aspects of the nawal it is attached to come through strongly. It is a very good day for activities such as divinations, however, ceremonies on 13 days should only be carried out by the most experienced Aj Q’ij who understand how to work with that strength of energy.

12 Kej (21st March 2020)

12 KejThe day 12 Kej has a very strong energy, both with regards to the nawal and the number. This energy may bring you determination, but be aware of where determination becomes stubbornness.

This is a day on which you can draw on your life experience in order to enhance your leadership or resolve issues. However, it may be important to understand where those experiences are useful and where they are not. The determination associated with the nawal Kej may lead to a degree of inflexibility when it comes to attachment to “the way it has always been done.” While strength may be built on experience, understanding how to adapt those experiences to become relevant as society evolves is the real goal.

It is also a day when you may find that a walk in the wilderness, or other connection with nature, acts as a very positive recharge for your energy. Connecting with nature may help you to balance the strength of this day and assist with decision making, possibly giving some perspective to the more determined ideas.

Xbalamkiej, patron of the day Kej one of the hero twins from the Popol Vuh. From the Dresden Codex

Kej is possibly the strongest of the nawales, it is powerful, but in a different way to Kan. Kej is energetic, lively and determined. It is the nawal of nature, of the wilderness and it is this power that it draws on. The animal totem of Kej is the deer, but if you have fragile, new-born Bambi in mind, think again. This is the majestic stag, standing on the mountain surveying his domain. Whilst most nawales are not necessarily engendered, Kej is most definitely masculine. Both men and women that carry Kej as their nawal have great strength, although the men tend to hide their strength more. Kej women are particularly driven, resourceful and brave, sometimes to the point of being rather dominant. All radiate an aura of nobility, people tend to look to them to lead.

Kej is the nawal of the Mayan “religion”, a day of spiritual leaders, of shaman and of priests. It is these leaders who understand how to read the messages from the natural world, who help to keep our existence in balance with nature. It is a day to connect with the wilderness and draw the power of the natural world into you, to harmonise and replenish.

The number 12 is the penultimate number. In some ways it can be seen as the last Earthly number, the number 13 representing the spirit world. We travelled through the mortal world with 1 through 6, then the other world with 7 through 12. In this way 12 can be seen as a point of bringing all of the experiences into one bundle for presentation to the spirit world as we step into 13. As such, the number 12 brings a wealth of experience into one place, it is rather like writing an autobiography. It is totality, all that is, brought together.

11 Kame (20th March 2020 – Equinox 03.50 UTC)

11 KameThis could turn out to be a day of powerful spiritual transformations which may come through confronting great challenges. They may seem unrelated, but the eventual outcome may come clear after time.

The highly unpredictable energy of the number 11 combines with the nawal Kame today to throw some challenges into life. There are some things which are difficult to face, they may be lifelong challenges, phobias or frights. These are things which follow us through life, confronting us from time to time, to give us the opportunity to clear them from our lives. In doing so, we move into a higher aspect of ourselves as we let the old fear die and fall away.

Today these challenges may come from many directions, and they may come in quickly and with force. The ability to adapt and respond to these situations as they arrive can be gleaned from the nawal Kame. It brings us the bravery to undergo these challenges and grow from them. Today is the day to “feel the fear and do it anyway”, although you might find more than the usual number of challenges coming your way.

Additionally, today is the day of the equinox, a day of equal light and darkness. We are moving out of one cycle and into the next within the Earth’s cycle. This gives an extra sense of equilibrium, very much in synchronicity with the Chol Q’ij. This is the time of the year that changes are happening the most rapidly. In the Northern hemisphere, the dead world is coming back to life rapidly as the days lengthen with the greatest rate of change. In the Southern hemisphere the reverse is true, yet the rate of change is just as great. It is this change that completes the cycle of life and today we celebrate this balance which puts everything in its rightful place.


Kame relates to death, which often makes people nervous. However, this nawal is seen as an extremely positive day. Birth is the gateway into the mortal life, death the gateway into the eternal. In many shamanistic traditions, the initiate goes through several death experiences during training. This can be through the use of particular herbs, or sometimes through accident or illness. In these experiences the density of the mortal realm falls away and the greater understanding emerges. It can often be described as a spiritual transformation. In the Popul Vuh, the Mayan book of creation, the Hero Twins descend to the underworld, Xibalba, to confront the Lords of Death. They pass the many challenges set for them, but eventually end up being tricked by the Lord of Death. Instead of giving in, the Hero Twins choose to sacrifice themselves. They give instructions to a pair of seers to convince the Lords of Death to grind the Twins’ bones to dust and throw the dust in the river. Everything went according to plan and five days later the twins appeared as catfish in the river, then transformed into vagabond “magicians”. In this way we see a literal transformation from the crusader (Tijax) through death (Kame) to the higher self (Ix). This is the potential of the Kame day, to face ones fears and attain a higher perspective, to advance the journey of your soul. This is also a day to remember your ancestors and friends that have passed into the other realm, to remember what they taught you, and to thank them for their wisdom that helped you to grow.

The number 11 is a high and odd number. This gives it some rather challenging properties, although it can come good in the end. Imagine you visit Ireland and are transfixed by the green of the hills, then you go to Morocco and are awed by the red of the buildings, then you go to the Caribbean and are moved by the turquoise sea. You return home and paint a beautiful picture using those colours. When you were in Ireland you didn’t know you were going to paint that masterpiece, you may not have even known why you were there.  This is how 11 works. You are sure you need to be doing something, but unsure why. You are collecting experience through many wanderings.