8 B’atz (6th December 2017)

8 B'atz

Wajxakib B’atz

Today is one of the most important days in the sacred calendar. It is the beginning of the new ceremonial cycle, the day of initiation of new day keepers, the day where the baton is passed from the old to the new. It is the day of celebration of the Chol Q’ij, the sacred calendar, which brings our ability to navigate through life using the cycles of sacred time.

The nawal B’atz represents the thread of time, and the sacred calendar is a representation of how that thread is woven to create reality. It is the nawal B’atz that brings the creativity to our world, re-creating and renewing all around us.

Both the number 8 and the nawal B’atz have a connection with gestation. It is said that the umbilical cord has 8 strands to it, and of course this brings the nourishment to the new life being brought into being. Here, within the Maya cross, we see 8 B’atz sitting between 13 Aq’ab’al (the conception from the ancestors) and 3 Kawok (the day of the midwife/birth process) preceding the day 4 Ajpu (the first day of the new world). It is on 8 B’atz that the new world receives its nourishment within the womb of creation, and this comes from the prayers and offerings made in the ceremonies. From the dawn of this day, the shrines and altars within the Maya lands will be packed with Aj Q’ijab making offerings and prayers on behalf of not just their communities, but the world as a whole. They are imparting the  love and wisdom of the old world into the new world which is being woven. This is the day where the seam is created joining the previous weaving of creation, completed on 7 B’atz (40 days ago), with the new weaving started in 1 B’atz (20 days ago). Here, the past and the future are joined.

We all have some talent to create, through words, music, food or images. We also have the ability to shape the world around us, our homes, our families, our communities. This is the day that we give thanks for our creative abilities, the day to gather inspiration from what you have created before and combine it with a new concept or method. Today we put all our love and energy into nurturing the new world soon to be birthed into being. It is the day where we embrace, and are empowered by, the wholeness of creation.

A dawn ceremony at the Nima Sabal altar in Momostenango on Wajxakib B'atz (11th July 2011)
A dawn ceremony at the Nima Sabal altar in Momostenango on Wajxakib B’atz (11th July 2011)

There are two nawales which bestow incredible talents, one of which is B’atz, the creative genius, the other N’oj, the intellectual genius. 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.

The number 8 is considered to be a number of wholeness. It can be seen as birth (1) and death (7) combined to represent the whole cycle of the soul. It can also be seen as the point where the four first men who raised the sky from the sea were joined by their wives and the world become whole. It is the most common day for ceremonies to be made, it is still in the balanced range of numbers and is an even number, which is also considered fortunate. As this wholeness represents every aspect of the energy of the day with which it is coupled, it is the wholeness of the nawal that is addressed in ceremony.