The day 1 Ix could be seen to represent the newborn jaguar. She has all the potential to grow into her powerful and magical adult self, but right now this is just an idea she sees in her elders. She grows through learning, and mother nature is her teacher.
1 Ix is a day where we can begin to learn the potential of our connection with Mother Earth. She is vast and sustains us all. Ix gives us the ability to communicate with her, to ask her for help, to ask her for what we need. Some would call it manifestation, but really it is just nature, it is how our mother wishes to see us nurtured. Yet some of us don’t see it. We fail to thank her, or even abuse her, our idea of human importance and power being greater than that of Mother Earth. We can not argue with her, she is bigger and tougher than we are! She has the power to scold us if she wishes.
This is the day which begins the Ix trecena, the next 13 day period. The whole trecena will carry the theme of harmonising with the spirit of Mother Earth and understanding the importance of our relationship to her.
Ix days are also the patron days of natural shrines and altars, the places where prayers and offerings are made to the spirit of Mother Earth, to ask her for what we require, and where thanks are given. The day 1 Ix could be seen as an excellent day for the renovation of such places, if you have them around you, or the setting up of new shrines. It is said that the number 1 represents the goddess Sac Ixik, the maiden moon goddess whose places were springs and streams, which are also associated with the nawal Ix. This association with water could also see the nawal Ix as both the source of life and the protector of water sources. 1 Ix is, therefore, a very feminine day, full of life and energy and of potential for magic and beauty. It is a day to show gratitude for all that you might become.
It is a day when we can make our petition to Mother Earth, and thank her for what she has brought to us. It is a day when we can see the benefits of living in harmony with Mother Earth, a day when we can begin to understand where engaging with her magic might lead us.
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.
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 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.