4 Toj (4th November 2019)

4 TojThe nawal Toj brings with it the appropriate time to make a payment, but today this is very much something which should apply to the physical reality. It is a day to pay off your physical debts and allow others to pay theirs.

Our debts weigh heavily on our energy, whether they are big karmic debts or that £10 you forgot to give back to someone. It doesn’t matter if it is only a tiny debt, in fact those you forget are the ones which mount up. They connect both the debtor and the lender, nibbling away at their energy and causing both an imbalance and and unnecessary attachment. The theme of this trecena of Kame is spiritual transformation, and this is difficult to undergo when such physical attachments are present.

Big debts can be very detrimental to the health, but may also be difficult to clear. Small ones might be more manageable. Sometimes just an acknowledgement towards the person you owe may go a long way to creating harmony, just by showing you haven’t forgotten. Likewise, it is important to remind others of their debt towards you, even if you feel awkward doing this. The energy goes both ways and it is better to clear it. Of course it doesn’t have to be about money, it may be that you owe the most precious of commodities, time.

Today is a day to repay favours, if nothing is asked for then why not just do something nice for someone who has helped you out in the past. If you haven’t got anyone to repay, then this would be an excellent day for a random act of kindness towards a complete stranger.

Toj helps to bring health and well being when payments are made, and so making physical payments today can help to heal divides within your community and bring transformation.


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 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 Q’anil (3rd November 2019)

3 Q'anilWith the nawal Q’anil representing the ripening, maturity, fertility and abundance, we usually expect beneficial Q’anil days. However,  with the number 3 representing possible obstructions, today could be slightly more challenging than most Q’anil days.

Q’anil days, much like the people who carry Q’anil as their nawal, very rarely fail to shine. They often feel like bright, happy-go-lucky kind of days, and with the properties of Q’anil, this is exactly what we would expect. However, today they might lose a little of their lustre. Growth and the passage towards ripeness may be a little obstructed, Q’anil may not be quite as prosperous as usual. Even the usual connection to the plant world may be obstructed today. The usual blessings of Q’anil enjoyed in the garden may not be quite as fruitful as normal. The harvest is on its way, but full abundance cannot be reaped at this time, full ripeness has not yet been reached.

As we age, Q’anil helps us to mature, we ripen from children into elders. Today might bring some setbacks with that process. It might give rise to a less than mature response from yourself or from those around you. This may lead to some frustration, it could lead to some lapses in responsibility. Q’anil may then even lead you into drunkenness.

We are passing further into the trecena of Kame, and once again we see a potential for challenges in the energy of today, although what we learn from these challenges may truly help our souls to ripen. The inner alchemical process we undergo during the trecena of Kame is highlighted as the light of Q’anil turns inwards bringing maturity to hidden depths of our creativity. Although this may not be easily expressed in the outer world, it is possible that the brightness of Q’anil illuminates something in ourselves which is normally unseen, a hidden talent.

However, it could also add some lightness to the day – Q’anil is a fun loving nawal after all. If we take into account the other aspect of the number 3, that of the home, this could be where the light of Q’anil truly comes out today. By bringing this lightness into your home, it could be an excellent day for a play day with your children, just don’t expect anyone to act too much like an adult!

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They are ripening, but are not yet displaying their full brightness. Picture by Mark Elmy

Nawal Q’anil represents the ripening of the seed, the crop coming to maturity. The K’iché word Q’an means yellow, and the -il suffix is rather like the English -ing. Q’anil represents the golden head of maize at its 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, its 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 its talent – sometimes a little too much. Q’anil is prone to overindulge in the sensual, in particular with regards to intoxication.

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 Kej (2nd November 2019)

2 KejThe energy of the nawal Kej is known for its strength and sometimes its stubbornness. However, its pairing with the number 2 may bring more gentleness to this day.

It is said that one of the qualities of the number 2 is to double the strength of whatever it comes into contact with. It enhances both aspects of the nawal. This may give the energy of Kej a softer edge than we might normally expect of a Kej day, as the energy of nawal Kej can be domineering and certainly determined. It is the nawal known to stand up first against what it perceives as injustice, and here we see it combined with the number which relates to self-sacrifice and relationships.

We could expect that today this energy may give rise to situations where we give our strength to causes dear to our hearts. It is a good day to bring new, fresh and vital energy into relationships through a connection with nature, allowing the raw beauty of the wilderness to inspire and revitalise. It is also a great day to put your energy into projects to protect the wilderness.

The nawal Kej is the representative of leadership, especially where it takes on a spiritual aspect. Perhaps it is an aspiration that may be held by some, to be a leader within the community. There is always a price to pay when in a position of leadership, and today this is exemplified through the energy of the number 2. It reminds us that true leadership begins with self sacrifice, the willingness to give freely of our time and energy on behalf of our communities. Today, this sacrifice may lead to strength and vitality coming to the people we care about.

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