Tag Archives: Mam

5 Iq’ (7th November 2017)

5 Iq'Clear and effective communication is always an important goal, especially if it can become something which transcends the usual level. Today is a day to work towards this ideal, although it might not come easily.

The nawal Iq’ does highlight communication, but it also brings about changes and its most challenging property is anger. These three properties can all be seen working hand in hand. Lack of communication can lead to anger, as can enforced, or unforeseen changes. It is worthwhile remembering this on Iq’ days, as sometimes the energy can make people more sensitive to these things and produce a stronger than expected reaction.

Days carrying the number five have some interesting properties and can lead to some frustration. It all comes down to putting effort into or working on the properties of the nawal to which it is attached.

This can lead to a day where putting a little extra effort into the clarity of your words will certainly help to overcome possible negative outcomes. In fact with suitable attention to detail your hard work may pay off, and your words will be blessed by the divine breath, inspiring those around you.

Wind God 1

Within the solar calendar, today marks the beginning of a new month as we travel through the solar year. Today is the first day of Takaxepual translated as the season of first sowing. This should mark the point in time where that first sowing of maize, which took place 260 days ago, is ripened and ready, marking the beginning of the maize harvesting season.  It should also mark the point in the year where the rain ceases to fall and we move into the dry months before the new Year Lord takes his seat in 105 days time.

Nawal Iq’ is another strong nawal. It represents communication and particularly divine inspiration. It is the wind, the breath of life, that which brings the change in seasons.

The communication brought by Iq’ can be enlightening and inspiring. It is the breath of the divine which flows through us all, in fact the word for soul is Saq Iq’ – white breath. When our breath stops, our divine essence leaves our physical body. When we engage ourselves with the divine breath we are able to create, to manifest with our words, to inspire those around us. However, Iq’ also has a destructive side. It has the ability to blow like a hurricane and may level everything before it. It is the angry words which cut down everything in their path.

Hurricane is one of the few English words which is actually derived from a Mayan word- Junrakan, meaning “one footed”. Junrakan is another name for the Heart of the Sky, one of the creator deities. Once again it seems that certain patterns follow through the sequence of the nawales which are interrelated. Imox, the female creative principle, or egg, is fertilised be Iq’, the male principle. Their combination results in Aq’ab’al, the conception and a change in the state, bringing the dream into reality.

Iq’ is a day of communication, a day of inspiration. It can be a great day to express yourself through written or particularly verbal means. It is also a day on which changes happen. You can either embrace those changes or resist them, but be aware that the wind blows forcefully and resistance of change requires a great deal of energy. Embracing change helps you to learn to dance like a leaf in the wind.

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”.

5 Iq’ 0 Nab’e Mam – The Seating of the New Mam

The Seating of the New Mam is the moment that the Wayeb has ended, when the period of retreat has finished and we can emerge from our “cave” back into the real world. In some communities, this would be celebrated with feasting and drinking, welcoming in the new grandfather who will guide us through the next revolution of the sun.

This year is governed by the Mam 5 Iq’. In addition to 5 Iq’ carrying the energy of the day, it is also carrying the energy of this new year. The properties and benefits brought by the nawal 5 Iq’ are discussed in my post for the day of 5 Iq’ here. The energy of this day is a representative of the energy which we will be living with for the whole year. The general advice for the energy of this year may be to strap in and prepare for turbulence.

The new Mam may take a little while to settle in. This is usually the first 20 days. Whilst it is obvious that the “administration” has changed, it takes a little time for all the promises made in the campaign to be adhered to. Nothing in nature moves in a square wave, it is always a gentle transition more akin to a sine wave. This is the first light of dawn, the day is just beginning, but we are still experiencing a little of the cold of the night. It will not be until midday, the height of the cycle that we will experience the fullest expression of the energy of this year lord. We can expect that in around 182 days or so, 5 K’at (21st August 2017).


The last time we experienced a Iq’ year was 2013, which was the year 1 Iq’. Iq’ years tend to have the reputation of being blustery, unpredictable years, years of change and harsh words. Change is what drives life; without it, stagnancy and true death occur. However, sometimes change is difficult to resolve, we have to learn to adapt, which when we were in a space we had grown attached to may bring up fear and possibly anger. This may be a year where we will need to learn to adapt quickly. The influence of the number 5 suggests work, which usually brings results, but when you are labouring you may find it difficult to understand what you are working towards. It may be that adapting will be harder work than anticipated.

The energy of the number 5 also has a reputation for rushing into things. In combination with the nawal Iq’ this could cause many problems, possibly with harsh words spoken in haste. Communication issues could come to the fore this year, both personally and in society. There is room, of course, for the inspirational words to be delivered by nawal Iq’, although these may seem more elusive than usual; Once again the 5 bringing the idea that they may be hard work to come by.

On a grander scheme of things, the cycle of the year bearers repeats every 52 years. Of course, we do not relive exactly the same experiences, but we may see similarities with the last time this year bearer was in office. That was the year 1965, when Mam would have taken his seat on the Gregorian day 5th March. This gives us the opportunity to understand how to engage with the benefits of, and avoid the errors committed during, the previous incarnation of the Mam 5 Iq’. For some ideas on major events of 1965, please click here.

Old Man Possum drew 4 streaks on the sky and is seen here delivering the new Mam, representing the new solar year. The first column of glyphs on the left hand side of the page, from the top to the representation of possum are all Iq’. He is accompanied by K’inich Ahau in the two frames below, the benevolent solar deity. From the Dresden Codex.

 

5 Iq’ (20th February 2017)

5 Iq'Clear and effective communication is always an important goal, especially if it can become something which transcends the usual level. Today is a day to work towards this ideal, although it might not come easily.

The nawal Iq’ does highlight communication, but it also brings about changes and its most challenging property is anger. These three properties can all be seen working hand in hand. Lack of communication can lead to anger, as can enforced, or unforeseen changes. It is worthwhile remembering this on Iq’ days, as sometimes the energy can make people more sensitive to these things and produce a stronger than expected reaction.

Days carrying the number five have some interesting properties and can lead to some frustration. It all comes down to putting effort into or working on the properties of the nawal to which it is attached.

This can lead to a day where putting a little extra effort into the clarity of your words will certainly help to overcome possible negative outcomes. In fact with suitable attention to detail your hard work may pay off, and your words will be blessed by the divine breath, inspiring those around you.

Wind God 1

Nawal Iq’ is another strong nawal. It represents communication and particularly divine inspiration. It is the wind, the breath of life, that which brings the change in seasons.

The communication brought by Iq’ can be enlightening and inspiring. It is the breath of the divine which flows through us all, in fact the word for soul is Saq Iq’ – white breath. When our breath stops, our divine essence leaves our physical body. When we engage ourselves with the divine breath we are able to create, to manifest with our words, to inspire those around us. However, Iq’ also has a destructive side. It has the ability to blow like a hurricane and may level everything before it. It is the angry words which cut down everything in their path.

Hurricane is one of the few English words which is actually derived from a Mayan word- Junrakan, meaning “one footed”. Junrakan is another name for the Heart of the Sky, one of the creator deities. Once again it seems that certain patterns follow through the sequence of the nawales which are interrelated. Imox, the female creative principle, or egg, is fertilised be Iq’, the male principle. Their combination results in Aq’ab’al, the conception and a change in the state, bringing the dream into reality.

Iq’ is a day of communication, a day of inspiration. It can be a great day to express yourself through written or particularly verbal means. It is also a day on which changes happen. You can either embrace those changes or resist them, but be aware that the wind blows forcefully and resistance of change requires a great deal of energy. Embracing change helps you to learn to dance like a leaf in the wind.

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”.

11 N’oj

11 N'ojThis is a day for “those free-thinking types.” It is a day with a myriad of genius ideas, although finding a train of thought to follow may be challenging.

Most days which carry the number 11 can be a little confusing to say the least. The strong energy of the 11 combined with its desire to wander randomly can lead to situations where you don’t really know where you are, or where you are going, although you are sure you are in the right place. The energy of N’oj may bring some stability to this through its logical and pragmatic energy. It may be a day of many thoughts and ideas which seem to form some kind of cohesive structure from a certain point of view. You may need to patiently observe your thoughts until the end of the day in order to understand where the trail is leading. In fact it may be that today you are able to come up with the rather left field thoughts that were the missing pieces of your master plan.

Earth Lord
A depiction of the Earth Lord, the patron of the day Caban (N’oj). He makes a sacrifice of his own blood so that the maize, sustenance of the people, will sprout. Representative of fertility and abundance through the cycle of life, death and resurrection. From the Dresden Codex.

The nawal N’oj is the nawal of thought, of intelligence and intellect. Within the count of days, there are two geniuses. B’atz is the creative genius, N’oj the intellectual one. N’oj is an energy of masculine, logical thought. N’oj is the problem solver, it gives ideas and solutions which work in the real world. N’oj gives a different way to understand situations, and through this ability comes innovation. It is thought, but also understanding and, indeed, knowing. As such, N’oj is also a day associated with divination.

This energy is not necessarily social, it can lead to becoming absorbed into one’s work, lost in one’s thoughts. The influence of N’oj can create ideas which may be very much ahead of their time. Do not be surprised if ideas you have on this day take a little time to catch on, the people you express the ideas to may need a little time to process, to see the genius within the idea.

N’oj is also one of the classic year bearers, or year lords. As a year bearer it is thought to be one of the more beneficial and benign energies. This year, 2016,  is the year 4 N’oj.

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.

 

4 N’oj 0 Nab’e Mam – The Seating of the New Mam

The Seating of the New Mam is the moment that the Wayeb has ended, when the period of retreat has finished and we can emerge from our “cave” back into the real world. In some communities, this would be celebrated with feasting and drinking, welcoming in the new grandfather who will guide us through the next revolution of the sun.

This year is governed by the Mam 4 N’oj. In addition to 4 N’oj carrying the energy of the day, it is also carrying the energy of this new year. This is likely to be a welcome relief after the difficulties and challenges brought to many by the year 3 E’. The properties and benefits brought by the nawal 4 N’oj are discussed in my post for the day of 4 N’oj here. This is a year to bring your new ideas into the physical world, a year of stable solutions to problems.

Whilst things should become easier, it may not happen overnight. The new Mam may also take a little while to settle in. This is usually the first 20 days. Whilst it is obvious that the “administration” has changed, it takes a little time for all the promises made in the campaign to be adhered to. Nothing in nature moves in a square wave, it is always a gentle transition more akin to a sine wave. This is the first light of dawn, the day is just beginning, but we are still experiencing a little of the cold of the night. It will not be until midday, the height of the cycle that we will experience the fullest expression of the energy of this year lord. We can expect that in around 182 days or so, 4 Kawok (21st August 2016).

Kinich Ahau, the solar deity, lord of space and time. We begin a new solar year, a new count of solar time. He is also representative of the number 4, which is the number carried by this new year. From the Dresden Codex.
4 N’oj (21st February 2016) is a day when we materialise our ideas into the physical world. We may have been sitting on them for some time, waiting for the right moment, and now is the time to ground them.

The last time we experienced a N’oj year was 2012, which was the year 13 N’oj. In some ways we could be looking at an interesting part of a cycle. The number 13 signifies the spirit world, so it is possible that the ideas we had in 2012 were directly linked with the spirit world. This could represent more than a hint of divine inspiration in 2012 to get creating. Four years on, N’oj is back again, this time with a very Earthly number of stability, the number 4, so it is possible that the ideas/intuitions that were being fed to us from the spirit world in 2012 are now materialised and stabilised into the Earthly plane.

On a grander scheme of things, the cycle of the year bearers repeats every 52 years. Of course, we do not relive exactly the same experiences, but we may see similarities with the last time this year bearer was in office. That was the year 1964, when Mam would have taken his seat on the Gregorian day 5th March. This gives us the opportunity to understand how to engage with the benefits of, and avoid the errors committed during, the previous incarnation of the Mam 4 N’oj.

Old Man Possum drew 4 streaks on the sky and is seen here delivering the new Mam, representing the new solar year. Accompanied by K'inich Ahau in the two frames below as teh benevolent solar deity. From the Dresden Codex.
Old Man Possum drew 4 streaks on the sky and is seen here delivering the new Mam, representing the new solar year. Accompanied by K’inich Ahau in the two frames below as the benevolent solar deity. From the Dresden Codex.

3 Ajmak 4 Wayeb – The Fifth and Final Day of Wayeb

3 Ajmak 4 Wayeb

The fifth day of the Wayeb completes these days of introspection and retreat. In some ways, whilst this is the day when we can see the dawn of the new year coming, it may also be the most difficult day. It is the day when we start the process to emerge from the chrysalis.

Sometimes the birth process is not easy, it is painful. The combination of 3 Ajmak falling on this day of the Wayeb maybe gives a sense of  challenges or obstructions towards creativity or redemption. Today you may encounter tests towards your commitments. Can you forgive the unforgivable? Are you really ready to step into your emerging self? How does the the emerging butterfly you will become deal with the issues that challenged the caterpillar you were?

13 Aj 1 Wayeb – The Second Day of Wayeb

13 Aj 1 Wayeb

The second day of the Wayeb is said to represent recognition of yourself, during your introspective period. Could we possibly have a more auspicious day for this? 13 Aj brings out the leader of people within you, empowered by the spirit world. It shows you your true strengths, how you are able to stand up for and sustain your community. Search inside yourself for what you bring to the world, and how you can create a more harmonious environment for your family and community.

The high energy of the 13th day also illuminates the dark corners. How can the energy of this day help you to overcome what you perceive as your failings or your weaknesses? Allow the energy to bring you strength, the backbone, if you wish to overcome these in the new solar year.

Pawahtuun, also known as Mam and god N. Known as the god of the Wayeb and the number five. An old man that carries a conch shell, who was both a beloved creator and a trickster. From the Dresden Codex
Pawahtuun, also known as Mam and god N. Known as the god of the Wayeb and the number five. An old man that carries a conch shell, who was both a beloved creator and a trickster. From the Dresden Codex

The Chol Q’ij and the Macewal Q’ij

As the Mayan new solar year approaches I have been thinking about the relationship between the Chol Q’ij, the 260 day Mayan sacred calendar, and the Macewal Q’ij, the 365 day Mayan solar calendar, or ordinary days. In the Macewal Q’ij, “new year” will occur on February 21st in 2016, and because of the lack of an intercalary day, February 20th from 2017 to 2020. The Macewal Q’ij consists of 18 months of 20 days, which are then followed by a period of 5 days known as Wayeb.

Each new solar year, a new year bearer (also known as Mam, grandfather, cargador or Year Lord) takes his seat. There are four year bearers in use here in Guatemala, these are Kej, E’, N’oj and Iq’. They cycle much as the days cycle; 2012 was 13 N’oj, 2013 was 1 Iq’, 2014 was 2 Kej, 2015 was 3 E’ and 2016 will be 4 N’oj. In 2017 the solar year will begin on the day 5 Iq’, so we see the same sequence of year bearers with the number increasing by 1 each time. These are the year bearers currently used by the K’iche’ people of Guatemala. Archaeologists give a slightly different count as they start their count, the Ha’ab, 40 days later. The year bearers are the same, but the number is increased by 1, making 2016 the year 5 N’oj. There is also another count which starts 13 days later, due to an extra 13 days being added in February of 2013, which changed the year bearers. This was known as the “Gran Wayeb” and while this has many logical reasons and has been adopted in some areas, I do not know many indigenous day keepers who have adopted it yet.

The Chol Q’ij consists of 260 days and is commonly seen as 20 periods of 13 days, which are sometimes referred to as trecenas. Each trecena has a different attribute depending on the days involved and their strengths. However, there is another way of counting the Chol Q’ij which co-ordinates it’s movements with that of the Macewal Q’ij; that is by counting 20 day periods. Each month of the solar year begins with a seating day, which is usually given a value of 0, and ends on a day numbered 19. Therefore, the first day of the solar year, consists of two components, and in 2016 will be 4 N’oj 0 Nab’e Mam. After 20 day have elapsed, the solar month will change and the month of Rukub Mam will start on the next N’oj day, the date 12 N’oj 0 Rukub Mam. I have compiled the dates into the table below to show the entire year.

What this table shows is that the bearer of the year presides over each of the Macewal Q’ij months, moving through each of his variations. He moves through the solar year twice, once thirteen times, then the second time five times (marked with a *), then through the Wayeb. The ** on the Wayeb marks that the year bearer only takes his seat for five days, and that it is the year bearer which governed for the previous appearance of this year bearer. For example, 13 N’oj was the year bearer of the year 2012, and 1 Iq’ was the year bearer on 2013. This seems hardly a coincidence and probably relates to the “Ghost” of the previous Mam taking responsibility after the current year bearer has “died”. The Wayeb is known as a time when public ceremony should be avoided, some people do not wash or comb their hair, they may not leave the house. It is a time when the days are unsupported and misfortune may occur.

Macewal Q'ij 2

When these cycles are compared with the life cycle of the maize, possible clarity occurs. The life cycle of the maize, the sustenance and substance of the people is 260 days. If Maize was planted on 21st February, it would be harvested on 7th November, which incidentally also around when rainy season usually ends. The maize grows and ripens, then the plant dies and is doubled over so that it dries out. In this way we see the 260 days as a cycle of life. From the 7th November through to 16th February there is no rain, so new life, the new sprouting of the maize, cannot occur. This is the second period of the year bearer, the 100 days, which could be seen as a journey through the otherworld, the world of the dead. We then have the 5 days of mourning, before the new year bearer takes his seat and the cycle of life begins again.

2015 – What Happened…..And When Will It Stop?

I have been asked a question a few times in the last few days regarding the energy of the year. It seems that many people found 2015 a very challenging year. They thought they were glad to see the back of it a couple of weeks ago, only to find out that challenging things are still happening. I want to write a much larger article on the 365 day count and the year lords, which I will reserve for the arrival of the new Mam in February, but for now I thought I would write something to give some of my frustrated friends a glimmer of hope.

Before I start I would like to clarify that I am basing my new solar count day on what my teacher observes, that the new 365 day count will begin on February 21st. There are some groups which are changing over to a new set of Year Bearers, which will begin their new year on March 6th, and the archaeological count used in Mexico and known as the Ha’ab will roll over on April 1st.

The Year Lord who took charge of 2015 was the Year Lord (or Mam) 3 E’. Much as I am writing about the energy of the day, the energy of an entire year can either be favourable or unfavourable. E’ is considered to be one of the more favourable Year Lords, bringing with it a spirit of travel and discovery, although is may also be somewhat restless at times. It is about more than just the physical journey, it is about our path in life and where that may take us. The number 3 is a challenging number which can represent blockages and obstructions, instabilities and difficulties, and here we have it connected with our life path. As you can imagine this can make for a rather challenging year, uncertainty and blockages in one’s path. The benefits of the E’ year not only muted, but turned into challenges.

On 21st February 2016, the new Mam will take his seat. This will be start the year 4 N’oj. N’oj is also considered to be a favourable nawal, it is a nawal of ideas, thought and intellect. It is the energy of the problem solver. It is coupled with the number 4, again thought to be a good, stable number. Representing the four directions and the fourfold aspects of the passage of the Sun – sunrise, midday, sunset and midnight, as well as the solstices and equinoxes. It stabilises that which it is joined with and can be seen as bringing the qualities of the nawal it is associated with into the physical world. Here we see it coupled with the nawal of ideas and intellect, which suggests that the energy which will be coming in will be more conducive to manifesting our ideas into reality.

Nature does not change in straight lines or square wave patterns, rather more like rolling sine wave type patterns. Just as the tides of the seas ebb and flow, so do the energies of the days and of the years. I will look at the patterns involved in the passing of the years in another article, but suffice to say there may be some changeover time between the year 3 E’ and the year 4 N’oj. However, I would expect that hopefully you should be finding life calmer and more stable by the end of February.