Tag Archives: Novelty

1 Iq’ 0 Wayeb – The First Day of Wayeb

The posts that I am writing every day concern the days of the Chol Q’ij, the Mayan sacred or ritual calendar, which consists of 260 days. However, this is, of course, not the only calendar used by the Mayan people. One of the other calendars used is known as the Macewal Q’ij or Ordinary Days. This has been termed a civic or agricultural calendar, which may seem less grand than the sacred days, but without agriculture, the people would starve. There are ceremonies associated with certain days of the Macewal Q’ij, not least the arrival of the first day, the new Year Bearer. Kenneth Johnson wrote an excellent first hand account of his experience in Momostenango of the arrival of the new year bearer or Mam here

However, the new year is not here just yet, first we have to get through the Wayeb. These are the five days at the end of the 365 day count. They are thought of as a dangerous time, when the energy is confused to say the least. It is interesting to note that the final five days of the solar year are overseen by the previous incarnation of the same nawal. 1 Iq’ was the year bearer for 2013. If we imagine reality as a ship and the year bearer as the captain, it is as if the captain has died and been replaced by the ghost of the previous captain. Maybe this is why this time is thought of as being so unpredictable.

Wayeb is seen as a time of introspection, a time when we take stock of what has happened over the previous year. It is seen as a time when public ceremony is 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.

The introspection of the  first day of Wayeb is used to review the previous year. Its combination here with the day 1 Iq’ suggests a review of the changes and new directions you may have taken during the previous 360 days of the year 5 Iq’.  This is a day to reflect on the year 5 Iq’, what you may have considered turbulence. the strength of the wind can come in and cause what we might see as upset, as it blows us in unexpected directions. It brings change by sweeping away that which can no longer resist its force. It might turn upside down the things which do not have a solid foundation. Yet, as it does so it provides opportunity for renewal, and this is something we can focus on with the nawal 1 Iq’ as the number 1 represents new beginnings and birth and Iq’ is the breath of life. This is a chance to review how the nawal Iq’ may have swept away the old, cleaned your altar, in order to breathe life into the new.

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

1 Imox (9th July 2017)

1 ImoxToday we begin a new a new trecena, and some would say a whole new cycle of the calendar. This is a point of novelty, which could almost be called the “dream seed”, a new inspiration to develop over the coming 260 days.

For me, the day 1 Imox has the words “in the beginning” very firmly attached to it. It is the moment before the first sound, before the first movement, a fleeting idea, glimpses of a dream. Whilst the “beginning” of the sacred calendar is often debated, I feel the best analogy is that of an analogue clock. As we look at it we see a circle of numbers. Depending on how we look at it we can see our day beginning at midnight, at sunrise or at the time when we start our work. Each viewpoint is as valid as the others, and has a reason for being so. Barbara Tedlock assigns 1 Aq’ab’al as the first day in “Time and the Highland Maya” , whilst many Aj Q’ijab here assign 1 or 8 B’atz as the first day. The idea of Imox being the first day is supported in ancient architecture, but far less common now. In reality, the circle has no beginning or end.

Imox is pure potential, limitless and directionless. Likewise, the number 1 also represents potential. Today is a day to dream, and dream big. It may be confusing, the initial images might not make sense to begin with, as so often with dreams. It might be best not to attempt to fit them together just yet, just allow the ideas to come and grasp their energy for use later on. It is a day where you may be delving deep into the collective consciousness, to see what dreams are possible. It is the seed hidden deep in the dark moistness, with the ability to become whatever you wish it to. It is yours to grow, yours to guide, but today a little encouragement from others, to start to grow this dream seed , may prove very helpful. They may also help you to pull yourself out of the depths and come up for air once in a while.

White water lilies. There is some evidence that the flowers were used by the priest/kings to induce visions of the otherworld. Picture by Elise Lutz
White water lilies. There is some evidence that the flowers were used by the priest/kings to induce visions of the otherworld. Picture by Elise Lutz

Nawal Imox represents the collective consciousness, the great ocean. It is the moment before the “big bang”, when all that existed was the dream of the creator. It is everything and nothing in one place, the ovum from which reality was conceived. Imox is still very much in the other world, requiring another component to physically manifest the dream into reality.

Imox is considered to be a feminine nawal. Sometimes called water lily, sometimes crocodile, it is an embodiment of the primordial. It was from the great ocean that the four first men raised sky to create the world which we inhabit. Imox can also be seen as the Darwinian swamp from which all life emerged. It is fertile and creative, the mother that gave birth to our entire reality.

As the water lily, Imox is probably a representative of  Nymphaea ampla, the white water lily. It has been suggested that the white water lily was smoked by the ancient Maya in a similar way to the blue lotus was used by the Egyptians. It was a plant which allowed access to the otherworld, a plant from which visions came if used correctly.

Imox is our common origin, and as such links us all together. It is the place of dreams, the collective conscious we delve into on our nightly voyages. It may also relate to the place that certain plant medicines take us to in order to bring us wisdom. However, as the font of all of creation, Imox harbours the dark as well as the light. When faced with the entirety of creation, the line between sanity and madness may become blurred.

Imox is a day to celebrate the spirit of the times, to understand the collective mind, particularly of humanity. It is a day to dream your creations, your art, your music. It is a day when we may all feel connected, a day when the psychic field between us may be particularly strong. Discernment may be called for, to understand when to dissociate from the collective, to remember your individuality, and to pull yourself back out of the dream world.

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.