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February 04, 2012

This Day in the Maya Calendar, January 21–February 9, 2012

Cholq'ij, the Maya sacred ceremonial calendar of 260 days—a cycle of 20 Day deities and 13 numbers—is the basis of the Maya spirituality that survives to this time, practiced daily among millions of Maya people, in thousands of communities. The interpretation of the days can vary from one Maya people to another. The interpretations given here are based on sustained conversations and participation over three decades with Maya Q'eqchi calendar priest Roderico Teni and daykeeping families in the area of Cobán, Alta Verapaz, Guatemala, by Jose Barreiro (Taíno), head of NMAI’s Office of Latin America, and his wife, Katsi Cook (Mohawk).

For a more detailed introduction to this series, please see Jose's post "Living in the Practice." For further insight into the role of the Day lords in everyday life, please see the Maya Journal. For the complete year so far, please see the the Maya calendar archive

13 Kat  |  Thursday, February 9, 2012 

Day deity KatCorresponding with this day in the Gregorian calendar is 13 Kat. Kat is Spider, also Web and Fire. 13 is the highest number in the Cholq'ij. Kat is the network of the sacred fireplace, the family hearth—a good day to pray for your family fireplace, the spirit of the fire that belongs in the home, the one that calls other spirits to ceremony and speaks for them. Kat is the net that hauls in the fish, and the net that holds the ears of corn; it is a good day to help free prisoners from captivity, to request youth and power for the weak. On Kat, the unity of the people is paramount, and knowledge is deepened. Kat can bring the fruition of things and the untangling of complications.

Today's Maya calendar glyph represents Kat and appears throughout Maya country. 

12 Aqbal  |  Wednesday, February 8, 2012 

Day deity AqbalCorresponding with this day in the Gregorian calendar is 12 Aqbal. Aqbal is Dawn, also Bat. 12 is the highest balance. Aqbal is clarity—separation of darkness and light as the Sun disperses the fog and obscurity of night. It is a good day to ask for a peaceful and happy daybreak, a day to find hidden and lost things or to wash away tears of sadness. Aqbal is a good day to clean the ashes (renew the heart) of a fireplace and to present a new baby to el Mundo. On Aqbal, the sacred fire is recognized and appreciated. A potential bride or groom can be revealed on this day. Harvesting of corn can begin on this day.

People born on Aqbal relate in the present and are a special link between past and future. They are early risers, good workers, tranquil and kind, strong before an enemy, good researchers and finders of hidden things, often called "the candle of the home."

Today's Maya calendar glyph represents Aqbal and appears throughout Maya country. 

11 Iq  |  Tuesday February 7, 2012 

Day deity IqCorresponding with this day in the Gregorian calendar is 11 Iq. Iq is Wind, also Moon 11 is high turbulence. Wind is powerful, violent, driven of itself, of its own identity. A day of strong emotion, Iq is also a healing day. Good wind is nutritional for human minds and is the mystic breath and vital inspiration of nature. Iq is one of the four Yearbearers, or mams. It is a creator who helped finish the world and put breath (essence) in human beings. Iq is a good day to appreciate all of Creation. 

People born on Iq are inclined to spiritual ways and may impulsively tap into cosmic sources. On Iq, a breeze or wind that splits across your face is a blessing, a cleansing to take your ills and purge your head and body. Respiratory illnesses are prayed over on this day.

Today's Maya calendar glyph represents Iq and appears throughout Maya country. 

10 Imox  |  Monday, February 6, 2012 

Day deity ImoxCorresponding with this day in the Gregorian calendar is 10 Imox. Imox is lizard. 10 is a high even number. Imox is the very force of gravity and a good day to pray for creativity and rain. Imox can open the Mundo to receive cosmic messages. Known as a "crazy" day, Imox requires much concentration and control. A day of high, male intelligence—also impatience and agitation—Imox can be difficult. Grounded on its left side, left arm, this day is easily unbalanced and in need of clasping left and right hands. Imox can be good if held in the balance of  the Heart of the Sky / Heart of the Earth; if unattended, Imox can manifest imbalance, mental nervousness, and even death. People born on Imox are open and sincere, but indecisive, in need of ceremony to set the positive to override the negative.

Today's Maya calendar glyph represents Imox and appears throughout Maya country. 

9 Ajpu  |  Sunday, February 5, 2012 

Day deity AjpuCorresponding with this day in the Gregorian calendar is 9 Ajpu. Ajpu is Caracol, Spiraled Shell. 9 is a rich number. Ajpu is Sun, captain of Time, a day of personal strength and for good to triumph over evil. Ajpu begins the men's cycle and is a day to connect with the ancestors, who can reward and punish. Death is reachable and amenable; spirits can ask permission to enter el Mundo, or the living world. Day of the warrior and blowgun hunter (cerbatanero), Ajpu is the strong blow of the dart that hits the target, a good day to pray for stealth or for enemy lines to break. Ajpu cares for the boys and guides men. Ajpu is also a good day to start building on a house and to make prayers for women and for success in lactation.

The Hero Twin Jun Ajpu Ixbalanke defeated the Xibalbas and fooled them into accepting the offering of copal rather than a human heart. In near and remote ways, this character and episode from the book of the Maya ancients endure as backdrop to the Day-lord called Ajpu.

Today's Maya calendar glyph represents Ajpu and appears throughout Maya country. 

8 Kawoq  |  Saturday, February 4, 2012 

Day deity KawoqCorresponding with this day in the Gregorian calendar is 8 Kawoq. Kawoq is Turtle, also Sky Serpent. 8 has strong balance. Kawoq is a high woman day, guardian of contentment, and a day of duality in all of nature—a day of woman–man, lightning and thunder, fecundity and imagination. It is a day of prayer for unity in the home, strength in the family, renewed strength for convalescents, and the smoothing of all irritation. It is a good day to turn bad medicine back on itself.

A day of midwives, Kawoq attends to young women in pregnancy, labor, and delivery, and to full realization for women; it is a day of their sash. Kawoq is also a good day to commemorate the Staff of Authority, a good day for the men of a household to pray for the coffers (good fortune) of the women and for the protection of the home. Good midwives, writers, and architects are born on this day.

Today's Maya calendar glyph represents Kawoq and appears throughout Maya country. 

7 Tijax  |  Friday, February 3, 2012 

Day deity TijaxCorresponding with this day in the Gregorian calendar is 7 Tijax. Tijax is Fish, also Obsidian. 7 is a pivotal number in the calendar; on a high number day, disputes can turn public, and debilitating. Tijax is a good day for seasoned masters to fortify daykeeping trainees against ridicule by envious countrymen or by evangelicos

Tijax is a day of doctors, good to pray for surgeons and all medical practitioners. It is a day of sacrifice and liberation from suffering. It is a day of sharp, cutting objects, of knives and scalpels and scissors. Tijax is a safeguard for domestic animals against predators, a good day to pray for all animals that are sacrificed, both in ceremony and in everyday life. Tijax is also a good day to use metal (machete, scissors) to "open the sky" to solicit rain, solicit life, split black clouds. Gossip, calumny, and sorcery, on money and sexual matters, can be overcome on this day. It is not a good day to plant. 

Today's Maya calendar glyph represents Tijax and appears throughout Maya country.

6 Noj  |  Thursday, February 2, 2012 

Day deity NojCorresponding with this day in the Gregorian calendar is 6 Noj. Noj is Woodpecker. 6 is a quiet number. Noj is a woman's highest intelligence. Maya knowledge and wisdom live in this day—good science to support positive deeds, good projects, good business, a good home. On Noj, good ideas are available through the intelligence connected to the movement of the earth. Boys born on this day have important female qualities and can be attentive to the knowledge of nature, which rules all. Girls born on this day can be clear leaders. Noj is a good day to hear advice and to make decisions; it is a good day to feed the mind, recognize curiosity, and strengthen memory. Noj is one of the four Yearbearers.

Today's Maya calendar glyph represents Noj and appears throughout Maya country.

5 Ajmac  |  Wednesday, February 1, 2012 

Day deity AjmacCorresponding with this day in the Gregorian calendar is 5 Ajmac. Ajmac is Bee, also Vulture. 5 is one hand. On Ajmac ancestor spirits can detect and smooth the thread of time in our lives. Prudence, intelligence, ancient wisdom are in this day. Ajmac is a day to plead forgiveness for serious faults and to be judged. It is a day that demands moral rectitude, respect, and sincere analysis. Our faults (stains) must be faced and paid for on this day; humble request for pity is encouraged. Ajmac is a propitious day for the women of a household to make peace with one another after conflict, to apologize for sharp words; it is a  good day to pray for smooth relationships and the renewal of agreements among women. Hard luck can face those born on Ajmac. 

Today's Maya calendar glyph represents Ajmac and appears throughout Maya country. 

4 Tz'ikin  |  Tuesday, January 31, 2012 

Day deity Tz'ikinCorresponding with this day in the Gregorian calendar is 4 Tz'ikin. Tz'ikin is Bird, best represented by the hummingbird, also the quetzal, also the eagle. 4 is a sacred number. Tz'ikin carries the message between the Heart of the Earth and the Heart of the Sky. Cold, heat, light, air, cloud are its elements. Love, intuition, precognition are strong in those born on this day. Tz'ikin is a good day for humans to follow the birds to the corn—to find good material luck. It is also a good day to ask for revelation and intelligence, for abundance, and for vision. Tz'ikin is a good day to ask for collaboration in projects and for personal freedom. On this day, women have the privilege to ask for their husbands and sons to triple the family money. 

Today's Maya calendar glyph represents Tz'ikin and appears throughout Maya country. 

3 I'x  |  Monday, January 30, 2012 

Day Deity I'xCorresponding with this day in the Gregorian calendar is 3 I'x. I'x is Jaguar. 3 can begin definitive action. I'x is a woman's energy day. It is a day to connect with your land and to pray for its original owners; to pray for and appreciate your house; to pray for the finances to buy and sustain land; to ask for fertility in humans and animals; to request vigor and strength for reproductive organs, particularly female. I'x is a good day to pray to the mountains in favor of the land. It is a good day for a woman to request strength in her husband's commitment to matrimonial stability. Persons born on the I'x have a close relationship to el Mundo and receive good access to precious metals. I'x is a good day for solitude and meditation. 

Today's Maya calendar glyph represents I'x and appears throughout Maya country. 

2 Aj  |  Sunday, January 29, 2012 

Day deity AjCorresponding with this day in the Gregorian calendar is 2 Aj. Aj is Cane Reed. 2 is foundational duality. Aj is life and receives life. It begins the women's cycle, sentiments of family and home, the spinal cord. It is a day of resurgence and renewal, as in the reed and the corn; a day of the triumph of good over evil, of life over death. It is a day of happiness, the renewal of food or money, the heart of life. Persons born on this day renew their communities. They are sickly as children and sturdy as adults. They are especially lucky. They are good awakeners of their families and communities, and good midwives.

Aj is a good day to ask for clarity of destiny, a good day to pray for the protection of one's life or of the newborn, a good day to pray for twins, a good day to pray for humanity. In the Pop Vuh, the sacred book of the Maya Quiché, Jun Ajpu Ixbalanké planted a cane in his grandmother's home. The plant would blanche or renew as he died and was resurrected in the fight of the Hero Twins with the Xibalbas, Death Lords of the Underworld. This story, central to Maya spirituality, is remembered in the oral tradition, independent of academic literature.

Today's Maya calendar glyph represents Aj and appears throughout Maya country. 

1 Eh  |  Saturday, January 28, 2012 

Day deity EhCorresponding with this day in the Gregorian calendar is 1 Eh. Eh is Bobcat. It is the Path; It is also the Tooth. 1 is the freshest number, clean. Eh is a day that can orient individuals, and groups or communities, to their destiny. Eh is the day to ask for protection from dangers and obstructions during travels—specifically, that the attention of thieves or highway police or border inspectors be tuned away from you on your road. Eh is one of the four pillars of the 20 days—a Yearbearer—a strong, especially sacred day. A prayer started on Batz can be carried by Eh through the full cycle of 20 days. 

Solitude is in Eh, light rain, kindness, alignment. People born on this day can be good counselors, spiritual guides with the gift of prayer to Ajaw (Creator) on the destity of things. Good dentists are also born on this day. 

Today's Maya calendar glyph represents Eh and appears throughout Maya country. 

13 Batz  |  Friday,  January 27, 2012 

Day deity BatzCorresponding with this day in the Gregorian calendar is 13 Batz. Batz is Monkey. 13 is strong, the highest number in the Cholq'ij. Monkey braid, monkey fingers, monkey tail, Batz is the grasp of the hand of monkey, so tight and braided that the fist will not let go even in death. Batz is a good day for beginnings, and, for some Maya daykeepers, Batz begins the 20-day calendar. Batz is also the thread of Time that rolls out from under the earth, weaving life until cut, weaving Time into History. Batz is unity, a good day to tie things together—a good day to start construction, a good day for a marriage or for initiation into the ways. People born on Batz are calm and self-confident; they make good spiritual guides and leaders, and good-hearted architects. 

Today's Maya calendar glyph represents Batz and appears throughout Maya country. 

12 Tzi  |  Thursday, January 6, 2012 

Day deity TziCorresponding with this day in the Gregorian calendar is 12 Tzi. Tzi is the Canine, the guardian, steady to reward or punish. 12 is the highest balance. Dog, Wolf, Coyote, Tzi can be snarly, terrifying the unprepared with his bark and his bite. Benevolent to friends and fierce to enemies, Tzi will punish those who disrespect the Days and the spirit of the family. Tzi people are zealous to guard the sacredness of ceremony, to identify and punish "intruders," those not disciplined to participate. This is a good day to ask for mystic access for leaders so they can seek and discover hidden things, so they can be just. Tzi also has strong sexual energy, hard to restrain. When this energy is delimited, however, people born on Tzi make loyal friends, husbands, and wives.

Today's Maya calendar glyph represents Tzi and appears throughout Maya country. 

11 Toj  |  Wednesday, 
January 25, 2012 

Day deity TojCorresponding with this day in the Gregorian calendar is 11 Toj. Toj is the mystic Fish; it is the tear of jade and the drops of rain, water falling. Toj is a day of making even. 11 is strong, turbulent. Toj is a good day to pay your spiritual and financial debts, and to collect what you are owed. It is a day of evenness for a family, a good day for parents to pay the family's debt to el Mundo, good for the oldest son to appreciate the father and the father to appreciate the mountain. Illness can be deviated from the family by making a ceremonial offering on this day.

Today's Maya calendar glyph represents Toj and appears throughout Maya country.

10 Anil  |  Tuesday, January 24, 2012 

Day deity Anil

This day in the Maya ceremonial calendar is 10 Anil. Anil is the fertility in the seed; Anil is Rabbit. 10 is a major balance. Anil is the four colors of corn—red, white, yellow, black—the seed of life that is the unity of the world. Anil is renewal after death, regeneration of the earth. Anil people are four-directions people and can be good travelers. This is a day of coming back, a day to generate and appreciate abundance, a day of declaring love to create a new relationship, a day to announce the wish to do business, a day of finding lost things, a day to ask for help in overcoming shyness.

Today's Maya calendar glyph represents Anil and appears throughout Maya country.

9 Kiej  |  Monday, 
January 23, 2012 

Day deity Kiej

This day in the Maya ceremonial calendar is 9 Kiej. Kiej is the Deer; 9 is gestation. Kiej is the four directions, four hoofs striking the earth at once, the quaternity of the cosmos linked to prayer, the highest warning to el Mundo. Kiej is the staff of authority, keen energy of a chief to detect danger, perception of the leader buck, his horns. Kiej is a good day to pray for mental and physical agility, a day of agile travelers and good communicators. It is also a day to ask for clarity before gossip and ill intentions. A major gift of nature, Kiej holds indefatigable energy. He is one of the four main carriers of Time.

Today's Maya calendar glyph represents Kiej and appears throughout Maya country.

8 Kame  |  Sunday, January 22, 2012  

Day deity Kame

This day in the Maya ceremonial calendar is 8 Kame. Kame is the Owl, and the recognition of Death. On the rotation of 13 energies that attach to the Day deities, 8 is double equilibrium. A day that recalls the night, tranquility, and silence, Kame is a good day to ask for the ancestors who have gone on, to thank them, and to remember them with purpose. It is an appropriate day to extend reconciliation, to feel and give forgiveness, to develop patience, to invoke against mortal illnesses, to access superior knowledge. Without fear, it is a good day to approach the spiritual dimensions.

Today's Maya calendar glyph represents Kame and appears throughout Maya country. 

7 Kan  | Saturday, January 21, 2012 

Day deity Kan

This day in the Maya ceremonial calendar is 7 Kan. Kan is the Snake; 7 is a pivotal number, pyramidal. Kan is the ancient origin—Cucumatz, the Plumed Serpent. It is the day of impartial and strict justice, a day of definition and maturity. It is a day to thank the corn, a day of respect. Kan is a good day to pray that truth and justice manifest in the Heart of the Sky, Heart of the Earth. It is a good day to put aside jealousies and request equilibrium in life and in the family. It is a day to ask for physical strength, to contemplate our spiritual evolution, and to rekindle the internal fire. 

Today's Maya calendar glyph represents Kan and appears throughout Maya country. 

—Jose Barreiro 

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