NOTE: SAQ' BE' IS NOT CURRENTLY DISTRIBUTING CHOLQ'IJ CALENDARS. THIS ARTICLE IS HERE FOR INFORMATION PURPOSES ONLY.
As many of you know, every year Saq' Be' travels to the community in Chichicastenango, Guatemala to pick up the traditional Mayan Cholq'ij calendars they produce. We return with them and make them available for sale, returning the profits to the community to support their continued efforts to keep the traditional ways alive. Unfortunately, we do not know when we will be able to return this year and are thus uncertain as to when the 2005 calendars will become available. As a way of compensating for our lack of hard copy calendars, we are making available the same Cholq'ij/ Gregorian overlay on our website, which can be viewed on the front page. We have also made available information on the meaning of the Nawales (glyphs) and numbers presented. Click "read more" to view additional infromation on this calendar. We ask you to please consider supporting Saq' Be', a nonprofit organization, by making a tax-exempt donation to assist with our continued efforts for the rescue, preservation and appropriate sharing of these living ancient peoples, traditions and cultures.
This information about the Cholq'ij was produced by an Indigenous group of Mayan
Ajq'ij (priests) in Chichicastenango, Guatemala: Fundacion Centro Cultural
y Asistencia Maya (C.C.A.M.). We give thank for their efforts in keeping the
traditions alive and for their welcoming arms and open hearts. We give special
thanks to "Chema" who has shared his knowledge and wisdom with us openly and
has been of great assistance in bridging the knowledge of the ancient and the
INTERPRETATION OF THE MAYAN CALENDAR
The Mayan calendars were idealized by the astronomers and spiritual guides
based on the movement of the blue bodies of the universe. The Mayan scientists
very studious and very observant. They were able to measure movement, the velocity
of every asteroid, then establishing systems that allowed them to register
time and other natural events. They were able to make the calendar which
to give orientation to the cycle of agriculture production, giving origin to
social time and the time of the individual destiny.
THE CHOLQ'IJ: SACRED CALENDAR OF 260 DAYS
Below are some resources that are very helpful to understanding and working with the Cholq'ij calendar to create the balance and harmony that is needed at this time:
The Cholq'ij "Book of the days" or "Thread of the
days", begins on B'atz and ends on Tz'i. This "Book
of days" is used today as it was put together by the ancient Mayas. For
divination and the establishment of time, for the manifestation of ceremonies
of commemoration and for protection, as well as for the times of celebration
and spiritual crisis.
The Cholq'ij is immersed in the universe and in the elements of mother
nature, necessary for life; the fire, earth, water, air; in the cycle of life
of some beings still alive and other fundamental aspects of our culture; the
women (I'x), the dawn (Aq'ab'al), and the death (Kame).
The Cholq'ij, or the sacred calendar, consists of 260. It is formed by
20 days that are combined with numbers from 1 to 13 placed before the 20 glyphs
of the days. Once finished with the #13, it begins once again with the #1,
until reaching #13 again, this way consecutively. We can say that the sacred
calendar is composed of 13 months that hold 20 days. (13+20=260)
Why are the numbers 13 and 20 used? The ancestors used and considered these
numbers as sacred. The number 13 is sacred because the most important joints
in the body are; the two at the ankles, two at the knees, two at the hips,
two at the wrist, two at the elbows, two at the shoulders and one at the head
or neck. As far as the number 20, this symbolizes the 20 fingers of the human
being; 10 on the hands and 10 on the feet.
In these 20 sacred words are expressed all of the basic forces of creation
and destruction, the good and the that are in the world, in society, in the
family and what is in the heart of the human. The unity of such forces in the
individual lives depends on the course of life and destiny.
The signs of the 20 days of the Cholq'ij are: B'atz', E,
Aj, I'x , Tz'ikin, Ajmaq, No'j, Tijax, Kawooq, Ajpu',
Imox, Iq', Aq'ab'al, Kat, Kan, Kame, Kej, Q'anil, Toj,
If we add, to the 260 day sacred calendar, 13 more days, there is a total of
273 days, which is the same time for human gestation, from conception to birth,
the sacred time for development of the human being in the mother's womb.
--Traditionally, when a child was born, and Ajq'ij would look at that child's birth chart using the Cholq'ij to determine that child's purpose. Although this proccess is intricate and requires years of training, it is often helpful to know the enerrgy at the time of birth, the equivalent of what is known as your "heart sign". To find out what this energy was at your time of birth, you may use this calendar conversion tool and then look up your sign in the links below.
-- Click Here for information on the Meaning of the Twenty Nawales (day signs)
-- Click here for more information on the Meaning of the Thirteen Numbers of the Cholq'ij
-- Click here for more information on Candles: Mayan Significance of Colors
Saq' Be': Organization for Mayan and Indigenous Spiritual Studies is a non profit organization based in New Mexico, US. Saq' Be' works to bring people, especially young adults, together with ancient traditions for the purpose of cultural and spiritual preservation and to open the doors of opportunity for those traditions to share their teachings with the rest of the world. Preservation programs include Radio broadcast capacity for the Native community in Chichicastenango, Guatemala, support for the community os Sarayacu in Ecuador in their struggle against petrol interests, and support for filmed documentation efforts of elders and guides of the Mayan tradition. More information can be found at: www.SacredRoad.org, or by email at: saqbe[at]sacredroad[dot]org.
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons License.