Sun, flowers, artistry, dancing – everything we need to help us through the dark days of late November to early December – these are keywords associated with the Ajaw trecena. For some at this time, the emphasis will be more on the “idea” of these things rather than on embodying them in reality, but even the idea can be helpful at this time of the year.
In the realm of the Classic Maya, this trecena was welcomed traditionally as a time for celebration. The very first day, One Ajaw, was observed as a celebrational “day of flowers”, during which dancers, singers, song-writers, drummers, storytellers, artists, orators, feast makers, gift-givers, banner-bearers, and flower-bedecked revelers would have been fully engaged in welcoming in the auspicious and joyful One Ajaw (or “One Flower”), representative of the initiation of “Full Sun” or “Full Enlightenment”. It was seen as a day to extol the virtues of creativity in all its diverse forms.
The patron, or overseer, of this trecena was known as Old Coyote, the God of Dance, who was integrally connected to the arts, particularly music and dance. Although referred to as an “old, old” deity, he was often depicted as an exuberant partygoer, but was also revered for his worldly wisdom, astuteness, benevolence, and even shapeshifting abilities. He provides a good reminder that often much can be accomplished through a little “fancy dancing”.
This brings to mind the Korean pop group BTS, all dressed in yellow as they performed “Butter” at the American Music Awards last weekend, where they won three AMA awards, including best pop group, best pop song, and artist of the year, becoming the first Asian group to do so. This group is wildly popular worldwide, the superstars of a $5 billion industry, and the promoters of a major UNICEF campaign called “Love Myself” designed to promote self-esteem among children and young people globally, with the goal of helping to end violence, abuse, and bullying. As UNICEF’s Executive Director Henrietta Fore put it: “The groundbreaking way in which BTS has helped spark a positive message with its ARMY is simply unmatched and incredibly invaluable.”
Collectively this group seems to personify so many of the celebratory aspects of this trecena – being exceptional singers, dancers, artists, gift-givers, and all-round “spreaders of joy”. Although perhaps seen as “too slick” for some, they provide a refreshing counterbalance to all the negativity and violence that has been plaguing the world in recent years, representing hope, creativity, and optimism – all of which they are bringing to the US at this time as they kick-off a concert tour in Los Angeles. No doubt Old Coyote would love their “Permission to Dance” video!
Fortunately, there are a number of opportunities being presented during this time frame for creative engagement, starting with the American Thanksgiving, which coincides with the second day of this time frame. Shortly thereafter Hanukkah, the Jewish “festival of lights”, begins, that features the lighting of menorahs over eight consecutive nights. The mid-point of the trecena brings in Giving Tuesday, the global day of giving that “unleashes the power of people and organizations to transform their communities and the world”.
Looking back we are reminded that one cycle ago this trecena had millions of Americans “dancing for joy” as President Biden signed his Covid relief bill into law and people learned that they would be receiving Covid-19 stimulus relief cheques from the federal government, along with other benefits. During that period the U.S. reached President Biden’s 100 million vaccinations goal and million of others worldwide were celebrating as they received their first immunizations against the coronavirus.
That was also the time frame that brought several important confirmations for Joe Biden’s cabinet, including that of Judge Merrick Garland as the US Attorney-General, and Deb Haaland as Joe Biden’s Interior Secretary, in an historic vote that made her the first Native American Cabinet secretary in US history. As a follow-up, this current trecena is coming into place just after Biden’s signing of the infrastructure bill, shortly after the passage of the Build Back Better Act in the House of Representatives, after months of negotiation. Although it still has to be passed by the Senate, this bill brings a promise of substantial benefits for families at all levels.
There will be cause for celebration with regard to the justice system in the U.S. as well, as a U.S. jury has just awarded $25m in damages against the organisers of that deadly far-right rally in Virginia in 2017, sending a strong message about consequences for such vile actions against society. With regard to “the former guy” there are several major court cases that will be heard during this period, including the one that, hopefully, will give the January 6th commission access to the National Archives records from the dumpster’s term in office. Apparently over 200 witnesses have already been interviewed by the committee and many more subpoenas have been issued. Over 700 people have been criminally changed so far with regard to the Capitol riots.
One cycle ago Fani Willis, the DA for Fulton County in Georgia who is overseeing the investigation into how the dumpster tried to manipulate voting results in Georgia, was assembling a formidable team to pursue that investigation, with that team including a top expert on racketeering and conspiracy law. It is thought that a grand jury may be convening soon in that regard.
This trecena is also coming into place just hours after the throne speech in Canada, presided over by Her Excellency Mary May Simon, Canada’s first Indigenous governor general, who unveiled the government’s priorities with regard to getting the pandemic under control, strengthening the health care system, economics, climate change, child care, and relationships with indigenous peoples, as she highlighted progress being made in “walking the path towards reconciliation”.
In the past this Ajaw trecena has ushered in many events of great significance, including the establishment of a camp at Veracruz by Hernán Cortés and his men in 1519 as they were embarking on their conquest of the Aztec Empire; the adoption of the U.S. constitution in 1787; the defeat of Napoléon Bonaparte at the Battle of Waterloo in 1815; the discovery of gold in the Klondike, in 1896; the opening of Sun Records, that gave birth to Rock ‘n’ Roll, in 1950; the putting into operation of the first computer produced for commercial use, in 1951; the averting of the outbreak of WWIII during the Cuban missile crisis in 1962; and the massive March on the Pentagon demonstration in 1967 to protest the US involvement in the Vietnam war. In 2018 this trecena opened with the report that California would become the first state to mandate the use of solar energy in every new home.
As this trecena opens this time southwestern British Columbia and northwest Washington state are still in states of recovery after an epic flood disaster that destroyed or badly damaged thousands of homes and farms. Dikes and highways are in the process of being repaired and in some (but not all) areas people are being allowed to return home after being evacuated. A “parade of storms” is again heading in that direction, so a great deal of effort and creativity will be needed to deal with the changeable situation.
Similarly the pandemic is far from over, as the global number of cases has more than doubled (from 118 million cases to almost 260 million) in just over one cycle. The death toll in the US alone will reach 800,000 shortly after this trecena begins, and many countries in Europe are going back into full lockdown. So not only is there still much to be done to turn all this around, but there are multiple levels of complexity that need to be addressed.
It is going to require a lot of “fancy dancing” and a lot of creative “pulling together” in order to achieve any kind of stability. As this trecena has a way of bringing significant “gifts”, even in the middle of challenging situations, hopefully it will again help to shed light on what will be required to speed up recovery, including mitigating strife and divisiveness, wherever it may be, so that the necessary shifts can be made. These are the energies that are coming into play:
One Ajaw (Nov. 24th) – the “initiation of Full Sun/Enlightenment”, the traditional Maya celebrational “Day of Flowers”. Through this association with Venus as the Morning Star, One Ajaw was referred to as the Sacred Day of Venus, an important “marker” day in the Classical Long Count calendar. In June of 2020 Venus was, indeed, rising as the Morning Star when One Ajaw was in place, but at this time Venus is illuminating the night sky as the Evening Star.
For anyone who wants to escape from the grinding issues of daily life, this is the opening day for Lady Gaga’s House of Gucci movie, which seems to offer an opportunity to escape for awhile into the glamorous world of high fashion.
2 Imix (Nov. 25th) – a dynamic “balancing” type of energy often aligned with “world-making”, coinciding at this time with Thanksgiving Day in the US, one cycle exactly since the US House of Representatives voted to pass the revised Covid-19 relief bill. This is President Biden’s Maya birth energy.
This is also the UN’s International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women and Saint Catherine feast day, with Saint Catherine seen as the patron saint of students, philosophers, and unmarried women
3 Ik’ (Nov. 26th) – the “activation of Wind/Breath/Spirit”, in place on Black Friday, which used to be the biggest shopping day of the year in the US, but much of this is now done on-line instead. Increasingly, this has become known as Buy Nothing Day, an international day of protest against consumerism.
One cycle since Canada’s National Day of Observance in honour of the more than 22,000 individuals who had died from Covid-10 in Canada. Since then over 7,000 more Canadians have been added to that list. One cycle since President Biden signed the historic $1.9tn coronavirus relief bill into law. In that country the death toll from Covid has now reached over 790,000.
Sixty years ago as of May this was the Maya energy in place when President John F. Kennedy presented, before a special joint session of Congress, his call to achieve a moon landing.
In 1970 this energy was in place at the time of the Women’s Strike for Equality, the first massive Women’s Liberation demonstration and march, in New York. Currently this is rock superstar Tina Turner’s 82nd Gregorian birthday.
4 Ak’b’al (Nov. 27th) – a “defining” day associated with night, darkness, dreaming, and the subconscious. Sometimes referred to as “house”, this is also associated with earth-oriented mystery, secrecy, abundance, and even sorcery. This day marks two years since environmental scientists warned that the world may already have crossed a series of climate tipping points, posing a risk that is “an existential threat to civilization”, putting us into “a state of planetary emergency”. They called for urgent international action. This was just a few weeks before the coronavirus was identified.
For many lucky ticketholders, this will be a night for magic and dreaming as BTS kicks off a 4-day concert tour in Los Angeles.
5 K’an (Nov. 28th) – a “blessing” type of energy associated with youthful vitality and prosperity, but can also involve “recklessness”, as could be seen one cycle ago (last spring) when partygoers began flockeing to Florida beaches for unrestricted “spring break” even though that state was reporting over 4,000 new cases of Covid a day at that time.
Currently this is the First Sunday of Advent. This evening brings the start of Hanukkah, the Jewish “festival of lights” that features the lighting of menorahs over eight consecutive nights.
Two cycles exactly since a US federal judge ordered the release of children held with their parents in US immigration jails and denounced the previous administration’s prolonged detention of families during the coronavirus pandemic.
6 Chikchan (Nov. 29th) – “Lifeforce Everywhere” – a structuring type of energy associated with Lifeforce, the Arts, and Higher Knowledge, coinciding at this time with Cyber Monday and the first full day of Hanukkah. On this day in British Columbia children aged 5-11 in B.C. will begin getting their Covid-19 shots.
This is also the UN’s International Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian People. This includes a virtual event that aims to educate the public on the question of Palestine in support of a peaceful settlement to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. The event brings together diplomats, journalists, media experts and youth representatives from Israel, Palestine, Europe, United States and other parts of the world.
This day also marks 40 years since the mysterious death of Natalie Wood and 20 years since the death of George Harrison.
7 Kimi (Nov. 30th) – “self-generating death” or “self-generating foundations”, a “return to Source” type of force that can draw attention to “absolute foundations”, marking the end of the 2021 Atlantic hurricane season and the final day of The Rolling Stones tour. This is the day when Barbados will declare itself a Republic, and Queen Elizabeth will no longer be that country’s head of state. This will be the first time a realm has removed the queen as head of state in nearly 30 years.
This is also Giving Tuesday, the global day of giving that “unleashes the power of people and organizations to transform their communities and the world”.
This is also the day set for the US Court of Appeals hearing over the request from the Jan. 6th Committee to obtain National Archives records from the former guy’s presidential term, including all records pertaining to Jan. 6th
In 1863 President Abraham Lincoln delivered The Gettysburg Address under this 7 Kimi influence, with this speech being given at the dedication of a cemetary for the more than 7500 men who died in the Battle of Gettysburg. That battle is now seen as a critical civil war turning point as that was when southern forces began their retreat. This particular address was seen as a point of resolve, that those who died “shall not have died in vain”, that there would be “a new birth of freedom – and that government of the people, by the people, for the people, shall not perish from the earth”. It was a point of light in the midst of a great darkness, and yet the battle to preserve that freedom still rages on. This also provides a reminder of what this trecena is about – a chance to “return to light”, to “enlighten”.
8 Manik’ (Dec. 1st) – the Day of the Lord Deer in Maya tradition, a “resurrection” type of energy aligned with sacrifice and reciprocity, which could be seen as a “doubly harmonious” type of influence, representative of a doubling of solar energy. There is a strong “fire/heat” aspect to this energy, tying in with the mythological link to the ancestral lineage of the Quiché Maya. In that legend was seen as the day in the Tzolk’in when one of the ancestral forefathers left the people a “bundle of flames” as a reminder of his continuing presence. Princess Elizabeth and Philip Mountbatten were married under this influence in late November in 1947.
Two cycles ago, in June of 2020, the Cheyenne River Sioux issued a statement that called for the removal of the carvings of the 4 American presidents from the sacred Black Hills in South Dakota.
Currently this is World AIDS Day, which provides “an opportunity for people
worldwide to unite in the fight against HIV, to show support for people living with HIV, and to commemorate those who have died from an AIDS-related illness”.
In the US this is the day when the Supreme Court will hear a case that challenges a Mississippi law that bans abortions. As this will be a test for the Roe vs Wade decision, this is seen as the biggest abortion case in a generation.
9 Lamat (Dec. 2) – an “outwardly projecting” type of energy associated with Venus and the idea of leadership, on the 50th Gregorian anniversary of the founding of the US Environmental Protection Agency. This is the UN’s International Day for the Abolition of Slavery, which (according to the UN’s website) is still a major worldwide issue, with over 40 million people worldwide still existing in slavery. It is also World Computer Literacy Day, National Pollution Prevention Day in India, and the opening day for the Emerald City Comic Con (ECCC), an annual comic book convention, in Seattle.
This was the energy in place at the start of the H3N2 flu pandemic in 1968 that killed over a million people globally. It had first been detected in the summer of that year but spread globally over the following few months. Two cycles ago (June of 2020) marked the Calendar Round return of the exact 9 Lamat 11 Sek energy that was in place in 1968 at the start of that epidemic.
10 Muluk (Dec. 3) – “foundational water”, often a powerful “shape-shifting” force, coinciding at this time with a Super New Moon, with Venus (as the Evening Star) close by at her greatest brilliancy. This is the UN’s International Day for Persons with Disabilities. The UN indicates that there are one billion people with disabilities worldwide, 80% of whom live in developing countries.
This is the deadline date for the US Congress to renew its funding to avoid a shutdown. This is also the day when E. Jean Carroll will take her defamation lawsuit case against the dumpster to the Second Circuit court.
It has now been seven cycles (1820 days) since the CIA revealed their conclusion that Russia had intervened to help the dumpster win the 2016 election.
11 Ok (Dec. 4th) – “inspirational love (or guidance)” – an “extinguishing” Burner Day representative of heart, love, fire, and passion, coinciding with a Total Solar Eclipse (but only visible from Antarctica) and the World Wildlife Fund’s Wildlife Conservation Day (Not the same as the UN’s World Wildlife Day, held in March, but the purpose and focus are the same.)
Maya birth energy of Terry Fox, the young Canadian who sparked a movement to raise money and awareness for cancer research. Over $850 million have been raised to date by his Foundation.
12 Chuwen (Dec. 5th) – “dedicated” play; a “timeweaver” type of energy than can have a kind of “anything is possible” aspect to it, coinciding at this time with International Volunteer Day.
In 1843 this was the energy in place when Charles Dickens’ classic A Christmas Carol was first published.
As of this day it has been four cycles (4 x 260 days) since the mass mobilization in the streets of Venezuela, with large numbers of people protesting the desperate state of affairs and calling for President Maduro to step down. Ant yet, after the recent election, with a turnout of just 41.8% of voters, he is still there. It is thought that this poor turnout was due to an electorate apathetic towards leadership options (ie. don’t vote because there is no one to choose from).
13 Eb’ (Dec. 6th) – “transformational vitality”; a powerful stream-of-consciousness type of energy reflective of the intense vibrancy at the end of this “sun-oriented” time frame, a vitality that can sometimes “let loose”, coinciding at this time with the last day of Hanukkah.
This is the 100th Gregorian anniversary of the day when the first woman (Agnes Campbell MacPhail) was elected to Canada’s House of Commons. It is also the National Day of Remembrance and Action on Violence Against Women, and in remembrance of the 14 women who were killed at Montreal’s École Polytechnique in 1989.
On this day 1000 pairs of shoes will be placed on the steps of the Vancouver Art Gallery for the 19th year in a row in memory of murdered women.
This is also the opening day for the 9th annual World Ocean Summit Asia-Pacific, a virtual summit that will convene 100 speakers virtually over 5 days, as they look at how governments, businesses, and civil society can work together “to create a sustainable blue economy”. Focal points will include shipping, marine renewable energy, plastics, aquaculture, and fishing in the Asia-Pacific region. The aim is to identify how innovation and collaboration within the region are affecting change, so that steps can be taken to protect and restore the oceans and increase economic viability.
[Please note that the brief descriptions of the days provided above are only “thumbnail sketches”. Much greater detail can be found in Manual for the Soul: A Guide to the Energies of Life.]