I'x B'alam, the Jaguar, a mysterious and multi-layered figure in the Maya worldview. Acting as a bridge between the earthly and cosmic realms, the Jaguar is not just an animal totem but a complex Nawal that embodies themes of pregnancy, spirituality, materialism, and even the world itself. From its role in the 260-day Tzolk'in or Cholq'ij calendar to its representation of cosmology and epic secrets, I'x B'alam is a nuanced Nawal that requires a deeper exploration. In this comprehensive examination, we will unpack the pivotal keywords that define I'x B'alam and delve into why these terms serve as cornerstones for understanding this Nawal's role in the Maya Calendar.

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I'x B'alam

I'x B'alam represents the world itself

The Sun and the Jaguar

An excerpt from "The Maya Calendar: An Archetypal Structure of Reality"

"In Maya cosmology, when the Sun sets behind the horizon it transforms into the Jaguar. As the Jaguar, the Sun makes its journey through the underworld, battling the Lords of Death. Victorious, the Sun rises again to become the new day. I have found that this motif goes much further than just a simple tale.

Carrying the stars on its back, the Jaguar is a symbol of the Sun traveling through the twelve houses of the zodiac. In the Trecena of Jun Aq’ab’al, I'x B'alam is the twelfth day. Aq’ab’al as the night, clarity, is segmenting the stars into twelve houses, classifying their role in the heavens.

The Jaguar's significance goes beyond its nocturnal voyage. Its approximate 105-day pregnancy solidifies it as a missing piece to the sacred calendar. When combined with the 260- day Cholq'ij, the Jaguar's representation completes the full solar year of 365 days.

In its physical form, the Jaguar bears 18 claws, with five on the front and four on the back. This numerological arrangement corresponds to the 18 regular months of the Haab, the Maya solar calendar. Additionally, the Jaguar's four legs and tail even symbolically embody the Wayeb, the five final days of the Haab’s irregular 19th month.

Through its mystical symbolism, the Jaguar embodies the cycle of the Sun within the heavens. These connections show the Maya's profound wisdom in understanding the sacred connections of our world."

I'x B'alam the Jaguar

I'x Balam

The Jaguar and the Altars of the World

I'x B'alam as the world itself represents the altar, the table in which ceremony, payments, and offerings are made. The altar, an ancient concept, has evolved into what is known today as the "ofrenda", where pictures of deceased family members, flowers, incense, and candles are placed.

Within the context of the sacred calendar, the relationship between various elements of life and death is meticulously mapped out—much like the symbiotic relationship between the sun and the earth. The sun nurtures the earth, giving life to its inhabitants, while the earth in return becomes the final resting place for all, turning man to dust, flowers to decay. This cyclical process reflects the underlying archetypal structure of reality, where everything has a beginning and an end, yet remains interconnected in a continuous loop of timeless existence.

In essence, I'x B'alam, as the world-altar, symbolizes this perpetual cycle of life, offering, and renewal. It stands as a cosmic interface, allowing us to make our offerings, be it material or spiritual, in an attempt to harmonize the forces that surround us and maintain the delicate balance that sustains all life.

I'x B'alam the Jaguar

The Jaguar watches from the shadows

Secrets of the Land

Ix B'alam as the world itself represents the theme of development. As the land weighs between being fertile and barren, a woman weighs the same in pregnancy. As Oxlajuj Kame (13 Death) is the ruler of I'x B'alam, the land accumulates death. The opposite day being K'at acts as a gravity, bringing everything back to the land, whose magnetism holds the calendar in place. At the heart of the Jaguar comes a loud roar of thunder echoing throughout the forests and canyons. An endless black hole of hunger, all the gold, silver and precious stones return to the earth.

Conclusion

I'x B'alam remains a compelling symbol within Maya cosmology, captivating those who seek to understand its complex secrets of power, spirituality, and cosmology.

Interested in discovering your own Nawal? Our homepage features a Mayan calendar calculator that might just reveal your kinship with the Jaguar.

Click here to find your Nawal https://mayanday.com 

For an even deeper exploration, my book, "The Maya Calendar: An Archetypal Structure of Reality," is available for purchase. Are you ready to walk the path of the Jaguar?

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