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The Chol'qij: Marking Sacred Time

Updated: Mar 5, 2022

The Maya (past, present, and future) have been and are scientists that observe the natural world. From their observations, our ancestors understood patterns that ensure that balance is maintained and/or restored through the creation of multiple calendars. One of these many calendars is the Chol’qij.

The Cholq’ij is known as the spiritual calendar because it follows the development of human beings. It is a 260 day calendar which measures the length of human gestation. This calendar has many functions, one of them is to create harmony in our lives through ceremony, self-reflective action, and meditation of the 20 day spirits known as Nawales.

Time in Maya cosmology is cyclical. In two dimensional depictions the calendars are typically represented as gears interacting with each other, as seen in the image above which primarily highlights the Chol’qij. In the example the 20 spirits are contained in the blue ring and the inner turquoise circle are the numbers, or rather the energy frequency. The numbers in the turquoise circle are 1 through 13. These numbers influence and highlight certain characteristics within each Nawal. This combination of 20 spirit days with 13 frequencies equals a total of 260 days.

With this simple explanation Chol’qij, it is easier to understand why this is the spiritual calendar since every single person is born on a day that has spirit and frequency associated with it. The day we are born is the Nawal of our essence, which is the core of who we are. Along with our essence we are endowed with a set of five Nawales known as our Mayan Tree. With our tree we can better understand our gifts, how to overcome challenges, and the path to fulfill our destiny for the benefit of our community.

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