Sunday, May 05, 2013

Beware the crossroads tonight

Your party sets off today on 1 - Deer (Mazatl) on the Aztec 260 day calendar tonalpohualli.

It marks the beginning of a good 13 day trecena for hunting. It will favor those skilled in stalking, tracking and backtracking. It is unfortunately also a day that faces west and as a first name day with such an orientation it opens the doors to the Cihuateteo, vampire like creatures who stalk the crossroads at night searching for victims.

What will your party be on this day that favors hunting? Will you be the hunter or the hunted? Will you dare journey out on your adventure? Risking a random encounter with one or more cihauteteo? Or will you wait in town for a more favorable day, like tomorrow 2 - Rabbit, to venture on your journey.

Cihuateteo are the spirits of noble women who died during child birth. As such they are honored as warriors and escort the sun from noon to sunset. After sun set on this day they are free to wander the roads and encounter unwary travelers at the crossroads. They are vicious wailing spirits who cry for their lost life and children. Is your party prepared to face their banshee like wails and sharp claws? Will you defeat them or fall victim to their sharp teeth and insatiable appetite?

It is best you pack some xucuichtlamatzoalli or tamales for the road and have them ready to offer as food. Maybe a generous enough offer will make your party a less interesting target for their appetite.

Cihuateteos roam the crossroads on all first westward name days  : 1 - deer, 1 - rain, 1 - monkey, 1 - house and 1 - eagle). On our calendar 1 - deer was April 27. The next day to allow cihuateteos free access to our world is June 18 on 1 - rain. It will be a trecena (13 day) period favored by Tlaloc, god or rain. It will be a time of hardship with either too much water or too little. Prefer solitude over companionship and don't rely on others as support from others is doubtful during this period.

Tlaloc, the rain god

Tlaloc at the entrance of the anthropology museum in Mexico City

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Images :

Bibliographical reference

Tamales and recipe

Aztec glyph and dates
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