4 Ajaw 13 Pax (Feburary 9, 2015): Jolom Konob’ (Santa Eulalia), Guatemala. Part III

4 Ajaw 13 Pax. Drawing by Jorge Pérez de Lara.

4 Ajaw 13 Pax. Drawing by Jorge Pérez de Lara.

The nature of Classic Maya writing was explained using examples taken directly from the stelae. This was followed by study of the calendar system, including the Long Count, the Tzolk’in (Stxolilal Q’inale’ in Q’anjob’al) and the Haab.

To better explain the calendars, exercise activities were done showing how the calendars worked. To understand the Cholq’ij (Tzolk’in) the participants formed two circles, one representing the 20 day-names and the other the numbers 1-13. The idea was the students learned how at the point where the two circles came together they were creating a single date; in effect the students themselves became a living calendar of 260 days!

An exercise to practice the numbers in Q’anjob’al directed by Igor.

An exercise to practice the numbers in Q’anjob’al directed by Igor.

Making the calendar circles, with Igor and Kari.

Making the calendar circles, with Igor and Kari.

Knowledge of the Tzolk’in or Stxolilal Q’inale’ was of ultimate interest for the participants since many of them were conscious of this calendar, still in use and respected by the elders of the community; and especially because the office of Alcalde Rezador (Chief Prayersayer) still exists today in Santa Eulalia and is closely linked to the count of the sacred days and the celebration of the Yearbearers.

Eulalia traveled two hours from her town to learn more about the culture of her ancestors.

Eulalia traveled two hours from her town to learn more about the culture of her ancestors.

B’alam Sotz’ answering questions from a friend during an exercise.

B’alam Sotz’ answering questions from a friend during an exercise.

For many of the young people at the workshop, this was the first introduction to the Maya culture of their ancestors, and moreover they were able to make a connection with the everyday material culture of their homes, from cultivation and consumption of maize to the wearing of traje, discovering they were part of a centuries-old living culture. Owing to the enthusiasm generated by this first workshop in Santa Eulalia, many requested a second one to deepen still more the themes of epigraphy and Maya calendar.

The high interest by all the participants was evident throughout the workshop.

The high interest by all the participants was evident throughout the workshop.

The participants, with their day names, during the exercise of Stxolilal Q'inale' (Tzolk'in).

The participants, with their day names, during the exercise of Stxolilal Q’inale’ (Tzolk’in).

The organizers of the workshop and the facilitators promised to make every effort to continue teaching the Maya of today that they are part of a very ancient culture.

In the next workshop they hope to present in depth one of the most important themes in Maya culture, one that many grandparents still remember in Santa Eulalia: the celebration of the Year Bearers, or as they say in Q’anjob’al: Iqom Hab’il.

The participants at the close of the workshop.

The participants at the close of the workshop.

Written by Alejandro Garay, Sak Chuwen Group.

5 thoughts on “4 Ajaw 13 Pax (Feburary 9, 2015): Jolom Konob’ (Santa Eulalia), Guatemala. Part III

  1. Great to see such a fantastic group of young individuals willing to learn the Maya glyphic language on a very cold day. Siguen aldelante todos abajo la luz brilliente de nuestro padre Sol! Saludos a todos desde me alma!

    Jim Reed, Instituto de Estudios Maya, EEUU.

    Desculpame para my Spanglish . . . ;>)

  2. Con su permiso, baje todo los textos y las fotos de este MAM update, y quiero hacer un articulo sobre lo mismo en el IMS Explorador, la revista mensual del Instituto de Estudios Maya. Otra vez, muchas gracias a todos.

  3. QUE INTERESANTE LABOR DE ENSEÑANZA PARA LOS JOVENES MAYAS DE LAS RUEDAS CALENDARICAS Y DE LOS GLIFOS DE SU LENGUA !!!

  4. de verdad que esas clases que nos dieron fueron muy lindas…. ami me gusto bastante, y x eso yo le ando hablando y enseñando a mis amigo sobre la epigrafía que son nuestras escrituras

  5. Que bueno que nuestro amado idioma q’anjobal se esta tomamdo en serio y como quisiera que nuestras letras entraran en uso de nuevo. Mata ay jun k’ual chi ko tz’ibejeq ko ti’ yin axca wal txolil axca yet paixa. Ayin lanan k’apax in cuywi chi wochej chin cuy in tz’ibli yetok jun tzan glifo tu

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