The Long Count & The Dreamspell
topic posted Tue, November 8, 2005 - 1:58 PM by mark

The Long Count and the Dreamspell both have their functions.

The traditional count and the long count are much better than the dreamspell for calculating day date to day date because they proceed one day at a time without any break for correlation to the solar year.

For example, using the Long Count can be helpful in illustrating many important ceycles. One of these is the period between Venus Transit Pairs which return on the same day of the traditional Tzolkin: Wind. (Something that it doesn't do in Dreamspell). This is particularly important because it equals exactly 8 Haab as well- the traditional calendar of 365 days exactly. The Long Count is a supremely effective 'deep time' calendar which is also very useful in understanding the different harmonic relationships that exist in the orbital periods of the solar system.

There is no conflict between using both the Long Count and Dreamspell. In fact it was Jose Arguelles who identified the 13 baktuns of the Long Count with the 'wave of history' (in The Mayan Factor)- an important and major insight which is acknowledged by other sources like John Major Jenkins and even Carl Calleman.

The Dreamspell is designed as a transitional calendar in that it correlates with both the Gregorian Calendar and the Long Count (see the Rinri project Vol II at www. for details of this rather complex subject). It doesn't deal with long periods of time. It leaves that to the Long Count.

It is a 'new dispensation' that has its goal as bringing back into use the 20 kin and 13 numbers of the Tzolkin into widespread- or even universal- practise. Its language is culturally non specific and the idea behind it could be likened to modern interpretations of the I Ching over traditional ones. It takes its origin point from the Books Of The Chilam Balam and the Yucatec culture around the time of the conquest when the Maya-Toltec culture was still prophetic in nature, but had abandoned the use of the Long Count. Consequentially, The Dreamspell bears a strong resemblance to the Toltec Calendar Round used at that time in the Yucatan. This repeats every 52 years taking 13 leap days out of time at the end of that period in which the Tzolkin was not counted. (See the Codez Perez and the Book Of Chilam Balam of Mani for details)

This is not the practise of the Traditional Maya of Guatemala and elsewhere, who still keep an unbroken day count in the manner of the Long Count.

Both ways of reckoning have their advantages. The 52 year pattern of the Toltec and Dreamspell calendars creates an internal harmonic in which the same Tzolkin day will fall on the same day of the Solar Year exactly once every 52 years. This pattern is also known to those using Dreamspell as the 'Earth Families'. This pattern doesn't quite work out with the Traditional Count.

It is perfectly possible to use both side by side- and doing so yields greater information than using either alone. The art to doing so is to be disciplined in differentiating between them clearly. i.e. talking vaguely about the 'Mayan Calendar' when in fact you mean 'Dreamspell' just adds to a very prevalent confusion that it is the advantages of all calendar keepers to clarify.

Applying Dreamspell names and relations to the Traditional days is also confusing and sometimes inaccurate. For example, earth families will not apply and guides, analogs, antipodes and occult kin are purely Dreamspell creations. It is good to be aware that speaking of the names of the day signs to the traditional Maya daykeepers is a sacred act reserved for the initiated, so let us respect their traditions by keeping clear with our language.

Ironically one of the arguments put forward against the Dreamspell Count at one time was that it potentially could disrupt traditional shamanic daykeeping practises by confusing the count. Actually, it is only misinterpretation of Dreamspell as a traditional Mayan Calendar that can do that and yet another reason for clarity.

Dreamspell is a system that lays out its foundations and purposes very clearly. It is quite possible to disagree with its goal- changing the worlds calendar as the means to synchronise the human species with the 'natural time' that the rest of the planet exists in. In which case there is no compulsion to use it. Many people, however, find it an insightful, empowering and even paradigm shifting experience.
They are no wrong for doing so because the Long Count and Traditional Count follow different rules and days.

We all exist in time and as long as this is true it makes sense to treat the exploration of this dimension with an open mind and as an ongoing investigation. The Classic Maya certainly did. Trying to crystallise the 'truth', as in the 'true count' or 'the real maya calendar' as just one way exclusive of others is exactly the fundamental mistake that organised religions have made since their inception.

With the sacred science of Mayan calendrics we are luckier because instead of dogma we can turn, with these tools and patient, comparative study, to a new investigation of the mathematics of time. And through this universal language we are increasingly able to reveal and share in ever unfolding levels of cosmic harmony as the mind of nature begins to make itself known again to us.


Mark Heley - 4 Ahau
Self Existing Moon 22 - Red Magnetic Moon