Book: The Secret Teachings of the Popol Vuh
THE MOSQUITO XAN
There are powerful keys that can lead us into the knowledge of ourselves. These keys are as old as humanity and have been taught by the greatest wise men who have walked the face of the Earth and at times, these have been delivered in symbols, with the intent of having the student discover its different meanings. The application of such effort is what gives so much more value to these keys, and that is the case of the Mosquito Xan.
“With each one of them taking their blowpipes, the Twins descended into the underworld, walking in as their fathers did through the rivers of boiling waters and blood, and using their blowpipes to cross them without their feet touching the waters. Beforehand, they already knew the black path led them to Xibalba”
When we truly seek inner peace and authentic liberation, it behooves us to comprehend our psychological defects. This is only possible when we descend to our own psychological depths to see how we truly are.
What we ignore about ourselves is itself a universe; we believe to have plenty of virtues and it happens we do not. There are defects-a-plenty that we carry within and that we ignore exist within us, and these are living as strong entities within our psyche.
The successful crossing of the rivers by Master-Magi (Hunahpu) and Little-Solar-Priest (Ixbalanque) making use of their blowpipes is a representation of the correct use of the sexual energy. When such energy is used to satisfy the animal passion, the inevitable consequence becomes the misfortune we experience in many aspects of our lives.
“They sent ahead of them, into the cave where the Lords of Xibalba waited, the Mosquito Xan, asking of it to bite each one of the rulers of Xibalba and to particularly listen for their names. And so the mosquito Xan flew into the cave and started biting, first the wooden effigies which made no noise at all, but then managed to start biting each of the other rulers. As they were bitten, each one yelped and called each other by their names; they asked each other what was happening… and the mosquito took note. And it was from that moment forward, and not an instant before, that mosquitoes started biting and sucking blood from their victims. Mosquito Xan was in reality a strand of hair off Master-Magi (Hunahpu)”
The mosquito Xan is a symbol for the sense of psychological self-observation, its flight path is the direction of our attention towards the inside (the inside of the cave) with the purpose of self-discovery. Normally we observe ourselves towards the outside, we pretend to know others very well, but there is plenty we ignore about ourselves.
Our defects manifest at will making use of our mind, our sentiments, our instincts, our habits, and the force of our sexuality. Their manifestation is blatant, because their presence is unknown to us, and they trick us in a variety of ways: behind the desire to work, lurks the defect of greed and under the cover of friendship lurk the desires of lust. That is why the Lords of Xibalba show first the wooden effigies before they can be seen. The effigies are a symbol of those sublime appearances the psychological defects project that lead us into error.
As we direct our attention towards our interior and when we divide our attention between the observer and the observed, we discover the fallacies of the ego, the many ways in which the ego confuses and tricks us, and the mechanisms of operation it employs. As we reach new levels of understanding of our defects, we slowly stop behaving as their puppet.
To know the names of each of the Lords of Xibalba (as narrated in the story) is akin to put our efforts into self-discovery. It is a representation of focusing our effort not only to identify the thousands of “I’s” or psychological defects we carry within, but to also learn about their structure, their transactions, what feeds them, what springs them into action, etc.
It is said the mosquito Xan is a strand of hair from Master-Magi (Hunahpu), which means that the work of self-discovery is individual and particular and no one can do it for us. It requires of great intimate super-efforts for us to route our attention towards the inside of our psyche to achieve self-knowledge.
“As they arrived to the cave, they were invited to pay reverence to the wooden effigies, but Master-Magi (Hunahpu) and Little-Solar-Priest (Ixbalanque) do not fall for it, and instead they started greeting each of the Lords of Xibalba by their names: ‘Greetings Supreme-Death (Hun-Came), greetings Principal-Death (Vucuc-Came)”… and later they called by name each of the ten princes, and all of the Lords of Xibalba were astounded”
When we discover the defects we carry within and the effort of studying them in our daily living – whether at home, school, work, etc. – gives us the necessary comprehension enables us to make use of a power superior to the mind that can eliminate them. This power within us, here and now and is our Divine Mother. Every defect eliminated through her intervention liberates a percentage of our consciousness and this repeated process leads us into living life in plenitude to eventually achieve true happiness.
Let us remember that among the ten princes were MAKER-OF-MISFORTUNE, MAKER-OF-TREASON and MAKER-OF-JAUNDICE. As we discover our defects, we start finding that through their consequences, we create our own misfortunes, our own problems and our own illnesses. Only through conscious work and conscious effort we can eliminate them. The answers to all our problems are inside of us, not outside.
“Because they were unable to trick the Twins, they invited them to take sit on a previously heated stone, so they would burn and thus, defeat them. But Master-Magi (Hunahpu) and Little-Solar-Priest (Ixbalanque) noticed their intent to deceive them, and easily avoided it”
The Lords of Xibalba invited them to take seat on the “bench of the great masters”, offering them a simulated honor, but in reality it was a heated stone.
This stone is the stone of stumbling, and rock of offence mentioned in the Bible, that when heated, represents the brutal animal passions our defects use to keep us subjected to their control, making us victims of their delinquencies. A good example of this is adultery, which has always brought Dantesque dramas into families and their homes.
In these times of crisis and bankruptcy of values we tend to believe that it is acceptable to give free rein to our vices and we tend to believe we are great personalities when we express such defects, yet we fail to realize we become a source of both suffering and pain.
However, when we remain alert, like the vigilant guard at times of war, we become capable of both, not identifying with and overcoming the temptations frequently taunt us throughout our lives.
“As the Lords of Xibalba were defeated, they invited the Twins to spend the night in the House of Darkness (one of the many traps they had set to defeat them), so they could rest. The next morning was planned the game of ball”
Our psychological defects are very crafty with their means to keep us within their domain. The Popol-Vuh not only shows us the dangers, but also the means for us to overcome the dangers themselves and overcome the temptations.