In Ahau, you can summon mighty deities for bonus actions, which increases your chance to be the most influential and famous ruler in the game. Each bonus action suits the features of that specific deity as we know them from Maya mythology and legends. During the next few weeks, we would like you to meet the deities of Ahau, who will be your allies in the game if you use their powers wisely!
Meet the ferocious beast of the Mesoamerican jungles, who became a compelling deity and symbol of raw power in the pre-Columbian Maya religion!
Since the Jaguar represented bravery, fierceness, and warriors, the Jaguar God can help you invade nearby cities, whether by moving and activating your own workers or by displacing and inactivating the opponent’s workers. Remember, you can score valuable fame points by having the majority of workers in a city, and the game is won by the player with the most fame points. Therefore activating the Jaguar God is a very powerful and direct way to position workers to gain more fame in the game.
The tremendous power of the Jaguar can be illustrated with Chak Tok Ich’aak I, the famous Ahau of Tikal. The ruler was also called the Great Paw or the Great Jaguar Paw, and no wonder why; he is still one of the most widely known kings of the city of Tikal. A Maya stela (tall, sculpted stone shafts created according to the ancient Mesoamerican fashion) was found, depicting the Great Jaguar Paw standing upon a captured opponent and victoriously holding an axe decorated with the marks of the Jaguar.
The Jaguar God had many forms in the pre-Columbian religion. The Jaguar God of Terrestrial Fire and War had distinct and immediately recognizable features: feline ears, fangs, “cruller around” the eyes. He was believed no less than being the god of the “Night Sun,” the alternative, underworldly version of Kinich Ahau (The Sun God). He was closely associated with fire in several forms and was often represented in fire rituals with torches, incense burners.
Among the several forms the Jaguar took in the Mayan mythology, there were female alternatives as well. The Jaguar Goddess of Midwifery and War, namely Ix Chel was responsible for curing aches, tending for the wounded, and of course, the war itself. Her jaguar ears, claws, and pattern around her eyes indicate a close resemblance with the Jaguar God of Terrestrial Fire.
The ancient Mayas honored their highly respected and even cherished deity in their architecture as well. The Tikal Temple I is still known as the Temple of the Great Jaguar since the lintel depicts the King sitting upon a jaguar throne. This temple was the royal tomb of the ruler Jasaw Chan K’awiil I and numerous of the king’s earthly possessions were found, including several jaguar skins as well.
It is no accident that the ambitious warriors and the thriving rulers longed to be associated with the Jaguar. Use its power wisely and he may bless you to become the most influential ruler of the ancient Yucatán Peninsula!