Omateotl: Why I go to Teotihuacan
Updated: Apr 4, 2019
Someone recently asked me, “Why do you go to Teotihuacan?’’ The answer: teotl. It is my spiritual home.
Our journey to Teotihuacan is drawing near! Mugoux Varra and I are taking a group of women to the pyramid site at Teotihuacan, Mexico, for an immersion week exploring the divine feminine. As I anticipate this journey, I contemplate the word, omateotl, a Nahuatl word for God or Spirit.
Omateotl implies “two spirit” or the two that create one. It recognizes the world of duality but goes beyond it. It means spirit, or cosmos, ever in motion. As a verb, it is “god–ing.” Omateotl is also used as a greeting, similar to the Buddhist and Hindu word namaste, which means: I bow to the divine within you.
Ome means: may this become real or two energies…combine to create. It also means the union of the energy heavens and of the physical world. Teotl means energy.* Together ‘ome’ and ‘teotl’ imply ‘all of Creation, God, or Spirit.’
As I prepare for my upcoming journey to Teotihuacan, I familiarize myself with certain Aztec/Mayan/Nahua names and philosophies. I am astonished to learn that Aztec philosophy and religion are very similar to Buddhism in that: “(a) everything that exists constitutes an all-inclusive interrelated unity; (b) this unity is sacred; (c) everything that exists is substantively identical and hence one with the sacred; (d) the sacred is Teotl. There is only one thing, teotl, and all other forms or aspects of reality and existence are identical with teotl (teotl is not a minded being or ‘person’).” **
I’m excited to find this definition because, when I walk through the grounds of Teotihuacan among ancient pyramids and iconography, difficult to grasp from a modern, Western perspective, I can integrate the imagery and the definition of the word teotl with the ineffable experience I have—every time I go.
So when someone asked me, “Why do you go to Teotihuacan?’’, at first the question gave me pause. Then I realized that my experience there is an experience of teotl. It is my spiritual home.
In my mind, I can transport myself back to the ancient city about an hour north of Mexico City and imagine the sound of stones crunching under my sandaled feet. I can walk down the Avenue of the Dead, past two-thousand-year-old pyramids which to me feel like being amongst the living presence of divinity itself. I realize that I, too, am part of that divinity. In my mind, I greet the pepper trees swaying in the warm breeze and greet the old stone statues of Quetzaquatl, the Feathered Serpent (deity of intelligence, creativity, and patron of those who walk a higher path) and Tlaloc, the storm or rain god. (These were not actually ‘gods’, but more like energies.)
For me, Teotihuacan is a place of light and dark and the space in-between, the coniunctio (conjunction - Jung). It is a place of history, mystery, and mastery. A place where it is possible to release the mundane and open to the cosmic. It’s as if the sun, moon, and stars are closer there, and the earth pushes up through the pyramids to meet them, creating a field of perfect unity. I can almost sense this field of imperceptible filaments of light re-informing my very cells.
I am privileged and honored to bring groups there—this group, in particular—to immerse themselves in the energy of the Divine Feminine. I’m profoundly grateful to my Toltec teachers who taught me the way through Teotihuacan: Bernadette Vigil, who taught me the hard way to revere no teacher except the one who resides within, and Francisco Rico, who taught me how to ‘perceive’ like a shaman. And I have the audacity to thank myself, for possessing the courage to walk this path with perseverance and humility.
*(The Dawn of the Sixth Sun, Sergio Magana, 2012, Blossoming Books)
**(Article: “Aztec Philosophy,” James Maffi, https://www.eip.utm.edu/aztec)