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Aluxes (ah-loosh'-es) or, in Maya, aluxoob (ah-loosh'-ov,ob) are mysterious beings: so mysterious, in fact, that some people actually question that they are real!  But we will forget about silly skeptics for now; they are the unfortunate ones, because to know the alux (ah-loosh') is to know the magic of the ancient Mayan rain forest.  Pay careful attention as you read of the alux.  If you visit Casa Gordon, and, if you are very lucky indeed, you may encounter an alux.  And, if you do, you will need to know all you can about the alux or you might find yourself not so lucky after all.

Ireland has its leprechauns, Scandinavia its gnomes, and Europe its trolls and gremlins.  But the Yucatecan Maya have aluxes... ancient little "people" of the rain forest who are seldom seen but who are almost always nearby.  Now, don't let your skepticism get the better of you.  If you visit the Mayan rain forest, you will do very well indeed to know of the alux and its ways.  To be overtaken by skepticism will not only impair your enjoyment of these enchanted surroundings but may actually put you at risk of some degree of misfortune.

It is said that aluxes are ancient spirits who take the preferred form of small people and live deep in the forest.  They resemble children in many ways beside their diminutive stature.   Like small children they are usually energetic and happy.  They are playful and love trickery of all sorts.  Usually their tricks are harmless and humorous to all except, perhaps, their victims.  But also like children, they are quick to upset and anger, instantaneously going into a pout or even a rageful tantrum if things do not go their way.   Because of their mystic powers, it is best to stay on the good side of the alux, for their trickery can take an evil turn if they feel mistreated.  It is therefore important for all to learn what they can of the alux, for their own selfish welfare at the very least, even if not to enjoy the wonder of the spirit of the forest manifested in the alux.

Perhaps the greatest difficulty in dealing with the alux lies in finding and identifying it.  The skeptic, lacking in appreciative capacity as well as being essentially devoid of any spiritual sensitivity, is most unlikely ever to realize the presence of the alux.  Even inordinate changes of luck are explained away by the shallow minded skeptic as attributable to silly notions such as "chance."  Of course children know better, and thus are infinitely more likely to recognize an alux encounter.  Such encounters appear common for small children, but not so for older children and adults -- even those wise enough to  accept the reality of the alux.  For these older persons, it is said that certain practices increase the chance of encountering an alux in the forest.  Quietness, stillness, and a serene taking in of the sounds, smells, sights, and feel of the forest leads one to a state of receptivity to experience the alux.   Usually the alux is experienced as a darting shadow or rustling sound, seemingly ordinary phenomena except to those having reached a sufficient state of entrancement.

More often than not, aluxes who choose to present themselves to humans, at least to adult humans, don a disguise.  And the disguises they choose are either to masquerade as lifeless clay statuettes or assume the forms of small forest animals such as coatis, grisons (Mexican weasels), snakes, monkeys, frogs, parrots, raccoons, opossums, bats, lizards, peccaries (small wild pigs), turtles, toucans, margays (small spotted wildcats), turtles, or other similar forest creatures.  For those lacking intuition, it is impossible to know ordinary animals from aluxes.  Children, especially the smaller children, seem to have little trouble, but many older children and adults are woefully inept at the finer points of penetrating the alux disguise.  The skeptics and non-believers, of course, are so blind to these  phenomena that they are hardly worth mention.  But once again forgetting these unfortunates, if one catches the alux in the process of changing form from its animal disguise to its hominid form or vice versa, the identification is more easily made.  Such spottings usually involve the sighting of a small to medium sized animal exhibiting some unusual behavior or accoutrement: a weasel wearing tiny sandals, perhaps, or an iguana in skirt or trousers.    The recent sighting of a peccary sporting a bow on its tail as well as decorative nose and ear rings was very likely an alux encounter.  Likewise the margay seen pacing back and forth angrily behind a cantina, not meowing as would be expected, but muttering expletives in semi-articulate Mayan.  Again, while children seem to be able to see such sights on a fairly regular basis, adults have a much more difficult time.   The Maya suggest that adults may facilitate their chances of experiencing such remarkable visions by imbibing sufficient (perhaps better described as excessive) quantities of certain popular Mexican beverages.  Unfortunately, for some, the effects of such potions also increase the chances of their insulting or otherwise offending the alux, if and when one appears.  (Dismissing the alux as a mere hallucination, and/or laughing at the alux' appearance are common, but serious enough, errors.  Neglecting to share the afore-mentioned beverages with the alux, is, however, a grave mistake indeed.)  Such insulting behavior should be avoided if at all possible, for it is most assuredly unwise to raise the hackles of an alux, disguised or not... or anywhere between.

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To be on the safe side, always, always respect all the wildlife at Casa Gordon and in the surrounding forest.  Children may be encouraged to leave small tributes to the aluxes in the form of food scraps by placing the offerings in, or at the edges of, the forest.   Adults be ready to share their beverages with any of these creatures that appear thirsty.  Any animals encountered, be they aluxes or natural fauna, should be left alone and never molested in any way.  (Even the natural fauna of this area are protected by laws enforced by the local, state, and federal ecological authorities; and, unlike some areas of Mexican law enforcement, these laws are very strictly enforced.)   Critters will almost always retreat into the forest when human presence is sensed.   Animals left alone present no threat.  If an animal presents a problem such as becoming trapped inside the house, the house staff can remove it. 

 

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