Monsters of Central America

Werewolves: The Nahual!

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A Nagual or Nahual (both pronounced [na’wal]) is a human being who has the power to transform either spiritually or physically into an animal form, such as a puma, jaguar, coyote, wolf,dog or sometimes even a donkey or bird.

A Nagual is believed to use their powers for good or evil according to their personality. n modern rural Mexico, “nagual” is sometimes synonymous with “brujo”, or “witch” one who is able to shapeshift into an animal at night,drink blood from human victims, steal property, cause disease, and the like. One’s birth date often determines if a person will be a Nagual. Mesoamerican belief in tonalism, in which every person has an animal counterpart to which his life force is linked, is also part of the definition of nagualism. Each day is associated with an animal which has strong and weak aspects. A person born on “The Dog Day” would have both strong and weak “dog”aspects.