The Mayan long count calendar ends on December 21, 2012, which is this Friday. According to doomsday theorists, that means the end of the world as we know it. These theorists say it will end midnight, Friday December 21, 2012. Notice they don’t specify a time zone.
Since it is almost impossible to turn on a television set this week without seeing some programming covering the end of the world, I’ve watched some of the more reasonable ones. Some of the things I’ve heard and seen are very interesting. Things such as the Mayans don’t predict the end of the world. People who are supposedly experts at deciphering the Mayan glyphs say they can find nothing that indicates the physical end of life on earth. The calendar just ends, which apparently indicates the end of the 13th baktun, a span of time defined as 144,000 days. December 22 will mark the beginning of the 14th baktun, nothing more. The nearest analogy used was when our calendar changed from December 31, 1999 to January 1, 2000.
Remember the panic and paranoia over “Y2K”? And what happened? People woke up Jaunary 1, swearing never to drink that much again, then went about their normal lives. Expect the same kind of reaction Saturday December 22, 2012. People will wake up, have coffee, then hit the mall for some full contact Christmas shopping on the last weekend before Christmas. Even the descendants of the Mayans simply say “the calendar will start over”, which has been my view all along.
Of course, if I’m wrong, there won’t be anyone left to say “you blew it, girl”. If I’m right, I promise I won’t say “I told you so” – really, I promise.
Interestingly enough, there are many predictions of the end of the world, but they don’t have any date attached to them. The legends of the Hopi describe the end of everything. Of course, the Bible covers it, graphically, in The Revelation of Saint John, which is the last book in the Bible. According to what I heard, the Torah and the Q’ran also mention the end of the world as do other religions.
Nostradamus, who apparently has quite a high accuracy rate, also predicts the end of the world. His prediction mention balls of fire from the heavens (pick your own description – missiles, comets, meteors, whatever), but not until the year 3797.
So, are we to believe those who predict Doomsday based on the ending of a calendar from a long-dead civilization; or those who, like me, take the more pragmatic view that the Mayan long count calendar simply marks the end of a cycle? Personally, I’m going shopping December 22, 2012.
Enjoy the rest of your week. Remember to hug an artist – we need love too and don’t worry, nothing’s gonna happen Friday midnight. No matter what time zone you live in.