The END...According to...NO ONE
How much has not been written by quite a few News24 users regarding the (tremble in your boots) END OF THE WORLD according to some late bronze age civilisation that lives in Central America about 1500 years ago.
Yes those infinitely wise predictors of the future that were so wise and all knowing that they simply decided their culture would shock all and sundry they had better stop existing. The MAYANS, I said it, the word of the prophets of eternal DOOM for all people on earth... Or not... If you do a PROPER research and understanding of the MAYAN calendar you would know... so I will explain it as plain as possible and bask in the glory of the end of nothing except (hopefully) some people’s misconception.
The first Mayan calendar is 260 days long, it is called the Tzolkin. Haab count is 365 days long (solar year) these two are combined over 52 Haabs to be synchronized.
The Trecena was 13 days long and the Veintena was 20 days long. These are not very relevant to this discussion.
Then we have the LONG COUNT, this is called the Bak’tun. The Mayans didn’t use a base 10 (decimal) number system like we do (born from having ten fingers) or and Octal (base 8, which ancient Sumerians used using the 8 gaps between fingers).
The current Bak’Tun started (if you had to trace the days back, ignoring skipped days from the middle ages etc) on the 11th of August 3114 BC. It will come to an end on the 21st of December 2012.
Before going onto the astronomical details did you know there were even LONGER counts (calendar)?
Pictum = 157808 years
Kalabtun = 3156164 years
K’inchiltun = 63123288 years.
Interesting that the Mayans made longer calendars but yet the world ends before that?
Let us continue to the Astronomy bit shall we?
21 December is, as most would (should) know, one of the solstices. Summer here by us in sunny South Africa. Shortest night, longest day...ring any bells? Reversed in the northern hemisphere (where the Mayans lived by the way).
So now we have the end of a season (or beginning of the end of a season), the solstice, coinciding with end of a calendar of an old extinct people. Relevant? No. Just proving the irrelevance of it.
Also the earth will be moving through the galactic equator on that very same day. Now THIS MUST be a sign of the end surely?
No... The earth does this TWICE a year...on each solstice... Relevant? No...AGAIN
So since the planets aren’t aligning to cause cataclysmic tidal forces and rip the earth apart, the sun isn’t going to engulf the earth, the earth won’t spin off into space, Niburu (legendary planet in a 3600 year orbit around the sun) is anywhere close by, no black holes or comets we are left with LOGIC to deduce the end of the world from an ancient calendar.
Some have said the Mayans ran out of rock, time, got tired went to have sex or go fishing...had to sacrifice a baby etc. As amusing as any of the above may be the sad, plain, uninteresting fact is that nothing is going to happen (related to the Mayan Bak’tun count anyway).
We have counts measuring the passage of time too you know. Seconds, minutes, hours, days, weeks, months, years, decades, centuries, millennia, eons... the list goes on.
However think LOGICALLY (those that can’t please just TRY) about the following: What happens when you get to 59 seconds? 59 Minutes and 59 seconds? 23 Hours, 59 minutes and 59 seconds? End of 7 days? End of (depending on the month) approximately 30 days? After 365 (sometimes 366) days? After 99 years? After 999 Years?
NOTHING happens. You have reached the end of a time measurement; it ticks the next bigger value +1, resets itself and starts at zero again...and again, and again and again.
If the world is going to end, for whatever reason it had better just be quick and painless. Not much we can do about it anyway.
PS: If you believe I am wrong, please give me all you possessions and money on the 20th of December 2012...you won’t need it! I on the other will enjoy some more last minute Christmas shopping...