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Oct 31
2009

Too bad: Mayan calendar predictions revised, 2012 becomes 2220

Posted by: Travel-Adventures in Lifestyle

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This is the translation of an excerpt of a publication in Natuurwetenschap & Techniek (Science & Technology), a Dutch scientific magazine. The excerpt was written by Maarten Keulemans. The publication was made in the 11th edition of 2009.


The movie 2012, which premieres this month, shows the viewer cities and continents being whiped from the face of the earth when the world comes to an end. However, research has just shown that the 'end of time' of the 21st of December 2012 has been miscalculated by two centuries.

 

Dozens of books, countless websites, people planning to flee to mountains or other areas believed to be safe. You couldn't have missed it: prophets of doom have discovered yet another end date. This time the world will end on Friday the 21st of December 2012. Our planet will be ripped apart by a stray planet, burned by the flames of the sun, crushed by the gods or completely cleansed by cosmic primal forces - depending on the book or website consulted.

 

These stories of doom all agree on two things. The first: the sun will climb to a very special place in the sky on 21/12/2012 . The second: the Mayan calender will end on 21/12/2012. Motivated prophets of doom have already made up their mind: say goodbye to the world. Sacha Defesche, a University of Amsterdam graduate in Philosophy and Religion Studies who graduated on the subject of 2012, believes that the idea of 2012 as a special year arose during a meeting between Terence McKenna and José Arguëlles. Sacha Defesche: "They are responsible for giving a religious and apocalyptic meaning to the date. It is possible that without this meeting the date would not have been noticed as such".

 

Mayan RuinsAstronomer Louis Strous says that it's not such a great event. "It's the beginning of the astronomical winter, but there are no special forces connected with it", says Strous , who created a public page for the University of Utrecht to discuss the astronomical side of 2012. The 'special' position of heavenly bodies is not so special according to him. During lectures, he sometimes shows pictures of the sky and the stars on different dates. After that he asks the attendants on what picture they see something special. No one chooses the 21st of December 2012. "There is nothing special to see for the ordinary civilian."

 

However, there does happen something on doomsday. The sun will climb to the point where, if it were dark, you would be able to see the Milky Way - the light band of stars running diagonally across the sky. The sun will reach it's highest point right in the center of that band, the 'galactic equator', on 21/12/2012. It only happens once in about approximately 25.800 years that the sun does this precisely at the time of the winter solstice. The 2012 believer can imagine it already: that alignment causes a cosmic gate to the Milky Way to open, through which spiritual forces will flow.

 

Too bad this position is not very unusual. "This event happens every couple of thousand years", stresses Strous. Moreover, there is no such thing as an exact 'equator' of the Milky Way. "This is not about things you can just see. The galactic equator is not a line in the sky or something like that. "Apart from the fact that the sun passes the galactic center twice a year already, when it's not the winter solstice, the sun was on the galactic equator on December 21 in previous years as well, and the coming years that will also be the case. Strous believes there is no reason for panic. "If you ask me it's not sure that the Mayans had this kind of knowledge."

 

Mishmash

So no sudden cosmic gates of heaven that will open. But how about the other story of doom: the Mayan calender?

 

Here too the truth is quite different (Skepter, 2008). When the Spaniards conquered the kingdom of the Mayans in the 16th century, the Mayans did not have only one calender.

 

These people were tracking time with no less than four calenders at the same time. The oldest calender had a count of 260 days called the 'tzolkin', made up of 20 days, each with their own name, each passing 13 times. The Mayans also knew the 'haab', a calender of 365 days, divided over 18 months of 20 days, with at the end 5 'bad luck days'. Calender number three was the 'short count', with days, months, years and 'katuns', periods of nearly twenty years. Lastly, in the background, there was a 'long count' that counted the katuns: 20 katuns make one 'baktun', and there were 13 of those baktuns. However, the long count was no longer in use when the Spanish arrived, likely not in the last place that because that count runs so slowly.

 

The Tzolkin

 

So it is a system of creepy complexity, being expressed in date notations like '10.4.0.0.0 - 12 Ahau - 3 Uo', or: 'the tenth baktun plus the fourth katun after the creation according to the long count, the last but one Ahau day according to the tzolkin calender and the 3rd day of the month Uo according to the haab-calender.'

 

Alright, so what is the Western 'translation' of such a date? What christian calender date belongs to which Mayan year. This is a practical problem that scientists have been debating for centuries. The Spaniards have burned most of the Mayan texts that could have acted as a guide. So researchers that want to know how Mayan time fits into the normal calender are forced to rely on chiseled inscriptions, a few written clues from the Spanish conquistadores and modern tables that allow you to find the positions of the planets and stars. This complex scientific puzzle that tries to fit the Mayan calender onto those of the West is called the 'correlation problem'.

 

An observatory in Uaxactun, Guatemala. One of the places the ancient Mayans used to study the skies.

 

And this is also where the notorious end date of 21-12-2012 comes into play. A small one hundred years ago scientists thought they had the answer. By looking at casual references in Spanish writings, archeologists named Goodman, Martínez and Thompson presented their 'GMT-correlation': a calculation that determined the creation date of the Mayans to be the 11th of August 3114 B.C. After some calculations the GMT-correlation says that the long count will complete one full round in December 2012. The counter will jump to 13.0.0.0.0 and time will be finished, or so the archeologists thought.

 

Thought, because what few 2012-prophets know, is that the GMT-correlation has been under heavy fire for the last ten years by modern research of astronomers, archeologists and a few hobby mathematicians. The final blow has been dealt by the thesis that gave earth-scientist Andreas Fuls his Ph.D. at the Technical University of Berlin three years ago. Fuls demonstrated that the GMT-correlation was not in line with a Mayan table that displayed the positions of Venus. And there is more, like inscriptions and artifacts that had not been discovered or dated in the time of Goodman, Martínez en Thompson. By adding it all up Fuls comes with a completely different date: one that has moved it 208 years. According to that correlation the long count will end in two centuries, on the 21st, 22nd or 23rd of December 2220. "That's the only possibility", Fuls says when asked about it.

 

This does not mean that the world will still end in 2220. "It's not sure whether you can speak of an 'end' with a cyclic calender like that of the Mayans", says Defesche. You can expect that Mayan time will continue at 1.0.0.0.1 after 13.0.0.0.0, even without taking into account whether the 'long count' actually ends at that time.

 

Archeologist David Kelly and astrophysicist Eugene Milone pointed out that the Mayans probably knew an even longer count, one in 'pictuns'; periods of 20 bactuns (or 20 x 144.000 days = 7.890 years). The prophets of doom - and the movie industry - have many thousands of years to continue their business.

 

Translated by Dennis Willigers of Duende Tours, the original article (Dutch) can be found here.

 

More information:

A virtual tour to 9 Classic Mayan sites

The history of Palenque

The history of Tikal

Mayan Pyramids: ancient technology

 

Active Jungle Tours to Mayan Ruins from Duende Tours:

Maya Jungle highlight tour

Tikal - Yaxha - Nakum Tour

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written by Chanel J12 Watch, September 09, 2011
That is exactly what I am lookng for!You have done a brilliant job. Your article is truly relevant to my study at this moment, and I am really happy to read it.Thanks for great share!
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written by Cody, April 08, 2011
You just made my day. Now I can continue my life without fear. Thank You!
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written by Carl de Borhegyi, February 22, 2011
OMG!!!
I need to acknowledged that I made a mathematical mistake in the above comment. The end date of the Maya Calendar according to Spinden should be placed at 1752 and not 1760. The mistake comes from bad math by myself and a statement I read in the book THE ANCIENT MAYA, in which according to the author archaeologist Robert Sharer (1983, p.559) the abbreviated form of recording Maya dates called the Short Count made a correlation with the European calendar accurate only within a period of about 256 years (260 tuns). However the fact remains that the correlation developed by archaeologist Dr. Herbert Spinden, and named after him differs from the GMT correlation by 260 years, once again placing the famous end date to the Maya Long Count at 1752. The evidence of a petroglyph with a probable Long Count Date jumping from a mushroom and archaeological evidence presented by my father should however be reviewed by experts.

The petroglyph from Central Mexico, dated archaeologically at 2000 B.C., of a monkey jumping from an Amanita muscaria mushroom (first noted by author) with what appears to be a probable Long Count date located above the monkey's left shoulder. If this Long Count date (2169 BC, discovered by Manzanilla López, Rubén; and Arturo Talavera González) can be confirmed, it fits the "once favored" correlation of the Mayan Calendar developed by Dr. Herbert Spinden, which establishes the beginning of the Maya calendar at 3374 B.C. That date, in turn, places the so-called end of the Mayan Calendar and the "end of the world" at 1752 rather than 2012. For more on the petroglyph read BREAKING THE MUSHROOM CODE at mushroomstone.com
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written by webhead, February 09, 2011
There are a number of ways that life on Earth could be drastically impacted. A giant asteroid, comet or meteorite could smash into the planet. A giant super-volcano (e.g. Yellowstone) could erupt. A giant solar flare could scorch us. A nuclear war could be initiated by a terrorist nation. Climate change could gradually make most of the habitable regions uninhabitable. Aliens from another galaxy could come take over the Earth and dispose of the human race. In any case, none of this will occur on a date that is will correspond with any religious, scientific or other particular time/day that has been predicted by humans. Throughout our entire history we have always tended to think of ourselves as the center of everything. At one time we thought Earth was the center of the Universe. We aren't that relevant. The end could be tomorrow, or it could be in 30 million years when the Sun becomes a red giant and swallows us whole. There is no point in losing sleep over it.
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written by John, February 05, 2011
This is complete and utter non-sense... And 99% of the comments above are either posted to dis-inform and dis-credit the important 2012 date, or are written by people who have not done their research.

Utter non-sense... And No the world will not end in 2012, but the controllers of the world will likely no longer be able to fool us into following their world scams any longer.

So for the people controlling the media, and movies... Their worlds mind end, maybe their lives as well
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written by Carl de Borhegyi, September 18, 2010
A mushroom inspired prophecy of the end of the Mayan Calendar is recorded in one of the native manuscripts, called the Chilam Balam of Chumayel, written by a group of "were-jaguars", also known as jaguar priests.
"It shall burn on earth; there shall be a circle in the sky. Kauil [ A deity whose image was erected on ritual occasions],shall be set up; he shall be set up in front in time to come. It shall burn on earth; the [very] hoof shall burn in that katun, in the time which is to come. Fortunate is he who shall see it when the prophecy is declared, who shall weep over his misfortunes in time to come"(Chapter XXIV)
In the katun ceremonies of the ancient Maya, the god K'awil(a mushroom god)plays a prominent role. In the Paris Codex K'awil's head, also known as God K, Tohil, and G III) his head is presented to different katun Lords seated on a sky-band thrown, and that the head of K'awil depicts the insignia of the Lord of the katun (Susan Milbrath, 1999: p 230).
K'awil's image, portrayed as a serpent-footed scepter, called the manikin scepter, is held by rulers as a symbol of divine rulership. K'awil's image as a manikin scepter first appears at the Maya kingdom of Tikal, where he appears to be related to the Mexican rain god Tlaloc (also a mushroom god, responsible for whats known as Tlaloc warfare). In Central Mexico, Chac and K'awil's Classic period counterparts were,Quetzalcoatl and Tlaloc.
In my examination of pre-Columbian art I have discovered that the gods that appear to be linked to mushroom imagery are clearly linked to the planet Venus as both a Morning Star and Evening Star. The name Quetzalcoatl has been interpreted to mean "Precious twin" indicating that the Morning Star and Evening Star are one and the same (Caso, 1958: p.24) (Duran:325). Avatars of Quetzalcoatl took the forms of various dualities signifying the concept of life and death: i.e. the eagle and the jaguar, symbolizing the ruler of the underworld and ruler of the upper world. In art this twin god is clearly connected with serpents, jaguars, and birds. Mushrooms are also associated with the grizzly ritual of decapitation and the ritual ballgame associated with a trophy head cult.
Carl de Borhegyi
For more on K'awil visit Breaking the Mushroom Code

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written by Carl de Borhegyi, September 05, 2010
Breaking news everyone, the Maya Calendar may have already ended in the year 1760 and not in the year 2012. John Major Jenkins and other New Agers should visit the site of Carl de Borhegyi regarding new evidence that the GMT correlation may be off by 260 years.

According to archaeologist Michael Coe, only two correlations meet the requirements of both dirt archaeology and specific dates. A number of correlations have been developed, but the one that has been generally accepted is the Goodman-Martinez-Thompson (GMT) correlation, associated primarily with archaeologist J. Eric S. Thompson. This correlation, which fits much of the chronological evidence from archaeological and historical sources, is the basis for the belief that the world will end in the year 2012. Another correlation developed by archaeologist Herbert Spinden, and named after him, also fits much archaeological and historical data. The two correlations differ, however, by 260 years

In many ways the Spinden correlation, which uses archaeological evidence from both the Maya lowlands and the southern highland regions, fits the archaeological and historical requirements better than the GMT correlation. In 1951 and 1955 samples of Sapodilla wood from dated lintels (beams) spanning Late Classic Mayan doorways at Tikal were tested by radiocarbon dating, These tests favored the Spinden correlation. More tests were performed in 1960 which favored the GMT correlation. Although at the time Maya scholars reached a consensus favoring the Thompson or GMT correlation, debate on the subject has never ceased. Due to various discrepancies in the tests, radiocarbon dating has not resolved the matter as to which correlation is correct. A number of researchers including my father, Stephan F. de Borhegyi, better known as Borhegyi, and most notably E. Wyllys Andrews (1960, 1965, 1965c, 1968, 1973) have presented convincing archaeological evidence favoring the Spinden correlation. It is the Spinden correlation that sets all Maya dates 260 years earlier than the GMT correlation.

If the once favored Spinden correlation is correct, and new evidence at mushroomstone.com suggests it might be, it establishes the beginning of the world at 3374 B.C. That, in turn, places the "so-called" end of the Mayan Calendar at 1760 rather than 2012. In other words, contrary to much contemporary hype, the end of the "fifth world" may have already ended. If so, there was no Armageddon and the Mayan Calendar simply began another cycle.
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written by brigite, August 12, 2010
is this true? i'm only 14 years old, i dont know what to believe in im really scared with this "end of the world" thing, please someone answer me
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written by KuRoRo, March 09, 2010
We are all fools. What will you gain with the knowledge of all that. At the end of the day, we are all just a tiny speck in this very vast universe, each of us thinking that we can comprehend everything.
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written by Billy Bob, November 25, 2009
Wooden lintels from doors at Tikal and other organic items that can be assigned to Long Count dates have been carbon dated and these agree with the GMT correlation to within the limits of the accuracy of the dating process, a few years. This confirms the GMT correlation and casts grave doubt on correlations that are not close to the GMT. In addition, one of the correlated dates that is used to derive the GMT is the conquest of the Aztec empire. This occurred on August 13th, 1521. The Tzok'in was one snake. A correlation could not be correct unless it differs from the GMT by a multiple of 260 days. This is not true of the correlation of 660,208 days proposed by Fuls, et. al. The date of the conquest would fall on 9 Ajaw. Many hierophanies have been proposed by attempting to use astronomy programs but the methods used by ancient astronomers were not accurate enough to use their data to get dates that accurately record astronomical phenomena to test these hypotheses. A very large number of correlation constants has been proposed by many authors but there is very little doubt that the correct one is the GMT. Senor Cuete (talk) 15:51, 27 October 2009 (UTC)Senor Cuete

More criticism of Fuls, et. al.: Fuls' chart at: http://www.archaeoastronomie.d...rrtabl.htm has a glaring error. It uses 584,285 as the GMT correlation. THIS IS NOT THE GMT CORRELATION. The GMT correlation is 584,283 days. If fuls didn't know the GMT correlation and analyze it then his work is useless in selecting a better constant then the GMT.

Fuls' note on Moon age says "The Moon age was counted by the Maya as given on various inscriptions (using glyph D and/or E). Ethnohistorical sources and the analysis of the Eclipse Table working for Solar eclipses at New Moon leads to assumption, that the Moon age count started at New Moon or one day later at the first visibility of the Moon." Using the wrong correlation constant and this methodology, Fuls finds that the (not really the) "GMT" correlation doesn't agree well with classical inscriptions. Thanks to Copernicus we know that the Earth orbits the Sun and the Moon orbits the Earth. For this reason modern astronomers (including Fuls) refer to the conjunction of the Sun and Moon (the time when the Sun and Moon have the same right ascension) as the New Moon. This is wrong. The New Moon is the first evening when one can look to the west after sunset and see the thin crescent Moon. Even today it can be difficult to predict this and it's important because for example the Feast of Ramadan starts on the New Moon. Given our modern ability to know exactly where to look, when the crescent Moon is favorably located, from an excellent site, on rare occasions observers can see and photograph the crescent Moon less than one day after conjunction. Generally, most observers won't see the New Moon until the first evening when the lunar phase day is at least 1.5. If one bases his lunar calculations on the rule that the New Moon is the first day when the lunar phase day is at least 1.5 at six in the evening in time zone -6 (the time zone of the Maya area), the GMT correlation agrees very well with classic inscriptions, for example: An inscription at the Temple of the Sun at Palenque records that on Long Count 9.16.4.10.8 there were 26 lunar days completed in a 30 day lunation. If Fuls didn't know the correct definition of the New Moon, his analysis is worthless.

A lot of correlations between the Calendar Round and Julian calendar are known from post-classic sources. A Tzolk'in is known for the fall of Tenochtitlan. A number of modern groups in the Guatemalan highlands have been found to be keeping the Tzolk'in to this day. All of these are consistent with each other and with the GMT correlation. Any proposed correlation that does not differ from the GMT correlation by a multiple of 260 days is at odds with the historical record.

Fuls is a Fool and so are U
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