December 25, 2012

Failed Mayan Prophecy?

I am writing this essay on Dec. 24, or about 3 days after the winter solstice...
three days after the 'end of the Mayan (long-count) calendar.' 
For some, invoking various manner of arcane reasoning, that date was supposed to mark the end of the world. Others understood that it simply marked the end of the long-count (lasting 5,125 years) used by those excellent time-keepers, the Maya.

Yet, there were pieces of 'supporting evidence' that seemed to corroborate the notion that the date 21-12-12 had some kind of ominous significance. The researcher Terrance McKenna arrived at the same date by transposing the Chinese 'I Ching' symbols into a mathematical time-graph. (And, critics claim, by some subtle forcing of the calculations). Many people noted that the date also can be viewed as signalling the aligning of the solstice with our solar ecliptic and with the galactic plane.

In Aztec lore, the date indicates a time when the solsticial sun rises in the heart of the 'dark rift' at the center of the Milky Way. Some reasoned that the energy output from that core would amplify that of our sun, and cause unknown catastrophes. Others say it marks the completion of the last 'Great Year,' or 'Platonic Year,' the 25,920 years it takes for the Earth's axis to complete its wobbly circuit around the zodiac. Many of these latter believers were convinced that the date marks the transition of humanity's consciousness to a 'higher dimension' or vibration of existence, whether we felt anything or not.

Whatever the case, the fact is that, by objective observation, 'nothing happened' on that date, 
despite the most ardent and dire predictions for 'teotwawki' ('the end of the world as we know it,' as it's often abbreviated). So, the question has to be raised, 'What was this really about?' I.e. was all the lead-up hoopla just media hype and human mass hysteria, akin to the Y2K stuff? Or was there some significance below the surface?

My feeling is that the Maya were no fools; they made that calendar for some reason to end on that date. Pundits are already suggesting that the calendar simply rolled over, like an odometer, thru a set of zeroes, to begin again. I find that conclusion too conveniently self-serving... especially given the tenuous tenor of these times, when even scientists admit that disaster could come in a number of guises, to bring teotwawki. Several aboriginal traditions also converge around the present time with predictions of either disaster or crises of some kind (refer to Hopi, Lakota, Hindu, and other folk-lore).

McKenna's construction may be somewhat artificial, but his understanding of the time-based graph was that it measured relative 'novelty' on the planet. Novelty was a word he used to refer, basically, to the rate of change of events. Moreover, he noted exponential cycles in his graph, where each newer phase compressed all the 'novelty' of previous phases into the latest cycle. Hence, when the graph makes it's final plunge down to the base line, around 21-12-12, it indicates a burst of 'infinite novelty.'

There's an odd remark to be found in the already-odd Book of Revelation, in chapter 10: “[6] And [the angel] swore by him that lives for ever and ever [...] that there should be time no longer; [7]But in the days of the voice of the seventh angel, when he shall begin to sound, the mystery of God should be finished, as he has declared to his servants the prophets.” Most versions use the word 'delay' in place of 'time;' but it's chronos in the Greek, so judge for yourself. In prophetic context, it signals that God is preparing to wrap things up on Earth; it indicates the 'end time.'

Placing our three clues before a speculative mind, one can argue that the Mayan calendar-makers (who were also their priests) saw no point in beginning a new cycle. Their '13th baktun' would end close enough to the end of the current Age that it was futile to pretend the continuation of a following Age. Similarly, McKenna's I-Ching time-line echoes the same theme; after 21-12-12, global events go 'off the charts,' haywire, until the system implodes catastrophically-- his 'time-wave zero.'

 So, gentle reader, there's a possible understanding of the 'failed Mayan prophecy' for you. My theory, projected ahead a few months, maybe years, calls for an unprecedented swirling of totally unexpected events that will make our heads spin. Not very cheery, it's true; but better to be aware of doom than to be caught blissfully dreaming by a very rude awakening.

No comments:

Post a Comment