Modern Mayans are claiming that the December 21, 2012 so called 'doomsday' that many say the Mayan calendar calls for is a for profit misrepresentation of the calendar. Rather than an environmental apocalypse that many claim the calendar foretells modern Mayans are saying that the December 21 date represents one on which mankind will make significant custom oriented changes in order to be in harmony and balance with nature. The Mayans are claiming that the determinants resulting in these significant custom oriented changes will not involve a cataclysmic 'doomsday' event. Per the article:
...This calendar, the Long Count, is a wonderfully complex system that spans around 5,200 years and is of huge spiritual significance to the Mayan people. The final cycle of the calendar -- the 13th b'aktun -- will complete on Dec. 21. Obviously this means the world will come to an end... Right? Wrong. In a statement released by Oxlaljuj Ajpop, the end of the cycle simply "means there will be big changes on the personal, family and community level, so that there is harmony and balance between mankind and nature." To some crazed doomsayers desperately trying to make money from selling their nonsensical books of doom, this "harmony and balance" means the Universe is going to char broil the planet, killing everyone who isn't 'prepared' (i.e. those poor unfortunate souls who ignored their warnings). The Mayan descendants don't quite see "harmony and balance" in the same way.
Rather than an environmental apocalypse that many claim the calendar foretells modern Mayans are saying that the December 21 date represents one on which mankind will make significant custom oriented changes in order to be in harmony and balance with nature.
Still doesn't change the fact that the date is going to pass with hardly anyone noticing. I mean, I wish that would happen, but i don't think it's likely.
I, too, think it is going to be another millennium like disaster watch which will, like the millennium, come and go without incident. I definitely hope there will be custom oriented changes that will be in harmony and balance with nature.
Do we really have people around who claim descent from the Mayans like all those American Native wannabees who are 1/18th Indian? Do they still practice their religion? And, if they are, then aren't they the ones who profited most from the Doomsday attention?
Why wait till two months before the Doomsday Date before making this statement? And what if we really do have a catastrophic meteor strike or worldwide ecological disaster or nuclear war? Wouldn't these 'Mayans' have been first in line to gleefully take advantage of...and make profit from...claiming "We got it right!"
The next step...I predict with all my 'spiritual insight'...will be groups claiming "Oh, we just got the date wrong" and re-doing their calculations and setting the new date somewhere in the future so they can continue making profit. It sounds like these religious con-men are setting themselves up to make the claim "Yes, the world did change but only the truly spiritual people (i.e., the ones who fork over their money and buy our books) are capable of seeing the changes."
For information centering around Christian apocalyptic thinking that applies to all forms of End of the World predictions. He does a great job showing how failed predictions actually strengthen the faith of the true believers rather than causing them to turn away from the 'false prophet' in disgust.
Harold Camping is back:
I believe what will happen on December 22, 2012, is the same thing that happens every year on our new calendar year starting January 1, nothing will happen. Well nothing, unless of course we put Mitt Romney the Mormon in office.
....people who do not believe in this fact and make predictions of raptures and the like make me suspicious and I question their motives.
I very much share this feeling. I think most of them are self-serving rather than truly loving.
Yes, Phillip, there are tens of thousands of people in Mexico and Central America who are true descendents of the people who built the temples and devised the Long Count calendar. They speak the same languages, practice the same religion, and continue many of the cultural habits of their ancestors. If you compare the profile of a modern Mayan with the profiles in the ancient carvings you can see more than a family resemblence. I've stayed in some of their homes - stick and thatch houses with dirt floors - and slept in a traditional hammock, waking to a breakfast of tortilla and beans cooked on a fire hearth.
One Mayan friend explained their religious beliefs this way. He said he and his family go to mass every Sunday just has they have for hundreds of years. They kneel to pray, stand to sing, and say 'amen' in all the right places. 'But,' he told me, 'we don't believe a word of it.'
I have seen for myself the altars in the bush where the Maya worship in the same way as their ancestors. As for December 21st, there is no prophecy from ancient times regarding it. On that day the Long Count will reset to zero and start over. The whole apocalypse business was started by people in North America.
We have three groups of Maya in Belize - the Kekchi, the Mopan, and the Yucatecan. The movie Apocolypto featured the Yucatecans.