Time for a change

Today is December 21st 2012. For domesday prophets this will be the last day on Earth. It has to do with interpretations of the so called Maya calendar. The Maya empire flourished in Central America during the Middle Ages, but ended 500 years ago, even though the Mayas still exist as a people in Mexico and Guatemala. The Mayas had different calanders which they used in their religion to predict celestrial phenomena, to structure their lifes and predict the future. One of these calanders was built on time units called “baktuns”, periods of 394 years. According to that Maya calander today, December 21st 2012, is the end of baktun number 13. The Mayas had something they called “the long counting” and that counting ends with baktun 13. The domesday prophets within the New Age-movement and elsewhere in the Western world have taken this as a sign of the destruction of our world. According to the Mayas themselves this is pure nonsense. There are more baktuns after the 13th – up to number 19. If that day is the last it should happen in 4772, if that is meant to be seen as a domesday prophecy.

So who started this wave of Mayan domesday predictions? It began in 1966 when the scientist Michael Coe, who studied the Mayas, speculated about the long counting and called it Harmagedon, most likely to sell more books. During the cold war between the West and the Soviet Union the fear of a big new world war with nuclear weapons it seemed to be a potential threat. Coe’s ideas spread outside the academic circles and was reinterpreted and exaggerated by the New Age-movement, among others. These ideas have then flourished in films, books etc.

I do not think that today will be the last day on earth in the way we know it. I believe that is pure nonsense. Like so many others though I’m fully aware of the potential threats. Our sun is now in a very active phase, which threatens to destroy or harm satellites and our electricity here on Earth. There is a potential threat of objects from space that will collide with us and destroy our world, like it did for the dinosaurs 60 million years ago…but not now.

The most imminent threat is us, the humans. We destroy the world we live in, we destroy ourselves and each other. In text after text on this blog I deal with different aspects of our human existence and with the importance of finding better ways to deal with our human interaction, and the care for the world we live in. Read for example texts like “Wise like an owl and tremendous like a deer?”, “Learn from history and work for the future”, “The Janus face of every faith”, “A Middle Eastern dilemma with global effects” and others. We need to take care of each other. It’s better to try and love with consideration and care, erotically but not in a rapist-, foul way, to show pity and empathy, have limits, respect and self-respect. That is what we need. This is not the last day on Earth, but we need time for a change.

Anders Moberg, December 21st 2012

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