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August 02, 2006


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Maybe they have astrologers because the Mayans were big on astrology, and the show's producers are trying to get an idea of why that specific date might have been chosen, or why that cycle was used?

If that's true, they still should have asked astonomers. Any decent one can tell you exactly why that date was used: From our perspective the sun passes over some unique point in the sky. This only happens once every 4000 years, and the last time it's believed to have happened is right when the Mayan calendar starts (this is from memory, so it may be wrong).

Their belief was essentially that the sun exited that spot, and would swing around for 4,000 years before going back into it and ending the world.

I'd be interested to know how many "end of the world" scenarios have been promulgated and passed in the last 50 years alone.

It amazes me that each failure of these (often well-publicised) predictions just seems to reset the woos' inner credulity clock: "Oh, well maybe we were just misinterpreting Nostradamus for the last three years. It'll happen next year, for sure."

I'd be highly skeptical the History Channel was going to do a "well done" program on any subject, let alone Mayan Prophecy and that kind of gibberish. If any network has tipped ass over teakettle into woo-land, it's that one. They really ought to call themselves The Pseudoscience and Alternate History Channel.

I don't even think it "starts over" as such, the Long Count system was more like IPv6 and we're just seeing the last few abbreviated decimals. The system itself could expand to any given arbitrary period of time.

So instead of cycling over to, it's really

Big Al wondered 'how many "end of the world" scenarios have been promulgated and passed in the last 50 years alone.'

Here's a pretty amazing collection: www.geocities.com/athens/oracle/9941/

Well, I watched it. Just the same old credulous crap. They did spend a significant chunk of time going into the history of the Maya, but it was always encapsulated by the "The Maya predicted Doomsday and they predicted all these things that happened in recent history" message.

Prophecies 100 times more vague than Nostradamus' nonsense are presented as predictions of specific events such as the American Civil War, the assasination of Lincoln, the social upheaval of the 60's, etc.

Professor Chase does say at the end that nothing will happen on December 21, 2012, but that's in the last 5 minutes of the program given to the "skeptical" viewpoint. The rest of the show almost completely endorses the Maya "prophecy" as a real phenomonon. Very disappointing, but, of course, not unexpected.

What killed me at the end was how the narration set up this false dichotomy between skeptics and believers: either you dismiss the prophecy as irrelevant, or you heed the "warning" of the Maya and work to prevent the disasters that threaten our modern world. I can dismiss the Mayan prophecy and still recognize that global warming, famine, global political instability, and nuclear weapons are still major issues that need to be addressed. These dangers weren't predicted in any way shape or form by the Maya.

Also at the end, one of the Maya prophecy enthusiasts, essentially admitted that the prophecy was bogus. He used some weasel words to argue that the exact Mayan date may not be accurate, but future historians will look back on the years "surrounding" the Mayan date give or take 20 years and conclude that interesting changes happened. Is there any period of recorded human history spanning 20 years or more in which historians wouldn't conclude that something interesting happened?

The History Channel! hahaha. That station pisses me off. Tonight: "History of Woo woo." After that "Secrets: the Woo woo factory." Followed by "Aliens, New World Order and the Woo woo Cult of The Founding Fathers."

I liked the History Channel better when it was the Hitler Channel. All WWII, all the time!

The authors of the documentary and the invited guests argued that the Mayan Calendar was the most sophisticated in the known history of the world, therefore, the prophecy should be true – the final judgment day is coming in less than 9 years.

See, I don't believe in final judgment days, Apocalypses, and similar mass fear theories, so the Prophecy didn't make any impact, didn't scare me. What made me very upset was the effort of the authors of the film to ignore any other calendar systems, and namely, the Proto-Bulgarian one.

The Mayans started their super civilization only 1000 years B.C., meaning more than 3000 years later than the Proto-Bulgarians already used their sophisticated calendar. In spite the fact that there were settlements 10,000 years BC in the same lands, where the Mayans created their civilization, nothing happened until 600 BC, when they suddenly started to build pyramids, use mathematics, astronomy, etc., just out of the blue.

What happened between the 10th millennia BC and 600 BC, and how the
Mayan smarted up so brilliantly, to leave a superior civilization, including the famous calendar?

What is very interesting, is that the names of most of the Mayan
Pre-classical settlements, and classical periods, are ending in the word «can», like the Kukulkan, or «khan».

Guess what: Khan was the superior title of the Bulgarian aristocracy – from 6th Millennia BC till 9th Century AD. The forth day in the calendar (k'an) is also very similar to khan.

Itza – the name of the most ancient Mayan people, means in Proto-Bulgarian (itzhi, itzi) – holy. No wonder that the Itza people built one of the greatest holy buildings in Chichen Itza.

Many other parallels could be drawn. I leave that to the historians and linguists to sort it out.

What I want to underline is: we cannot believe in prophecies, drawn on insufficient knowledge of history or religion. It is time to start to recognize the achievements of people and nations, ancient civilizations, and contemporary cultures, no matter of the politics of the jour.

If we continue to ignore the diversity of the world culture, the contribution of each nation to it (no matter if now or yesterday this nation was considered “evil”), if we close our eyes to historical facts, the real doomsday will inevitably come – from the division, from the hatred, from all lack of respect to the other people’s knowledge and understanding of life.

Excerpt from the book Bulgarian Chronicles (translator: RossitzaOhridksa-Olson). See the original text below the English version.

«So, in vain you are denying your Proto-Bulgarian heritage, gets even more angry the Hungarian professor and orders the third glass of grape brandy, if there is anything decent in you, you have inherited it from the Proto-Bulgarians,
because they were not Mongols, like they are telling you, neither Huns or Turks, but Indo-European with mystic cosmic knowledge.

in difference from the ignorant Italians, who in 1600 AD burned on the stake Giordano Bruno, because he insisted that the Earth turns around the Sun,

the Proto-Bulgarians not only knew that – it was carved on their
tombstones – the Sun with the turning around 6 planets, which was for them something like their coat of arms (later, after the Christianization, the bogomils turn it into their sacra sign),

you see, back in 4783 BC those clever Proto-Bulgarians have calculated that the Earth turns around the Sun in 365 days plus a forth of a day, minus a little bit,

and they calculated this «a little bit» with an incredible exactitude: they compared the movement of the Earth with the movement of Jupiter,
and they concluded that the Earth turns around the Sun in 365 days and 2422 thousands of the day, which is only half second less than the absolutely exact astronomical time, measured today.

Stefan Tsanev comment in the book:
Based on their astronomical knowledge, the Proto Bulgarians created the most perfect calendar, known until now: the year started on the
Winter Solstice (standing – still – Sun, web dictionary), that day, because the sun "stays" still, was declared as nil (zero), the rest
364 days were divided into four seasons, 91 days each; each season was divided into 3 months, the first month of the season being of 31 days, the rest - 30 days; this way the first month of the winter coincided with the winter solstice, the first day of the spring season – with the spring equinox, the first day of the first month of the summer - with the summer solstice, and the first day of the first month of the autumn season – with the autumn equinox. Every four years the leap day was added in front of the first day of the seventh month, in the day of the summer solstice, it was also a nil day, and the Proto-Bulgarians called it eni, now a day, in Bulgaria, we called it
Enyov Den.

That’s a pretty good write-up Big C – saved me the trouble. I also noted the weasel words to simultaneously argue that the prophesy was bogus but we should heed it anyway. I think I covered this exact same form of equivocation before.

That said, I believe the skeptical viewpoint got more of a say than in many other programs on woo topics. Professor Chase was featured throughout the program and was quoted clearly saying nothing would happen in 2012. Someone (I forget if was Chase or someone else) also said that the Mayan calendar continued after the 2012 date – ie it rolls over to the next cycle (which I believe starts So yes, it did hype up the end of the world nonsense, but was not as bad as it could have been.

Perhaps my expectations have become lowered?

The show was indeed over the top and the relentless scenes of destruction spoke loud and clear about the intentions of the film makers - raise the fear level!

By the way, I was one of those interviewed on the program (the "astrologer") and found that many of my mostly skeptical comments weren't included. I was the one who said 12/21/2012 would be "just another day" which they then incorporated into their script rather than have me say it.

Having just spent seven weeks in Belize and the Yucatan visiting ancient Mayan sites, I've come to some conclusions that may be contrary to the common understanding of the Mayan calendar and prophecies. I was also struck by the similarities between the Mayan calendar and the East Indian calendar regarding 2012.
Please visit my blog at:

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