Who will be left behind 2012? who will survive 2012?
The recent movie referring to the Mayan calendar asked this. The movie trailer asks another question,
“How would the governments of the world prepare six billion for the end of the world?”
While showing a watery deluge pouring over high mountains, “Find out the truth”
This showed both a touching faith in government, by implying that they prepare for events, and also realism, in that Government will fail do anything.
In the plot of the movie has a scientist learning from another in India information which is conveyed to the American government in secret. In reality, if one scientist learns anything from another chances are its 'out there' and common knowledge to possibly millions in the net connected info-world. Earth movement science is evidence based, it is often has good funding levels due to the desire to predict earthquakes and there are now many sensors and global teams of scientists working in co-operation. Any new trends will be subject to debate which, if radical enough, will twitter. It is possible the, often scientifically clueless, elected representatives of government are the last to find out. The failure of Government to act on information is illustrated, in that the American government even when given information seemed unable to prevent bombing of a plane, or even get their story straight afterwards. 'Intelligence' and 'government' don't often go together.
'Movies' and 'truth' don't go together, either. The trailer of 2012 continued.
“Mankind's earliest civilization warned this day would come 21 December this year, what are the odds”
The Mayan are far from the earliest civilization! The image shown for this civilization is actually incredibly recent. The stepped pyramids like those of Tikal date from 700CEto 1000CE when they abandoned the city. The famous Temple I pyramid of the Grand Jaguar dates from 695-734CE, Temple II for the Queen 702-4CE, Temple III 810CE, and Temple IV the highest is dated 766CE. At that rate, they are late starters. The Egyptians had long given up building pyramids and hadn't built any since circa 2000BCE. The Nubians gave up building them by 400CE! In Europe by 1000CE they were about to embark on the structurally sophisticated era of the Gothic Cathedral!
Also there is no Mayan prophecy warning, just a (defaced) reference to the Long Count calendar. According to scholars, the Mesoamerican Long Count calendar used by the Mayan (among others) to five places ends on possibly 2 dates, December 21 or December 23. Like the Jewish year count, the Mayan calendar began at their estimate of Creation, which scholars think equals August 11 or 13, 3114 BCE of the Gregorian calendar (see wiki/2012) (compare this to the Jewish date for creation 26 Elul 3760 BCE, or Bishop Ussher's of 4004BCE, they cannot all be correct).
The Long Count was capable of being extended to refer to any date far into the future (or past) most often they used 5 places (or 5125 solar years). The Maya were superstitious and the end of their many cycles, of which the Long Count was only one, were times of celebration (wiki/Mayan_Calendar). The Maya long calendar may not imply a stop at 5 places as Coba Stela 1 has many more. In any case, ancient it is not. The source of the idea, at Tortuguero Monument 6, is dated to the 7th century CE. Though defaced, Mayan scholar David Stuart made a translation:
The Thirteenth (Bak'tun) will be finished (on) Four Ajaw, the Third of Uniiw (K'ank'in).
... will occur. (It will be) the descent(?) of Bolon Yookte' K'uh to the..
Bolon Yookte' K'uh is a god of underworld. This inscription is in context of a not uncommon idea of a future dedicatory celebration (wiki/2012_doomsday_prediction)
In a superstitious pagan culture, in the context of a turning of a cycle, the expected celebration hinted at on this monument is not more unique than any other the Mayans indulged in. Being a government inscription, if anything, it was a bit too arrogant. This Mayan Long Count date far exceeded the destruction of the Mayan culture itself. If this was a prediction, it failed to predict the end of the Mayan civilization. Clearly their government failed to prevent the end of their 'world'.
A trailer for the 2012 movie optimistically concluded, as it showed a massive tsunami,
“The end is just the beginning”
The Mayans quite possibly were wrong about when the world began, what makes anyone think they are right about the end of their self chosen cycle?
There is no connection between the Mayan calendar's descent of a god to the underworld (featured also in Babylonian and Scandinavian mythology) and the 'science' of the movie 2012, unless it be both are myth. The absurd 'science' suggests a force pushing the crust of the earth up. What has this to do with a defunct Mayan god? Surely even a conspiracy theorist would not connect the two.
But the movie script writers did connect the two, because the director wanted to make a movie about a 'biblical flood'. wiki/2012_(film) And, despite being pagan, 2012 has become attached to the baggage of Bible influenced apocalyptic thinking of American culture.
There is no logical connection between pagan ideas and the Bible. In addition the only text we have for 2012 was so little regarded it was defaced, and except for the persistence of scholars in digging up the past, the inscription would have been lost.
But the Bible, a currently politically relevant document, does have some predictions of end of eras. I collected at least six of them. They don't speak of a volcanic induced flood, but rather the end of the entire political system of this era.
The most famous prediction many should know about, as it went front page in 2003, is Isaac Newton's calculation of 2060. The academic Stephen Snobelen who, in a BBC2 documentary, inadvertently caused the stir, tried to vainly point out 2060 (see here)was only one of a number of Newton's suggested end dates for a prophetic period, and in fact it was not the date for end of the world but,
“the era Jews refer to the Messianic age and the era premillenarian Christians term the Millennium or Kingdom of God.”
The era came from the book of Daniel (chapter 7) and was for a period of 1260 years where a political power 'spake great things' and oppressed Jews until the 'thrones were cast down' and a kingdom which 'would not be destroyed' established. Newton, himself a heretic, saw this power that spoke 'great things' as the political power of the Papacy and throughout his life made notes to date the end of its power.
Earlier commencement dates include 607 and 609CE. As Newton grew older, he pushed the time of the end further and further into the future. In Yahuda MS 7 Newton twice gives 800CE for the beginning of "the Pope's supremacy”,
Newton's early dates of 607/9 give and end time in 1867/9. The late date of 800CE ends in 2060, so Newton may yet be right. But if I was to date the European political power of the Papacy, 800 is late, as by 800 they had already given the Holy Roman Church the glory of an empire (a Reich). The process was begun by Pepin the father of Charlemagne in 754 with a Pope crowing him. But this was not a kingdom for the Papacy by any means. Due to Pepin's subsequent conquests in Italy he gave the land as a "donation” in 756 to give a legal basis for the Papal States, and began the political presence of the Papacy. Newton does considers these dates, and notes this,
These victories were achieved and secured through the military aid of Pepin and Charles the Great, kings of France : from this time forwards the Popes, being temporal Princes, ceased in their Bulls to note the years of the Greek Emperors as they had hitherto done. (Daniel & the Apocalypse, published after his death in 1733).
From 756 the 1260 year era goes until 2016. If Daniel is taken seriously, and Newton, who is now regarded by scholars as one of the most brilliant theologians of his age, is right in his understanding, 2016 to 2060 will mark a radical political change that will eclipse that of the end of the Mayans. For more on the 1260 year predictionhere:
Newton in the late 1600's, had good access to history, but not the 400 years of history that has come after his time. Newton may have been favouring the later date as there is another prophecy in Daniel (Chapter 8) for 2300 long 'nights' (of years)! After that the 'sanctuary would be cleansed'. This is of momentous political significance today as that sanctuary is occupied by an Islamic 'holy site'. The 2300 era is dated from where a power that comes from one of the 4 generals of Alexander the Great emerges, which would subsequently 'tread down' Jews.
Many look for this to be a date from Jewish history. But the context of Daniel is clear; this is about world politics. The great power from one of the 4 parts of Alexander's empire is the same as the iron of Nebuchadnezzar's empire image which became 2, then 10 kingdoms. The 2300 years begin when Rome takes over from Greece, the dating of which is not as simple as it sounds. But one date is famous actually as a saying. Does 'Pyrrhic victory'sound familiar? It was when Greece led by Pyrrhus, a second cousin of Alexander, won two battles against Rome, but the cost of victory was so high that they lost the war and eventually empire to Rome. The date is 279BCE. It is not as simple as adding 2300 years, because the Gregorian calendar lost some 4-5 years about CE, but give or take a year comes to 2017 until 'the sanctuary be victorious'. Not as in the days of the Maccabees, for that victory was short lived, but a real return to the glory of the temple of the Kingdom of Solomon. For more on the 2300 year prediction.
There is another 1260 year prediction (year, years+ half year) in Daniel Chapter 12. It is not to be mistaken for the one in chapter 7. It is to the 'end era' of increased knowledge and travel not 'the end' and it is not about Rome's power over Jews in diaspora, but another 'breaking in pieces the dominion of the holy people'. The dominion (literally 'hand') is Jerusalem (the right hand Psa. 137:5). From 637-644 the Islamic Caliphate began to dominate Jerusalem, even building a timber mosque on the Temple Mount. The end of times was then begun in 1897-1904 the height of First Aliyah. (more see here)
here) But Daniel asks for more information. He is given 1290 and 1335 years, from a specific start date when 'the perpetual (or daily) is taken away, and the coming forth of the detestable destroyer'. Many have looked to Jewish history, but forgotten Daniel was in Babylon. It is a famous event, perhaps the most famous event of Islamic history. In Mecca in 622, the 360 idols (the daily as their calendar was a 360 day one) around the Kaaba, the black stone were destroyed in the first act of Islam. However the 'destroyer' was Abu Bakr so the era to start is 622-623. From that date 1290 is 1912- the year leading to WW1 to 1922 the year of the British Mandate (including Jerusalem). But this was not a time of blessing. To the 1335 years is 1957-67. At that time the destroying power that made Eretz Yisrael desolate, no longer ruled the Land. Their bitterness at this fact and denial of it still echoes around the world. (more see Daniel 12 the 1290 & 1335)
Daniel speaks of a time to Messiah. He speaks of 'weeks' referring to the 7th year of rest, the Shmita year (see here). While puzzling on why 7 and 62 and not just 69, I read Isaac Newton who had concluded that Messiah would come '7 weeks' or 49 years after Jerusalem was acquired again by the Jews based on this passage,
From the going forth of the commandment to restore and to build Jerusalem unto the Messiah the Prince shall be seven weeks.. (Daniel 9:25)
Newton couldn't know it, but 1965/6 was a 7th year of rest for the land and therefore 1966/7 was a 1st year for sowing crops. Upon thinking on this and how Jordan had let Jerusalem stagnate and Jerusalem was rebuilt after 1967, I conclude Newton may well be right. In which case the year projected for Messiah is 2016. The trail led by Newton hits 2016 twice. Daniel himself is a ruler and is writing of who rules what, and who has political power. It is not about a cataclysmic end of the world.(for more see here)
The New Testament repeats what may be learnt from Daniel. In the Revelation the 1260 years of tribulation is repeated 4 times using 3 different expressions. They have slightly different application to that of Daniel in context, as they are merely to the end of religious and political persecution. It is to be noted they are not to the great disaster of Armageddon. (for more). If there were not enough time periods, there is one more. The Olivet prophecy says that the 'generation' that sees the end of non-Jewish rule over Jerusalem will see Messiah (Luke 21). How long is a generation? It is possible Newton thought 7 weeks was a good equivalent to a 'generation', as the 50th year Jubilee year that concluded the 7 week era in the Torah was to return people to their inherited land, if they lost it by debt, once every generation. Newton might be right on that point too, in which case Jesus, who actually quoted Daniel's prophecy and would have known of the '7 weeks', was in effect repeating information given in Daniel. (For more see here)
Whereas an obscure Mayan inscription of the end of a calendar cycle to 5 places, is creating expectation of cataclysmic change, or at least some difference to the world, the almost universally translated prophecy of specific eras to unprecedented political change are often ignored.
Though the Pagan Mayan 2012 has nothing to do with a Biblical flood, the Messianic political era is associated with an earth movement that, conservatively, involves the earth moving possibly 10km sideways and many metres up (see here). Not in Africa, but further North along the the Great African Rift, in what is called the Jordan rift valley, at the Mt of Olives http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:EAfrica.gif
The special effects imagination of the movie 2012, though absurd in its scale, might be more right than they could wish. And not in 2012, but at the roll over of Daniel's prophecy of the 1260 years, some time from 2016 onwards and at the latest 2060. But if Newton was right on the '7 weeks', his earlier date for the beginning of 1260 year era fits and it is more likely 2016 than 2060.
The truth is usually more bizarre than fiction.
The 2012 movie trailer didn't give bad advice at the end. I concur.
“Find out the truth”
The 2012 movie is nonsense: everything; from the ancient credentials of the Mayans, the pseudo-science, to the role of government in the scenario, and the rationality of the special effects. A decent investigation shows 2012 is not to be feared.
But it's worth finding out about what the Hebrew prophet Daniel said. There was (and is) a powerful political interest working to ensure people do not find out, and they have done everything they could for over 1260 years to conceal and obfuscate the evidence. But unlike the Mayan inscription, the source is accessible.