How much disaster can you handle, baby?
In case you haven't heard, 2012 is allegedly the year in which the Mayan calendar predicts the end of the world. It's actually not. It is the year the Mayan calendar ends however, which is not the same thing. Given that the Mayans lived between 2000 BCE (Before Common Era, or if you like to measure everything with relevance to the theoretical lifespan of Jesus Christ, BC) and about 900 CE (or AD), it's hardly surprising that they stopped making their calendar around 2012. I don't know about you, but the calendar in my house just goes to January 2010, it sure as heck doesn't go to January 3011.
If you do the slightest bit of research, you will discover why the Mayan calendar finishes in 2012. It's not because the end of the world is nigh, it is because, and I quote:
"The Mayans kept extremely detailed astronomical records and they followed the cycles of the planets and stars as they travel around in their orbits. We are currently in the 4th cycle recorded by the Maya. It started in 3114B.C. and lasts for 5126 years until 2012. With the end of the 4th cycle comes... the beginning of the 5th cycle. The Maya believe that in the 5th cycle the ancient wisdom of the Maya will be rediscovered by the world and it will be a new dawn for mankind"
Now this is also fairly cuckoo clap-trap, the part about the ancient wisdom and whatnot, but the part about the astrology is true. The Mayan calendar is an astrological map. It is not a harbinger of doom.
So can we please, please, quit acting like chickens with our heads cut off, furiously anticipating the end of the world, or perhaps the rapture in some utterly nonsensical blending of Pagan and Christian mythology. I know humans just love to anticipate their demise and indeed, the demise of the whole spcies with a kind of morbid glee, but dwindling oil reserves, over population and possibly global warming if it isn't simply a natural cycle are all greater threats to the long term survival of mankind than the Mayan calendar running out.
It never fails to surprise me how much effort and fervor people can put into worrying about something perfectly ridiculous, only to ignore the very real threat much closer to home and much more within their control. This happens all the time, for example, how often do you sneak an orange light, just hoping to make it before it goes fully red, but then worry when you get on a plane that it will crash or terrorists will blow it up? The risk of dying when sneaking through an intersection are far higher, but we do things like that quite blithely with no fear whatsoever, only to turn into a quivering mess at the departure gate of an airport.
Don't waste your time worrying about some supernatural asteroid collision, which by the way, NASA is refuting already, (the fact that NASA has to actually take time out from exploring the wonders of the universe to calm the fears of the sort of people who think that Furbies have evil spirits inside them is disturbing indeed,) worry about how many kids you have, how much oil you use, and whether or not you'll be able to grow food in a crisis. Recycle, be frugal, get out of debt and you know, generally be kind to the planet. It is far more likely that we will kill ourselves off than we will all die in some cataclysmic event.
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