This breezy seemingly fluffy travel article in the Guardian just days before NYE that somehow got overlooked as the apocalyptic hysteria surrounding the Mayan Long Count date of 21 December 2012 reached a pots-New Year crescendo (for now).
In it, author Kevin Rushby reminds us that unlike the Atlanteans, the ‘noble savage’ and other imaginary creatures Mayan culture still exists and continuous with its more grandiose past.
When Rushby asks a local Guatemalan shaman about the end-of-the-world prophecy, he says, “It is the end of a 5,126-year cycle, that’s true, but there is no mention of the end of the world. People seem to have got that from the Dresden Codex (a pre-Columbian volume of Mayan writings now in the State Library of Dresden). But in that record there is no mention of 2012.” According to Rushby, “Some millenarian-minded person had put these two separate records together and made a doomsday scenario.”
Read more about contemporary Mayan culture over at the Guardian.
To the student of apocalypticism 2012 is a clear case of secularised but still linear Christian eschatology meets a previously colonised cyclical but urban shamanism. When this doesn’t happen:
… it will be fascinating to watch the cognitive dissonance in action, one way or another …