Recently the Mayan calendar system was found to extend far beyond 2012, perhaps giving some respite to those who feared that the world would end by next Christmas. Now a new discovery once again highlights December 21, 2012, but as the end of a political cycle, rather than doomsday. I say bring it on. Phys.Org reports:
Archaeologists working at the site of La Corona in Guatemala have discovered a 1,300 year-old year-old Maya text that provides only the second known reference to the so-called “end date” for the Maya calendar on December 21, 2012. The discovery, one of the most significant hieroglyphic find in decades, was announced today at the National Palace in Guatemala.
“This text talks about ancient political history rather than prophecy,” says Marcello A. Canuto, Director of Tulane’s Middle American Research Institute and co-director of the excavations at the Maya ruins of La Corona. “This new evidence suggests that the 13 Bak’tun date was an important calendrical event that would have been celebrated by the ancient Maya.”
The hieroglyphs commemorated a royal visit to La Corona in AD 696 by the most powerful Maya ruler of that time, Yuknoom Yich’aak K’ahk’ of Calakmul. The key to understanding the reference to 2012 is a unique title that the Calakmul king gives himself. In the text, he calls himself the “13 K’atun lord”—that is, the king who presided over and celebrated an important calendar ending, the 13th K’atun cycle (18.104.22.168.0)
Rather than prophesy, the 2012 reference served to place this king’s troubled reign and accomplishments into a larger cosmological framework. “This was a time of great political turmoil in the Maya region and this king felt compelled to allude to a larger cycle of time that happens to end in 2012.”