Is the world coming to an end in the year 2012? To many believers of Mayan culture, December 2012 marks the end of era in the passge of time. However, some have speculate this date will mark the onset of armageddon; a true ending of life as we know it. To elaborate further, an examination of the origin of the Mayan Calendar and the methods of counting must be understood and, from this, we may be more informed as to the foundation on which the armageddon theory is built.
Originating in Chichen Itza, the Mayas marked the passage of time through the Pyramid of Kukulkan. Built in the period of circa 1050, part of late Mayan Period, the Pyramid was utilized by the Mayas as a sort of calendar to mark the passage of time in varying methods. Structurally, the pyramid is built with four stairways, each with 91 steps, all leading to one platform at the peak. In total, this accounts for 365 steps and coorelates with 365 days in a traditional calendar year. To the Mayan culture, the Pyramid provides three avenues for accounting the passage of time; The Long Count, The Tzolkin and Haab. Of these, The Long Count method seems to support the end of the current Mayan era on December of 2012. While all three methods are complex, they are also equally accurate.
The Long Count is a mixed base method of counting days which began on the first day of the current era. As the Mayas believe, there have been three eras in which the world has passed. Similar to the Julian Day numbering system, the Long Count continues into a numerical order sequence coming full circle and anticipated to end in December 2012. It is believed each era ends with the beginning of a new winter solstice. In The Long Count, the first day would be counted as 184.108.40.206.0. and the numbers would increase with each day that passes with an eventual return to the original number in December of 2012. To the Mayas, 220.127.116.11.0. marked the first date of creation and the beginning of the first era. Thus, many followers believe, with the Winter Soltice in December 2012, an armageddon of sorts will occur. When,in actuality, the Mayas believe this period will mark the end of an era and the beginning of a new era in the passage of time for the world.
In addition to The Long Count, the Mayas also follow two other methods for counting the passage of time; The Tzolkin and Haab. While the Tzolkin counts in a two week increment period, Haab follows a 20 day period, broken into 18 month periods. In total, Haab directly coorelates to a civil year while the Tzolkin does not account for years.
In the sacred and beautiful setting of Chichen Itza, the Pyramid of Kukulkan is a breathtaking view. For travelers to this area it will welcome you with a serreal moment to reflect spiritually while looking into a creation which has impacted the world scientifically as well as architurally. As with many prior tales of potential armageddon, 2012 has been marked as the date on which the next believed event may occur. As with prior foretold events, we have yet to see the armageddon event and will most likely not see such an event in December of 2012. However, because of the significance of this period in the Mayan Culture, and its impact on the calendar methods of counting the passage of time, it is an interesting phenomenon to continue to monitor well into 2012 and beyond.