21st December 2012
Posted: Nov 16, 2012
Misinterpretation of the Mesoamerican Long Count calendar is the basis for a popular belief that a cataclysm will take place Dec 21, 2012. December 21, 2012 is simply the day that the calendar will go to the next b'ak'tun, at Long Count 22.214.171.124.0. The date which the calendar will go to the next piktun (a complete series of 20 b'ak'tuns), at Long Count 126.96.36.199.0.0, will be Oct 13, 4772. Sandra Noble, exec director Mesoamerican research organization Foundation for the Advancement of Mesoamerican Studies, Inc.(FAMSI), notes "for the ancient Maya, it was a huge celebration to make it to the end of a whole cycle". She considers portrayal of Dec 2012 asdoomsday or cosmic-shift event to be "a complete fabrication, chance for a lot of people to cash in."
(As quoted in USA Today (MacDonald 2007). Despite this knowledge questions still remain, as Professor Robert Chalken states "The ancient Maya really saw a lot of value in the calendar and treated it as a sacred thing, for them it was an ongoing process they would finish a cycle, celebrate, and then return to working on it. The question still remains why they stop with no sign of starting up again It would have made much more sense to stop at the next cycle if they had just gotten 'sick' of working on it.")
(thanks again Wikipedia)