You know, when I decided to visit Belize this year, I wasn’t really thinking about the Mayans nor the significance of the year 2012 in the Mayan calendar. But now that it is 2012, and after being here, visiting both Actun Tunichil Muknal and the Caracol temples, I’m so glad to have been given this opportunity to celebrate their culture and history.
I’m hard pressed to tell you anything knowledgeable about the Maya. The last time I encountered them in a scholarly setting I was in 10th grade. Who were they? The ancient Maya that is. How did they, like the Egyptians, build such an impressive civilization in the middle of the Mesoamerican jungle and why did that world vanish?
I’m also not a New Age guru so all I did previously was chuckle at the popular (propaganda) belief that according to the Mayan calendar, the apocalypse is on 12/21/2012. I now understand that to be a total misrepresentation.
The ancient Maya of Central America (southern Mexico, Belize, Guatemala, El Salvador, Honduras) are revered as pioneering astronomers, scientists, and mathematicians. They were the most literate ancient society in their times.Though they did develop a 365 day solar calendar, they also used a long count cyclical calendar. It is this long count calendar that will complete a cycle of 5125 years on December 21st, 2012.’that is, that calendar started in 3114 BC! Wicked cool! What an amazing time for celebration then right, it’s party like it’s 1999 all over again.Y2K! Y2K! 🙂
I’m looking forward to whatever documentaries come my way this year on the Maya.