Some believe Friday is doomsday on the Mayan calendar; the Mayans don't
Image from Mayan calendar found in Guatemala.
December 20th, 2012
05:00 AM ET

Some believe Friday is doomsday on the Mayan calendar; the Mayans don't

By Ben Brumfield and Nick Parker, CNN

Merida, Mexico (CNN) - There may be no one left on earth to say TGIF this week.

Some believe the world is coming to an end Friday - on 12/21/12 - which is when an important phase on the ancient calendar of the Mayan people terminates.

Mayans don't buy it.

At least the ones living in the city of Merida, Mexico don't. Neither does the Mayan village of Yaxuna. They know the calendar their ancestors left them is about to absolve a key phase, which means the end of an era and the heralding of a new one, but they don't think we're all gonna die.

- A. Hawkins

Filed under: Mexico

soundoff (31 Responses)
  1. Saraswati

    It was a good excuse for a party, though, and the inaccuracies in the Movie 2012 probably educated quite a few folks on basic geology.

    December 22, 2012 at 10:57 am |
  2. nelson

    colin you dont have a clue what you are talkin about i sure hope your parents didnt pay for that degree you got because they wasted there hard earned money on you. even satan belives and trembles you have secured you place with him.

    December 20, 2012 at 4:04 pm |
    • Murderface

      You don't have a clue about sentence syntax, proper punctuation or capitalization. You sound like you have education envy. Satan and God are as real as leprechauns and unicorns. Get a clue "nelson", you sound like a as.shole.

      December 20, 2012 at 6:09 pm |
  3. GodFreeNow

    Well, it's already 12/21/12 here in J.apan. No surprises, we're all still here.

    December 20, 2012 at 3:58 pm |
    • Rational Libertarian

      You in J.apan? Is the food as good as they say it is?

      December 20, 2012 at 4:08 pm |
    • GodFreeNow

      It's fantastic. I hate to gush, but when I return to America, I get so depressed. America has 3 flavor: Salty, sweet, spi.cy. Imagine a world where you could see all 7 colors and then someone took away your ability to see all except 3.

      December 20, 2012 at 4:14 pm |
  4. MARY

    12-21-12 End Of The World? The Mayan Calendar says that the World Ends on the 21st. It means that we are going to have a different Biology, a different Neurology. We are going to be different because the brain is going to function differently. Time and Space will function very differently. It is all happening because, it was meant to happen. The world is changing. What is going to happen to the Brain? How are we going to be different? reminds me of Miracle Midbrain Method by Dr. Pillai

    December 20, 2012 at 1:46 pm |
  5. Dr. K

    There is not such thing as "Mayans." The millions of descendants of the ancient Maya people are called "Maya" and that term is used in both the singular and plural (not Mayas, for example). Why does this matter? Because it is a matter of respect to learn the proper name for a people and to respect their cultural heritage by using that name correctly. From: The Penn Cultural Heritage Center, University of Pennsylvania.

    December 20, 2012 at 12:04 pm |
    • Rational Libertarian

      Go fudge yourself with that holier-than-thou PC bullpoop.

      December 20, 2012 at 12:34 pm |
    • Murderface

      What a rational response....

      December 20, 2012 at 12:35 pm |
    • Rational Libertarian

      Thank you.

      December 20, 2012 at 12:40 pm |
  6. Angel Moronic

    The people on earth are already doomed (as they continue living this way) and the Mayan knew that.

    December 20, 2012 at 11:28 am |
    • Murderface

      Moronic is right....to bad the Maya didn't know they were doomed. Go figure.

      December 20, 2012 at 12:27 pm |
  7. frank

    It's actually the Aztec calendar that is of interest. Crowned face with tongue hanging out in the center – a clear foretelling of the zombie apocalypse slightly eclipsed by the Diamond Jubilee.

    December 20, 2012 at 11:07 am |
  8. Akira

    I hope people stay home; I've got some shopping to do!

    December 20, 2012 at 10:35 am |
  9. New Alias

    The world may not end, but I'm opening my Xmass presents early this year – just in case.

    December 20, 2012 at 10:02 am |
    • Huebert

      Best Excuse Ever!

      December 20, 2012 at 10:40 am |
  10. Doc Vestibule

    The end of the world is nigh, but it won't be the Mayan apocalypse, the rapture or ragnarok.
    The signs of our funky, butt wiggling demise are evident to those with eyes to see and ears to hear.
    3 of the 4 Nordic Disco Bands of the "A"pocalypse have made themselves known – Abba, Aqua and Ace of Bass.
    When the A-Teens came on the scene, I stocked my bomb shelter but breathed a sigh of relief when I learned they were just a cover band.
    But make no mistake – doom is coming at 120 beats per minute.

    December 20, 2012 at 9:44 am |
    • Rational Libertarian

      Were'nt A-ha also a Nordic "A"pocalypse disco/pop band?

      December 20, 2012 at 9:50 am |
    • Doc Vestibule

      Their songs are not sufficiently funky to merit concern.
      "The Sun Always Shines on TV" doesn't force one's booty to shake in the same manner as "Dancing Queen".
      If you find that the sound of synth and wah-wah pedals causes involuntary getting down with your bad self, there is a good chance that it is one of the 4 Heralds of Groovy Doom

      December 20, 2012 at 10:12 am |
    • Akira

      Oh, you crack me up, Doc!

      December 20, 2012 at 10:30 am |
  11. professoreugene

    Hardly seems worth raising an eyebrow over. Why on earth would Jehovah give a precious piece of info like the date of the end of the world to the Mayans, a bunch of pagan sun-worshipers, who are busy cutting out the heart of their latest human sacrifice to offer to their deity?

    December 20, 2012 at 9:12 am |
    • Rational Libertarian

      Jehovah was partial to a bit of the ol' human sacrifice also.

      December 20, 2012 at 9:14 am |
    • Huebert

      While I agree with your conclusion, your logic is ridiculous.

      December 20, 2012 at 9:32 am |
  12. Reality

    What we do know: (from the fields of astrophysics, nuclear physics, geology and the history of religion)

    1. The Sun will burn out in 3-5 billion years so we have a time frame.

    2. Asteroids continue to circle us in the nearby asteroid belt.

    3. One wayward rock/comet and it is all over in a blast of permanent winter.

    4. There are enough nuclear weapons to do the same job.

    5. Most contemporary NT exegetes do not believe in the Second Coming so apparently there is no concern about JC coming back on an asteroid or cloud of raptors/rapture.

    6. All stars will eventually extinguish as there is a limit to the amount of hydrogen in the universe. When this happens (100 trillion years?), the universe will go dark. If it does not collapse and recycle, the universe will end.

    7. Super, dormant volcanoes off the coast of Africa and under Yellowstone Park could explode catalytically at any time ending life on Earth.

    Bottom line: our apocalypse will start between now and 3-5 billion CE. The universe apocalypse, 100 trillion years?

    December 20, 2012 at 8:03 am |
  13. Apple Bush

    I don't even understand where the doomsday stuff came from. The Aztecs and the Mayans called it the end of the age and the beginning of the next age. Nothing specific about what that means.

    December 20, 2012 at 5:44 am |
    • Colin

      Two interest groups shanghaied the original idea – (i) the "end is nigh" Christian nutjobs and (ii) minor economic interests.

      December 20, 2012 at 5:52 am |
    • Apple Bush

      Huh, thanks Colin. Well for my part, I am going to the beach to watch the burning cauldren appear over the ocean.

      December 20, 2012 at 5:58 am |
  14. Colin

    The Judeo-Christian "end is nigh" nonsense actuallybegan as the Jewish answer to the failure of their covenant belief. The covenant belief, a quintessential Jewish doctrine, held that God had chosen the Jews as his people and would look after them and favor them over their enemies if they kept his law – circu.mcising boys, not working on the Sabbath etc.

    After a few hundred years of generally keeping the law, but being overrun by everybody except the Australian Aboriginals, the Jews naturally started to question where their god was and why he wasn’t keeping his end of the deal.

    By about 200 BC, two schools of religious doctrine had developed to explain why they were experiencing exactly what one would expect if there were no god. First, the “we’re being punished for our sins” school arose. This school ttaught that the Jews were not living according to their god’s law and that God was therefore punishing them. This worked for a while, until they started to realize that those who TOTALLY ignored his law (i.e. gentiles) were ruling over and doing much better than the Jews.

    So, once again they had to explain why they were experiencing exactly what one would expect if there were no god. Shazam, the apocalyptic school was born. This school taught that, while the gentiles were doing better NOW, the day would come when they would get their comeuppance. The Jews were suffering because of Satan (invented for this purpose and appearing nowhere in earlier Jewish literature) but God would return and defeat Satan in an epic battle. THEN the Jews would get their just rewards and the evil would be punished.

    This view was perfect, because you never had to deliver. You could just keep putting off the issue by answering any skeptic with the “any day now” response. It was (and is) perfect to explain why we experie today exactly what one would expect if there were no god. It is a promise which you can perpetually put off "performing."

    The Palestinians do the same thing with Allah, claiming the Jews will get their comeuppance “one day…one day, you mark my words”. So do Christians, in a sense, with the “he’ll burn in hell for that” response they proffer when they feel somebody has gotten away with something they don’t like.

    So do the Chicago Cubs -:)

    Jesus himself believed this, as did St. Paul. They expected the second coming in their lifetime. They were wrong, as has every apocalyptic prophet since then, to and including Koresh, Harold Camping, the idiot Christian Evangelicals and these 21 December 2012 nuts.

    What this Jewish apologist view did do, however, was spawn a genre of writing at the time called “Apocrypha.” Apocrypha were the ancient equivalent of horror stories, written to frighten and entertain the public, much the same way that Shakespearean plays did in the 1600s and Stephen King novels do today.

    You have to remember that those people had no vampires, serial killers or evil corporations to do the trick. They had to rely on what they had- gods. Revelations from the Bible was simply one of many of these stories floating around the Middle East at the time. Revelations happened to find its way into the Bible in the way that a Stephen King novelette might find its way into “A Collection of Modern American Literature”.

    Apocrypha were not necessarily meant to be taken seriously, but to entertain and, sometimes, pass on a message from the author. Unfortunately, once Revelations found its way into the Bible, this particular pulp fiction story was guaranteed to be reinterpreted by every generation since then as applying to that generation’s particular time and place in history. The early 21st Century is no exception, save that we have even less excuse for taking it seriously today.

    Taking Revelations seriously and as applying to the 21st Century USA is every bit as ridiculous as trying to apply a Stephen King novel to a particular generation in a country that will not even exist for another 1776 years on the other side of the planet.

    December 20, 2012 at 5:34 am |
    • Akira

      Poor Cubs.
      Maybe next year.

      December 20, 2012 at 12:03 pm |
  15. Religious independant

    Yay! Aliens. I can't wait till they get here I'm all packed.

    December 20, 2012 at 5:33 am |
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The CNN Belief Blog covers the faith angles of the day's biggest stories, from breaking news to politics to entertainment, fostering a global conversation about the role of religion and belief in readers' lives. It's edited by CNN's Daniel Burke with contributions from Eric Marrapodi and CNN's worldwide news gathering team.