Live every day – perspective and balance

I have decided to take a leap into the deep end of the pool and write a post on one of the more popular topics for discussion, classes, and other activities in the spiritual community in Second Life. The topic is the concept that the world as we know it will end on December 21, 2012. I have no intention of trying to predict the future or of telling anyone what to believe or not believe. The twin purposes of this post are quite simply (1) to point out that this is a topic of interest to the Second Life spiritual community and (2) to encouraged anyone interested in this topic to take a balanced look at available information on both sides of this issue.

That said, we need to remember that December 21, 2012 is not the first “doomsday” date under discussion in recent times. In fact, several other dates preceded this in discussion, including Harold Camping’s much heralded date of May 21, 2011 (which replaced the previously incorrect date in 1994 and has now been replaced by October 21, 2011). Other doomsday predictions cite the comet Elenin being responsible for our demise in the autumn of 2011 (the first date cited was September 26 – which has come and gone) and various other space bodies passing between the Earth and the Sun. To some in the SL spiritual community this is a matter of significant concern, while to others it is a point of mild curiosity and to still others it is a completely unknown concept.

What is going to happen on December 21, 2012? I don’t know – and neither does anyone else. All I can do as an individual is to live my life as well as I possibly can; follow my own spiritual path in an authentic and ethical way; and hope that others will do the same.

That said, as a healer, I felt it was time to make a case for injecting some logical thought into the entire matter. The truth is that heavenly bodies pass between the Earth and the sun all the time Don Yeomans, the head of NASA’s Near-Earth Object Program Office, had this to say about the much cited comet Elenin: “Comet Elenin will not only be far away, it is also on the small side for comets … and will have an immeasurably minuscule influence on our planet. By comparison, my subcompact automobile exerts a greater influence on the ocean’s tides than comet Elenin ever will.” In fact the nearest this comet will come to Earth is some 22 million miles and after Mr. Yeomans made this statement this comet has been observed disintegrating rather rapidly, further reducing its size, which was on the small side for comets to begin with. And yes there are many conspiracy theorists out there reading this, nodding and saying something like, “Well what did you expect from a government agency? They don’t tell the truth about anything.” But the fact is that a comet large enough and near enough to earth to be destroying us some time in the next couple of weeks would be so big and so close that it is likely that anyone with a decent telescope would be seeing it – certainly every government and private observatory in the world would be seeing it. And honestly, you couldn’t get these entities all to agree on what kind of pizza to order for dinner, let alone maintain a conspiracy of silence of this magnitude.

There are so many Internet links and You-tube videos and books and pamphlets being published on 2012 that it is impossible to sort them all out or to discuss more than a few of them. When you are considering this huge volume of “information,” I ask you to keep this in mind: Anyone with access to a computer and an internet connection can publish anything they want in the Internet. This does not mean that anything they say is or is not correct or based on any kind of logical fact. There are, however, a number of books being published by credible scholars – both experts on the Maya civilization and on astronomy and astrophysics. If you feel compelled to read the articles and watch the videos that are promoting hysteria, please consider balancing this with some actual verifiable material being provided by scholars who have spent their careers studying this and have a vested interest in being right. There are many reasons for publishing such materials and making predictions. Rough estimates are that Mr. Camping’s organization (see above)is worth somewhere between $72 and $125 million dollars, and much of this money seems to have been collected during his various end-of-the-world campaigns.

There are more examples of the bases for these doomsday predictions than this, or any other blog or publication can possibly address. Here are just two of them:

Tortuguero Monument:

One of the bases for the thought that the Mayans were predicting apocalypse on Dec 21, 2012 is based upon a translation of the Tortuguero monument. This significance is derived primarily from the fact that it cites the date at the end of the Long Count Calendar. However, this very fact indicates its weakness as a source for a doomsday prediction. For one thing this is a broken fragment, so the entire message of this monument is not known. Secondly, it really says very little about what will happen on this date. And finally, the purpose of this monument was not prophetic. When it was first translated in 1996 there were no other monuments similar enough to it to be helpful in its translation. In the time since 1996 two similar maya texts have been uncovered and translated. All three cite future dates that mark the end of cycles of calendars (one cites 830 and another 692 … and we are still here). There was, in fact, nothing prophetic about the Tortuguero monument and is more likely to have been the equivalent of a cornerstone that states “built in 1900, this will still stand in 2000.” Other interpretations further support the idea that this monument is a dedication and not a prophecy. And a dozen years after this original translation of the Tortuguero monument, Stephen Houston (one of the original translators0 issued a retraction admitting that the monument “had nothing to do with prophecy.” But it was too late. Erstwhile 2120logists had already seized upon this information and protested that these scholars had deliberately downplayed the significance of this monument. (Author’s note: Scholars do not build careers on downplaying facts or admitting failure; they build careers and gain continued funding for projects based upon being right about their theories and hypotheses.) (This information is excerpted from: “2012 and the End of the World: The Western Roots of the Maya Apocalypse,” by Matthew Restall and Amara Solari. Both of these authors are experts in Maya culture and colonial Mexican history with more than 30 years of experience in studying Mayan languages and cultures. Both teach at the Pennsylvania State University.)

Long Count Calendar:

Some thoughts about the Long Count Calendar:

· Scholars and scientists appear to be in agreement that this now-famous Long Count calendar did not even begin with the Mayans – that they, in fact, adopted it from another, earlier civilization and added their own refinements to it.

· The Maya had 60 or more calendars, one for each holiday cycle (which would be the rough equivalent of us having separate calendars for Easter/Ostara, Christmas, Samhain/Halloween Calendar, Rosh Hashanah, etc., etc. – in other words a separate calendar for every single ritual or religious holiday celebration. And all of these calendars are what are known as “calendar rounds” – this means that, like our calendars, when they get to the last date on the calendar they just start again. I find myself wondering why it is assumed that this one calendar is different.

· The assumption that the long count calendar is somehow predictive is based upon the idea that the Maya picked the date of December 21, 2012 and counted backwards. However, I’ve yet to find a credible explanation for why they counted backwards to a date that predated their own civilization by 1000 years or more.

(This information is excerpted from: Dialogues on 2012: “Why the World Will Not End,” written by Christopher Keating. Dr. Christopher Keating is a professor of physics with 20 years experience conducting research in space physics with several published scientific papers. His experience as a teacher includes nearly all topics in undergraduate physics, space science and astronomy. He has also served for over 30 years in the Navy and Navy Reserve working principally as an analyst in naval intelligence. )

So the bottom line of this very long post is no one really knows what is going to happen on December 21, 2012, or on October 22, 2011, or on January 1, 2012, or truly on any other date. Bad things happen … they happen all the time and our limited human minds don’t know why. It might be comforting to be able to lay the blame for these things at the feet one doomsday prediction or another, but the truth seems to be that we can’t logically do this.

I am a healer, not a soothsayer or a seer. My only interest in doomsday predictions is that I am regularly faced with having to heal individuals who have suffered pain and distress from reading/hearing/watching/etc. these apocalyptic messages with no solid frame of reference for deciding what is true for themselves. In conclusion I repeat what I write earlier, which is this: What is going to happen on December 21, 2012? I don’t know – and truthfully neither does anyone else. All I can do as an individual is to live my life as well as I possibly can; follow my own spiritual path in an authentic and ethical way; and hope that others will do the same.

Peace be with you.

ConnieJean Maven

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