But because the length of our year has changed, the Long Count calendar of the Maya now has an inherent discrepancy of five-and-a quarter days in every solar year. And any calendar that has a built-in error of over 52 days in every decade has clearly lost its ability to predict anything of significance in the future. And unfortunately, those authors who have incorporated the year 2012 into their apocalyptic predictions, have merely compounded the errors of others and added to the confusion of everyone.
These writers might have spared themselves, and their readers, this confusion had they conducted more rigorous research, and investigated what ancient cultures actually had to say on the subject. And what these ancient societies recorded was that the earth had undergone numerous cataclysms in the past, and had changed its orbit, as well as its axis, many times. These stories can be found among the writings of all ancient peoples.
As Plato recorded in his essay Timaeus, the renowned Athenian statesman Solon (638-558 BC) visited Egypt. While he was there he was confronted by an elderly priest who said to him: "Oh Solon, Solon, you Greeks are all children, and there is no such thing as an old Greek. You are all young in mind. You have no belief rooted in old tradition and no knowledge hoary with age. And the reason is this."
"There have been and will be many different calamities to destroy mankind, the greatest of them by fire and water, lesser ones by countless other means. Your own story of how Phaeton, child of the sun, harnessed his father's chariot, but was unable to guide it along his father's course and so burnt up things on earth and was himself destroyed by a thunderbolt, is a mythical version of the truth that there is at long intervals a variation in the course of the heavenly bodies and a consequent widespread destruction by fire of things on the earth."
Another famous Greek, this time Herodotus (484-425 BC), who has been called the "Father of History" because he was the first Greek historian to collect his materials systematically, test their accuracy, and then reduce them to a written narrative, also had an opportunity to visit Egypt. In his Second Book of History, Herodotus referred to his own meeting with various Egyptian priests, and recorded his conversation with them. As he wrote:
"The priests asserted that within historical ages and since Egypt became a kingdom, four times in this period (so they told me) the sun rose contrary to his wont; twice he rose where he now sets, and twice he set where he now rises." Obviously, such an event would cause catastrophic effects throughout the earth. Commenting on this Plato wrote in his book Politicus: "There is at that time great destruction of animals in general, and only a small part of the human race survives".
Early scholars of Mexican hieroglyphics noted that the Sun (Tonatiuh) was considered to have four motions. "The sun that moves towards the east, contrary to the present sun, is called by the Indians Teotl Lexco. The people of Mexico symbolized the changing directon of the sun's movement as a heavenly ball game, accompanied by upheavals and earthquakes on the earth." (Seler: Gesammelte Abhandlungen)
And we shall see how the prophecies of the Maya pose a modern warning to the world.
The idea that the earth has undergone a succession of catastrophic upheavals associated with cosmic encounters did not originate with the Maya. Legends, myths and stories of these devastating events can also be found throughout the ancient world. They tell of times when dwellings were destroyed and the earth was convulsed by natural disasters which had their source in space.
While these stories vary in the number of ages that have come and gone, they agree that there have been, at periodic intervals, various disasters that have assailed the earth causing widespread destruction. The agents of this destruction have been earthquake, fire, wind and flood. But these stories go further. They claim that as a result of these encounters, our world has repeatedly changed its axis, as well as its orbit around the sun.
The Chinese called these vanished ages Kis, and recorded that ten ages had passed from the beginning of the world up to the time of Confucius.The ancient Chinese encyclopedia Sing-li-ta-tsiuen-chou described these past eras in the following words: "In a general convulsion of nature, the sea is carried out of its bed, mountains spring out of the ground, rivers change their course, human beings and everything are ruined, and the ancient traces effaced."
The sacred Hindu book Bhagavata Purana called these past ages Kalpas or Yugas, and referred to four previous ages that had terminated through different catastrophes. The Buddhist scripture Visuddhi-Magga, written about 430 BC, contains a chapter on "World Cycles" declaring that: "There are three destructions: the destruction by water, the destruction by fire, the destruction by wind". Each of these ages is separated from its previous one by a world catastrophe.
Similar references can be found in the Zend-Avesta, the sacred book of the Persians. The Pahlavi Texts quote the prophet Zarathustra referring to "the signs, wonders, and perplexty which are manifested in the world at the end of each millennium." One of the books of the Avesta, the Bahman Yast, numbers seven world ages or millennia that have preceded the present age.
The Greek philosophers Anaximenes and Anaximander both referred to past world ages in their writings, as did Diogenes of Apollonia in the fifth century BC. Heraclitus (540-475 BC) taught that the world was destroyed by fire at regular intervals, while Aristarchus of Samos claimed that in every period of 2,484 years, the earth underwent various destructions, some by flood and some by fire.
In his work Theogony, the Greek poet Hesiod described the end of one of these ages. "The life-giving earth crashed around in burning . . . all the land seethed, and the Ocean's streams . . . it seemed even as if earth and wide Heaven above came together; for such a mighty crash would have arisen if Earth were being hurled to ruin, and Heaven from on high were hurling her down."
Among the peoples of Meso-America, persistent traditions of cosmic catastrophes can be found among the Incas, the Aztecs and the Maya. The Maya referred to these past ages by the names of their "suns", such as Water Sun, Earthquake Sun, Hurricane Sun and Fire Sun. They substituted the word "sun" for "world age" in order to define a time characterised by a specific orbit of the earth around the Sun.
As H. B. Alexander wrote in his epic Latin American Mythology published in 1920: "The Water Sun (or Sun of Waters) was the first age, terminated by a deluge in which almost all creatures perished; the Earthquake Sun or age perished in a terrific earthquake when the earth broke in many places and mountains fell. The world age of the Hurricane Sun came to its destruction in a cosmic hurricane. The Fire Sun was the world age that went down in a rain of fire."
The Maya did not record the date of the last cosmic disturbance that led to a change in the orbit of the earth. They did however alter their calendar to match this change, by putting aside the former Long Count calendar, and instituting in its place the 52 year cycle known as the Calendar Round. However another nation, also known for its meticulous record of historical events, has left us with a written record of this event.
When the Assyrians descended on the Jews like "the wolf on the fold", the Old Testament prophet Isaiah predicted that Jerusalem would not fall into the hands of the enemy, and that their leader Sennacherib who had blasphemed against the Lord would be killed by a "blast" sent by the Lord. (Isaiah 37:7) Isaiah went on to tell king Hezekiah that the Lord would send a sign of this deliverance. As we read:
"And I will defend thee and this city out of the hand of Assyria; and I will defend this city. And this shall be a sign unto thee from the Lord, that the Lord will do this thing that he hath spoken; Behold, I will bring again the shadow of the degrees, which is gone down in the sun dial of Ahaz, ten degrees backward. So the sun returned ten degrees, by which degrees it was gone down." (Isaiah 38:6-8)
"And it came to pass that night, that the angel of the Lord went out, and smote in the camp of the Assyrians an hundred four-score and five thousand; and when they arose early in the morning, behold, they were all dead corpses." (II Kings 19:35) In his book Worlds in Collision, Immanuel Velikovsky writes: "The rabbinical sources state in a definite manner that the disturbance in the movement of the sun happened on the evening of the destruction of Sennacherib's army by a devouring blast."
Velikovsky also quotes from the work of French scholar Edouard Biot: "The year 687 BC, in the summer, in the fourth moon, in the day sin mao (23rd of March) during the night, the fixed stars did not appear, though the night was clear (cloudless). In the middle of the night stars fell like a rain."
Although the Maya of today emphatically deny that our world will end on December 21, 2012, they do believe that the existing world age will shortly come to an end.
And just like the other world ages that have come and gone in the past, they believe that our current age will also end in a series of cosmic disasters. These disasters will devastate the planet, and lead to the destruction of our existing way of life. However, according to the Mayan prophetic tradition, the new world age that is coming will see a return of peace and harmony.
The chief spokeman for this ancient tradition is Don Alejandro Cirilo Oxlaj. Oxlaj, or "Wandering Wolf" as he prefers to be called, is President of the National Mayan Council of Elders. This is a body of 440 elders of wisdom who represent various Mayan ethnic groups of Guatemala. He is also an international lecturer on Mayan culture, and he travels the world sharing the message and the prophecies of the Mayan people.
In September 1999, speaking in Santa Fe, New Mexico, "Wandering Wolf" described the prophetic purpose of his world-wide mission.
"We are all here because it is our destiny, our mission. Spirit has called each of you here. You are special. I am no more special than you are. You are more than me. I am a poor Mayan. We do not have schools and universities like you do. We live in the poor countryside. What I have is given to me by my father. The Cosmos is the source of our knowledge. We study the Cosmos."
"Our books are the Mayan Codices. For us, this is our writing. The hand is a book. We have 5000 codices. We study these. We communicate with the invisible ones, the star people, who gave me my name,"Wandering Wolf." I come in fulfillment of the prophesies of the Mayan and Hopi, which says: "Those of the center will unite the eagle of the north and the condor of the south, because we are one, like the fingers of the hand."
"This means that the elders of Central America will unite with those of North and South America. This is a fulfillment of our prophesies, that is why I am here. Our elder astronomers are watching over time and when it will be fulfilled. It shall be fulfilled in Twelve Baktun and it began on August 17, 1987, the Harmonic Convergence. It was then that I began my walk all over the world."
"The Harmonic Convergence began the Twelve Baktun, Thirteen Bahaou and will end in 2012 or 2013 by your calendar. This will end the fifth period of the sun by our calendar. There will be huge problems. Catastrophes and cataclysms will befall us."
When Alvaro Colom was inaugurated as President of Guatemala on January 14, 2008, "Wandering Wolf" was invited to address the gathered throng of dignitaries. In his address he expanded on the theme he had announced some twenty-one years before.
"According to the Maya Long Count calendar, we are finalizing the 13 Baktun and 13 Ahau, thus approaching the Year Zero. We are at the doorsteps of the ending of another period of the Sun, a period that lasts 5,200 years and ends with several hours of darkness. After this period of darkness there comes a new period of the Sun; it will be the sixth one. In each period of the Sun there is an adjustment for the planet and it brings changes in the weather conditions and in social and political life as well."
"The world is transformed and we enter a period of understanding and harmonious coexistence where there is social justice and equality for all. It is a new way of life. With a new social order there comes a time of freedom where we can move like the clouds, without limitations, without borders. We will travel like the birds, without the need for passports. We will travel like the rivers, all heading towards the same point . . . the same objective."
"The Mayan prophecies are announcing a time of change. The Pop Wuj (Popul-Vuh), the book of the Counsel, tells us, 'It is time for dawn; let the dawn come, for the task to be finished." In subsequent talks, "Wandering Wolf" has clarified his teachings on the events leading up to the end of the current world age, and of the sixth world age that lies ahead.
"You and I may meet again in another dimension after the Year Zero. The Year Zero is the word of the Maya. On March 31, 2013, the sun will be hidden for a period of 60-70 hours and this is when we shall enter the period of the Sixth Sun. Then you will realize that what the Mayans speak are facts and not false preachings. We are not saying the world will end in 2012. There are false ones who say these things to frighten and threaten the world without awakening."
"But the Mayan priests and astronomers know what is happening and see what shall happen in the future. This is my only message. I do not come to intimidate you. I come to say that we should love one another. We are all children and we pray that our Father be with us. Thank you."
Article By: Allan Colston
Allan Colston was born in England and grew up in South Africa. He graduated from the University of Witwatersrand in 1961. From an early age he was drawn to the study of ancient civilizations, and to the prophetic works of these societies. In pursuing these interests he has traveled widely, including South America, India and Tibet. He has lived on four continents, and now makes his home in Vancouver, Canada.