Will the World Really End on Dec. 21?
And if the end of the Maya's 'long count' calendar comes—how are you preparing for it?
According to some, the world will end Friday, in their reading of ancient Mayan calendars. But those calendars are silent on how the end will come about—and at what time.
Before Europeans came to the New World, indigenous tribes used a calendar system now called the Mesoamerican Long Count, which predicts an apocalyptal event on Dec. 21, 2012, an event interpreted in some circles to mean the end of the world.
And with less than one week to go, everyone from radio DJs to NASA is getting in on the action. The agency created a page on its website devoted to debunking the myth—not least because the Mayans never predicted any such thing. The date is simply the end of one time period that simply starts over.
“Our planet has been getting along just fine for more than 4 billion years, and credible scientists worldwide know of no threat associated with 2012,” NASA wrote.
Experts on the matter say we've got nothing to worry about. According to an article on nbcnews.com, "Experts estimate the system starts counting at 3114 B.C., and will have run through 13 baktuns, or 5,125 years, around Dec. 21. Experts say 13 was a significant number for the Maya, and the end of that cycle would be a milestone — but not an end."
There have been several predictions of the end of the world, including the May 21, 2011 biblical prediction by then 89-year-old old "minister" Howard Camping. At that time, Patch columnist Ben Cathey made his own prediction that it would not come to pass. Indeed he was right. On May 22, 2011, the sun rose just as surely as it had the day before.
So what do you think about the predictions of the world ending on Dec. 21, 2012? Will you crank up REM and plan an "End of the World celebration," just in case?
Tell us in the comments box below—and take our poll on how the end will come about.