Feeds

Better pay your taxes: The world's NOT going to end this year

Mayan prophecy is for drought or disease, not apocalypse, say bone boffins

Build a business case: developing custom apps

Those folks counting down to the end of the world, currently scheduled for 21 December according to the Mayan calendar, are going to be disappointed, a gaggle of experts have said.

Archaeologists, anthropologists and other experts in old things meeting over the weekend in Mexico have suggested that the Mayas may indeed have made various prophecies about that fateful date, just not a doomsday one, AP reported.

The boffins convened to discuss the Mayan Long Count calendar, which is made up of 394-year periods called baktuns. Since Mayas started their calendar at 3114 BC, the 13th baktun will begin on 21 December, 2012. The number 13 was a significant number for the Mayas.

However, that significance does not point to the scream-filled end of days for mankind, possibly as a Sun flare ravages our planet or the Earth's magnetic field reverses or (insert favourite apocalyptic scenario here).

Instead, the end of the cycle could be a milestone, a prophecy of something a bit less final, like droughts or disease outbreaks. “The Mayas did make prophecies, but not in a fatalistic sense, but rather about events that, in their cyclical conception of history, could be repeated in the future,” said Alfredo Barrera, of the Mexican National Institute of Anthropology and History.

There's also the fact that the prophecies don't stop at 21 December. Instead, Maya monuments refer to events even further into the future, thousands of years from now. "The king of Palenque, K'inich Hanaab Pakal, believed he would return to the Earth a couple of thousand years from now in the future," Braswell wrote in an email to The Associated Press.

“This thing about looking for end-times is not something that comes from Maya culture,” said Alexander Voss, an anthropologist at the University Of Quintana Roo, in Mexico. ®

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops

More from The Register

next story
LOHAN packs bags for SPACEPORT AMERICA!
Spanish launch goes titsup, we're off to the US of A
Gigantic toothless 'DRAGONS' dominated Earth's early skies
Gummy pterosaurs outlived toothy competitors
'Leccy racer whacks petrols in Oz race
ELMOFO rakes in two wins in sanctioned race
Boffins ID freakish spine-smothered prehistoric critter: The CLAW gave it away
Bizarre-looking creature actually related to velvet worms
CRR-CRRRK, beep, beep: Mars space truck backs out of slippery sand trap
Curiosity finds new drilling target after course correction
Astronomers scramble for obs on new comet
Amateur gets fifth confirmed discovery
Boffins build CYBORG-MOTHRA but not for evil: For search & rescue
This tiny bio-bot will chew through your clothes then save your life
Vulture 2 takes a battering in 100km/h test run
Still in one piece, but we're going to need MORE POWER
What does a flashmob of 1,024 robots look like? Just like this
Sorry, Harvard, did you say kilobots or KILLER BOTS?
prev story

Whitepapers

Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Top 10 endpoint backup mistakes
Avoid the ten endpoint backup mistakes to ensure that your critical corporate data is protected and end user productivity is improved.
Top 8 considerations to enable and simplify mobility
In this whitepaper learn how to successfully add mobile capabilities simply and cost effectively.
Rethinking backup and recovery in the modern data center
Combining intelligence, operational analytics, and automation to enable efficient, data-driven IT organizations using the HP ABR approach.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.