Posted by: Jim | April 23, 2008


The Mayan calendar ends in the year 2012. Because of this, many people theorize that the world ends at that time.

For those of you who know me, I bet you can guess my stance on this. I’m a’gin it! There is absolutely nothing about the Mayans that tells me they had the inside scoop on when the world would end.

1. They sacrificed humans.
2. They practiced slavery.
3. They almost went extinct because they weren’t able to manage their own resources and because they fought amongst themselves and paid too much money to their religious powers.
4. They believed that the king brought them rain, so when it didn’t rain, they killed the king.

How bright were these people? As a society, they frankly sound about as bright as we are. Did they really know when the world would end?

In a word, no. So relax people.

Besides, to prove how stupid it is, both Michael Bay AND Roland Emmerich currently have films in development–both with the title of “2012.” If directors who have given us such visionary and scientific masterpieces as “Transformers,” “Pearl Harbor,” “The Patriot,” “The Day After Tomorrow,” and “Godzilla” are grabbing a piece of the 2012 action, it is veritable proof that life will go on as expected in 2013.

I wonder if, in 2011, people will sell their stocks and jump out of windows because the end is nigh. If they do, someone will be buying those stocks: me.



  1. But if the world ends in 2012, Blade Runner can never come true 😦

  2. There may have been some questionable practices engaged in by the Mayans, but they were certainly not stupid. They remain the finest naked-eye observers of the heavens and developed a complex calendar.

    Many of the cultural things you cite as foolish could be echoed in any culture. Aren’t traffic jams one of the most foolish things in the world? Or going to watch big men in crash hats squabbling over a weirdly shaped ball?

    It’s a shame about the 2012 films, but that should not be an excuse for Mayan-bashing. I’m now going to email you an example of Mayan art, which was complex and often beautifully executed, photographed by myself in the National Museum in Guatemala City, maybe it could adorn this post.

  3. I don’t mean to seem like I’m Mayan-bashing. In fact I state that they were about as bright as we are. We are pretty bright! We are also pretty stupid!

    You can find amazing things about every early culture, and not a single one of them knew when the world was going to end. Lots of doomsday cults have predicted the end of the world and been sadly wrong.

    I think we have a bit of the “noble savage” perspective on the Mayans, and many other cultures. But they were no more noble than we are. We vaunt primitive cultures because we believe they had something that we have lost (which may be true!) but they did not have and lose the ability to know when the world would end.

    Their calendar systems also *begins* at 3114 BCE, which by no means is the beginning of the world.

  4. “But if the world ends in 2012, Blade Runner can never come true.”

    Neither can Star Trek! I want my personal, fully functioning (as in not turning me inside out or scattering my molecules across space) transporter, damn it!

    Alternatively, my own sentient, fully functioning android would be acceptable as well.

  5. This is insane. Nobody knows when the world would end let alone Mayans.

  6. Well, I was going to post a comment but it turned into a blog post so as to entertain and enlighten those of you who get my stuff, and disgust and horrify those who don’t — so I opted to reward the former and spare the latter by posting on my page: briosphere(dot)com


    * * *

  7. Yeah, the notion that the Mayans somehow had special knowledge the world is going to end is just foolishness, and any culture that pratices human sacrifice is one that doesn’t deserve to exist. The fact that they don’t anymore is a point in their favor. 🙂

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