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article imageMayans did not predict end of the world in 2012, expert says

By JohnThomas Didymus     Dec 1, 2011 in Religion
Mexico - A German archaeologist Sven Gronemeyer of La Trobe University in Australia, says he has been studying Mayan tablets which make reference to 2012. The archaeologist says the tablets do not predict the end of the world, but the beginning of a new era.
The expert archaeologist's interpretation of the Mayan inscriptions was presented on Wednesday at a forum of Mayan experts at the Palenque archaeological site in southern Mexico.
Digital Journal reported that Mexican archaeologists recently acknowledged a second reference to the date 2012 in Mayan archaeological relics in connection with what many have interpreted as end of the world.
Daily Mail reports that the archaeologist Sven Gronemeyer, who has been studying the stone inscriptions found several years ago at the Tortuguero site in Mexico's Gulf coast state of Tabasco, says that what the inscriptions describe is the return of an obscure Mayan deity Bolon Yokte, at the end of the 13th period of 400 years, or Baktuns. This date falls on December 21, 2012.The archaeologist stressed, however, that there are no overt apocalyptic references in the prophecies.
According to Gronemeyer, the inscriptions refer to the end of a cycle of 5,125 years beginning with the year 3113 B.C. in the Mayan Long Count Calender. The Tortuguero inscription was a prophecy of Bahlam Ajaw, a Mayan ruler. According to Gronemeyer:
"For the elite of Tortuguero, it was clear they had to prepare the land for the return of the god and for Bahlam Ajaw to be the host of this initiation."
Gronemeyer, according to The Guardian, says that in Mayan belief, the god Bolon Yokte was the god of creation and war, and the day of his return to the sanctuary was marked with a ritual rite of passage for the god. Gronemeyer said:
"The date acquired a symbolic value because it is seen as a reflection of the day of creation. It is the passage of a god and not necessarily a great leap for humanity."
Historians and anthropologists are familiar with rites of passage of deities in ancient Near East civilization. The rites marked the renewal of time as reckoned on calender, such as end of the year, or time as reckoned in the agricultural cycle of seasons. In many of the ancient Near East traditions, the apocalyptic element was not as prominent as in the Christian tradition. The apocalyptic battle was usually mythologized, that is, pictured as event in an other-worldly mythological setting before time.
Digital Journal reported that experts at the Mexican National Institute of Anthropology and History are organizing a forum consisting of 60 Mayan experts at the archaeological site of Palenque. Experts have been arguing that the Mayans did not predict end of the world in December 2012, rather they had a cyclical notion of historical time with periodic renewals not necessarily linked to apocalyptic events.
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