Monday, June 17, 2024

Breathe! It’s not will have a good day


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By Nawaz Yasin Islam

 SHILLONG: This story revolves around the reality that the world has not ended as prophesied by doom-sayers. Cyberspace is filled with doomsday prophecies and end-of-the-world predictions and inhabitants of this land are no less scared of a ghastly ending to all dreams with the universal ‘switch-off’ on December 21, 2012.

The end of the Mayan calendar has surely sparked off ancient prophecies to haunt mankind once again but with no news of NASA scientists digging bunkers, loading up their families on secret space ships or recruiting Bruce Willis and Robert Duvall to blow up incoming asteroids, we can safely say that this whole drama is yet another farce.

So why the hysteria? According to Maya myth, the world was created on 11 August 3114 BC in the Gregorian Calendar; or by the Maya count. This creation was the fourth incarnation of the world, the previous age having ended after the thirteenth b’ak’tun (a c.400-year cycle). On 21st December, it will once again be and the ‘Great Cycle’ will be completed, bringing the thirteenth b’ak’tun of the current age to an end. Some translations of the glyphs from a partially illegible Maya stela suggest that the end of the present b’ak’tun will see the ‘descent’ of the god Bolon Yookte’ K’Uh (sometimes translated as the ‘Nine-Footed God’).

The story started with claims that Nibiru, a supposed planet discovered by the Sumerians, is headed toward Earth. This catastrophe was initially predicted for May 2003, but when nothing happened the doomsday date was moved forward to December 2012 and linked to the end of one of the cycles in the ancient Mayan calendar at the winter solstice in 2012 — hence the predicted doomsday date of December 21, 2012.

This convergence of dates and prophecies has been seen as marking the transition to the next world, and hence the end of this one.

Just as the calendar you have on your kitchen wall does not cease to exist after December 31, the Mayan calendar does not cease to exist on December 21, 2012. This date is the end of the Mayan long-count period but then — just as our calendar begins again on January 1 — another long-count period begins for the Mayan calendar.

The bottom line is that there is this one crazy family who is your neighbour who has a calendar hung on their wall, which is coming to an end…hence they summarise that the world itself will end!

NASA scientists have thoroughly studied and analyzed the possibility of the Earth ending in 2012, and have concluded that 21st December 2012 will be nothing more than a normal December solstice. There is simply no scientific evidence to support any claims of an apocalypse.

According to an elder of the Seng Khasi- Seng Kmie, Sumar Sing Sawain, the age old prediction of the Mayan Calendar does not depict that the world might come to an end, it only pertains to the Mayan calendar which explains that their world, to be specific, their calendar is coming to an end.

When asked whether Khasi Legend concurs with this prediction, Sawian said there is no such relation or connection with such prediction of the Mayan Calendar in the Khasi legend, which depicts that the world would be coming to an end. “Nowhere in the Khasi legend will you find a specific date mentioning about the end of the world”, he added.

While some people take this prediction as a joke, there are some who are serious about its occurrence. “In this regard, people should understand that this is just a prediction and is based only on the Mayan Calendar”, Sawain said adding that there should be no apprehension as this, like earlier human predictions, is unlikely to be true.

(With inputs from Ibankyntiew Mawrie)

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