The Mayan calendar ends on December 21, 2012. Does that date also mark the end of the world?
You'll be happy to know the world will still be here when you wake up on Friday morning. It could be the end of the world as we know it, just like every other day. We live in a world of change. But what's the deal with this whole Mayan calendar thing? I'll tell you.
Like every year, December 21 marks the new solstice and the shortest day of the year in the northern hemisphere (conversely the longest day of the year in the southern hemisphere). What's different this year is that the Earth, the sun and the center of the galaxy will be aligned for the first time in 26,000 years. The sun and the earth will be lined up with the exact center of the black hole that holds our Milky Way galaxy together. Cool, huh?
This incredible event was predicted by ancient Mayan and Hindu astronomers. Please note they never predicted the "end of the world," but the end of a "cycle." What's especially astounding is that these predictions originated from two entirely different cultures in different parts of the world.
As for the origins of the world-ending rumor, it started with claims that Nibiru, a supposed planet discovered by the ancient Sumerians, was headed toward Earth. The cataclysmic event was originally predicted for May 2003, but when nothing happened on that day, the doomsday date was moved up to the end of one of the cycles in the ancient Mayan and Hindu calendars: the 2012 winter solstice.
Regardless of how untrue the scenario is for the impending end of the world, it sure is fun to spin tales around the event. I've been amused by some of my favorite TV shows that have played with the concept in their story lines.
My publisher, Harlequin Luna, is also having fun with the world-ending theme by publishing an anthology of three end-of-the-world novellas in a book called 'TIL THE WORLD ENDS. I'm fortunate to have my novella SUN STORM included in the collection. Look for it at your favorite online and brick and mortar book stores on January 29, 2013.
Are you planning anything special to celebrate the winter solstice this Thursday? I'll probably spend the day writing.