For the last several years there has been a lot of interest
in the date December 21, 2012. This date
is claimed to mark the end of a period of time found in the Mayan Calendar,
called the Great Cycle. This Mayan era
is believed by some to have started in August 11 (or 12), 3112 BC, and to last
about 5125 years, meaning that its end occurs on December 21, 2012. Some New Age writers in the 80's noticed that the end date of the Mayan cycle
was coming soon and speculated that it would be the time of a "harmonic
convergence," ushering in a new age of enhanced spiritual
development. Other writers predicted
that this date would bring about the end of the world. Still others say the
interest in this date is a lot of hoopla put forward by popular researchers to
sell their books.
Regardless of the conclusions one draws about this question, there is no doubt that the interest in this date draws attention to many other fascinating topics, including the spiritual beliefs of the Mayans and other Amerindians, the commonality of beliefs held by the Mayans and peoples such as the Hindus, living in vastly different times and locations, and the effect of cycles, large and small, on the life of earth's inhabitants.
The following articles explore these and other subjects.
These two articles discuss:
What started the interest in the 2012 date and its correlation to the Mayan calendar?
Did this date really have meaning for the ancient Mayans? For that matter, does the date have meaning for the modern Mayans?
What do some archeologists say about the end of the Mayan Great Cycle? Is this cycle really 5125 years long or is that up for interpretation?
The Maya Great Cycle and 2012 by Marilyn O'Day
What's Behind 2012? by Sally Dougherty
This series of articles by Blair Moffett describes the history and beliefs of the Mayans, where they came from, and why the cycles of the sun and planets had a spiritual significance for them. It also discusses how the Mayans obtained such advanced astronomical knowledge.
Theosophy of Ancient America (parts 1 and 2)
One Foot in the Fifth World (part 3)
To Make Men Divine (part 4)
Ciphers and Civilizations
These articles provide background information on the Popol Vuh, or the "Council Book" of the Quiche Mayas, in which is described the creation myths and history of the ancient Mayans.
The Mayan Popol Vuh by Eloise Hart
Esotericism of the Popol Vuh by Raphael Girard (full text online)
Ancient American Theosophy: A Review of "The Esotericism of the Popol Vuh" by Blair Moffett
Articles on cycles and the effects they have on man and evolution
Cyclic Impression and Return by William Q. Judge
Cycles: An Introduction by Lydia Ross
Inherent Rhythms of Life by Scott Osterhage
Racial Cycles and Yugas by G. de Purucker
Aztec Calendar Stone by Louis R. Arana
Death and the Tree of Life by Blair A. Moffett
I, the Great Mystery by Blair A. Moffett
Wisdom Teachings of the Hopi by Eloise Hart
Forces, Energies, and Consciousness by G. de Purucker
KABOOM! Gifts from the Stars by Andrew Rooke
Coe, Michael D. Breaking the Maya Code. London: Thames and Hudson Ltd, 1999.
-------, and Mark Van Stone. Reading the Maya Glyphs. London: Thames and Hudson Ltd, 2001.
Morley, Sylvanus Griswold. An Introduction to the Study of the Maya Hieroglyphs. New York: Dover Publications, 1975.
Popol Vuh, The Sacred Book of the Ancient Quiche Maya. Translated into English by Delia Goetz and Sylvanus G. Morley, from the translation by Andian Recinos. Norman Oklahoma: University of Oklahoma Press, 1950.
Schele, Linda, and David Freidel. A Forest of Kings: The Untold Story of the Ancient Mayas. New York: Morrow, 1990.
-------, and Peter Matthews. The Code of Kings: The Language of Seven Sacred Maya Temples and Tombs. New York, Simon and Schuster, 1998.
Stephens, John L. with illustrations by Frederick Catherwood. Incidents of Travel in Central America, Chiapas and Yucatan, Vol. I & II. New York: Dover Publications, Inc, 1969.
Thompson, J. Eric S. The Rise and Fall of Maya Civilization. Norman, Oklahoma: University of Oklahoma Press, 1954.
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