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End of the World: Is the Mayan Apocalypse Really Coming on Dec. 21?

The Mayans may or may not have predicted the apocalypse will occur on Dec. 21—just less than two weeks from now. Do you buy it?

Do you expect the world to end on Dec. 21, 2012?

As the day draws near, NASA is getting in on the action. The agency created a page on its website devoted to debunking the Mayan apocalypse idea—not least because the Mayans never predicted any such thing. The date is simply the end of one time period that simply starts over.

“Our planet has been getting along just fine for more than 4 billion years, and credible scientists worldwide know of no threat associated with 2012,” NASA wrote.

But maybe they're just fun-haters: there are a number of parties planned for Dec. 20 or 21 this year, just in case the Earth explodes, or zombies run amok. With the "long count" calendar of the Ancient Mayans coming to an end that day, some people are a little pessimistic about any calendar continuing past that date.

However, experts on the matter, like the NASA thing above, say we've got nothing to worry about. According to an article on nbcnews.com, "Experts estimate the system starts counting at 3114 B.C., and will have run through 13 baktuns, or 5,125 years, around Dec. 21. Experts say 13 was a significant number for the Maya, and the end of that cycle would be a milestone — but not an end."

Some people believe the Maya may have predicted "impending astronomical disasters that would coincide with 2012, ranging from explosive storms on the surface of the sun that could knock out power grids to a galactic alignment that could trigger a reversal in Earth's magnetic field."

But according to the article, that is not the case. In fact Mayan predictions go way past our present-day, indicating that they expected a future to come even after their long count calendar came to an end.

We asked fans of the Downers Grove Patch Facebook page what they think of the 2012 apocolypse theory. Here's what they had to say:

  • Alison C.: not nervous, otherwise no one should have Christmas shopped
  • Laura Alison C.: Not too worried since the Bible says NO ONE knows the day or the hour (only the Father), but I'm waiting to do my Christmas shopping until Dec 22, just in case! LOL
  • Corinne N.: Totally Y2K
  • Jesse C.: Mayans didn't count the extra day in leap years. World ended about a year and a half ago.
  • Laura Alison C.: I recently heard somewhere they are now thinking they may not have found all the tablets...
  • William V.: I've stocked up on wine and spam...
  • Kristen S.: save money on Christmas presents until after the 21st, then do a mad rush for Christmas shopping if we're still here. lol

So what do you think? Are we doomed? Or not so much? Let us know!

Editor's note: This article initially ran on Cummings Patch. 

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Carmen December 15, 2012 at 03:58 AM
I was worried about it . My Christmas is going to be just fine with my wonderful grand kids
mdilmore December 15, 2012 at 02:50 PM
I think we are all doomed as soon as we are born into this world, every living thing on this planet will die at some point, but i doubt everything on this planet will die at once, most likely a gradual extinction.

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