The Madeleine Brand Show for January 23, 2012

The myth of the Mayan calendar

Mayan Calendar

c/o Carolann Quart

A Mayan calendar. Only one ancient Mayan text references 2012 -- and not in a negative context.

Will 2012 bring a cataclysmic end to life as we know it? Or did doomsayers completely botch their interpretation of the Mayan calendar? Jill Replogle of the Fronteras Project reports from Guatemala, the cradle of Mayan civilization, where scientists and priests say we've got it all wrong.

Guatemalan thinkers insist 2012 is mentioned only once in ancient Mayan texts. And, they say, the writings describe it as a time when the gods will return to earth and there will be for a "big event or party." In other words, this year could spark the beginning of a new era, not the end.

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