December 21 2012, but October 28, 2011
Over the decades much discussion has focussed on finding the exact correlation between the Mayan Long Count and the Gregorian calendar. Most researchers in the field have now come to agree that the so-called GMT correlation, placing the beginning of the Long Count 4 Ahau 8 Cumku on the Julian day 584 283, August 11, 3114 BC, is correct. This means by consequence that it will end on December 21, 2012 and most students of the calendar of the Maya, such as Jose Arguelles, John Jenkins and Terence McKenna, have endorsed this date as the end of the current cycle.
I do not dispute that the GMT correlation for the Long Count with the Gregorian calendar is the correct one. And clearly, the Long Count is an approximately (within a year or so) correct reflection of the divine process of creation. There are however strong reasons to believe that the Mayan Long Count itself does not exactly reflect the shifting energies of the divine creation cycles that we today are interested in. What in this regard is most compelling is that the exact Long Count beginning date ultimately is calibrated based on the date of solar zenith in Izapa, which occurs on August 12. (Izapa is the ancient Mayan site in southern Mexico where the Long Count was first devised.)
This solar zenith day was since long, long before the Long Count was implemented, considered as the day of the year when “time began” and considered as a holy date in the location of Izapa. There is thus every reason to believe that the solar zenith was the reason the initial day in the Long Count, 4 Ahau 8 Cumku, was set on this day, although obviously the date of solar zenith in Izapa has nothing to do with the real beginning of the corresponding divine creation cycle. (Not to use the solar zenith date as the beginning of the Long Count would have been considered as heresy. We may make the comparison with the date of Christmas, which was taken from old solstice celebrations, and has not been changed, despite the fact that few, if any, believes that Jesus was born then).
That the end date of the Long Count falls on December 21, 2012 is thus just a necessary logical consequence of the beginning date chosen by the Izapans and not something that the Maya had intentionally targeted. The creation cycles described by the Maya, including the tzolkin, are fundamentally of a spiritual, non-astronomical, nature. Thus, any theory that implies that the Mayan Long Count would have been designed to reflect astronomical phenomena, be it the precession of the earth or a solar zenith, is a warning signal that its originator is off the mark. It should be obvious that if the Mayan calendar is a prophetic calendar describing cosmic energy cycles of a universal nature then the particular date at which the sun was in zenith in the particular location of Izapa is totally irrelevant for us who live today and must be considered as nothing but a result of a tradition too strong to be changed.
Another equally compelling reason why December 21, 2012 cannot be the true date of completion of creation is that this day is 4 Ahau in the tzolkin count. Since the Long Count consists of exactly 7200 tzolkin rounds then the true end of creation must fall on a day that is 13 Ahau in the tzolkin count so that the tzolkin rounds even out. If we want to find out what is the real date of ending of the creation cycles we must therefore look for a day around the year 2012, which is 13 Ahau in the tzolkin count. The inscriptions in Palenque, written about a thousand years after the Long Count was devised in Izapa, seem to indicate that the date of relevance is October 28, 2011, which in fact is 13 Ahau in the tzolkin count.
[Read the rest here.]