The Maya count years in what is currently called the Long Count. They believe time doesn’t exclusively run forward, as we do. They sense that it is circular, that it runs in a series of cycles — as do the Hindu. There are short cycles and there are very very long ones. The current Long Count began in 3114 B.C. (that’s early Egyptian, Sumerian and Babylonian times for handy reference — civilization in the middle east was taking shape) and the Long Count will end…get this…on Dec 23, 2012! Save the date.
At that time the “universe” (our world) will be annihilated by a flood (always with the floods!) and then the sky will fall upon the earth (an asteroid?) and darkness will cover the earth (dust from the impact?)
Then comes a relatively short age of myths and heroes — heroes whose job it is to clean up the awful mess and the metaphorical debris from the previous age — as each age starts with a clean slate. It’s all good. It will all be built up again. (Reference M. Coe: The Maya, Thames & Hudson.)Written on April 4th, 2006 by Chris Prather