2012: The Odyssey: 7 p.m. Friday and Saturday, July 18 and 19, and 2:30 p.m. Sunday, July 20, at East West Exchange
By Clay McNear
December 21, 2012.
The End Date.
While I’m sure I’ll have mixed feelings if the Apocalypse really does go down on the Winter Solstice in 2012 – I won’t get to see the playoffs! I won’t have to pay my mortgage! – I’ll be royally pissed if nothing at all happens. I’m one of those Luddites who left the house at 11:59 on 12-31-99, just in case the electric stove achieved consciousness at the stroke of Y2K and decided to terminate me. While I was relieved that I wasn’t beheaded by flying oven shrapnel, I was kind of disappointed that, you know, something didn’t go kablooey.
My prediction for December 21, 2012, is that nothing at all happens. It’ll be just another shitty day in the life of humanity.
Here’s where Sharron Rose and I part ways. The co-producer of the quasi-documentary film 2012: The Odyssey views the end of the world as a once-in-a-deathtime opportunity. Her film provides, as one reviewer it, a “positive look at Armageddon.”
Before we get to the upside of annihilation, let’s examine this Armageddon hooey. New Age Chicken Littles assure us that the end is nigh based on two central “facts”: 1) the “Long Count” of the Mayan calendar, which begins with the Mayans’ calculation of Genesis at 3,114 B.C., screeches to a halt on December 21, 2012; 2) the next Galactic Alignment, an every-26,000-years phenomenon in which the plane of our solar system lines up with that of the Milky Way, is set for . . . yep, you guessed it. The nuttiest of nutballs theorize that this convergence will cause the Sun and planets to begin a cosmic freefall into the massive black hole at the center of the galaxy.
Um, a few thoughts.
1) The Mayan calendar in question is actually Aztec. Duh.
2) Since the world obviously didn’t begin in 3,114 B.C., why should we take the Mayans’/Aztecs’ word that it’s gonna croak in 2012?
3) The Sun, Earth, et. al., apparently didn’t sucked into a black hole 26,000 years ago, so why should this time be any different?
4) Contradiction alert! Contradiction alert! If you believe in the “prophesies” of the Mayan/Aztec calendar, you must then believe that the Earth was created in 3,114 B.C., right? Well, then, how can you also believe that a Galactic Alignment happens every 26,000 years? Wouldn’t this be the first?
Which just goes to show: You don’t have to suck at math to be a nutball, but it helps.
Filmmaker Rose is hoping against hope that all of the flawed math turns out to be correct. The central premise of her 2006 flick – molded from her personal views as well as those of semi-respectable nutballs such as Jose Arguelles, Alberto Villoldo, Moira Timms, and Jay Weidner – is that the End Date will serve as a giant slate-clearing for a corrupt humanity and open the door for a metaphysical evolution.
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Here’s Rose’s take on what the rapture will look like: “It is said that as we move to the end point of the cycle, whether it be the end of the world or the end of a life, time speeds up until there is no time, only the moment. In this extraordinary moment of reintregration, the psychic knots that bind us unwind, and the karmic veils are lifted. In that moment we can see with true clarity the pure essence of our being. We come face to face with our eternal nature. Time dissolves into space and all things appear in the perfect simultaneity of the state of pure immediate Present. This is the moment of true awakening. It is the still point between the thoughts, the pause between the in breath and the out breath. It is what we have been waiting for a long time.”
Well . . . speak for yourself. The thought of being murdered by a sentient appliance or vaporized by a black hole isn’t pretty, but I, at least, would prefer it to spending eternity with a bunch of granola eaters who can’t do math.
So, here’s hoping that your metaphysical Apocalypse doesn’t happen. Which it won’t.
2012: The Odyssey screens at 7 p.m. Friday and Saturday, July 18 and 19, and 2:30 p.m. Sunday, July 20, at East West Exchange, 2051 West Warner Road in Chandler. Admission is $10. Call 480-855-6010 or see East West Exchange.