Mayans Unfazed By ‘Doomsday’ Calendar

Mayans Unfazed By 'Doomsday' CalendarSome believe the world is coming to an end Friday — on 12/21/12 — which is when an important phase on the ancient calendar of the Mayan people terminates. Mayans don’t buy it.

‘Don’t think we’re all gonna die’

At least the ones living in the city of Merida, Mexico, don’t. Neither does anyone in the Mayan village of Yaxuna. They know the calendar their ancestors left them is about to absolve a key phase — the end of an era and the heralding of a new one — but they don’t think we’re all gonna die. People in his village will keep living much as they have, preferring hand-built, palm-thatch huts to concrete buildings and baking tortillas on an open flame.

Though 12/21/12 is a somewhat congruent date on the western calendar, the Mayan version enumerates the event in a different way. The ancient people measured time in cycles called “baktuns” of 394 years each, and the winter solstice coming Friday marks the end of the 13th baktun. Some who study the calendar say the date for the end of the period is not Friday, but Sunday.


‘Beginning of the 14th baktun’

The Mayan calendar is based on the position of the heavenly bodies — the sun, the moon and the stars — and was meant to tell the Mayan people about agricultural and economic trends, said archeologist Alfredo Barrera. NASA is also weighing in on the matter, with a post on its website declaring that the world will not end on Friday.

In Merida, Mayan priest Valerio Canche conducts an ancient ritual to honor the dead in light of the upcoming end of the 13th baktun. If you’re reading this on Thursday, keep in mind that it’s already Friday in New Zealand, and it’s still on the map. If it’s Friday, a look out the window may be reassuring. If it’s Saturday, and no major calamity has occurred, then relax and go celebrate the beginning of the 14th baktun with the Mayans.

Do you believe in the Mayan “Doomsday” calendar? What would you do if the world were to end tomorrow?

Source: Ben Brumfield and Nick Parker, CNN

Image: Black Christian News

NASA’s Next Generation Spacesuit Resembles Buzz Lightyear’s Getup

NASA's Next Generation Spacesuit Resembles Buzz Lightyear's GetupIf your kids didn’t already want to be astronauts when they grow up — just wait until they get a look at the Z-1. It’s NASA’s next generation of spacesuit, and bears more than a passing resemblance to the suit worn by Buzz Lightyear in Pixar’s beloved Toy Story films.

‘Just like Lightyear’s’

The Z-1 Prototype Spacesuit and Portable Life Support System 2.0, produced for NASA by the David Clark Company, is white with fluorescent green stripes, and features a large, hemispherical transparent dome helmet –just like Lightyear’s.


‘Ingenious’

Named one of Time magazine’s inventions of the year, the suit is designed to take astronauts into long missions into deep space. It features a rear-entry port that gives galaxy-hopping space rangers an easy way to dock with shuttles and space stations without the need for an airlock. Ingenious!

The Z-1 is a prototype, NASA stresses, and will be subject to further revisions before it’s actually put into use by NASA in 2017 — hopefully by which time the U.S.’s space program will again be in full swing.

Do you like NASA’s next generation of spacesuit that resembles Buzz Lightyear’s costume? Does this suit inspire you somewhat to be an astronaut?

Source: The Hollywood Reporter, Yahoo Movies

Image: The Sly Oyster