Mexican author pooh-poohs '2012' movie

entertainment | Nov 20, 2009 | By Martin Barillas

The noted Mexican writer Carlos Villa Roiz has written an opinion article in which he asks his compatriots to understand their own history and to disavow the so-called “prophecies” about the end of the world that Hollywood is attributing to their Mayan ancestors in the movie “2012”. He is a columnist for the Impacto newspaper of Mexico, and author of “Popocatepetl: Mitos, Ciencia Y Cultura Un Crater En El Tiempo.”

Villa Roiz noted that the Mayan culture emerged about 1,500 years before Christ and reached their zenith before the 8th century of the Christian era. “Among them were astronomers, mathematicians, priests, soldiers, and wise men who devised complex but precise calendars based on the count of “Katun” – periods of twenty years. These formed the solar or civil calendar of 365 days, and the Tzolkin – the lunar or ritual calendar of 260 days. Both were inter-related because each could be divided by 5” said the journalist.

He noted that “both calendars are noted by their two interlocking wheels, that turned and turned for eternity and every time one cycle ended another began, obviously. The same occurs with the Gregorian calendar that we have had for a little more than two millennia.” Villa Roiz said that “while there are different interpretations of the equivalents of the Mayan dates in our calendar, this was used by the director of the film so as to invent that in 2012 would be the end of an era, and his fantasy was adorned with the suicide of a Mayan community (of mixed race) who became hopeless because the time had come for the accomplishment of the Mayan ‘prophecies.’”

According to the journalist, “as for novels and movies, writers can do whatever they want: including aliens from other worlds, spirits, witches, or whatever. The result can be amusing or deplorable and offensive for some, as in the case of the books by Dan Brown. What is troublesome is that that people believe them and alter these fantasies into supposedly occult dogma.”

Said Villa Roiz, “In the midst of the 21st century, while many people are leaving historic religions under the influence of materialism, relativism or scientific methodology, it is deplorable that this vacuum should be filled by horoscopes, Tarot cards, coffee cup reading, or movies.”

He explained that “the Mayas wrote in the Dresden Codex what is found in other books of the aboriginal traditions such as the Popol Vuh: the destruction of humanity by a universal flood – an event that is repeated by almost all cultures such as, for example, the Huichol people of (Mexican states) Jalisco and Nayarit. The legend of the Five Suns and its equivalents recounts the past and, while philosophers and modern moviemakers may deduce that the cycles of nature are repeated – it is a long shot from having the Mayas predict for 2012 the kind of destruction depicted in the film.”

The author reflected sadly “in Mexico, where unfortunately people read but one or two books per year, many people believe these lies.” He asked for Mexico’s educators to get students to read the work of American archaeologist Sylvanus G. Morley, who was one of the great scholars of Mayan culture. As for a cataclysm in 2012, Villa Roiz said “The Bible says only this about the end of the world “No one knows the day or the hour, only the Father.”

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Martin Barillas is a former US diplomat and the editor of Spero News.

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