Time Zones & The End Of The World
So, the world is ending next week. Sounds like something setting an alarm for. Whereas the media is very good at telling us (in local time) when an international sporting event or solar eclipse will be happening, the Mayan Doomsday date is not getting that treatment. Because it’s just a bit of silly content for the newspapers… no need for serious information, especially not approaching the holidays season!
The Long Answer
Before I get into timezones, here is some background:
- The ancient Mayan Long Count calendar was a simple, continuous counting of days. No hours, no minutes. So pinpointing a precise time for doomsday is impossible from an archaeological point of view.
- The most commonly accepted correlation between the Mayan Long Count calendar and ours is known as the GMT correlation.
- The previous creation ended on a long count of 188.8.131.52.19. Another 184.108.40.206.19 will occur on December 20, 2012, followed by the start of the 14th b’ak’tun, 220.127.116.11.0, on December 21, 2012 [Source: Wikipedia]
- The Maya used the Long Count in astronomical tables
- The Winter Solstice (northern hemisphere) is at precisely 11:12 Universal Time (aka GMT/London time) on Dec 21. NASA previously calculated it to be 11:11 which added to the paranoia of some people…
So technically the ancient Mayan world/age/Sun is meant to end on Dec 20, and a new one begins on Dec 21.
As far as I can tell, the scholars behind the correlation did not specify a timezone for the dates they arrived at. The authors of the GMT correlation are from both sides of the Atlantic, and the celestial events they used to connect the two calendars were sometimes a day or two out (meaning the Maya weren’t perfect). It is quite likely that they never meant for their correlation to be more accurate than a non-time-zone specific date.
Because the 18.104.22.168.0 Mayan date coincides with the solstice, and Maya had an interested in solstices, it is reasonable to consider the solstice as the event the calendar points to. If that is the case, the 11:12 Dec 21 UT is the time of doom.
Personally, I figure that the date is symbolic. Being the darkest day of the year, it represents gloom. I have for a long time spoken of the 6 months either side of the solstice being the danger zone. But of course we should also treat the precise date as being serious.
The Short Answer
The world ends on Dec 20 and is reborn on Dec 21 (with or without humans?). This is imprecise given time zones, so really we should be looking at the period between 00:01 Dec 20 in Western Samoa, and 23.59 Dec 21 in American Samoa.
Solstice times for major cities, in their local time, are:
- London: Fri 11:11 AM
- New York: Fri 6:11 AM
- Los Angeles: Fri 3:11 AM
- Sydney: Fri 10:11 PM
- Perth: Fri 7:11 PM
- Tokyo: Fri 8:11 PM
- Mumbai: Fri 4:41 PM
- Dubai: Fri 3:11 PM
- Johannesburg: Fri 1:11 PM
- Paris: Fri 12:11 PM
- Auckland: Sat 12:11 AM
Many more cities are listed at TimeAndDate.com on a page I set up.
If you are planning on a day/evening sitting paranoid at the computer searching for indicators – 2012Live.com has all you need. Exclusive for you folk, to save it being swamped by traffic…