Sunday, December 9

Apocalypse now?

I post this last part of an CNN article here, because I find it to have a genuine conclusion. The Maya calendar stops at 21.12.2012 - hence the hysteria of some of our earth-dwellers to believe that earth-life will come to an end as we know it. Well, so far we are doing our best to make this happen - unfortunately. Has nothing to do with some ancient calendar though!

Just a few years before the rot set in, Maya painters at the site of Bonampak, a small city in Chiapas, Mexico, covered the walls of a small three-room palace with extraordinary murals.

They painted more individuals -- men, mainly, but women and children, too -- than had been rendered before, numbering more than 250. They deployed more fancy pigments than had been used before, more than would ever be used again in ancient Mexico, some 47 vibrant blues, reds and yellows. The paintings reveal the social layers of courtiers and lords, musicians and dwarves, victims and their blade-wielding sacrificers. Musicians, singers and performers lined up to perform on plazas and pyramids.

None of these activities or materials was new, but what was new was the rapidly crumbling world around the Bonampak painters.

No one could change -- the paintings seem to tell us. The Maya ignored the crisis in front of them, instead dancing with great panaches of precious quetzal feathers on pyramids, as if the present would forever hold.

Now in the 21st century, perhaps we have also reached a precipice. Global warming is not just fearful thinking -- it's real. Weeks after Superstorm Sandy, scientists are now predicting the near-term and long-term effects of global warming as more dire that previously thought.

Some, perhaps like our Maya predecessors, would rather not see the writing on the walls of our flooded cities. The crises pile up in front of us, one after another, and we ignore them at our peril. Acknowledging and doing something about the problems in front of us seems hard. Give us more feathers. Build more walls. Stockpile canned goods and buy a generator.

As for December 21, rest easy. This day will pass as if it were nothing more than the Maya Y2K, the nonevent of the decade. We'll wake up on December 22, and the world will still be here.

And so will our pressing environmental challenges.

We need to make some hard decisions and resolve that we will confront our own brewing apocalypse before it's too late.


gfid said...

the end of the world has come so many times that it doesn't faze most of us anymore. the fall of civilization has happened numerous times as well..... think of any great empire of the past. yet we keep making the same mistakes, and wondering why plagues and epidemics and famines continue; the wealthy continue to get wealthier on the backs of the poor, and the poor continue to strive to emulate the wealthy. as a species, we don't seem to be very intelligent.

Zee said...

Yeah GFID - as so many times you are right. We are commonly the most stupid species - and the most adventurous! Wonder how it all will play out in the end.

Zee said...

By the way Granny Fiddler, the copper relief is mounted on an outside restaurant in Germany. Played some Bach today, felt good, got that violin a bit undusted.

Aisha said...

This is the plight of humanity when they worship their desires - as a result they endulge in wishful thinking in order to preserve the things they love.

"By time,
Indeed, mankind is in loss,
Except for those who have believed and done righteous deeds and advised each other to truth and advised each other to patience."

Thank you for sharing the story of the Mayans! Very intriguing..