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Old 21-02-2010, 14:42   #46
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Originally Posted by Intentional Drifter View Post
Oh, boy. Religion. Prediction. The End. Fun stuff, so long as it comes with a bottle of Herradura Anejo.

I find myself particularly amused with the degree of confidence people have about their chosen deity's revelations. So, let's see: At the very most, all of these revelations have come about during a period of time that encompasses no more than .000001% of just Earth's history. Earth, one planet around one star, of which there might be between 200 to 400 billion just in "our" galaxy; of which there may be 500 billion (or more) galaxies in the universe (or at least the part we can see, so far). If we assume that ours is an average solar system of 8 planets (sorry, Pluto), then that's 1.2 septillion planets.

And, somehow, we've got the absolute truth for all things, in all places, at all times? In English, no less? (or, Latin; or, Arabic; or, Hindi; take your pick)

Anybody got some lemon, and salt?

ID
Find that a bit hard to swallow, ID?
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Old 21-02-2010, 14:56   #47
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That's the reason for the Anejo!

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Old 21-02-2010, 15:23   #48
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Or the mayan found out that the empire was only two years from it's doom, concluded his work was pointless, threw down his tools and went cruising in a canoe.

I'll follow his example now. Not in a canoe though.

I'll stay out of the religious discussion, although my fingers are itching

/Hampus
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Old 21-02-2010, 16:26   #49
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What I thought was really interesting was the mathematical precision that the Mayans achieved without paper much less a computer. If I want to figure something out an electrical circuit or a plumbing problem I take a pencil and an eraser. They figured out things that are beyond my understanding without the use of the internet. Unless maybe the voices inpeoples heads are leftovers of an ancient internet. Dec 21, 2012 is the occasion of a recurring astonomical event where the earth is tilted and pointing towards the middle of some solar system. I wouldn't be able to see stars without my glasses.
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Old 21-02-2010, 17:01   #50
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Well I say go ahead an max out those credit cards just in case
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Old 21-02-2010, 17:07   #51
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Yes, quite interesting how much astronomical knowledge many ancient civilizations had, and how this knowledge got collected (or transferred, but this unlikely) in isolated places of the planet. And all this without telescopes, computers ...

b.
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Old 21-02-2010, 17:21   #52
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Dec 21, 2012 is the occasion of a recurring astonomical event where the earth is tilted and pointing towards the middle of some solar system.
Well, not exactly, Charlie. The 23.5* tilt of the earth on its axis is the source of the seasons, but it has nothing to do with the 21 December 2012 phenomenon.

Earth is one of a handful of planets circling a star (the Sun) way out on one spiral arm of the Milky Way Galaxy. Just as the planets orbit the Sun, the Sun orbits the center of the Galaxy, a point that appears approximately in the middle of the constellation Sagittarius as viewed from this planet.

But the path of our solar system (the Sun and its orbiting bodies) around the center of the galaxy is not perfectly consistent with the galactic ecliptic; that is, out system oscillates both above and below the ecliptic over time, because the orbital plane of our solar system is tilted in relation to the galactic ecliptic. It is similar, though not as extreme, as the eccentric orbit of Pluto around the Sun itself.

What is about to occur - some claim it will happen on 21 December 2012 - is that our solar system will be re-crossing the plane of the galactic ecliptic. Whether or not that is accurate, and whether or not it coincides with any particular event is debatable, at least beforehand.

Some astronomers have pooh-poohed the very idea that this "crossing" occurs at one moment in time; I have read that, given the vastness of space and geologic time, it actually takes approximately 200 earth years for our solar system to accomplish such a crossing.

As always, worrying about what is beyond one's ability to do anything about is pointless. It only results in (additional) stress. It has been said that worry is wasted emotion - if it's prompted by something you can do nothing to alter, then worrying about it is non-productive. If it's prompted by something you can alter, then stop worrying and get busy creating the necessary change.

Either way, wasting time worrying achieves nothing.

TaoJones
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Old 21-02-2010, 17:25   #53
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Thanks for the Astronomy lessons Tao!
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Old 21-02-2010, 17:33   #54
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Yikes! it worries me that these types of threads are the longest. Do we cruisers need day jobs? The myan calander was done on cicular plate. Perhaps they just need a biit more dameter
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Old 21-02-2010, 18:15   #55
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A 2005 Gallup Poll revealed the following percentages of adult Americans who believe in:

Extrasensory perception, or ESP
41
That houses can be haunted
37
Ghosts/that spirits of dead people can come back in certain places/situations
32
Telepathy/communication between minds without using traditional senses
31
Clairvoyance/the power of the mind to know the past and predict the future
26
Astrology, or that the position of the stars and planets can affect people's lives
25
That people can communicate mentally with someone who has died
21
Witches
21
Reincarnation, that is, the rebirth of the soul in a new body after death
20
Channeling/allowing a 'spirit-being' to temporarily assume control of body
9

73% of Americans believe in at last one of the above. If you also include those who "aren't sure about" the item, each one increases by 12 to 29%. Most of these numbers are pretty stable over the preceding 15 years.

Source: http://home.sandiego.edu/~baber/logic/gallup.html

It behooves us all to never over-estimate the likelihood that a randomly encountered, otherwise typical-appearing adult American is actually using reason and critical thinking in whatever is being discussed.

And, for you folks from other countries? Don't get too much on your high-horse -- the numbers are similar in most developed countries and some are actually higher.

Still want to cut educational funding?

ID
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Old 21-02-2010, 19:14   #56
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TaoJones View Post
Well, not exactly, Charlie. The 23.5* tilt of the earth on its axis is the source of the seasons, but it has nothing to do with the 21 December 2012 phenomenon.

Earth is one of a handful of planets circling a star (the Sun) way out on one spiral arm of the Milky Way Galaxy. Just as the planets orbit the Sun, the Sun orbits the center of the Galaxy, a point that appears approximately in the middle of the constellation Sagittarius as viewed from this planet.

But the path of our solar system (the Sun and its orbiting bodies) around the center of the galaxy is not perfectly consistent with the galactic ecliptic; that is, out system oscillates both above and below the ecliptic over time, because the orbital plane of our solar system is tilted in relation to the galactic ecliptic. It is similar, though not as extreme, as the eccentric orbit of Pluto around the Sun itself.

What is about to occur - some claim it will happen on 21 December 2012 - is that our solar system will be re-crossing the plane of the galactic ecliptic. Whether or not that is accurate, and whether or not it coincides with any particular event is debatable, at least beforehand.

Some astronomers have pooh-poohed the very idea that this "crossing" occurs at one moment in time; I have read that, given the vastness of space and geologic time, it actually takes approximately 200 earth years for our solar system to accomplish such a crossing.

As always, worrying about what is beyond one's ability to do anything about is pointless. It only results in (additional) stress. It has been said that worry is wasted emotion - if it's prompted by something you can do nothing to alter, then worrying about it is non-productive. If it's prompted by something you can alter, then stop worrying and get busy creating the necessary change.

Either way, wasting time worrying achieves nothing.

TaoJones
You missed the point entirely Tao. The Maya were calculating different calendars based upon 144,000 day periods named baktun.

"A baktun (properly b'ak'tun) is 20 katun cycles of the ancient Maya Long Count Calendar. It contains 144,000 days, equivalent to 394.25 tropical years. The Classic period of Maya civilization occurred during the 8th and 9th baktuns of the current calendrical cycle. The current (13th) baktun will end, or be completed, on 13.0.0.0.0 (December 21, 2012 using the GMT correlation" as quoted from wikipedia.

Even with a paper calendar on my desk I have a hard time keeping track of what day it is in a month. The Maya were calculating astonomical events prior to the invention of calculators and without readily available paper. I think that feat in impressive. I don't know if the galactic ecliptic will occur on that particuilar day but it is a possibility. I find that type of calculation very impressive. Not only that but they were able to describe these calendars using stone tablets. They also calculated solar and lunar eclipses. They had an understanding of the heavens that is much more complex than mine and I would presume most peoples.

They also have a number of buildings that line up the sun on particuilar solstices

Maya Astronomy

I don't believe in the end of the world scenarios but I am impressed by the complex calculations that were needed to identify when an eclipse was going to occur, buildings that are lined up to show the sun on a particuilar solar or lunar event. Paper -- in my opinion -- is one of the most important inventions of the modern age b/c it allowed the transfer of knowledge to occur easily. If we had to carve our opinions into a stone tablet to get this information on the internet surfing the web would not be as fun. The Mayans made these calculations prior to the widespread use of paper.
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Old 21-02-2010, 19:18   #57
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I’d never trust prognostications from a culture that didn’t have “the vision” to see a future that included a WHEEL or found it necessary to sacrifice children!
I did though enjoy the ruins at Tikal!
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Old 21-02-2010, 20:27   #58
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Or basically disappear from the face of the earth.
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Old 21-02-2010, 20:43   #59
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The part I found fascinating was the ability to predict the progression of the constellations so far into the future, and there is some speculation about being able to observe the stars through a bore hole from underground during the day time, which would be interesting to see first hand. How can one not wonder about the wonder of it all?
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Old 21-02-2010, 20:59   #60
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They disappeared because they knew the end was coming so they made a spaceship and went to Mars.

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