Gerald Benedict’s Mayan Prophecies is the latest in a long list of modern takes on ancient prophecies. The current climate we live in is full of fear-mongers and paranoids who claim that the world is coming to an end, either through global warming (man made or not), war, terrorism, disease, poverty, nukes, zombies, natural disasters, Giant Wasps, aliens, NWO, Jeremy Beadle’s ghost, the return of Christ, etc etc. A perfect time then to release a book of ‘eerily accurate’ prophecies which all point to the world going through a potentially catastophic change in 2012. The book does point out that, according to the prophecies the change will more likely be for the good of humanity (psychic powers..)but that it won’t be without great stress and trouble.
Benedict gives a long, though mostly interesting introduction of Mayan culture- incredibly talented star gazers, builders, and mathmaticians, and explains a little about their society- how their every day life and yearly routines were decided by prophecies guided by the movement of stars. Eventually he gets to the prophecies themselves, a few early ones to show how supposedly accurate they could be- predicting the fall of their own civilisation, and the eventual rise of others. Soon we read about the predictions for 2012- The Winter Solstice when….something may happen. The return of a God, or the embodiment of Godly wisdom in each of us starting with this date. The problem of course with prophecies is that anyone can make them at any time, and anyone can interpret them any way they please. The prophecies of a wise man or people are only marginally more acceptable than those of a drunk on the street at night.
This should not suggest though that the book isn’t a good read. For those, including myself, with an interest in ancient cultures, the supernatural, or anything remotely apocalyptic, this is interesting and accessible. You don’t need to know too much about the Mayans to understand it, and it is written in a simple fashion. Some of you may even find affinity with some of the prophecies and change your life. Taking the book another way, it can simply be read as another warning that we are hurting the planet and ourselves with our ignorance, passivity, and hatred, and that a few simple changes to our own lifestyle and thoughts could go a long way to making the world a better place. Lovely.
It is a well known fact that some idiots believe the world will end on 21st Dec 2012. This is due to an age old series of prophecies written by the Mayans of South America. Now, they were a crazy bunch alright, crazy smart. Better mathmeticians than Carol Vorderman, better space staring guys that Patrick Moore, smarter physicists than Stephen Hawkwing. They understood the galaxy and time, dates, calendars. They knew which day certain galactic events like eclipses etc would take place, hundreds of years before we could work it out. They built massive buildings and pyramids dedicated to such practices- buildings which on a certain hour of a certain day, in a certain year sunlight would penetrate and create wonderful shadows and pictures. Naturally with all these skills it is believed they could predict future events. As we live in a time of fear and nonsense one out of every one fools believes that the world is going to end one way or another, and probably soon. The Mayans say 2012, and some say every prediction they have made has come true. Of course the predictions themselves are as follows: ‘When the smiling Devil Bird has turned 58 thousand times the grass will eat the land, and the Jaguar will have a corn bride’. Naturally this can be translated as the rise of Hitler. I have been to various temple and have spoken to many Mayan who now practice Christianity and laugh at such claims. The only prediction they made to me was that I would give them 5 dollars for a fertility statue. They were wrong. I have recently been making a few generous predictions of my own which I am confident will come true. Read into them what you may: Somewhere, some time on the 14th February 2014, there will be an episode of The Simpsons shown on TV; Madonna will be dead 150 years from now; When the Spac Twins reach four figure viewings on Youtube there will be a great cheer of despair; this film will make more than 137 Dollars at the Box Office on November 15 2009. Of course such fairytales make for great films- and by great I mean balls.
Roland ‘The Rat’ Iamrich has taken another end of the world scenario and turned it into a special graphics laden affair- their will be giant CG tidal waves, giant CG explodings, various famous world landmarks will be destroyed, and at some point the fat, nerdy one will make a quip which no-one will find amusing. About 3 hours into the movie the hero, his girlfriend, and his father/son will realize that they can save the world and restore all this ungodly destruction in a matter of hours by some simple natural/scientific solution that had previously slipped their minds. All will be well. I wait for the day when someone makes a film about the moon smashing into the earth- and is simply 127 minutes of explosions, people screaming and dying, and The Moon encroaching on everyone’s personal space. It will surely be the greatest film of all time- by which I mean balls.
Best Scene: I predict the best scene will be when a CG animal (Tiger/Wolf/Polar Bear/Rhino/Hippy) which has mysteriously blown across several continents to America chases our heroes until it eventually gets crushed by rock.
PS: This review was originally written in June 2009
As a fan of the more extreme side of cinema, I ask you to join me, as I explore the history of Cinema's most extreme movies with all the sex, violence and symbolism intact. I'm here to reflect on the extreme movies that have come and gone to see what they mean, see what makes them so extreme, and of course, see if they're any good.