NASA scientist: No Doomsday in 2012

Oct 20, 2009
The Mayan calendar, which ends in 2012, was based on astronomical cycles.

According to NASA scientist David Morrison, the widespread Internet rumor that the world will end in 2012 due to some astronomical event is a hoax. Dr. Morrison attributes the hype to 'cosmophobia' fueled by fake science websites and people trying to cash in on public lack of knowledge.

The widespread Internet belief that Dec. 21, 2012, will be doomsday for planet Earth because some astronomical event will destroy or decimate our planet is a complete hoax, according to scientist David Morrison. His concise summary of the claims and the scientific response is being published by the Astronomical Society of the Pacific as a public service at: http://www.astrosociety.org/2012

For several months, NASA and many astronomers have received increasingly worried letters and e-mails from members of the public about the possibility, widely touted on the Internet, that the world will end in 2012. Many mechanisms for doomsday are being proposed, including a collision with a fictional planet called Nibiru, deadly activity on the surface of the sun that lashes out at Earth, alignments with the center of our galaxy, etc. David Morrison has coined the term “cosmophobia” -- fear of the cosmos -- for these concerns, and has seen a huge increase in the phenomenon this year.

Dr. Morrison, a world-renowned expert on the solar system (and asteroid impacts), also serves as the public scientist for NASA’s “Ask an Astrobiologist” service, where he answers questions for the public. He has received so many questions about 2012 and the end of the world, that he felt he had to investigate and set the record straight.

One of his most interesting findings is that the distributors of the science fiction motion picture “2012”, to be released this November, are purposely feeding the flames of the Internet panic (in what is called a viral marketing campaign) by creating fake science websites and encouraging people to search for “2012” on the Web. Most of the sites such searches encounter are full of nonsense and misunderstanding, often by people who have written books on coming disaster that they are trying to sell.

Morrison’s article is in the form of questions and answers, and is followed by a resource guide that allows readers to find even more scientific information about why no 2012 disaster is in the cards. There are many reasons to worry about the future of planet Earth, of course, but absolutely no reason to single out the winter solstice of 2012 as a special time to be concerned.

More information: For an annotated guide of resources for responding to claims of astronomical pseudo-science, from astrology to crop circles, and ancient astronauts to moon-landing denial, see: www.astrosociety.org/education… urces/pseudobib.html

Provided by Astronomical Society of the Pacific

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User comments : 21

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diva4d
Oct 20, 2009
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funnyalien
Oct 20, 2009
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prabhu21
Oct 20, 2009
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Velanarris
4 / 5 (8) Oct 20, 2009
This is obviously just a further conspiracy from NASA and the powers that be, to keep the general population calm while the elite are preparing to evacuate earth en masse.

You do understand that the Mayan calendar doesn't have an "end", right? When you finish off Baktun 13.13.13.13 you go to 14.1.1.1, or 1.1.1.1 since the calendar is a circle.
soulphysics
3.7 / 5 (6) Oct 20, 2009
Quality control: that image is of the Aztec calendar, not the Mayan calendar. The systems are related, but they look very different.

Also: Nasa scholars aren't the only people to dissent. Mayan scholars also agree there is little evidence that the Mayan long-calendar cycle will be completed in 2012. The 2012 prediction is based on the hypothesis that the long-calendar began in 3114 BC, which is a highly contentious claim.
Velanarris
4.3 / 5 (6) Oct 20, 2009
The 2012 prediction is based on the hypothesis that the long-calendar began in 3114 BC, which is a highly contentious claim.
Not really.

There are defined dates which the Maya recorded. One need only establish exact dates, or close enough proxies to when the events happened and recursively count backwards. The prior claims of 2010, 2036, and 2045 have all been struck out and 2012 is one of the most accurate. It's not so highly contentious, but, even those that agree with 2012 think the calendar just ticks over to "start" again.
LariAnn
Oct 20, 2009
This comment has been removed by a moderator.
mklnk
4 / 5 (4) Oct 20, 2009
I've also read about mayan prophecies pertaining to events happening very long after backtun 13.13.13.13. Not that I believe in prophecies or the prophetic nature of this calendar.
Birthmark
4.3 / 5 (3) Oct 20, 2009
People and their odd myths...I can't wait until January 1st, 2013.
Velanarris
4.3 / 5 (6) Oct 20, 2009
People and their odd myths...I can't wait until January 1st, 2013.

Hopefully, it'll be as grand a party as Y2k was.
Simonsez
3.8 / 5 (5) Oct 20, 2009
What makes anyone believe that the Mayan calendar would ever match up so beautifully with the flawed Gregorian calendar? 12/12/12, really? That is a hype number, like 6/6/06 and 9/9/09.

Further, we have yet to firmly establish (and for scholars to agree upon) a singular event upon whose date both the Mayan and Gregorian calendars agree.
Doug_Huffman
Oct 20, 2009
This comment has been removed by a moderator.
Velanarris
4 / 5 (4) Oct 20, 2009
What makes anyone believe that the Mayan calendar would ever match up so beautifully with the flawed Gregorian calendar? 12/12/12, really? That is a hype number, like 6/6/06 and 9/9/09.

Further, we have yet to firmly establish (and for scholars to agree upon) a singular event upon whose date both the Mayan and Gregorian calendars agree.

It's not 12/12/12 and we have matching dates for events as far back as we have mayan texts. Their calendar is actually more precise and accurate than the calendar you and I use today. The Maya also never said the world would end. Just the age.
otto1923
4.7 / 5 (3) Oct 20, 2009
NASA- aw, what do they know? The US is supposed to collapse next year says some Russian. Just getting a jump on the inevitable I suppose.
otto1923
2.3 / 5 (3) Oct 20, 2009
Danie
2 / 5 (8) Oct 20, 2009
The Maya also never said the world would end. Just the age.


True. It is easy to misinterpret the end of a age with the end of world. People love hypes and doomsday theories as it keeps those certain minded people entertained.

Only He knows the time of His second coming. Even then it is disputable whether the earth will perish or if it will only be another dawn of an enlightened age.
plasticpower
5 / 5 (4) Oct 20, 2009
I have a religious friend who believes in this nonsense. I bet him $3000 that nothing will happen. So I will have a very nice Christmas present waiting for me in 2013!
paulthebassguy
2.6 / 5 (5) Oct 20, 2009
Is there a theory about the LHC? Perhaps there will be another setback when it resumes later this year, and that they won't actually collide the particles until 2012, and then when they do the proposed black hole will appear and destroy the earth.

Haha.
Sean_W
3.3 / 5 (3) Oct 20, 2009
While some of this is hype for the movie, the bs well predates the film so it shouldn't be called a hoax anymore than any other crap theory is a hoax. Confusing the terms makes it easier for believers to dismiss criticism out of hand.
axemaster
Oct 20, 2009
This comment has been removed by a moderator.
otto1923
3 / 5 (4) Oct 20, 2009
@assmaster
Who exactly are you referring to sir? Morrison, people at NASA in general, internet people, ? As to hoax I would say its more a set of related theories involving conjunctions, galactic plane crossing, comets, asteroids, rogue planets, lizard people, historical events and predictions, pending geological events, lizard people, etc; some more lucid than others. many books and articles on the subject-
NeuroPulse
5 / 5 (3) Oct 21, 2009
What do you expect to here from someone who works for the government. He is obviously part of the coverup.

Find out the truth from the foremost authority on 2012, Charlie Frost.

http://www.youtub...P3ytogCU
bernino
5 / 5 (2) Oct 21, 2009
Does anyone know if any professional bookmaker takes bets on 2012?
poi
3.7 / 5 (3) Oct 21, 2009
@simonsez
What makes anyone believe that the Mayan calendar would ever match up so beautifully with the flawed Gregorian calendar? 12/12/12, really? That is a hype number, like 6/6/06 and 9/9/09.


uhm...

actually it's 12/ 21 /12. so please revise, unless it doesn't matter as most of these don't.
wiki says it's a cause for celebration whenever it completes the cycle.
Fionn_MacTool
Oct 21, 2009
This comment has been removed by a moderator.
sillyhumans
3 / 5 (2) Oct 21, 2009
It is nice for mr. Morrison to provide so many answers. Perhaps he can explain why so many former NASA Astronauts are claiming that there are structures on our Moon, Mars, and Phobos. You see, sometimes the deception is so great, even the so called most intelligent cannot see beyond it...or they are told to support the deception. 2012 aside, A LOT is still unaccounted for.
fixer
5 / 5 (3) Oct 25, 2009
Perhaps the Mayans expected to be extinct by 2012?
I guess they got that bit right.
Magus
not rated yet Oct 25, 2009
Don't know much about the calendar. Is it a count up or a count down? Not that is matters, just wanted to know.

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