This story was originally posted to the Colgate University news site by Tim O’Keeffe.
Whew. It’s not the end of the world after all.
If you delayed gift shopping because you thought it would be a waste of time, if you called in sick all week to knock off some items on your bucket list, if you are wishing the world would end today because you celebrated too hard at an End of the World party last night, well, you should have been following what Colgate Professor Anthony Aveni has been saying all along: The Mayans never actually said the world would end on Dec. 21. It’s just the end of their calendar and the beginning of a new one.
While it’s made for entertaining chatter on the web, generated some buzz for a bad movie (John Cusack’s 2012), and filled a lot of TV time, we’re still here. Just like Aveni said.
Aveni, an authority on the astronomical history of the Mayan Indians, appears in dozens of news stories about the supposed end of the world.
“Bottom line: There is nothing in the Maya written record either on monumental inscription or in books that says anything about the end of the world,” said Aveni told the St. Louis Post-Dispatch, adding “no self-respecting scientist” could say with any certainty that such a prediction is based in fact.
Aveni has written more than two dozen books, including The End of Time: The Maya Mystery of 2012, earned grants from the National Science Foundation, been named a CASE National Professor of the Year, and served with Stephen Hawking as a Youtube/Lenovo Space Lab Competition judge.
Earlier this year, Colgate awarded him the third annual Balmuth Teaching Award in recognition of his legendary skills as an educator.
Here are just some of the news outlets where Aveni has appeared in the past few weeks.