2012: The Return of Quetzalcoatl is the acclaimed metaphysical epic that binds together the cosmological phenomena of our time, ranging from crop circles to quantum theory to the resurgence of psychedelic drugs, to support the contention of the Mayan calendar that the year 2012 portends a global shift—in consciousness, culture, and way of living—of unprecedented consequence.
The Classical Maya developed a highly sophisticated civilization in the Yucatan and Guatemala that vanished 1,000 years ago. They were extraordinary architects and astronomers, and developed methods of timekeeping that are far more precise than our Western calendar system. Although we destroyed most of their scrolls, our archaeologists have discovered that the Maya looked toward the year 2012—specifically the date December 21, 2012—as the end of a “Great Cycle” of 5,125 years on their Long Count calendar. According to the Mayan creation myth, the Popol Vuh, such cycles end with the destruction of the old way of life and the inception of a new world. Many scholars agree that the Classic Maya pointed to this time, around the year 2012, as the juncture between one world age and the next.
We are currently in the throes of an ecological crisis, brought about by human activity, which threatens us with disaster if we do not immediately change our ways. Basic resources such as fuel, water, and food are becoming scarce around the world. Many scientists have predicted cataclysm due to climate change and pollution that could lead to the extinction of the human species in a short span of time. On the other hand, we are also experiencing a massive leap in human consciousness. Our world is now meshed together through communications technology and social networks that act as a “global brain.” We can transmit new ideas and transformative practices instantly across the world.
In 2012: The Return of Quetzalcoatl, I proposed that what happens in “2012” depends on what humanity decides to make of it. We might see global famines and wars and increasing misery, or we might decide to institute a new planetary culture based on empathy, alternative economic systems, sustainable design, and an equitable sharing of wealth. According to the prophecies held by the Maya and other indigenous cultures, we may integrate modern scientific knowledge with Eastern spiritual wisdom and indigenous shamanism, leading to a new understanding of the physical and psychic cosmos. Rather than “doomsday,” 2012 could be a time of positive transformation and the opening to a new way of life.
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“A daring and intriguing, sometimes deeply disturbing, very well researched and extremely readable book that puts an entirely new slant on 2012. From quantum physics to aliens, from crop circles to reincarnation, from shamanic hallucinogens to Rudolf Steiner, from the Amazon jungle to Stonehenge, from fragments of jaundiced autobiography to the ending of worlds, Pinchbeck takes us on a mind-bending, paradigm-rattling ride.”
Graham Hancock, bestselling author of Fingerprints of the Gods