Guest Articles by Will Hart
About the Author
Will Hart is a freelance journalist, book author, nature photographer and
documentary filmmaker. He has been
investigating ancient mysteries and evidence of extraterrestrial
intervention on Earth since 1969. He lives in Arizona.
All articles on this page are
© 2004-2007 by Will Hart.
Reprinted with permission.
Is the 2012 Alignment Theory Correct?
Cosmogenesis in the Age of Aquarius
by Will Hart
Author John Major Jenkins has written a number of books, and articles, about
the Maya calendar system including, Tzolkin: Visionary Perspectives and
Calendar Studies which reconstructed the Mayan Venus Calendar and the more
recent Maya Cosmogenesis: The True Meaning of the Maya Long Count Calendar.
The latter is a heavy claim indeed and it is time to examine it in some depth.
In addition to being an independent researcher, author Jenkins has become
somewhat of a self-styled expert in the field. His ideas and theories are known
widely and taken seriously because he asserts that even though he is not a Maya
scholar with academic credentials, he uses a scholarly approach. That is fine
with this author I am just stating the facts and not passing judgement on those
issues. He has summed up his primary 2012 thesis in a straightforward paragraph:
"The early Maya astronomers who created the Long Count calendar
some 2,100 years ago intended the end of the 13- baktun cycle of the Long
Count (December 21, 2012) to target the alignment of the December solstice sun
with the plane of our Milky Way galaxy.”
His simple statement conceals several controversial assumptions and a very
questionable conclusion. Maya scholars do not generally accept his proposal that
the Long Count was configured 2,100 years ago. The consensus ascribes the date
of August 14, 3114 since the Long Count represents a Sun cycle, a period of
On the other end his end date, December 21, 2012, agrees with the consensus
and that is our central focus. Our main problem is with his conclusion, which
categorically asserts that the Long Count targets the alignment of the December
solstice sun with the plane of our galaxy and that is its purpose. Does the
evidence really point to this deduction? That is the Jenkins core idea and this
author questions it. I will argue we must all question it since the Maya
calendar and cultural record points to very different ideas and to very
different events at the end of the cycle (2012), including a forecast of
increasing natural disasters.
Author Jenkins appears to avoid these issues in his writings, lectures and
when defending his alignment theory against critics. Yet the Maya clearly stated
that the 2012 end date involved two phenomena, i.e., a solar shift, Venus
transit and mounting earthquakes, which appear to have largely escaped Jenkins.
This is curious because he claims to use due diligence in all his research
efforts and to be able to back up his theories with incontrovertible evidence.
He has intimated on many occasions that he has found his material in ancient
Maya literature. In short, he claims to be an authority on the subject.
In fact, this author does not dispute the 2012 end date, the problem he has
with Jenkins theory is that his model appears to leave much important data as
well as central features of the calendar system out of the equation. It is well
known that the cycles of Venus were a key component of the calendar. In fact,
the Maya stated that the Long Count was begun with a ‘birth of Venus’. The Venus
Round, a 104-year period was based upon the convergence of the Sacred 260-day
cycle, the solar 365-day cycle, and the 584-day synodic periods of Venus.
The 104-year Round was obtained from the mathematical fact that 37,960 days
is the smallest number divisible by 260, 365 and 594. However, in spite of these
facts Jenkins makes very little out of the cycles of Venus, which the ancients
exalted to center stage. He does mention the synodic periods but then inserts
the galactic alignment as the centerpiece and the reason the Long Count was
The author has not found any reference in his writings to the fact that the
transit of Venus occurs in 2012 and it should at least rival any alignment in
importance. That is a fact and it certainly supports the generally accepted
chronology. Even scholars have failed to link the transit cycle to the calendar
system apparently because they do not believe that the ancients knew of the
We must then ask was it just a coincidence that the 2012 end date
synchronized with the Venus transit cycle? Claiming this amazing convergence is
a coincidence would constitute a very long stretch in light of the fact that the
Maya placed such great importance upon the planet.
Even if we accept the theory that 2012 will be the point in time when a
cosmic alignment occurs, as Jenkins proposes, we must still question whether
that was the principal astronomical cycle that the calendar was set to? We have
very good reasons to suspect that it was not; and they have to do with another
fact, the Maya used the Long Count calendar to track the cycle of the 4th Sun.
The entire Great Round, a sequence of ages each spanning about 5125 years,
which John claims is coincident with and proves they knew of the precession
cycle, still involves Solar Ages during which succeeding suns are born and die.
But Jenkins appears to downplay these solar transformations (the Maya did not)
while exalting his alignment theory above all else.
How does Jenkins construe the focus was on an alignment when the Maya clearly
referred to a Solar Age -- in which the cycles of Venus played a central role --
to be the purpose of the calendar?
John must address these issues because his alignment theory is now much more
widely known than is the actual Maya model. The second part of his book’s title
(“The True Meaning of the Maya Long Count”) flatly states that his is the FINAL
ANSWER, an assertion one should always be wary of. His theory is one
interpretation of a small part of the data, while excluding the most important
predictive and actual components of the calendar. In the process of arguing that
the alignment was the main purpose of the calendar and is what 2012 is all
about, Jenkins has apparently painted himself into a corner in several respects.
In his zeal to prove his case he downplays the importance of the Solar and
Venus transit cycles and the fact that the Maya indicated these were their
principal celestial concerns. Every facet of the calendar system relates to the
following numbers 13, 26, 52, 91, 104, 364, 891 and 1508. The author has shown
in other papers that these numbers are part of a series and all are closely
The calendar was based upon “synthetic numbers” that had 13 as the seed
number, which were used to carefully measure and track the solar year, the
synodic periods of Venus, Mars, and Mercury as well as to tabulate much longer
cycles. Nonetheless, the prime cycles were the sacred/solar year, synodic
periods, and realigning these with Venus was the real focus of the 104-year
As shown above there is simply no denying that fact that the central idea of
the Long Count that the Maya had conceived, was that the sun went through cycles
roughly, every 5,200 years. One Sun would end; a new one would emerge. The
author has come to take this literally, by that he means that the Maya observed
that solar output oscillates over prolonged cycles. That is the core thesis of
the Long Count and Great Cycle Round (26,000 years). The only other factor that
we know was embedded into the calendar, which was considered of critical
importance was the synodic periods and transits of Venus.
Author Jenkins makes the case that it is legitimate to extrapolate from the
Maya literature that the Long Count calendar (2012) was focused upon a galactic
alignment. He has argued his case and defended his theory quite passionately
whenever critics have questioned the data and the deductive methods he uses to
reach his conclusions.
Let me add here that John Major Jenkins has taken every opportunity to
review, critique and disassemble the theories of other writers including Jose
Arguelles, Carl Johan Callehan, Maurice Cottrell & Adrian Gilbert, etc. At the
same time, he has always mounted a vigorous defense of his theory. You can
search the Internet and find his reviews and exchanges for example with Dr.
Strous an astronomer and Callehan, both of whom tried to debunk his alignment
With those facts noted, the author will add that J.M. and I have exchanged
emails regarding his ideas at which time I raised the above questions and
issues. He essentially dodged them and made what this author considers some
strange comments in the process. There simply is no getting around the fact that
the Long Count keeps track of a time-span that involves millennia. That span was
known as a Sun and during that time the Maya believed ‘old sol’ changed,
actually one sun died and another emerged. Hence they conceived that there had
been 3 previous solar ages leading up to the 4th Sun.
Jenkins cannot deny that the central focus was upon the sun since he uses the
structure of the 5 solar cycles of roughly 5,125 as the basis for his precession
argument. But then he shifts the central focus away from the Sun and introduces
his cosmic alignment theory in its place. In the process, Venus slips out of the
picture as does the Maya prediction that this age, like the previous Suns, would
end in a series of disasters.
Now we are to the crux of the issue. Is his claim that the galactic alignment
theory represents “The True Meaning of the Long Count Calendar” accurate? My
response is a flat no, which does not mean I reject it out of hand. What I
reject is the notion, which John is continually reinforcing, that the Maya
created the calendar to signify the alignment, that is a gross exaggeration.
They would not have referred to the ages as Suns if that were the case.
Neglecting the importance of their actual predictions regarding the sun,
earthquakes, and the transit of Venus does not reflect well upon Jenkins theory or deductive
methods. At this point, since I have offered him several chances to study my
findings and add the above material to his data, I feel compelled to challenge
John either acknowledge that you are aware that the actual Maya Long Count
calendar was configured to track the course of a Solar Age(s), which included a
focus upon the transit of Venus cycle or deny that this true. In addition,
publicly debate the issues I have raised in several articles that were published
in Atlantis Rising in 2004 that showed: 1) that the Maya predictions of rising
earthquakes have been confirmed. 2) The 2004-2012 transits of Venus cannot be
ignored as a central factor.
There is no justification for raising the galactic alignment above the Solar
cycle, transit of Venus and the natural disasters that accompany them.
From my perspective John M. Jenkins has excluded and/or downplayed the real
heart of the Long Count calendar in favor of a vision that resonates with the
Age of Aquarius, which was touted in the 1960s. He has recycled ideas that came
out of western astrology traditions and mixed them together with Maya cosmology
and calendrics. The Aquarian Age was supposed to be just around the corner and
it promised a complete, painless spiritual transformation, an upgrade of human
consciousness based upon planetary alignments.
We are still waiting; in the meantime massive earthquakes, volcanoes and
social changes are sweeping the globe…
Final Note: To save pointless digressions into minutiae or attempts to
deflect the focus away from the key issues, I want to make it clear that I am
denigrating John Major Jenkins contribution to our understanding of the Maya
culture or calendar. I am also not insinuating that he never mentions Venus or
the actual core concepts of the Long Count and Great Cycle. I am saying that he
exalts his theory -- and it is an interpretation and not the final solution he
claims -- above the established central concepts, the Sun cycle, the transit of
Venus, and natural disasters that end the age.
The public needs to be informed about the whole prophecy and not a carefully
edited theory that is being presented as the true prophecy. You can go to my web
site and freely access the articles that appeared in Atlantis Rising at
© 2005 by Will Hart