Saturday Extra!Documentary Film Explores Growing 2012 Debate

The latest offering in the growing 2012 craze, 2012: Science or Superstition, is intelligent enough to make it worth recommending.

The documentary film, released on DVD by the Disinformation Company (Wal-Mart: The High Cost of Low Price, Outfoxed: Rupert Murdoch’s War on Journalism, Bush Family Fortunes), takes on the question of whether there is any significance to the year 2012, specifically the date December 21, which according to some scholars is the end date of the Mayan Calendar.

Does it settle the question its subtitle proposes to answer? Not really. Is it the best film on the subject to date? I don’t know, because I haven’t seen all of the others. Is it worth laying out $10 for on Absolutely. Be the first in your condo complex to see it. Better still, invite your friends over and make it a party. You’ll have an evening filled with lively discussion about a topic that does matter, in the grand scheme of things.

The filmmakers no doubt are hoping to capitalize on the 2012 hype, which will increase by galactic proportions with the release this summer of a big-budget Hollywood disaster film using 2012 as a theme. But hey, anything that injects some rational debate into the subject and entices mainstream audiences to think more deeply should win a public-service award.

The panel of experts featured in 2012 is impressive, but it could have done with fewer New Age writers. The film relies heavily on well-known author Graham Hancock, who makes a case for the end of civilization as we know it, and John Major Jenkins, a recognized pioneer in Mayan Calendar research. Jenkins comes across as bombastic and at times ridiculous. Maybe it was the editing, but I had a similar reaction several months ago when I happened upon an Internet debate between Jenkins and Carl Johan Calleman, another 2012 researcher. Actually, “debate” is giving it too much credit. It was more like two males egos in a cosmic pissing contest — hardly the kind of enlightened behavior one would expect from individuals claiming to have special knowledge about the evolution of human consciousness.

Among other things, Jenkins and Calleman disagree about the end date of the Mayan Calendar, with Jenkins promoting the Dec. 21, 2012 date and Calleman arguing for October 28, 2011. You’d hardly know, watching this film, that the exact date wasn’t carved in stone.

The film’s token scientist, Dr. Anthony Aveni of Colgate University, makes the predictable observation (of which he is very certain) that the world is not going to end in 2012. But at least he has a sense of humor.

Fortunately, the filmmakers also found Alonso Mendez, an archeo-astronomer and researcher at Palenque. Speaking with quiet conviction, Mendez makes perhaps the wisest observation of all: “The concept that this end date or completion date of the Mayan Calendar has some relevance to the world in a global sense I think is a fallacious thought, because this system is a particular system that was developed for and by Maya, for their particular ideology, for their particular place in the world. It would be a mistake to rally around a philosophy that has its place in its history and in its world and appropriate it as something that belongs to a global sense.”

From an astrology standpoint, the film uses fabulous special effects to explain the precession of the equinoxes, and for that reason alone should be in the library of every astrologer or serious astrology student. I’ve mentioned this phenomenon often in my writing about the coming Age of Aquarius, but explaining the reasons gets complicated and tiresome. With these brilliant visuals, you get it right away.

Aquarius, the sign of astrologyPat

2012: Science or Superstition
Documentary presented by The Disinformation Company
Available on DVD
Directed by Nimrod Erez
Written and produced by Gary Baddeley
78 minutes, no rating
Featuring interviews with Graham Hancock, John Major Jenkins, Anthony Aveni, John Anthony West, Walter Cruttenden, and several other writers and leading experts.
Official site