DOOMSDAY hour came and went - and it appears it isn’t the end of the world.
According to legend, the ancient Mayans’ long-count calendar ended at midnight, ushering in the end of the world. It didn’t happen.
“This is not the end of the world. This is the beginning of the new world,” Star Johnsen-Moser, an American seer, said at a gathering of hundreds of spiritualists at a convention centre in Mexico’s Yucatan city of Merida, an hour and a half from the Mayan ruins at Chichen Itza.
“It is most important that we hold a positive, beautiful reality for ourselves and our planet. ... Fear is out of place.”
As the appointed time came and went in several parts of the world, there was no sign of the apocalypse.
Indeed, the social network Imgur posted photos of clocks turning midnight in the Asia-Pacific region with messages such as: “The world has not ended. Sincerely, New Zealand.”
In Merida, the celebration of the cosmic dawn opened inauspiciously, with a fumbling of the sacred fire meant to honour the calendar’s conclusion.
Gabriel Lemus, the white-haired guardian of the flame, burned his finger on the kindling and later had to scoop up a burning log that fell from the ceremonial brazier on to the stage.
Still, he was convinced that it was a good start, as he was joined by about 1,000 other shamans, seers, stargazers, crystal enthusiasts, yogis, sufis and swamis.
“It is a cosmic dawn,” he declared. “We will recover the ability to communicate telepathically and levitate objects ... like our ancestors did.”
Celebrants later held their arms in the air in a salute to the morning sun.
“The galactic bridge has been established,” intoned spiritual leader Alberto Arribalzaga. “At this moment, spirals of light are entering the centre of your head ... generating powerful vortexes that cover the planet.”
Despite all the ritual and banter, few actually believed the world would end today - the summit was scheduled to run until Sunday. Instead, participants said they were here to celebrate the birth of a new age.