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Birth, Death and Renewal

Published: February 6, 2012, Author: Rÿser Rudolph C.

Hysteria rising from the dooms-day theologies grips large pieces of the world’s human population as they attempt to use the Mayan end-of-cycle date of December 21, 2012 (Winter Solstice) as a confirmation of their “end of the world” fears. In a strange way, this failure to truly understand the Mayan system of knowledge while imposing a Euro-Eastern Mediterranean bias on the civilizations of the western hemisphere reflects the centuries long failure to close the knowledge gap between the peoples separated by the Atlantic Ocean.

Quechua, Maya, Mixitec, Purépeche, Tarahamara, Apache, Lakota, Cree, Anishinabe and Onondaga are among peoples throughout the hemisphere that share a common system of thought based in the basic concepts of “birth, death and renewal.” The underlying framework for this triad is the recognition that existence is multi-dimensional…not merely three dimensional. Some cultures recognize seven dimensions, others recognize thirteen and still others know of four dimensional realities.  Cause and effect certainly exist as part of the paring of material things: up and down, male and female, good and evil. But, the knowledge systems of the western hemisphere (and indigenous peoples around the world) would point out that even in the material world what appear to be opposites actually include elements of nuance–as some would say the seen and the unseen. The multi-dimensional way of thinking reflected in the Mayan analysis of time, change and the material world notes that the complexities surrounding us all can be explained with the triad, “birth, death and renewal.”

The galactic change we will mark on the coming Winter Solstice is an important event, not for the fearsome claims of “distruction” and the end of the world as a material end, but as time of personal and collective transformation and renewal as we, and all other life enter the beginning of a new Grand Cycle.  Caring for our environment knowing that we are part of that environment and not separate from the environment is an essential concept the Mayan system of knowledge reminds us. We have all a duty to ourselves to recognize the simple truth that the conceptual triad is a time of celebration.

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