The meaning of December 21, 2012.

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Still wondering what (if anything) happened on the winter solstice last year? Was that date really the start of the “2012 consciousness shift?” Here is the most intelligent perspective I have found, from the Nov/Dec 2012 issue of The Intelligent Optimist magazine. Here is a link to the article, which I have re-printed below. STEP INTO INFINITY

Interview with Alberto Villoldo, PhD, psychologist and shaman, on why the end of the Mayan calendar on December 21, 2012, means the beginning of a new era in consciousness. By Jurriaan Kamp and Elleke Bal.
[Note: Connie and I videotaped an interview with Dr. Villoldo at the Omega Institute a while back. We will be posting that inspiring interview (and many others) in the Conscious Loving University section of this website. Stay tuned!]

Alberto Villoldo, PhD

Alberto Villoldo, PhD

When Alberto Villoldo was in the Amazon earlier this year, he found the shamans who live there in a deep state of preparation.
They believe that beyond the end date of the Mayan calendar on December 21, 2012, lies the chance for a reinvention of ­humanity. Therefore, they are fasting and praying, says Villoldo, who has spent more than 30 years in the Andes and the Amazon training with them. The shamans are preparing their brains and bodies for the coming of a new age.
There are people who speak of December 21 as the end of civilization or humanity. Villoldo stresses it’s not. “The Mayans and the indigenous people of the Americas saw this time as a tipping point,” he explains. “It is the beginning of a new cycle.” An important characteristic of this new cycle is that people will not experience a difference anymore between their inner and outer worlds. This has enormous consequences for all of us, Villoldo believes, because “in the new cycle, you can only change the world by changing your inner life.”

December 21 is the end date of a cycle of more than 5,000 years in the Meso-American Long Count calendar. This calendar was used by several cultures that lived in the Americas before Columbus; the Mayans are the best known. It is a date that people have been looking forward to with joy, fear or dread. For Villoldo, December 21 represents the advent of a new world, which he—a modern medicine man, trained in psychology and old shamanistic wisdom—doesn’t dread at all. He sees it as a time filled with opportunities. “There are predictions of hunger and plagues. But I’m still optimistic. I believe that everyone is born to make a difference,” he told The Intelligent Optimist in a 2006 interview. Villoldo was born in Cuba and studied psychology, first in Puerto Rico and then in California. As one of the youngest professors at the University of California at San Francisco, he conducted research into the relationship between the human state of mind and illness. He wasn’t satisfied by the answers he found in Western medicine, so he decided to travel to the Amazon and the Andes, where he completed 15 years of training with native shamans. In 1984, he founded The Four Winds Society, which offers a two-year program in energy medicine and personal healing. He is the author of many books, including Healing States, Shaman, Healing, Sage and most recently, Power Up Your Brain.

Why is December 21, 2012, a special date for you?
“It’s the end date of a cycle of time. The Mayans were great calendar keepers, like all the Native American peoples were. In fact, the mythology of creation of the indigenous peoples is about the division of time, whereas the Western mythology of creation is about space. The Western people believe we own space; we own the Earth; we own the land. The indigenous people own time.
“The Mayans talked about the cycle coming to closure on December 21 and the beginning of a new cycle that would have different qualities. In fact, they are opposite qualities to the current period that is coming to a close. And these are qualities that are very terrifying to some people. One of those is that there won’t be a difference anymore between the inner world and the outer world. In the old cycle, you have your inner life, and then you have to go and change the world. Well, in the new cycle, you can only change the world by changing your inner life, which we’re all terrified to do because we know the house we inhabit internally is full of ghosts and garbage.
“So, it’s a time of major cleansing. Whatever it is that inhabits your inner world is going to begin to manifest very immediately and literally in your outer world. What it means is that the world as we have known it is coming to an end, and a new world is being born. A new world that will have new technologies, new ways of doing business, new ways of people relating to each other, new forms of ­medicine, new ways of participating consciously in our evolution that did not exist in the old cycle.”

Do we find the same prophecies in other cultures as well?
“Absolutely, throughout the Americas you have this end date being pinpointed. The Hopi know it as ‘the time of turning the Earth over.’ The Inca knew it as ‘the time to step outside of linear time.’ The problem with linear time is that it’s haunted by death; it is ending. So the opportunity here is to step into infinity and timelessness. The Tibetan Bon shamans also foretold the end of this great era.”

The Mayans suddenly appeared as a highly developed civilization and disappeared as suddenly again. What happened?
“Their calendars were set by the cycles of heaven. All of these great cultures and civilizations had their own time, according to these heavenly cycles. Now we’re coming to a close of one of these heavenly cycles.The Mayans disappeared very rapidly. They appeared out of nowhere and disappeared almost overnight. There is a history throughout the Americas of civilizations vanishing into thin air. Where do they go? What happened to them? One of the legends around the end of cycles like this one is that they are ­doorways that open between the worlds, veils that become permeable. Entire civilizations of hundreds of thousands of people can seep right through them.”

Many of our crises—pollution, poverty, injustice—seem to come from a crisis of consciousness. Is December 21 a landmark in the transition to a new world?
“The Mayans and the Inca are cultures that understood the cyclical nature of life. We will reincarnate and keep coming back. Throughout these cultures you have the mythology of the returning god, like Quetzalcoatl, the great deity of the Americas. He is the god who keeps returning. He lives not in linear time but keeps looping. This is a metaphor for what we do as well; we keep returning and reincarnating, and the opportunity in incarnations like this one that we’re living is that the planets align in just a perfect way so we can take a quantum leap in human consciousness, first individually and later as a tribe or a community.”
So why did we have to go through all these crises?
“You’re asking me to look back 10,000 years from now and interpret history. We are part of a great experiment in consciousness, in how well we get along with each other, in tolerance, in compassion, in violence. What we see playing itself out now in the global arena is a clash between the old paradigm that’s dying, which is the violence-based territorial ‘My god is stronger than your god’ to the new paradigm that is beginning to express itself, which we cannot yet articulate. In this new paradigm, we grow into godhood. We take on the task of creating, dreaming the world into being, participating in creation.”
Is there a relationship between the magnetic fields of the Earth and human consciousness? If so, what would happen if a shift in these poles took place this year, as some scientists suggest?
“Yes, there are shifting geo-magnetic ­phenomena. The Earth’s magnetic spheres have been weakening. They are a quarter of their ordinary strength, making us very susceptible to solar storms, plasma storms, which are very intense this year. In 2012, the polity of the sun will shift; it will go through a pole ­reverse, which it goes through every 11 years. The earth seems to be preparing for one of these.
“If you talk to neuroscientist Bruce Lipton, you learn that the human brain is also preparing for a quantum leap. We’re establishing neuropathways, exploring neuro-architectures that allow us to perceive in ways we’ve never perceived before, that allow us to create psychosomatic health and not just psychosomatic disease, to shatter all belief structures that have crippled and hindered us and keep us repeating the genetics of our parents and the ways they lived and became ill or died.
“So we’re preparing not only planetary but also neurologically for a quantum leap. But there are a lot of mistakes made along the way in trial and error. We have to take command of the process personally or our systems will not be able to comprehend what’s happening to us.”

What are shamans from the ancient traditions of the Americas doing to prepare for December 21?
“They are fasting and praying. When you fast, you put your body and brain into detox and self-repair mode. They’re preparing their brains for new downloads to receive the codes for the new human, an evolutionary quantum leap that will be biological as well as consciousness-based. We need the biological vessel. We need the neurology to be able to support the consciousness that’s been made available to us right now. If you don’t have the neuro-networks, you’re going to bring the new possibilities down to the old perceptual filters, looking at everything in terms of fear, greed, limitation, scarcity.”

And what will they do on that date?
“The specific date is very important for us Western people. If you and I would make a lunch appointment, we would set it for next Tuesday at 12 o’clock. But if you would make an appointment with the shamans, they would probably be three hours late on the wrong day. So December 21 is the literal time. But for them, there’s a window that’s much broader. So they’ve begun their preparations already months ago, and they will continue it after 2012 so that they can firmly anchor on personal levels the download of love and compassion and power.
The thing is, we’re too busy for that here in the West. We don’t have time to fast and pray because we’re too overwhelmed with our lives right now. So we’re not going to be ready.”

What do you plan to do on December 21?
“I’ve started fasting, too, every month for three days. And every day I take time to pray. Around December 21, I’m spending time in a practice of vision quest. The traditional shamanic vision quest means fasting or drinking only fruit juices or vegetable juices, for example. I drink green juice, plenty of water and I pray. It quiets the mind. Only when you quiet the mind, when you reach a deep level of stillness, will you be able to experience a tremendous acceleration of the moment. So the vision quest is the key practice of these times.”

Are you (as) optimistic about our ability to go through this transition as we are?
“I am sure that we will go through it and that we will survive and thrive through this great time of opportunity. When Europeans discovered the world was round in the early 1500s, there were many peasants and farmers that still believed the world was flat, and it didn’t make a difference. But today, if you do not embrace the new cosmology, you will not thrive. Our information systems can make you dated in a matter of months, whereas 500 years ago it took a century for your beliefs to become dated. So yes, I’m very optimistic. I’m being enzymatic, contributing in any way I can to this great shift.” Alberto Villoldo, PhD

Posted by Andrew Cameron Bailey
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