Minister of Tourism, Civil Aviation and Culture, Hon. Manuel Heredia gave the welcome address and invited everyone to enjoy the night's festivities. Minister Heredia's keynote was that Belize is the Heartland of the Maya.
http://belizemaya2012.com. The website is very informative so feel free to take a look.
Before the lecture began the attendees were treated to mouth watering Maya dishes including, corn panades, tamales, chicken cooked in 'col' which is a richly spiced tomato and corn based sauce, and dukunu as well as a delicious array of fresh vegetables and tropical fruits. The Otaxa Deer Dancers took to the stage entertaining the audience as they flowed into the Center for Performing Arts Auditorium for the lecture by Dr. Mark Van Stone.
“2012: Science and Prophecy of the Ancient Maya” inspired by Maya inscriptions, astronomical knowledge, math, and myth, and “Reading the Maya Glyphs”. Responding to the recent upsurge in interest in “the Maya prophecies”, Prof. Mark Van Stone has spent the last several years researching what the Ancient Maya actually said about 2012.
Dr. Van Stone made sure to mention that nowhere in the history of the Maya is a doomsday prophecy emphasized, but they did, in fact, mention of a renewal period and a change in the Maya Calendar from a short period calendar to a long period calendar. There is also evidence from the the Maya history found on stellaes, that life and history actually continue to 4772 A.D. as can be seen below in the photo. He believes that the Sosltices were not as important to the Maya as we believe they were. He also made mention that with only 1% of the Maya civilization being unearthed that there is not much data and still so much more that we need to learn about the mystical and ancient civilization of the Maya. Dr. Mark Van Stone said that whatever data have been unearthed are contradictory since the Maya did not believe in correcting errors. The Maya did not change errors because they saw it as a sign from the gods that it was meant to be so. Maya scholars also disagree on the information that has been found and their interpretations.
The Maya 2012 Calender of events is shown below:
One of the very special events taking place this year on the calender is a very new and unique concept in Belize. The date 12-12-12 offers a great opportunity for 36 lucky couples, who are interested in being a part of the mysticism of the Maya, to get married or renew their vows on the ancient Maya Ruin of Cahal Pech in the Cayo District of Belize. This once in a lifetime event is being spearheaded by Lara Goldman of Romantic Travel Belize. For more information visit 2012 Maya Weddings.