September 2009
Summary: Neal deGrasse Tyson on 2012; Wikipedia entry; "Cycles of Danger" in Atlantis Rising magazine

1.Neal deGrasse Tyson

A well known and liked TV personality, Neal deGrasse Tyson, chimed in on the 2012 discussion. Unfortunately, he indulged in the classic misrepresentation of the galactic alignment phenomenon, much like astronomers I had exchanges with five and eight years ago. I guess it doesn't really matter how many times I address the same misconceptions; they will continue to arise as the latest round of "experts" stumble into the 2012 arena and neglect to Google "galactic alignment" or read my book Galactic Alignment before asserting their views about it.

Tyson bio:

Here is the piece in which Tyson gets it wrong:

It's odd that many people will say something like "there is no alignment in 2012" and then qualify that by saying the alignment happens every year on the solstice for many years around 2012. So, the initial headline they present is misleading. It is more accurate to start by saying that the alignment is in effect in 2012, given the 1/2-degree width of the sun. The point is much overlabored as some kind of deal breaker for 2012 having any meaning at all. We should be asking "what were the ancient Maya skywatchers looking at?"


2. Wikipedia "2012 phenomenon" entry

I'm currently working out my reponse to this relatively recent entry on Wikipedia that a friend recently called my attention to.


3. William Hamilton, "Cycles of Danger" article from Atlantis Rising magazine. Anthologized in Forbidden Religion (2008).

A piece by William Hamilton III called "Cycles of Danger" appeared a few years back in the pages of Atlantis Rising magazine. It was one of the first of a now legion number of articles and treatments that confuse the precession-based galactic alignment with the orbit of our solar system around the galactic center in a sinusoidal motion above and below the galactic mid-plane. Hamilton's article even cited a website (by Marling) that accurately summarized my work on the galactic alignment, but then explained it incorrectly. I sent a letter to the editor at Atlantis Rising as follows:

In William Hamilton III's article "The Cycles of Danger," readers need to know that he is speaking about the orbit of our solar system around our Milky Way's Galactic Center. This orbit is, as he specifies, on the order of hundreds of millions of years. However, Hamilton introduces his idea with a quote from a website by Roderick Marling, which draws heavily from my books on the original Maya teachings about 2012. Marling nicely paraphrased and summarized my work on 2012, stating correctly that the solstice sun aligns with the galactic equator in 2012, and this occurs only once every precessional cycle (roughly 26,000 years). Two diagrams on Marling's website were taken from my 1998 book Maya Cosmogenesis 2012 and illustrate how precession, over thousands of years, has been causing the December solstice sun to slowly shift into alignment with the "nuclear bulge" of our Milky Way (the Galactic Center). Hamilton shares interesting findings regarding our solar system's sinusoidal wave orbit, moving above and below the plane of our galaxy, over many millions of years. But it needs to be stated emphatically that this orbital process is not to be confused with the alignment process that the Maya intended their cycle ending date (December 21, 2012) to target. Finally, there was a typo in Marling's website: it should be Accurate information on the galactic alignment of 2012, including essays going back to 1994, FAQs, and the distinction between precessional shifting and orbital period can be found on my website:

John Major Jenkins

A truncated version of my corrective letter did appear in a subsequent issue of Atlantis Rising. In 2008, Atlantis Rising editor Doug Kenyon anthologized another round of articles from his magazine in a third book of a series, this one called Forbidden Religion. I noticed it just recently and found Hamilton's article in it. They had corrected the typo in the web link, but allowed the confabulatory misconstruing of the galactic alignment to stand. Of course, my letter to the editor was not included. This is a good example of how disinformation has an insistent integrity of its own, especially in the hands of the careless and clueless.