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The Mayan Apocalypse is here and the world did not end

Panicked citizens of planet Earth, a Maya expert comes clean on the Apocalypse. It’s nothing more than a modern day excuse for a human freak-out.

By Charyn Pfeuffer - MSN Living Editor Dec 21, 2012 7:25PM

Some people prepped for the End of the World with lavish parties, while others opted to max out their credit cards, call NASA or join an apocalyptic cult. While some Doomsday preppers went to extreme lengths to plan for this so-called end of the world prediction, Maya expert David Stewart projects that the Mayan calendar has at least 2,400 years to go.

Photo; PBNJ Productions/Getty ImagesMore from Living: 20 Pinterest crafting 'fails'

"The Maya never, ever, said anything about the world ending at any time — much less this year," Stuart, a professor at the University of Texas at Austin was quoted on NPR’s Morning Edition. "So, it's sort of bizarre to be living through this time right now, when so many people seem to be worked up."

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In an international poll of more than 16,000 people, Reuters found that 1 in 10 respondents worried that the Mayan calendar could signal the end of the world. The poll, which was taken in May, also found that 15 percent of those responding said they "believe the world will end during their lifetime," Reuters reported.

So, what’s all the fuss about? Stewart explains in the NPR interview that Dec. 21, 2012 marks "an important cycle of the Maya calendar which is turning over called a baktun."

Bing: Learn more about the Mayan calendar.

Each baktun represents 144,000 days — or nearly 400 years. The 13th (and, some say, final, reports NPR) baktun of the Mayan calendar was slated to come to an end on the solstice marked on Dec. 21, 2012.

"I think in our culture, too, or maybe globally – humans like to come up with excuses, sometimes, just to freak out," Stewart was quoted. "I think the Maya have become an excuse for something a bit larger. It's a reflection of a lot of tension, a lot of anxiety in our society. And Lord knows, there's a lot of real problems out there. But this isn't one of them. You know, the Mayan calendar is certainly not something we need to worry about."

What did you do to prepare for the end of the world?

Photo: PBNJ Productions/Getty Images

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