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550 of 612 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars 2012 Junk Food, April 5, 2009
This review is from: Fractal Time: The Secret of 2012 and a New World Age (Hardcover)
Writers such as Joe (aka Jose) Arguelles pointed out that time was fractal back in 1987 in 'The Mayan Factor'. Frank Waters in Mexico 'Mystique: Coming 6Th World Of Consciousness' wrote about Mayan time cycles in 1975. The Maya, by Michael Coe appeared in first edition in 1966. Terrence McKenna pointed out time is fractal with his TimeWave theory. Tony Shearer was also an early source.

The Olmec or Mayan or whoever invented the long count calendar are the ONLY ones who really understand what it is talking about. Non-Mayan speakers on a Mayan subject most often walk on thin ice or speak nonsense as often occurs in archeological circles. Regarding calendars there are also other cyclical calenderic systems from many cultures including the Chinese and their famous animal-oriented zodiac.

Example: "In addition to the 2012 winter solstice marking the end of the Mayan Great Cycle, December 21 also signals the completion of an even larger cycle: the great or precessional year that began approximately 260000 years ago."

The existence, length, and timing of the precessional year is a subject of great debate. The book is trying to say that December 21 2012 also represents the end of the cycle and the dawning of the age of Aquarius. However, no one knows in what year such a theoretical transition occurs let alone the day. According to Max Hiedel this transition to Aquarius occurred back in 498 AD. Based on other correlations it will not happen until 600 years from now. And the book does not tell you that it stole, I mean got, the idea of 2012 corresponding to age precession from John Major Jenkins which doesn't make it fact either. In fact the book lifted much of JMJs work in Galactic Alignment for this book. Anthony F. Aveni is a great authority to balance all of the 2012 hype.)

Additionally, although our Gregorian year starts in January, the Zodiacal year begins with Aries in April. How can the book select the ending of the Piscean cycle with the ending of the great year of precession?. Indeed Vera W. Reid in 'Towards Aquarius' (1968) makes is clear that a cycle is a CYCLE, it has no beginning or ending, it just is. The book introduces the *concept* of the ending of a year of precession (and *when*) with absolutely nothing to back it up.

The books statement about Dec 21 2012 'ending' a cycle of the great calendar of precession, and many other parts of this book, is straight from John Major Jenkins in Galactic Alignment. Many times when concepts are lifted from others there is not adequate credit. And with so much lifting you wonder what is the unique message of the book.

The book also has difficulty when it attempts to borrow JMJs ideas and use the Vedic time periods of Yugas and correlate then to *fit* the Mayan calendar. There is an extremely wide set of interpretations of how long each Yuga is. Even the Kali Yuga alone has many different interpretations to it's duration from approximately 5000 years long to 432,000 years long. The book also says that the level of our consciousness has to do with how close we are to the center of the galaxy. This is clearly a silly flub as our solar system is way out in the edge of the Milky Way. What he meant to say is that consciousness may be affected by our (earth's) relative [vertical] position to the galactic ecliptic. However, even that's a stretch. So this is just one example of how you have to keep filter what he is saying.

We are talking about metaphysics here and the more concrete you try to be with your statements the more error prone you will be. The domain does not fit tight conceptual models. It is clear that the book is forcefully folding and fitting in different concepts that do not belong together. He attempts to do this through a combination of fluffy language and just plain wrong conveyance of facts.

Most of this book is pretty beginner material and folks who have been around the block will find it sparse with little to offer. It rides heavily on the coat tales of others without due reference. If you like it fluffy and to be told they way things are instead of digging yourself for the facts and realizations then please enjoy it.

If you want some solid information on Fractal Time you should stick to McKenna, Shearer, and Joe Arguelles (with strong filters at Dreamspell which is nonsense).

If you want better, much more accurate information, around 2012 and the Maya then go to the original works that the book is copying. Your first and top pick should be John Major Jenkins (Galactic Alignment). Carl Calleman also has an interesting book (The Mayan Calendar and the Transformation of Consciousness). But beware, Callemans' book is a wide mix of concepts and he loosely passes off as Mayan things that are not clearly so. Calleman also believes that Sri Kalki Bhagavan is the Kalki Avatar and that Europe, specifically his beloved Sweden, is the center of earth's energetic pulses that guide evolution.

P.S. The author is even more 'interesting' in live spoken word. Go listen to the C2C interview with the author on Mar 17 2009. Some claims from that show:

- That scientists have found that the center of the Milky Way is a source of tremendous energy and that scientists by studying ice cores can prove when we are close to or far away from this source at the center of the Milky Way (or 'Cyclic-tilting' as he alternately called it). It seems like he is distorting the findings of Paul LaViolette in this statement. He also referred to a study in the Journal Nature which had nothing to do with this claim (I think he was confusing a study of disc-accretion with the point he was trying to make.)

- That the star purportedly next to the black hole at the center of the Milky Way (the only galaxy by the way that has a black hole and a massive star next to it) is 'the' brightest one in the galaxy. Current thinking gives that title to the Peony nebula star. There are the remains of a massive star cluster near the massive black hole but there is no single companion massive star next to it. In fact the most massive stars known just now are in star cluster NGC 3603 in the Milky Way.

- That the Dendera Zodiac has an 'inordinate' amount of space between Pisces and Aquarius ('precisely where we are now'). Go look at an image of it. Mazzoroth has a large one you can read. There is no unusual gap between the two signs. He also said there is 'a mysterious document encoded on that stone called The Program of Destiny' which links to a Sumerian text. Someone needs to update google to find any matches of 'The Program of Destiny' to Dendera. Actually the author is referring to a statement made by John Lash ('the programmes of destiny') documented by Colin Wilson in Atlantis Blueprint. I think the author means the Sumerian 'Tablet of Destiny'. [...].

I could go on with these examples. But I hope you get my point.
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Showing 1-10 of 39 posts in this discussion
Initial post: Apr 5, 2009 8:02:57 AM PDT
Hermit says:
How nice to have someone else say exactly what it was that I was trying to pinpoint on the problem I often have reading Greg Braden's books. He seems to take a little bit of fact and make somewhat stretched correlations using unsubstantiated interpretations of those facts. Thanks for saying it so well and offering alternatitive books for consideration.

Posted on Apr 9, 2009 8:33:23 AM PDT
I agree with Hermit, though I am perhaps a little more in overall sympathy with Braden's view of things. What bothers me, as I noted in my review, is that he speaks and writes books on topics about which he has, NO expertise at all. If you do a web search to find out anything more than that he used to work as a computer systems designer and some related fields, there is NOTHING out there about him. He doesn't even tell us on his web site where, if anywhere, he went to college or grad school! Being an expert computer systems designer is one thing: claiming to have researched "ancient texts" from Tibet, Peru, and the Middle East is quite another. I find it very puzzling that, assuming Braden does have some degree or other in computer science or engineering, he has, so far as I know, not published one book about such matters, yet in areas where has no formal training or expertise, he writes volumes! Go figure! Let's remember that we can gripe all we the end of the day, Gregg's making a lot of money, and enjoying life in the hills above Taos, NM.

Posted on Apr 13, 2009 10:22:27 AM PDT
[Deleted by the author on Apr 13, 2009 10:22:52 AM PDT]

In reply to an earlier post on Apr 15, 2009 1:23:42 AM PDT
Adam Neeley says:
Are you claiming to have "expertise" on this author's life experiences?

He doesn't have credentials, so what? That's an ultimately meaningless symbol of status.

In reply to an earlier post on Apr 16, 2009 2:23:39 AM PDT
OK Adam, let's think of it this way: you're driving your car and it breaks down. You're stranded on the side of the road. I pull up and offer to repair your car. You ask me, "Are you a mechanic?" I reply, "No, but I have experienced a lot of broken down cars. I used to work on computers, so based on my experiences and my computer work, I can repair your car." Would you really want ME to work on your car? On the other hand, if I answered your question, "Yes, I am a mechanic and I am certified as an automotive repair technician." Would you feel better about me repairing your car? Or would you dismiss my reply with, "Ha! So what, your certification is a meaningless symbol of status!" My observations and comments about Gregg Braden's are not based on any pretended "expertise" on my part, but purely on what he himself has told, or not told, his readers and the potential buyers of the products he is selling.

Posted on Apr 17, 2009 3:29:29 AM PDT
WOW...lots of facts n'stuff! How can anybody go back in distant "time" and come up with something absolutely definitive?? Pure scientific inquiry and method alone does this. And this is not the realm of the 2012 inquiry. Braden is showcasing some interesting information, of course colored with his viewpoint and background, as all the authors you site must do to a degree. He seems to want us to see the forest and all you can see is individual trees.

Posted on Apr 21, 2009 11:52:50 AM PDT
Cedar Button says:
[Customers don't think this post adds to the discussion. Show post anyway. Show all unhelpful posts.]

Posted on Apr 23, 2009 11:55:04 PM PDT
TVDIVA says:
Thank you for posting your review. To some people it may have been long, but to me you pointed out enough contridictions and fallacies in the book that I decided not to buy it. You also backed up your review by citing your sources. That is the job of any good review whether they get paid for reviewing a book or not. I look forward to reading more of your reviews.

Posted on Apr 29, 2009 2:23:12 PM PDT
Paul Haag says:
Yep. I get your point! Okay, you probably went on a bit too long. So what?! The reader can stop whenever (s)he wants to. As for me, I read every word AND I appreciate you taking the time to give so many examples, realizing that there were a great many more you could have made. I'm not buying the book either -- and I'm taking your suggestion to start with Galactic Alignment.

In reply to an earlier post on Apr 30, 2009 4:44:26 PM PDT
Fascinating (and well documented review). I heard the Coast2Coast interview, too. I'm not sure I followed the author's points very well, and that's why I surfed over here to check out the book and the reviews. I think I'll pass on this one -- for now, at least -- and keep searching. Thanks for your insights.
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