Katun Predictions and the Nephite record.

24 Nov

Katun Predictions and the Nephite Record.

By Dave Gray ( November 2012)

 

The Mayan calender is divided into different sections. While it is not known what these where called anciently archaeologists have called them Baktuns, Katuns, Tun ,Winals and Kin’s. The period that I will be focusing in is the Katun but to understand what a Katun I need to give a brief description of the other elements of the calendar.

 

Kins represent 1 day.

Winals represent 1 month. The Mayan month however only went for 20 days.

Tun represents a 360 day year.

Katuns represent a period of 19.7 years .

Baktuns represent a period of 394.3 years

There are bigger periods used in the calender but these were generally sufficient to record dates on the monuments that the Maya erected.

 

 

While the above is the most common calender cycle that the Maya used. They also had many other cycles, such as Venus, Mars, lunar, Lords of the night and the predictive Katun cycles.

 

It is the predictive Katun cycle that this article will be mostly about. As mentioned before a Katun lasted for 19.7 of our years. 13 Katuns made up the Katun cycle for a total of 256 years. Each individual Katun in the cycle had a prescriptive element of what the coming Katun was going to be like. The cycle was not a straight 1-13 count instead the odd numbers were counted first start at 11 going down by twos and then the even numbers.

 

Katun 2-Ahau: For half of the Katun there will be food, for half some misfortunes. This Katun brings the end of the “word of God.” It is a time of uniting for a cause

Katun 4-Ahau: There will be scarcities of corn and squash during this Katun and this will lead to great mortality. This was the Katun during which the settlement of Chichen Itza occurred, when the man-god Kukulcan (Quetzalcoatl) arrived. It is the Katun of remembering and recording knowledge.

Katun 6-Ahau: This is a time of bad government and deceptive government. There is also starvation and famine.

Katun 8-Ahau: This may be the worst of the Katuns as both Chichen Itza and Mayapan, the two great ruling cities of Yucatan, were destroyed during its period. The texts speak of demolition and destruction among the governors, an end to greed, but much fighting. It is the Katun of “settling down in a new place.

Katun 10-Ahau: Although this is a holy Katun, there is trouble in the land once again. This Katun brings drought and famine and is a time of foreign occupation, calendar change, and sadness.

Katun 12-Ahau: Finally a good Katun. During this period government and rulers are wise. Poor men become rich and their is abundance in the land. There is friendship and peace in the land. There will be six good years followed by six bad before well-being returns.

Katun 1-Ahau: This Katun brings even worse troubles, weak rulers and destruction. Governments fall apart due to rivalries. There may also be a great war which will end and brotherhood will return.

Katun 3-Ahau: This Katun brings changes and calamities such as drought and wars. The people will become homeless and society will disintegrate.

Katun 5-Ahau: During this Katun of misfortune, rulers and their subjects separate — the people lose faith in their leaders. Leaders may be harshly treated, even hung. There is also an abundance of snakes, a great famine, and few births during this period.

Katun 7-Ahau: This is apparently a time of social excess including drinking and adultery, a low point in the history of the society. Governments stoop to their lowest. The “bud of the flower,” an allusion to eroticism, is said to sprout during this Katun.

Katun 9-Ahau: This is a period of bad government where the ruler abuses his people and commits misdeeds. Rulers are so bad that they wind up losing some of their power to the priests. Carnal sin and adultery are practised openly, by rulers and others, and it is also a time of wars. It is the katun of the “forcible withdrawal of the hand,” a phrase the meaning of which is unclear.

Katun 11-Ahau: Apparently food is scarce during this katun and invading foreigners arrive and disperse the population. There is an end to traditional rule, there are no successors. Since this is the first Katun it always opens up a new era. It was during the span of this katun that the Spanish began their takeover of Yucatan and imposed Christianity on the natives.

Katun 13-Ahau: This is a time of total collapse where everything is lost. It is the time of the judgement of God. There will be epidemics and plagues and then famine. Governments will be lost to foreigners and wise men, and prophets will be lost.

 

I have taken these Katuns and compared then to what was happening in Nephite history to see whether it corresponds. The correlations that I found between the two were quite amazing when I first discovered them.

 

The years that I will use in the following discussion are my own calculations. So there could be some inaccuracies. They are however probably accurate to within 2 years of when start/finish of the real Katun would have taken place.

 

The Nephites arrived in America in about 588 BC. This is according to Nephi’s recounting of how long they were in the wilderness ( 8 years) and a guestimated 1 year building the boat and 1 year sailing it .Also based on the first year of the reign of Zedikiah being in 598/97 BC.

 

If they arrived just before Katun 8 started they would have arrived in Katun 10 . A time that it was expected that foreigners would come and take over the land. This arrival was either just before or just after Katun 8.

Katun 8-Ahau: This may be the worst of the Katuns as both Chichen Itza and Mayapan, the two great ruling cities of Yucatan, were destroyed during its period. The texts speak of demolition and destruction among the governors, an end to greed, but much fighting. It is the Katun of “settling down in a new place.

 

This Katun started in 588 (590) BC. In this 19.7 year period the city of Jerusalem was destroyed and both the Nephites and the Jews were forced to settle in a new place. The Nephites where forced to settle in a new place twice.

 

After Nephi’s time it is hard to be precise with the lining up of Katun with the years mentioned in the record. Until we get to where Mormon starts to abridge the record.

 

One possible correlation is in the Book Of Omni. Amaron the son of Omni describes how all the wicked among the Nephites were destroyed .During this Katun 275Bc – 254 BC. Many of the wicked Nephites were destroyed. Possibility the “ending of the word of god” was Mosiah taking the righteous and the scriptures with him. Mosiah united the righteous for the cause of moving to Zarahemlah.

Katun 2-Ahau: For half of the Katun there will be food, for half some misfortunes. This Katun brings the end of the “word of God.” It is a time of uniting for a cause.

 

There are many more correlations between Nephite history and the Katun Predictions that I could point out but there are two in particular that I want to emphasize .

 

The first on the 5 September 41 AD there was a significant cycle ending. The Baktun as well as the Katun ended. Katun 11-Ahau: Apparently food is scarce during this Katun and invading foreigners arrive and disperse the population. There is an end to traditional rule, there are no successors. This is the first Katun it always opens up a new era.

 

What an apt way to describe what happened to the Nephites during this period. During the first part of the Katun there was the arrival of Jacob and the breakup of the population into tribes. Traditional rule ended in two ways firstly with the breakup of society into tribes and secondly when Christ came. The destruction that happened when Christ came would have led to a scarcity of food. It also started a new era for the Nephites.

 

It was also the time of the end of one Baktun and the beginning of another. While it is not the purpose of this article to go into Baktun prophecies. As mentioned above a Baktun lasted 394.3 years. Baktun endings were seen as a time of renewal and change. When the heavens and the earth can be renewed and re-established. While it is the change is actually more complex . I feel that the fact that Christ came to Nephites just before this crucial time, could have had a profound effect on how those who heard about Christ coming could have been impacted.

 

The final comparison between Nephite history and Katun predictions that I will make is with the destruction of the Nephites. Katun 1 started in 376 AD This is the time that Mormon states that the Nephites no longer had power over the Lamanites as they did come with there full strength.

Katun 1-Ahau: This Katun brings even worse troubles, weak rulers and destruction. Governments fall apart due to rivalries. There may also be a great war which will end and brotherhood will return.

 

As with the Katun prediction of what was happening at the time of Christ so too does this katun prediction seem to mirror what was happening in the Book of Mormon.. The great war between the Nephites and the Lamanites did end. From the Lamanites point of view brotherhood did return as there were only a few Nephites remaining who held a different point of view.

 

2 September 385 was a point that was half way through the Katun. Which was of minor significance to the Maya. It was the day that Mormon choose to make his final stand against the Lamanites. I presume that Mormon chose this day, as he wrote a letter to the King of the Lamanites outlining his desire to gather to Cumorah for a final battle. If the Lamanites just commenced the battle than this would be an auspicious day for them to do so, according to their beliefs.

 

The evidence of the relationship between the Katun predictions and the history of the Nephites seems to me quite compelling. It could however just seem that way due to my interpreting events to fit what I have found in the Katun predictions. The one element of the Katun’s that is concrete is the date. The fact that major dates outlined in the Book of Mormon correspond to the start of Katun’s is just another evidence that the Book of Mormon is an ancient record that was translated by Joseph Smith. 

2 Responses to “Katun Predictions and the Nephite record.”

  1. dallon j January 30, 2013 at 7:03 am #

    about the reurn of brotherhood. in 4 nephi those who were called jacobites josephites and zoramites all joined forces to become the collective nephites again, while the lamanites lemuelites and ishmaelites all joined forces again. so in a sense brotherhood returned that way

    Like

  2. astrallds January 30, 2013 at 9:39 am #

    I was thinking more along Nephite terms but it works for the Lamanites as well.

    Like

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