Posted by: Johan Normark | April 20, 2010

2012: Prophet of nonsense #12 – Terry Nazon and ethnocentric astrology

While I was travelling in Thailand I got an email from Stuart Robbins who runs the blog Exposing Pseudoastronomy. He asked me to write a guest post on his blog as part 3 of his exposure of the astrologer Terry Nazon’s claims about the Maya. Part one and two are found at his website. I accepted the offer and I have just read what she has to say about the so-called Mayan prophecy of 2012. As you might expect from an astrologer, it is full of disinformation. Here follows some of it.


Puuc iconography

Her first claim is that “the ancient Maya were obsessed with watching the stars and making astrological predictions.” Obsessed is perhaps not the right word here. True, some Maya (a minority) were skilled sky watchers but they were far from obsessed, that is a word that better describe the 2012ers. Neither did they “go on the roofs at midnight, and through 2 crossed sticks X make their calculations. This symbol “X ” is found on many ancient Mayan buildings still, denoting places where the astrologers would go to watch the stars at night or early morning. “ This is her interpretation. First, they did not go on to the roofs of their buildings (this shows a lack of knowledge on how Maya buildings were designed). Few staircases lead up to the “roof”, maybe up to the top of a pyramid, but that is not the “roof”. Although “pecked crosses” were used for astronomical observations the symbol X she refers to on buildings is probably the common crosshatching we find on particularly Puuc architecture. This is believed to represent pop or the woven mat people sat on. It is a symbol of royalty in the Maya area. The four corners of a cross (such as the Kan cross) is otherwise a common theme in Maya iconography but it refers to the Maya cosmological model of a quadripartite cosmos with four corners and a center.


Next Nazon claims that the Maya astrologers “predicted the end to civilization as we know it in 2012, and their calendar actually ends on Dec. 21, 2012. According to others it’s Dec. 8, 2012.!”. No, they did not predict the end of civilization whatsoever and their calendar does not end in 2012. There are at least three inscriptions (at Yaxchilan, Tikal and Palenque) that indicate time periods in the distant future. She claims that “we know it has happened before in their Calendar long count on Aug. 12, 3114 B.C.” What has happened before? The end of civilization or their calendar? Neither option is applicable to the 3114  BC date. It concerns the beginning of the current Long Count but says nothing about the end of an earlier civilization. I have never seen the December 8 date before but it would not surprise me if such a correlation exists.

She speculates, like all other 2012ers, what this “end” means to us. Of course she brings up global warming (as if the Maya 2000 years ago knew that this problem would occur). As an astrologer she obviously focuses on the supposed alignments of planets that she believes will happen on December 21, 2012. However, if she had some critical thinking skills she would quickly see that such an alignment could not possibly occur on the alternative date she presents (December 8). One of these dates must be right but since such an alignment is nothing but pure fantasy in the first place I guess it does not really matter. In any case this alignment will change the seasons and “the length of months may change, years may change, and certain planetary cycles like Venus may change. Something new will have to replace the old calefndar [sic]”. Is it the Maya Long Count or our own calendar she talks about? We never see a reference to the Maya date of 13 Baktun, just the Gregorian date. It would have been illuminating if she had actually mentioned some of the logics behind the Maya Long Count. The Maya never predicted that a completely new calendar would replace the Long Count. It would simply go on and on and on.

More nonsense follows when she says that “The Mayans also correctly predicted the end of their own civilization. It ended when the Spanish Conquistadors invaded Mexico and South America, then fought bloody wars, killed or enslaved all the indigenous people. A clash of cultures ensued, and as the story goes the Mayans just disappeared.” How come roughly 7 million people today speak Maya languages and still have beliefs similar to those who lived before this conquest? They never predicted the end of their civilization and Nazon’s understanding of anthropology, archaeology, etc. is even shallower than her knowledge of astronomy. She is just as ethnocentric as the rest of the 2012ers. She also claims that “the Mayans were initially a very spiritual people, whose cities were settled and infiltrated by more warlike peoples. Eventually they gained power and created a warlike state.  Through their spiritual rituals they got the spiritual message “sacrifice your Heart and your life” and well, they took it literally. In their use of ritualistic human sacrifice, they became entrenched in self mutilation, worshiping the dead, and all forms of ritualistic sacrifice.“ Well, this is the old idea that occupied some Mayanists 50 years ago. The warlike and more barbaric “Toltecs” were believed to have corrupted the peaceful and spiritual time worshipping Maya. It is completely outdated and simply reflects ethnocentrism again. Human sacrifice is found in the earliest Maya settlements as well, long before any “Mexicanization”. The Maya did not worship the “dead”. Their “religion” was that of ancestor veneration. Venerating ancestors is not synonymous with worshipping the dead.

There is even supposed to be a “battle that brought down Chitzen Itza”. This “was started because a spanish conquistor [sic] soldier, stopped Mayan priests from brutally ripping the heart from the chest of a child.” One should perhaps know that by the time of the Spanish conquest Chichen Itza was mainly a pilgrimage site and it lacked political importance of its own. Chichen Itza’s political importance ended around 1050, fully 500 years before Nazon’s “battle”. What she refers to is a minor event but she has misinterpreted it as a Spanish conquest of Terminal Classic Chichen Itza.

More ethnocentric statements follows: “Looking at the planets in 2012 there is a very special alignment that occurs only every 26,000 years, and the outer planets and Venus will be making transits that in the past have lead to civil unrest. Remember 2012 is a US election year !” Of course, the whole Maya calendar was designed to end in a US election year. Once again the common theme among 2012ers is that the whole calendar is in fact related to USA and its evangelical believes in apocalypse and all sorts of related nonsense. I leave Nazon’s astrological interpretations that follow this statement to Stuart (he has already discussed them). I can only say that the Maya knew nothing of Uranus, Neptune or Pluto (and has not Pluto been ditched from the planet category?) Why not include some other dwarf planets in the Kuiper belt? Further, Nazon says that “we traditionally associate the planet Venus with love, marriage, harmony, beauty and luxury.” We? If she is talking about the Maya should she not say that the Maya associated Venus with danger and maybe warfare?

She claims that the Books of Chilam Balam refers to 2012. But “only very small references to 2012, are actually written down as so much of their written books were destroyed in an effort to purge the Mayans of their religious practices.” Not quite, The Books of Chilam Balam were written down at a later period (18th and 19th centuries) and they were written in Latin alphabet. Nazon confuses the 40 codices Diego de Landa and others burnt in 1562 with these books. She says that “there remains only one book on astrology by the Mayans, and one inscription that says during this Galactic Alignment of 2012, A God of War or a God of Creativity descends to the Earth. What we do know is that during every one of these transits sweeping social changes and social unrest has occured.” I am not sure which book she refers to but she believes the Books of Chilam Balam actually is just one book (but there are actually nine surviving manuscripts). If she believes it is a codex (which she never mentions in the text) there are four known codices. The inscription related to 2012 is the one at Tortuguero but it says nothing about a galactic alignment as this is a myth created by John Major Jenkins. She does not specify what transits have created sweeping social changes and social unrest. It would be nice to see some example.

I end with an astrologer’s dirtiest trick: to let the reader believe the predictions are related to him or her. Nazon says “it’s time to start thinking ahead as 2012 is only 3-4 years away! You were born for this moment in time!” Astrologists and other hoaxers try to fool you that you are chosen, there is no coincidence that you live right now. It can all be seen in the stars. Btw, did she predict my and Stuart’s critique? If so, should it not be found on her website? If she predicted it she could have corrected the information before we published our critique. I guess she didn’t. That makes me wonder how capable she is of predicting…

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  1. Gotta love WordPress with its automatic e-mails when people link to your posts. Thanks for following up on this, Johan. I guess you’re back from Thailand.

    One thing that amazes me is just how many spelling errors are in her site. I noticed you pointed some out as I did with the “[sic],” but it still baffles me. I know I’ve made some silly grammar mistakes in my posts, but I at least spell-check them.

    Your critique is similar to what I suspected when I read her, well, “novel” approach to interpreting the Mayans. Seem to be about as made-up as her astronomy is. I know it’s low-hanging fruit, but as you pointed out, you’d think that a “professional prognosticator” would be better at predicting and hence preparing for critiques.

    And I’ll finish here with what I’ve tried to emphasize on my blog (and since we have fairly good libel laws here in the US): Terry Nazon is a scammer. She may honestly not be aware of how many mistakes she makes, but that’s hard to believe considering how many there are. If she is aware, then I think she should be prosecuted (though it does say in teensy-tiny print on her website that it’s for entertainment purposes only). If she isn’t aware, then why on Earth would anyone pay her upwards of $300 for a 1-hour phone call. Buy food for your family for a month. Make a car payment. Buy a plane ticket for a vacation. Seriously folks.

    • All 2012ers and astrologers are scammers/hoaxers. I have not made much more research on what services she has to offer but it cannot be anything serious.

    • Terry Nazon likes to predict peoples’ futures, but she cannot predict her own. A nasty divorce a copule of years ago, and the fallout from that cannot be described here.
      A total narcissist and exploitative psychic, she ripped me off to the tune of $5,000.

      • I am not surprised.

  2. Interesting thoughts on this one.

  3. Interesting thoughts on this one.

  4. Your ignorance is showing

  5. Spam?

  6. you will be pleasantly surprised to note that an article is being prepared by THE NEW YORK TIMES soon to be published exposing terry nazon as a fake astrologer con artist who is scamming lots of clients out of money – she recently conned an innocent old lady then threatened her with curses, we have it all recorded and will expose her very soon

  7. Let me know when it is published (hopefully online as well).

  8. Ditto. It would make an interesting follow-up for a “Part 4″ in my series on her. I wonder if it’s also why Coast to Coast had her scheduled for their initial astrologer show and then cancelled her with no word on-air as to why. I kinda doubt it, but imagining that’s the reason is fun.

  9. I wish other people’s 2012 scams could be revealed in a similar way. Calleman and others fool thousands of people with buying their books. But I guess they can always rely on the freedom of speech.

  10. You are an asshole freak go to gay to get your freak on

  11. talk about scams all the lonely women go to will travel for rich women

  12. Is this your way of getting attention or picking up women loser

  13. she hasn’t written a book why pick on her? Jealousy…? Single out someone who has written a book…why don’t you…you are supposed to be an intellectual get your facts straight

  14. This is for Elizabeth H and Dhyanna: I got your IP address and internet provider at Fort Lauderdale. It is one and the same for all of you so I assume you are the same person or use the same computer. In any case, I will be happy to give this information to the FBI once they contact me.

    • I’m gay and looking for hot gay love email me for a good time.

  15. asshole

  16. Oh the you’ll get the call don’t worry
    have a good time travelling from now on…

  17. Oh, now even I am making comments from the same IP address in Fort Lauderdale as the other “people”. The last comment, which is blocked, is poorly written but indicates that the author of the comment probably is the same as the person under discussion here.

    I guess you desperately want me to create a new blog post for you (at least you are working pretty hard to get one). I will be happy to expose your latest emails to a broader audience. Watch out, the FBI may come for you instead…

  18. Here is my last comment on this blog post for now. I am tired of Nazon’s multiple emails and juvenile comments. For your knowledge, Terry, these goes directly into the waste basket without me reading it (I do not believe a word you say). But please visit my blog post on you as many times as possible (you have visited it dozens of times the past 24 hours). It will only increase its ranking and more people will see it…

  19. For a bit of cross-posting fun, I have written a short post explaining what Terry appears to be doing at the moment in terms of harassment, at least from my side. She appears to be harassing Johan more directly than me, though just me by trying to pose as me in other places.

    And Johan, I’m jealous! Type in her name to Google and your post is the 8th that is displayed. The closest mine comes is 18th and that’s the one I linked to above (so will likely fall in the Google rankings soon).

    • Well done!
      People need to know the truth up front when they do a google search.

      • Yes, and I will post her “comments” and threats soon.

  20. OK, one more comment then. It is usually Patrick Geryl who gets the highest numbers of hits on my blog. Right now my post is the 5th that is displayed. It keeps on rising. I guess Terry does not settle until our posts are right below hers.

  21. […] Originally Posted by joey2000 They did, actually… were practically obsessed with time No, they didn't, and no they weren't. […]

  22. I’m fascinated by the whole “upcoming” doomsday thing, especially when tied to the ancient Mayan culture. There are many debunking of the 2012 end-of-the-world prophecies, but I’m impressed by the accuracy of the Mayan documentation of natural phenomenons.

    More importantly, the Mayans did not predict the end of the world. It’s just the end of a cycle, which no one really knows exactly what. The doomsayers are just saying it’s the apocalypse. I’m not sure what our scientists are saying.

  23. Well, most of these so-called predictions are plain bogus. I am of the opinion that the Maya never even believed that there was an end of a cycle. It will just continue. The whole idea of four previous cycles is simply a mixture of Aztec and Maya beliefs.

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