Geoff Stray’s magnum opus ‘Beyond 2012’ has gone a long way to spread the word far and wide about the possibilities of some kind of huge shift, symbolic or physical, in the year 2012, an event seemingly long indicated in ancient writings and calendars, and apparently reflected in several crop formations. MIRANDA JOYCE reviews the book…
Several years back, I can remember buying a thin stapled booklet called ‘Beyond 2012’ at a crop circle conference. I bought it from its author Geoff Stray, who seemed to be very much a lone figure in promoting the 2012 subject in those days. For some time this was my only contact with the many different prophecies for the year 2012, and it was a Godsend, a compendium of all the theories and beliefs under one cover.
Now we have the proper book version of ‘Beyond 2012’, hugely expanded, beautifully produced and unrecognisable from its humble forbear, but I am delighted to find that it still retains its vital balance of viewpoints and sweep of coverage. Nearly every theory, however extreme or obscure, gets touched on at least briefly (longer for the more credible ideas), and Mr Stray is one of the most thorough researchers of any subject that I have ever come across. He is open enough to give coverage to everything, but has enough discernment and honesty to say clearly when he thinks something has validity and when it does not. The style is never less than authoritative, but also manages to be witty and sharp, entertaining even as it educates.
For some, the year 2012 brings thoughts of global change, upheaval, apocalypse. Others see it as a shift of consciousness, new spiritual awareness, higher frequencies. Several different cultures of the ancients (not just the famous Maya) appear to have had knowledge of a significant time cycle, which may bring either some of these turmoils or delights, none of them, or all of them - hence the full title of the book: ‘Beyond 2012: Catastrophe or Ecstasy’. Taken together with modern predictions by various means, scientific and mystical, there is something of substance here. Knowing exactly what to expect is the problem, and the urgency in wanting to know comes because the next turning of the cycle appears to be 21st December 2012, according to most observers of the predictions. Is the heart of the cycle about astronomy? Weather or geological cycles? Psychic development? Returning gods? Extra-Terrestrial intervention?
Anyone wanting to get a good fix on what this 2012 business is all about should start with this book – there is simply no other source out there that I have found which provides such a huge overview of the whole phenomenon. This book is well-written, well-reasoned and exhaustively comprehensive. That said, it is not the easiest of reads - nor should it be. Some of the information is necessarily detailed, leaving no stone unturned in its mission to get to the heart of a belief or theory. And some of the base information is of its nature complex – the Maya calendar, for instance, the most publicly-known area of 2012 prophecy, is not simple to explain, and one must persevere to get through some of the fine details. Doing so brings rewards – the key to understanding IS in this book when one relaxes and simply absorbs. But if the calculations and charts do get too much, it is still possible to skip through them and yet retain clear understanding of the point being made. In other words, you will not read this book at a single session over a cup of coffee. It’s not like that, and life is not like that. Instead, you have 352 pages of incredibly well-researched information that may change your life, depending on what level the data hits home.
Crop circles figure significantly at key points of the book and, as we know, several agriglyphs in recent years have directly referenced the 2012 time cycle. The circles get a whole chapter to themselves, and Mr Stray’s revelations about the multi-layered correlations to 2012 and numerological connections of the formations in question are astonishing and make one look again at the incredible purpose (or at least universal connectedness) with which the circles seem to be made.
The book itself is well-presented and full of explanatory illustrations, colour and black and white, and, joy of joys – it has a detailed index. This makes it a very valuable research tool for anyone with even a little interest in the 2012 phenomenon and its satellite subjects, as relevant bits of the many ideas covered in the book can be checked so easily. So many books these days are let down woefully by the lazy omission of such an obviously useful feature. There are also lots of comprehensive references and notes which give all the pointers to further information that anyone could want.
If you are curious in any way with what might happen in 2012, and want to know what the key hopes and fears are - and whether it is something we should be concerned about or not - then ‘Beyond 2012’ is essential reading.
After all, it’s only six years away.