One of three photos of El Castillo pyramid in the ancient Mayan city of Chichen Itza taken in 2009 by Hector Siliezar. Having captured a lightning flash in this, the third shot, Siliezar was stunned to see a beam of light shooting up into the sky from the top of the pyramid.

A sign of Doomsday 2012?

NASA researcher Jonathon Hill (the bloody spoilsport) claims it’s an iPhone glitch.

…a distortion in an image that arises from the way cameras bounce around incoming light.

It is no mere coincidence, Hill said, that “of the three images, the ‘light beam’ only occurs in the image with a lightning bolt in the background. The intensity of the lightning flash likely caused the camera’s CCD sensor to behave in an unusual way, either causing an entire column of pixels to offset their values or causing an internal reflection (off the) camera lens that was recorded by the sensor.” In either case, extra brightness would have been added to the pixels in that column in addition to the light hitting them directly from the scene.

Man Captures iPhone Photo of Mayan Pyramid Firing Beam Into the Sky (PetaPixel)