November is once again turning into December and here in the antipodes the summer heat is rapidly building once again, cricket has taken over from football as the religion of the working man (much to the chagrin of my long suffering wife) and the kiddies are once again waiting for Father Christmas to squeeze his fat arse down the chimney with a sack full of X-Box games. At the same time there has been a growing buzz about the holiday season this year as those of us in the know are also expecting the end of the world- again.
I have already written about the end of the Mayan Calendar and I don’t see the point in repeating myself and my opinions about the Western beat up of a solidly sensible apprehension of existence that is being used as an excuse to distract people from the truth. What has come to interest me more that the upcoming rerun of the Apocalypse is the enduring idea that December 21 will be some sort of turning point in human evolution. There is a thread of belief that we are approaching a definitive before and after point in history. Even the misguided Earth Council that I wrote about in February pegged 21-12-12 as being their startup date for a new world order.
There has been a lot of fluff on social media about the palindromic nature of the date, especially in the USA where it reads 12-21-12 but it is not really very convincing. Calendar dates are merely relative yardsticks and December is only the twelfth month through a series of ancient accidents so any validity to the esoteric numerological implications of the date seem to me to be highly questionable. At the very best it could be said that any world changing influences that are mystically generated by this most occult of dates could only influence those peoples (a minority in fact) that use the Gregorian calendar to measure the passage of time. This tends to rule out Jews and Muslims as well as the majority of the world’s population in the Orient. Anyway, it would seem more auspicious to focus on 12-12-12 which occurs nine days prior to the Armageddon as a significantly formatted date; although we all have survived the 11 November 2011, 10 October 2010 and so on for over a decade now (although 1-1-1 was pretty hyped with all of the bullshit about the Y2K bug that never happened).
In the past two millennia there have been over 150 predictions of the coming Apocalypse, beginning with St Paul expecting the Christ to return within a generation of his death. After that, every ‘significant’ date that came along had its own version of Armageddon attached to it. We only began numbering our years in around 523 AD and the calendarian calculations of the end of the world really took off with years like 500 AD being big with the bookies for the return of Our Savior. So far the bookies are winning.
Pope Sylvester II gave January 1, 1000 AD the papal seal of approval as the starting date for St John’s scheduled end of the world and when the Lord’s angelic army failed to appear the Vatican simply went on with business as usual. Various suggestive astrological alignments in the heavens were seized upon as a pretence for prophecies of universal doom throughout the first half of the second Christian millennium but the real focus was on the year 1666 which, because it contained that much maligned integer was considered to be a harbinger for the arrival of the Great Beast. Even though he failed to rise out of his pit of sulphur and brimstone to engage the ever ready troops of the Lord we have remained vigilant for any sign of the Armageddon, just in case somebody got their calculations skewed.
For the remainder of the second millennium this was to be an enduring theme among the ‘End of Days’ crowd. Time and again they have calculated and re-calculated the date of the coming desolation, the return of their beloved Lord has been charted to the highest degree of accuracy and still no result. After 1900, with the influence of the Great War giving us a glimpse of just what an Apocalypse may actually look like and with the added vigor of Americanized evangelistic enthusiasm the end of the world took on a new life and, being ever more certain that it was on its way we began to focus more on the mechanics and soon there was a torrent of predictions for the day when ‘The Rapture’ would commence.
My enduring interest in end-of-the-world prophesies comes from my childhood in the 1970s when these pictures of Armageddon added scientific data and new age culture to the recipe for the Apocalypse. Now we found that scientists were predicting that within 20 or 50 or 100 years that the seas would rise, the climate would turn hostile and we would be plunged into worldwide famine. There were direful warnings of volcanic eruptions blotting out the sun, asteroids and comets smashing into our small green world and even prognostications that the magnetic polarity of the planet would change and bring about a cataclysmic event like the one that ended the Jurassic Age. A whole genre of science fiction was devoted to the end of the world theme with popular films like The Omega Man made the coming Apocalypse into box office revenue.
The other ingredient to the apocalyptic ragout that was introduced in the 1970s came from the pseudo-scientific and Oriental esoterica of the writings of people like Erich von Daniken who’s Chariots of the Godsflamboyantly misinterpreted many of man’s greatest achievements as being the work of visiting space aliens. Added to this are the UFOlogists whose tin foil encased crania gestate some of the more original components of the modern version of the Apocalypse so that now we all know that Jesus will return in a flying saucer.
The year 2000 was heralded as a most suitable time for all of these varied and interested parties to conflate their stories into one giant END OF THE WHOLE FUCKING WORLD prophecy. It even had its own IT enigma with the Y2K bug threatening to bring the Armageddon into cyberspace (this has now been postponed until 2038). All of these influences are now converging on that auspicious day, 21 December 2012, when this will all culminate in the mother of all Armageddons.
The list of shit going down that day is really impressive. Including a galactic realignment, the end of the Mesoamerican Long Count Calendar (the highbrow name for the Mayan Calendar), a geomagnetic reversal (my personal favorite), nuclear war, a collision with another planet (easily my second favorite), an invasion by the saucer people, being destroyed by a giant super nova and the Zombie Apocalypse (an evergreen theme) the Apocalypse that is coming in December will be as busy as Reiki tent at a hippy conference. I do hope that the saucer people get here before Nibiru collides with Earth (true story) or they will have wasted a long trip.
So…, having packed my end of the world kit (I am a Virgo so I like to have things in order early) I started musing on why we are so fixed on choosing such arbitrary before and after dates. After all, who really wants the world to end? Many of the historical instances of the prognostication of the ultimate end of the Christian era can probably be put down to ecclesiastical politics. If you frighten the largely illiterate serfdom with tales of the second coming and grisly images of the lake of fire with a soundtrack of a great gnashing of teeth they are probably going to be pretty keen to attend church next Sunday. But we aren’t so easily frightened in the modern day and it takes more than a promise of hellfire to get people into your club on Saturday night.
As I packed the all-terrain vehicle with supplies for the family bunker I realized that I had been counting down the days; not until the Summer Solstice but rather to the start of the Boxing Day Test at the Melbourne Cricket Ground which traditionally starts on December 26. I started thinking about how much humans are addicted to counting down. Having a clear date that we can fix in the future makes the present that little bit easier to bear. When you consider that part of the end result of all of these apocalyptic scenarios always seems to revolve around the world’s evil doers getting their comeuppance it begins to make more sense. On an individual level it is easier to live with many of the things that we can do nothing about if we can mark a definite use by date when the correct order will be returned to the universe.
The promise of redemption for years of faithful abstinence from the wicked ways of the world may be a motivation for many of a fundamental persuasion but there has been another constant thread of hope that has been attached to the Great Day of Change in the most modern of these end of days prophecies. Many people are now looking to the impending turning point as a time of spiritual change in human consciousness more generally.
There are now a plethora of websites facetiously claiming that we have been being prepared for a great awakening but leading the charge is Diana Cooper who’s claims of the coming new age is the final experiment of Atlantis and will include the opening up of 33 portals to heaven which will enlighten the people of the Earth and usher in a new age of man’s spiritual evolution. Of course Ms Cooper is selling a book so she is very keen on getting the message out and to encourage readers to buy her other books and a set of unicorn cards. It seems that she doesn’t want to begin the new age with an empty bank account. Her message does encourage us to hope that the world will not end on December 21 and that this will just be the first day of the rest of our blessed lives (she does suggest that we carry around a pocketful of crystals just to be sure though).
While I remain hopeful that this glorious day may indeed arrive and the entirety of humanity will open their Ajna Chakkra to the True Light I find myself having trouble believing that it will happen any time soon; certainly not on some arbitrarily chosen date. In fact I am struggling to imagine any sort of meaningful evolution happening like a bolt out of the blue to everyone all at once. I am wary of prophecies of sweeping change and while the bookies are currently offering odds of 1,000,000:1 against the end of the world it is beginning to seem to be something of a long shot. I suppose that the main reason why I have stopped the countdown to the spiritual awakening is because of something written in the very book that brought us the Apocalypse in the first place; The Revelation of St John the Divine, which says:
He that is unjust, let him be unjust still: and he which is filthy, let him be filthy still: and he that is righteous, let him be righteous still: and he that is holy, let him be holy still. Revelation 22:11 KJB
For a comprehensive list of End of the World announcements from the past 2,100 years check out this great Wikipedia page:
And to be sure that you are up on the landing times and locations of our impending interstellar visitors as well as everything you might have wanted to ask about having your galaxy realigned and your polarity reversed you simply must take a look at the official 21 December 2012 website (another true story).
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