Observation: So, I See the World Ended Yesterday…
That might explain the pounding in my head. It might have been that bottle of Scotch I downed after running out of rum and Bourbon, but I don’t think so. It has to have been the end of the world, because it is just past midnight and everyone knows the Mayan Long Count Calendar ended yesterday and the Mayans knew stuff we mere normal humans never could understand.
Actually there are Mayans living in my area. They seem like a reasonable bunch of guys but not a single one of them seemed to have been concerned about the end of the world and I expect they’ll be back at work in a few days, so this whole Mayan Calendar thing is suspect.
Maybe the headache is due to the collision with the invisible (and apparently massless) planet Nibiru, or were we invaded by space aliens? It is all so hazy now on the morning after.
Maybe we were all instantly transported to a new and different world just as the old one was destroyed. This hangover headache might be an artifact of the transition to the new dimensional quasi-matrix… If so, whoever created this new world was amazingly unimaginative. It looks, feels and smells just like the old one and my creditors are still just as numerous and demanding as ever.
Therefore I am forced to conclude the world did not come to an end… again. I probably ought to swear off self-proclaimed prophets, psychic and other assorted fruitcakes (except the ones I bake myself).
Side Note: Vladimir Putin stunned the world this week by saying he knew when the world would really end. There was a brief pause until he added it would take place in 4.5 billion years and we were all able to start breathing again. Funny guy!
End time predictions are not really new. The ancient Romans predicted their own end would come as early as 634 BCE and there has really been no shortage of such predictions over the last two millennia. So let us look at a brief history of the end of the world over the last hundred years or so…
1901 – The last founding member of the Catholic Apostolic Church died. According to the teachings of that church the world would end when the last of its 12 founding members passed away. Well, I suppose it did for them, in any case.
1908 – The Bible Student Movement predicted this would be the end of the world. Then again that was the fourth time they predicted the end, so maybe their clocks needed resetting…
1910 – Camille Flammarion predicted that Halley’s Comet would destroy all life on Earth. Well, we did pass through the tail of the comet and those alive at the time got a really good show, but not even a near miss.
1914 – The Bible Student Movement starts to retcon its previous predictions, claiming the end is already in progress and will finalize in October.
1915 – John Chilembwe informed us the “Millenium” has begun.
1916 – The Bible Student Movement is back with a revision. The World War I would end the world.
1918 – The Bible Student Movement – the Actual end of World War I.
1920 – The Bible Student Movement is back once more with predictions of exactly how the world would end that year.
1925 – Joseph F. Rutherford and, yes, The Bible Student Movement predict a new order of things on Earth. I guess that’s the End of the World as we know it. That seems to be the last prediction I can find from The Bible Student Movement (However from them came the Jehovah’s Witnesses, so the end has not yet come to an end), but in that same year Margaret Rowen predicted the end would come on February 13.
1935 – Wilbur Glenn Voliva said the world would go “puff” and disappear in September.
Okay, let’s pick up the pace. The Jehovah’s Witnesses started predicting he world’s end as of 1941. Herbert Armstrong predicted the world would come to an end in 1936, 1943, 1972 and 1975. Perhaps, by misreading the Mayan calendar, a UFO cult predicted the end by flooding on December 21, 1954. And Florence Houtell thought the end would come on April 22, 1959.
Jeane Dixon, the psychic who later predicted the assassination of John F. Kennedy, told us all that the world would end due to a planetary alignment on February 4, 1962. When that failed to come off on queue she revised the date to sometime between 2020 and 2037.
Anyone remember Jim Jones and the Jonestown Massacre of 1978? Did you know he previously predicted the end of the world would be in 1967? There followed dozens of predicted dates for the latter half of the Twentieth Century. Someof these include the belief of the “Children of God” that the world would be destroyed by Comet Kohoutek – a comet that not only did not get very close to earth but fizzled out as a celestial showpiece when astronomers billed it as “The Christmas Comet.”
The 1980’s was a good time to be in the prophecy business, I guess. Well, so many people believed in Reaganomics too even though the economy crashed following that lead. Among the prophets were Hal Lindsey, Chuck Smith John Gribbin, Stephen Plagermann,Benjamin Crème, Pat Robertson… Let’s pause.
In 1976, Pat Robertson, the rather famous televangelist, founder of the Christian Broadcasting network, Regent University and quite a bit more went out on an obviously unsupportable limb and predicted the Doomsday would occur in 1982. Why anyone still listens to him, I don’t know, but he’s still out there and predicting stuff. This year he predicted that Barack Obama would not be re-elected. Oh no! Does that mean Romney really won? By the way, Robertson also predicted the end would come April 29, 2007.
Anyway, noted preachers have this tendency among their numbers to include those who want to be the first to tell you the world would end and when. Cotton Mather (noted for his role in the Salem Witch Trials) predicted the world would end in 1697, 1716 and 1736. Religious hysteria, I suppose. Anyone remember the Shakers? They believed the world would end in both 1792 and 1794.
While I’m on this historical tangent, My personal favorite has to have been the Prophet Hen of Leeds who in 1806 began laying eggs that had “Christ is coming” etched into their shells.Um, yes, that was later revealed as a hoax, but at least as reliable as Mather’s assertions, right?
Back on track: The Jehova’s Witnesses predicted (again) the end of the world, this time on Oct. 2, 1984, but Lester Sumrall, Noah Hutchings, Leland Jensen, Jose Arguelles, Hal Lindsey (again) and Edgar Whisenant all argued for later in the decade.
The 1990’s was equally full of end-times predictions from such notables as Elizabeth Clare Prophet, Louis Farraklhan (the Nation of Islam), David Berg, Harold Camping… pause again.
Harold Camping, apparently loves to predict the end times. He predicted the Rapture would take place on September 6, 1994, then when that did not work out, on Spetember 29, October2… then March 31, 1995, May 21, 2011 and October 21, 2011.
1997 – You may recall that Marshall Applewhite, leader of the Heaven’s Gate cult, claimed there was a spacecraft trailing Comet Hale-Bopp and told us that through suicide we could escape this Earth and then board the spacecraft to be taken to another level of existence. Not quite the end of the World,but worth mentioning here…
1999 – half the people in the history of the world predicted the end would come, including noted linguist Charles Berlitz, The Seventh-day Adventists, Nostradamus (depending on who’s translating) and The Amazing Criswell.
2000 – The other half of the people over the history of the world predicted the end in this year… Yes, well, we also were warned about Y2K and planes falling out of the sky… guess what? In any case there were far too many claiming 2000 would be the final year of history to list them here… Even Jerry Falwell got in on the act.
Since then the pace has actually slowed a bit as Millennium Madness is starting to peter out (I hope!). Let’s not forget that much of all this is just a rerun of what happened around the year 1000. You may have missed it, but Ronald Weinland told us the end would come on September 29, 2011 and then again on May 27 of this year.
So… the world is still here, but don’t fear we still have a chance to be here for the end. Based on Hal Linsey’s (failed) predictions, F. Kenton Beshore assures us that Jesus will return sometime between 2018 and 2028. And if that does not pan out don’t forget Jeane Dixon only gives us until 2037, although Said Nursi, a Sunni theologian, is certain the end is coming in 2029.
Not everyone agrees, however. I know I won’t be around to see if certain Talmudic interpretations which place the Messiah’s coming 2240 come true. Nor will I know if Rashad Khalifa’s research into the Quran Code is accurate in stating the end will be in 2280.
If none of that comes true James Kasting tells us that around half a billion years from now carbon dioxide levels in the atmosphere will drop to the point that Earth will be uninhabitable. Therefore, I recommend we stop worrying about our carbon footprints and keep the fires burning. But if he turns out to be wrong the Sun only has another five billion more birthdays (more or less) to celebrate and eventually the heat death of the universe will get us all.
Always something to look forward to, huh?