Since the day I was born people have been predicting the end of the world. Eventually, if people predict the end of the world long enough, someone will be right – if nothing else the earth’s sun will eventually become a red giant, making life on earth impossible. Mind you, that will take about 6 billion years, but if humans don’t edge themselves to the top of the endangered species list by then, someone will be right.
When I was young, my parents belonged to a church, whose founder had predicted the end of the world by the end of the world long before I, or they, were born. Obviously, her predictions were somewhat amiss.
Back when my biggest decision was whether to eat my popsicle or read my comic book the world came close to higher place on the endangered species list during the Cuban missile crisis.
The turn of the millennium brought the “Y2K scare” – all it did was create extra work, updating databases.
The year 2000 also brought predictions of doom based on the planetary alignment of Mercury, Venus, Earth, Mars, Jupiter, and Saturn on one side of Earth’s Sun.
Last year, one man had it down to the precise day .
Now, of course, the internet is rife with news that 2012 is the year that it all goes south – otherwise, apparently, known as “The 2012 Phenomenon”
A large part of the problem, of course, is that those predicting the end of the world right down to the day, never seem to read their source material. Two important sources would be Mark 13:32, and an article on the “Long Count Calendar”
For those who think the Mayans predicted the end of the world, a quick read of an article about the Mayan Calendar should assuage any fears of the world ending on December 21, 2012. What will happen on December 21, 2012? The Mayan in the comic above probably would have told you “a new age” – and if you gave him a perplexed look (presuming he knew anything about baseball) he might have said “end of an inning”
Does this mean that the end isn’t near?
Not a bit of it – all you have to do is read the newspaper. Mankind as a whole has a nasty habit of believing the path to a peaceful coexistence is by killing the people with which you must co-exist; and that’s only if we don’t make the world uninhabitable ourselves. When Thor Heyerdahl made his Kon-tiki expedition in 1970 he reported “seeing tar balls and plastic debris all the way from Africa to the Americas” (Massive Pollution in the Atlantic, Associated Press, February 13, 1973). The Cuyahoga River was once so polluted that it caught fire .
The list goes on.
As for me, I think of it this way. Go watch the film “Oh God” with John Denver and George Burns as God. In the film, God is explaining his concept of time to John Denver when he explains “ When I woke up this morning Sigmund Freud was in medical school.” Time, as Einstein would have said, is relative. An eternal being, by whatever name, saying “time is short” probably carries an entirely different meaning for you or I when it nears quitting time at work. And the practical side of me remembers a line from the movie Crocodile Dundee:
“Ain’t no crocodiles out there, but a fast-moving Chevy would sure make a mess of you.”
In the end, you never know if a fast moving Chevy is just around the next corner – so if nothing else, make sure your character hits the level cap now.
See you online,