Friday, 24 June 2011

2012: Are we really doomed?

2012.  The year of the apocalypse. But do we really need to be worried? Are we all going to wake up on the morning of the 21st December 2012 and see a scene of horror, people running screaming from their houses, fire raining down from the skies? Will the Illuminati sneak into our homes in the middle of the night and drag us and our children into the back of a van and take us all to a secret underground world? Will we be invaded by aliens who wish to study our brains in a series of painful experiments and mate with us to create a superhuman race?
It might sound like a plot for a Hollywood movie but these are actual predictions and ideas given by different sources all over the world in relation to 2012.

Let’s start with the Mayans. They were a Meso-American civilization who were at their peak between 200-900 AD.  They are well known for their astronomical based precision and accuracy as well as being one of the most intelligent civilizations of their time.  They used their knowledge of astronomy to track star patterns across the sky which enabled them to “read” them and make predictions for future star patterns. This also made them discover that, at the end of every 5,125 year cycle, the Sun will align with the centre of the Milky Way. In accordance to their cycle and our present calendar, the end of the current cycle will be in 2012. The Mayan’s believed this phenomenon was what happened at the moment of creation and therefore whenever this occurred, a new cycle began. Which brings about the idea that the current world will be wiped clean and will start afresh in 2012, specifically the date 21st December which is the day that the Mayan Long Count calendar ends. 

Why don’t I believe this? Well there are a couple of reasons.  First of all, the Mayans had no kind of technology to stargaze with. They only used the naked eye and so how could their astronomy be as precise as is made out?  Plus, the idea of the Galactic alignment, as it is more commonly known, to them, bears religious significance. The beginning of creation, that their God’s began a new cycle after a proverbial “wiping the slate clean.” It isn’t relevant to other religions. Not only this but the whole apocalyptic prophecy that they are seemingly associated with are far fetched, often because of those studying Mayan culture misinterpreting hieroglyphics. The thing is, the Mayan’s never actually claimed that the world would end, full stop. They only hinted that the world ‘as we know it’ would end, just making way for a significant change, whether it be minute extinction of some species or climate change. As I said before, they were well known astronomers and mathematicians. But they weren’t actually prophets. So how could they have made such a prophecy in the first place? I would only put it down to misunderstood Mayan scripture and an over analysing of their works in writing by scholars who claim to be an “expert” in their field. 

I have noticed, not just with the case of the Mayans, that many of the apocalyptic theories are made and backed up by authors and people who claim to be experts in the study of a supposed prophet or oracle. Whereas scientists, professors and even NASA are the ones who dispute them.
One “prophet” who interests me is Nostradamus, a 16th Century French apothecary. Probably one of the more famous prophets of all time. He has supposedly predicted a number of things from 9/11 to the death of King Henry II. However, read out of context, his quatrains (small paragraphs describing a prophecy) actually make little to no sense. Just to use as an example, take his quatrain for the apparent prediction of the murders of the Kennedy brothers from these two quatrains:

The ancient work will be accomplished,
And from the roof evil ruin will fall on the great man:
They will accuse an innocent, being dead, of the deed:
The guilty one is hidden in the misty copse.
(Century 6, Quatrain 37)

The great man will be struck down in the day by a thunderbolt,
The evil deed predicted by the bearer of a petition:
According to the prediction another falls at night,
Conflict in Reims, London, and pestilence in Tuscany.
(Century 1, Quatrain 27)

To read these just as plain text don’t seem to apply to anything. However, put into context it can be pulled apart and made to fit to a specific event. For example, the word ‘thunderbolt’ means just that. A thunderbolt. Right? Wrong. Many would say that ‘thunderbolt’ actually meant ‘gunfire.’ But surely anyone, by using this kind of method, could make a prediction and then apply it to something that happens in the future, because they are so vague and incoherent that it’s easy to over analyse them to your own means.

Nostradamus made these so called “predictions” based on reading the stars and studying their patterns (not unlike the Mayans) but is it possible to make such prophecies based on this? The Mayans are claimed only to predict future Galactic phenomenon based on their astronomical intelligence. Not future events on Earth, like Nostradamus. Not to mention the fact that a lot of Nostradamus’ predictions, although still over analysed, have not come true. Like the assassination of George W. Bush in conjunction with a comet passing Earth in 2006. Nostradamus refers to “Mabus” which has been interpreted as meaning “Bush.“  Why though? How did they come to that conclusion? Just because it fitted in with what they thought it might be about?  Despite the 2012 predictions of a catastrophic end to the world, with fire apparently raining from the heavens, widespread death and destruction and worldwide disaster that he apparently makes, not only in his quatrains but also in his Lost Book, he actually goes on to make more predictions extending way beyond 2012. For example, he claims that the “final Armageddon will begin on 3rd October 2025 with an Iranian leader being captured on October 7th.  Not only this, but many of his other quatrains are interpreted to mean that a World War III will end in 2070.

So there we have probably the two main theories associated with 2012. But there are many more theories that crop up. Another popular conspiracy theory is New World Order. Or, a one world government.  The basic idea behind this theory is that a power elite are secretly conspiring to form one whole government to effectively “rule the world.” Many people have suggested that this is already in process and the quest for world domination is imminent. With this New World Order, the government would rule with a specific ideology and become a mass dictatorship. However it doesn’t stop there. Theories associated with New World Order include alien intervention in society as well as Illuminati influence. These are the briefly worded ideas:

Alien Intervention:  People have speculated that there are extraterrestrials among us. But any knowledge of invasion are covered up by  the government. They are said to be manipulating human thoughts and actions, even walking amongst us in human form. Their want to take over the world is great and so, take place in government positions so when the New World Order comes about, they can intervene in society and reign supreme amongst the most powerful people in the world. Nostradamus himself supposedly suggests in one of his many quatrains that aliens will come to Earth and mate with humans to create a superhuman race.

But, really? Does this sound possible? Alien-human hybrids pacing the planet? Aliens setting up seats in the White House, or them already being there and us not knowing? Of course, for all we know aliens could well look like humans without any kind of morphing or shape shifting, and not actually those giant headed, bug eyed creatures we all imagine them as. But more to the point, do aliens even exist? The only people who have said to have encountered them have been rednecks, businessmen taking a shortcut home from work or a woman who has been taken, sleeping from her flat. If aliens existed and they were curious about the human race, why would they “abduct” average Joe’s? Why not experiment on someone of great importance or intelligence for example? Surely they would learn more from a physicist than a guy who lives in a shack in Ohio that can barely read and has no teeth? Just a thought…

Illuminati:  Apparently the influence of the Illuminati is everywhere. Even in the media in music and advertising. They are said to be at the forefront of the one world government movement of the New World Order, subliminally manipulating the minds of the public into believing their religious ethic and thus creating a one world religion.  Their ideals go well with the conspiracy of the power elite. There are apparently many Illuminati members who are in prestigious positions in society, such as world banks. The basic idea behind this conspiracy is that the Illuminati will purposely produce the major fall in economics by being in control of the banks so they are able to “rescue” the situation and convince the world that their way is the right way. This will enable them to then rule or at least take their place, in a one world government.

The Illuminati symbolism, mainly recognised as an eye inside a triangle, is meant to be present, all be it subtly, in many parts of our everyday lives. The most known example is on the American one dollar bill. However, this is just a suggestion, it could of course, just be a general design with no intentional meaning. All of this said, the existence of the Illuminati is in question anyway. In the 18th Century the Illuminati were suppressed and many people believe that they did not survive this suppression and no longer exist in modern society.

Other ideas included in the New World Order conspiracy are things such as public surveillance and mind control. In other words, the government are listening in on our phone calls, reading our emails and shooting subliminal brainwashing messages at us through our TV screens when we’re watching Coronation Street. This may well be true. But I have to say, maybe it is all a giant game of Big Brother and we are having our every moves watched. But it seems unlikely that everybody is being surveyed. There are around 60 million people in Britain alone. Who has the time to watch us all?

Moving on from the New World Order conspiracy and onto another point of interest. Geomagnetic reversal. Or “Polar shift.” A geomagnetic reversal occurs when Northern and Southern Hemispheres will shift their magnetic poles due to a weakening in the Earth’s magnetic field, which can supposedly be easily triggered by a large solar flare from the Sun. This is a more than likely concept and is probably inevitable, even in our lifetime. Scientists claim that we are overdue for a pole shift as the last shift was almost 800,000 years ago.  If one did occur, it would not happen all of a sudden and would be a gradual development and so therefore not cause any significant massive changes to the Earth overnight. However they also say that it would not be caused by any solar flares and no outside contribution from other planets or similar, would be needed to cause this reversal. Although a solar flare or storm could potentially interrupt satellites and radio signals. And an EMP (an Electromagnetic Pulse) which can project from the Sun at any time, and has many times in the past, and is relative to a nuclear explosion sending a magnetic pulse towards Earth, could also affect the planet if strong enough by cutting off our communications and sending us into darkness by penetrating power lines and stations. But, most, if not all, major switchboard operators have made sure that they have protection against this and none of the past EMP’s have managed to cause any major damage, that we would have noticed anyway.

Finally I’ll come briefly to NASA and the people I believe actually matter when it comes to all 2012 conspiracy theories.  Professor Stephen Hawking, one of the most intelligent physicists of our time has never made any claims in favour of 2012 conspiracies. Another well known British physician, Professor Brian Cox rubbishes all claims of Mayan prophecy and other conspiracy theories to do with 2012.  NASA backs this up too. A direct quote from their website:

“Remember the Y2K scare? It came and went without much of a whimper because of adequate planning and analysis of the situation. Impressive movie special effects aside, Dec. 21, 2012, won't be the end of the world as we know. It will, however, be another winter solstice.”

They go on to say that they closely monitor space activity including impending meteors and say that no large asteroids are due to hit Earth but if there was they would know well in advance. Also, they say of Planet X or Nibiru, a planet said to be headed for collision with Earth, doesn’t actually exist as a planet which was originally thought, but a small dwarf called Eris (with what Nibiru is often mistaken as) does exist but would never come within 4 billion miles of Earth. And the original prediction for the collision was 2003 but when it didn’t occur it was moved to 2012, coincidentally the same year of the end of the Mayan calendar sparking the fear that they were linked.

In summary to this, having researched the prophecies and conspiracy theories and reading through both sides I have come to the conclusion that 2012: The Doomsday year, is nothing but media hype created by vague predictions and even vaguer interpretations. I don’t dispute that we may experience some change in the run up to 2012.  And maybe the government are plotting something but I doubt it is something as drastic as an alien-Illuminati fuelled one world government. And maybe there will be a slight change in climate as we have seen in the last year with more flooding, snow and earthquakes. But the world is always changing. Maybe we are only noticing it more now because of the imminence of 2012 and we feel we need to find something to use as an explanation that something is going to happen. There is nothing to be afraid of, in my opinion. Nothing is due to happen to us that would cause a massive and dramatic change to the world. The world will not change overnight. The Earth is cyclical. It’s inevitable that changes will occur. They might not always be for the better but I think I can promise you that you will all be here in 2013.

1 comment:

  1. I think with relation to the Mayan ideas, it is most certainly the beginning of a new age of the world that they predicted, not the end of the world (as you correctly pointed out). The Maya in fact believed that creation would not end as they kept their calendar running well beyond this date.
    The more worrying phenomenon that I read about was solar activity. Solar activity goes in peaks and troughs over (I think) 4 year cycles. The previous solar minimum was higher than most maximums. The next maximum will occur in 2012. Here is a quote from the first web site I found on the matter:
    "(The NASA publication) entitled "Severe Space Weather Events — Understanding Societal and Economic Impacts," it describes the consequences of solar flares unleashing waves of energy that could disrupt Earth’s magnetic field, overwhelming high-voltage transformers with vast electrical currents and short-circuiting energy grids. Such a catastrophe would cost the United States "$1 trillion to $2 trillion in the first year," concluded the panel, and "full recovery could take 4 to 10 years." That would, of course, be just a fraction of global damages.

    Worse yet, the next period of intense solar activity is expected in 2012, and coincides with the presence of an unusually large hole in Earth’s geomagnetic shield. But the report received relatively little attention, perhaps because of 2012’s supernatural connotations. "

    Now to me, that is the more worrying occurrence. There was also some talk about solar flares causing a lot of the natural disasters on earth, but that seems to be not true.

    Ali (@hopalongali)