December 21, 2012 – A day that will supposedly live in infamy. The Mayan Calendar was correct, at least seers claim, in foretelling other world-shattering events over hundreds of years, including the arrival of white men (Cortez’s army) on the Mayan peninsula (Yucatan) in 1519. But the big enchilada is just twelve days away – when the earth lines up with the galaxy’s core, resulting in massive earthquakes, the polar shift, and unprecedented storms – a galactic cycle only repeated every 25,800 years (or so).
Yes, in a few days we’ll discover whether prophecies delivered by the Mayans, Nostradamus, I-Ching, and other timeless psychics are true. Doomsday date-setters are always intriguing but seldom credible. Recall the many prophets who’ve come and gone foretelling Apocalypse or Rapture, persuading followers while entertaining skeptics. Sure, the world will end someday, but who knows when?
From America’s early days, cults have risen and fallen; religion is part of our national fabric. However, some cults predicted the Second Coming of Christ, the Messiah, on specific dates, contrary to Christ’s admonition
“However, no one knows the day or hour when these things will happen, not even the angels in heaven or the Son himself. Only the Father knows.” – Matthew 24:36
The faithful were directed into safe-houses or sanctuaries in anticipation only to be drowned in disillusionment when doomsday failed to materialize. Hundreds, if not thousands, of Americans commit suicide when shaken to reality – in most decades of U.S. history.
I can think of four cults in Arkansas alone since the 1960s where cultists gathered, then dispersed, some of them taking their lives and those of their loved ones. Tim McVeigh attended such a religious compound near the border between Oklahoma and Arkansas before committing himself on a terrorist mission in OKC. The Jones Cult in Guyana is only one of many mesmerized by a false messenger carrying an appealing message. Fabricated worldviews do generate victims. That’s why Americans should be concerned about how the Republican Party has become so dominated by radical cultists.
Not only the religious world, but commercial television is getting in on the act of misleading its viewers. History Channel and Discovery have turned their networks into ghost stories, UFOs and biblical prophecy in recent years to draw on a growing anti-intellectual audience. Episodes providing sound information are few and far between. Surfing the channels, I find little to quench my thirst for truth. Pumpkin Chunkin on History, Pawn Stars, Guns & Weapons, Storage Wars, Ghosts & Goblins, and of course Nostradamus and the end of the world…. Plus they throw in several Bible stories to pander to the true social conservatives, none of which are based on factual history save for a few morsels. The dumbing-down of America has taken on a whole new dimension.
Commercial networks are exclusively about the bottom-line, making profit for shareholders/owners; nothing remains for educating the public. They might as well run endless infomercials. Even Travel Channel has transformed itself into another food network, making money for its advertisers. Republicans openly propose shutting down PBS because of its content, not its miniscule federal dollars. PBS’ cardinal sin is providing TMI for the public, not catering to the dumbed-down society the right desires.
On the other hand, the same who fall for charlatans and false prophets scoff mercilessly at scientists who predict devastating climate change and economists who forewarn collapse if oversight is not effectively enforced on purveyors. Ironically, America is about to fall off the “fiscal cliff” nearly the same time the Mayan Calendar closes.
The religious right can’t accept the truth about saving the planet and protecting a sound economy, but they embrace ghost stories, myths and dubious legends not remotely biblically based.
Why is that?
They are anti-intellectual because their pastors and evangelists (charlatans mostly) preach anti-intellectualism. They are anti-climate change because their clerics teach that science is anti-God. They are anti-poor because their ministers teach (contrary to Christ) the poor are in disfavor with God while the rich are favored (“Prosperity Theology”). They align themselves with the modern Republican Party exactly for those reasons. And since the religious right is more concentrated in the South, election maps display the historic faultline without question. But the root is religion, albeit false derivatives. For, without the Southern Baptist Convention and other fundamentalist bodies in the Confederacy there would be no Republican base at present. There would be no slant toward racism, sexism, monarchial adoration, gay-hate, nation-worship and all other such vices paralyzing this nation.
It’s easier for fundamentalists to embrace the Mayan Calendar and Nostradamus than to believe in protecting the environment and putting the economy on sound footing. Because their worldview is myth-based rather than fact-based. Facts get in the way of their established doctrine, and so facts must have been massaged by the left or mainstream media or secular humanists, or…. Satan himself. (Yeah, Satan “planted” dinosaurs.)
The end of the 4.54 billion year-old planet is coming, maybe in 7.6 billion more years. But not how or when the false apostles teach their low-information listeners. And science doesn’t contradict God as they surmise. They just distort and misinterpret their own scripture.