According to the hyped â€œend of the worldâ€ theories based on the purported ancient Mayan predictions, the world is slated for termination on December 21, 2012. But is humankind really going to meet its end by the end of this year? Could civilization be drowned in apocalyptic floods, seared by the scorching sun, destroyed by a colossal meteor, thrown overboard by breakaway continents, or by some other predicted world-ending catastrophe? Like with all end of the world theories, itâ€™s probably a good idea to obtain a healthy dose of skepticism before freaking out or jumping to rash conclusions about doomsday predictions. In fact, most of the discussions surrounding the end of the world have been critical and are said to have little scientific merit. As with every other prediction of the end of the world, it is most likely safe to assert that no, the world will not end come December 21, 2012. But just for kicks, letâ€™s consider a few of the discussions surrounding our potential doom and how theyâ€™ve been subsequently debunked.
The date that marks humankindâ€™s termination is December 21, 2012. Where exactly did this specific date marking the end of the world stem from? According to early interpreters whom have based their predictions on the Mayan calendar, December 21, 2012 is allegedly the last day that appears on the Maya calendar. However, according to further investigations, that assumption is not true and simply misinterpreted. The Mayanâ€™s invented many calendars which ended, sure, but in no way have they predicted December 21, 2012 as the end of the world. Basically, long story short, according to the Mayanâ€™s Long Count calendar, this date marks the beginning of a new cycle in their cyclical calendar in which the day count is overturned and struck back to Day Zero. Other than that, there is no real applicable significance of that specific date.
Another widely discussed issue surrounding doomsday theories, which was predicted earlier for the apocalypse slated for 2003 (which obviously was bogus), is the notion of a mysterious planet called â€œPlanet Xâ€ or â€œNibiruâ€ on a collision course headed for Earth. A convenient explanation as to why we havenâ€™t been able to clearly identify the whereabouts of this mysterious planet is that it is currently hidden by other planets. As sinister as that sounds, there most likely is no such planet. If it hasnâ€™t even been visible to the naked eye by now, it probably does not exist.
Finally, the other issue surrounding our doom is the idea of speeding breakaway continents destroying civilization as we know it. Caused by a â€œpole shiftâ€ in which a gravitational pull shifts the earthâ€™s pole alignments, Earthâ€™s crust and mantle will violently shift and spawn earthquakes, tsunamis, volcanic eruptions, and drowning cities into oceans and seas. These scenarios are pretty much considered overly drastic and probably wonâ€™t happen all at once as some have suggested. A subtler shift is to be expected though and drastic rearrangements usually take millions of years and are slow enough that humanity wouldnâ€™t have felt much of the motion, so you know, weâ€™re good.
Whether all of this hype surrounding the â€œend of the worldâ€ on December 21, 2012 is potentially real or has simply been a ploy to sell t-shirts, survival kits, movies, and books to those that are genuinely scared (really?), itâ€™s always a good idea to double check the facts. As a skeptic of apocalyptic predictions and critical thinker, always, always deny the apocalypse because youâ€™ll usually be right. And when you are wrong, there will be no one left around to say they told you so.
Photo fromÂ Denzo Mag