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The Five Factors Fueling “Apocalypse 2012”

Many people believe that the world is coming to an end soon. Fact of the matter is, the world is in trouble, but it has nothing to do with the Mayan Calendar and its 2012 doomsday “prophecy.”

The world is coming to an end, soon, or so people believe. Urban Times published an infographic back in August (The End OF The World As We Know It) that reveals how wide this fear is and what it entails.

Fact of the matter is, the world is in trouble, but it has nothing to do with the Maya Calendar and its 2012 doomsday “prophecy.” The Mayans never claimed that the world would end on December 21, 2012. Nowhere in their records is there reference to such an event. Their calendar simply ends on that date, marking the completion of a set of grand and complex cycles of time.

Why that specific date and not any other? I don’t know. Maybe they ran out of stone slabs and couldn’t make more calendars.

Yet some people are convinced that 2012 marks the end of the world.

The reasons are five.

  1. The Twelfth Planet
A mythology of earth-shattering proportions (source: public domain)

The first reason the Maya doomsday prophecy became popular over the past few decades is a book titled The Twelfth Planet, by Sumerologist writer Zecharia Sitchin. In it, Sitchin claims to have shed light on Mesopotamian myths that reveal hidden aspects of the universe.

One of these myths is the ‘undiscovered’ planet Nibiru, which is supposedly on a collision course with Earth. Nibiru, or X, as some call it, was supposedly the home of the Anunnaki, an alien race who came to Earth hundreds of thousands of years ago to mine the planet for minerals. Harsh working condition eventually culminated in a rebellion among their workers who demanded the creation of other workers (Homo sapiens) through genetic engineering. A terrible war between slaves and masters resulted in the catastrophes described in Mesopotamian and Biblical texts.

Many people have called The Twelfth Planet an original and illuminating piece of work, citing Sitchin’s ability to read between the lines of ancient myths and archaeological data. Others have called it misleading and pseudo-scientific. It sounds an awful lot like Scientology, not to mention Prometheus, Ridley Scott’s latest movie.

Whatever the case, the book has influenced a great many people, spurring the myths surrounding Nibiru and its alleged crash-course with earth, which has over time been projected to coincide with the Maya Calendar’s end.

  1. Solar Maximum
Every eleven years the sun gets blazing mad (image:

The second reason the Maya doomsday prophecy became popular over the years is a solar event called solar maximum, or solar max. Occurring roughly every eleven years, a solar max is a period of intense activity, during which the Sun’s magnetic field is distorted and sunspots appear on its surface. An increased number of solar flares and storms manifest, the effect of which are felt on Earth. When they’re intense enough, they cause electrical blackouts and major disruption to our high-tech construct.

The last solar max occurred in 2001. The next one (2012) was predicted to be the strongest one since 1958, an assertion which coincided ominously with the Mayan terminal date.

Hence the worry.

[Note: the 2012 solar max has since been reevaluated. It’s now expected to occur in 2013, and may be far weaker than anticipated.]

  1. The Invisible Landscape
Visions of extraordinary and terrifying nature (source: public domain)

The third reason behind the 2012 doomsday mill is a book written by Terence and Dennis McKenna titled The Invisible Landscape. In this book, and in others that followed, the authors, especially Terence, made predictions and assertions about the world based on a function of time.

In a nutshell, Terence McKenna believed that an acceleration of time was taking place as life became more organized and complex, leading to a singularity of events that would signify the end of time (and the beginning of another). The data he obtained from his research pointed at 2012.

Terence McKenna was an important figure in the psychedelic, ethnobotanic and counterculture scenes. His work was widely read within those circles, yet not far beyond them. It was marginalized by the scientific and mainstream communities on account of its radical underpinning.

But it was highly potent. When Terrence met his untimely death from cancer in 2000, it gave him new impetus, granting him cult status, resulting in the proliferation of his views on the end of time, fueling the 2012 doomsday scenario even more.

  1. Apocalyptic Hollywood Movies
This lousy movie cost 12 bucks (image: imdb poster)

The fourth reason behind the Mayan 2012 end of the world is Hollywood and other media industries. Eager to capitalize on the morbid opportunity, several doomsday scripts were developed, many of which proved popular with the market. Knowing; 2012; The Day The Earth Stood Still; Transformers … films that deal with the obliteration of the planet by cosmic forces, the invasion of aliens, and the demise of life due to environmental, political, social, biological, and technological factors. Over the last few decades humanity has been mercilessly bombarded by – and has perversely reveled in – the prospect of being annihilated.

Other apocalyptic blockbusters include:

Rise of the Planet of the Apes

The Day After Tomorrow

Independence Day


  1. Economic And Financial Crisis
I’m living beyond my means and everything is going wrong. OMG! (image: UM Sizzle –

The apocalyptic zeitgeist culminated in the fifth reason behind people’s fascination with the end of the world: the 2008 Great Recession and the ongoing Eurozone crisis.

In a nutshell, the world as we knew it buckled under pressure four odd years ago. The setup began to crack and faith in the system evaporated, leaving us with fewer and narrower options. The damage was deeper and more severe than the 2000 dotcom bubble, or the 1973 oil crisis. Economists spoke about doomsday and Armageddon, urging governments to act before it was too late.

Measures were taken. Economic collapse was averted and stability was restored, and the world breathed. But word on the financial grapevine had it that the worst was yet to come. True enough, the sovereign debt crisis reared its ugly head in 2010, in Greece, and exploded into an all-out cancer that almost took out the entire Eurozone. After many efforts to contain it, it went in remission, or so it seems. The data warns that if decisive action is not taken to eliminate the problem, 2013 will not be a good year for the world.

Doomsayers, of course, believe there will not be a 2013 to begin with. So they’re spending their money like mad on things they have no use for, like doomsday films and bacon-sprinkled popcorn, adding to the health bill and fueling financial volatility.

The notion that the world is ending in a week or so is not a harmless fad. People are serious about it.

If only they were serious about things that mattered, we wouldn’t be in this situation in the first place. Fact is, if the world does end, it will be because there are too many doomsayers around who prefer to entertain the notions of catastrophe rather than seek out active ways to avert it.

Now, for the love of Armageddon, where’s that popcorn?