By: Courtney Kidd, LMSW SJS Staff Writer
Ah the 2012 holiday season. A time to laugh, remember our loved ones, exchange some gifts. Oh, and let’s not forget the upcoming apocalypse. The Mayan calendar rumor has been circling around for the past couple of years as the “end of the world” prophecy, followed quickly by “No, no, we really mean it this time.” I enjoy a good end of the world prophecy, especially by those who couldn’t see the Spanish coming(aw too soon?). Not everyone I encountered over the past few years have been so blasé about the end times, many are doing what can only be described as ‘having a major freak out.’ It made me realize that perpetuating these rumors is actually harming a large grouping of the population. It’s creating panic attacks, high levels of stress, excessive worry and even suicidal thoughts. This is especially an issue for our younger crowds who will buy into an idea with absolutely no scientific evidence or indication, much more easily than mature adults.
Except these adults believe it as well. During the 2011 scare that no one has mentioned since, I successfully annoyed my sister-in-law, who as the time of rapture drew to nearer grew more concerned. Ever the humanist, I left a note on our door saying “Gone to Rapture, be back soon” along with some clothes strewn across the foyer floor. Needless to say I heard her yelling from my room. Quotes from the past are taken out of context and applied to any situation with the disclaimer that you mustn’t take things literally.
Nostradamus’s divinations were shouted from every rooftop after 9/11, not realizing that Nostradamus, having no background in future telling, took up writing horoscopes as a side business for extra cash due to its popularity at the time with the elite. It is crediting a fortune cookie with knowing what our future holds. Worse that, it is taking something that was never meant as a prediction and applying it to some person’s belief about our demise. The Mayans never even implied an end of the world on 12/21/12, their calendar cycle ends, as it has previously, it will continue, as it always has and they’re all having a good laugh at our lunacy. We give ourselves entirely too much credit. Keep moving forward, you’re all due at work on that following Monday unless you have a written note from your maker.
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