Mayan Apocalypse Nears, As the supposed Mayan apocalypse draws near, millions of people worldwide are preparing for the worst. Conspiracy theories surrounding the coming date, December 21, include a rogue planet or an asteroid slamming into Earth, an alien invasion, the second-coming of Jesus Christ, a polar shift—and countless other ways we all may perish on the Winter Solstice this year.
While the majority of the world’s people seem to be staying calm, extremists are camping out near sacred mountains or stocking up on nonperishable goods in case of an emergency. The hype is reminiscent of Y2K, for those of us who remember the fears that the world’s computers would fail because of the date resetting to 01-01-00, which many believed would confuse older computers into believing that the year was 1900.
Countless officials, scientists and professors have debunked the “prophecy” time and time again. NASA explains that there is no rogue planet—or else we would be seeing it in plain sight by now. Meanwhile, Boston University Professor William Saturno uncovered a Mayan calendar this past summer that cancelled out the apocalypse myth by extending the calendar for at least another 2,000 years. Even the Vatican has chimed in with a surprisingly scientific take on why the world will not end next week.
Still, many people are still scrambling to get their affairs in order in case a cataclysmic event does take place on December 21. There’s even an official website counting down the days and tracking the world’s strange events leading up to the date.
If the world really does end on December 21—and if the original Mayan calendar is both literally and figuratively set in stone—then what is the use in preparing? If the entire world population is wiped out and the planet destroyed, then why fear it at this point? With one week left, wouldn’t it be better to just live life—and maybe have a little fun with it during our last days on Earth?
Fearing the end is obviously within human nature. We fear the unknown, and we fear death and what may come after, if anything…
But being so dead-set on dying on December 21 makes no sense—especially if you’re actually stocking up on things and preparing for it (because you can’t take it with you). Why go through all the trouble if it’s just going to end? Why not embrace the last few days we have left instead?
New Yorkers have learned how to prepare for disasters, especially after Hurricane Sandy, but with no impending hurricane or weather disaster on the current radar, at least according to Weather.com’s 10-day forecast, we can probably rule that out. There is also no way anyone can really prepare for an earthquake or a tsunami, and don’t even think about an alien invasion…
Head for the hills—or to your loved ones—if you can, but obviously, the dream of taking next week off is a distant one for most of us in the city, since we are known to be workaholics (and the holidays are so close that it’s probably impossible to get a day off at this point, anyway). The ideal option of taking time off to enjoy our supposed final days is very impractical.
Instead, treat yourself to a nice dinner or a night out this week, or even take a mini-vacation for the weekend if you are able. Maybe celebrate SantaCon this Saturday if you’d rather be partying, or volunteer to help people out in the Rockaways or Red Hook who are still suffering after Hurricane Sandy—after all, even if the world does end, being generous may get you in with the good guys in the afterlife.
Fearing the end is natural, but living what’s left of your life will ultimately be more fulfilling—especially if we only have 7 days and counting… Keep calm and do something good for you or for others this week, because even if/when we live beyond December 21, life is too short to worry.