Friday, 21 December 2012

We're still here...

If you're reading this, then the world hasn't ended. In fact, if you happened to be reading this in New Zealand then the world hasn't ended for an entire day and it's nearly the 22nd of December. Like many people, I can't say I'm shocked that a Calendar just sort of running out didn't result in the end of the world. If there were any Mayans left I suppose it probably would have resulted in nipping down the Calendar store like the rest of us this time of year.

Cortez gives the worst Secret-Santa giftsSource
Of course, massively hyped apocalypse predictions are nothing new. Amusingly even the arrival of the Vikings was seen as a sign of the end times over 1200 years ago.

" This year came dreadful fore-warnings over the land of the Northumbrians, terrifying the people most woefully: these were immense sheets of light rushing through the air, and whirlwinds, and fiery dragons flying across the firmament. These tremendous tokens were soon followed by a great famine: and not long after, on the sixth day before the ides of January in the same year, the harrowing inroads of heathen men made lamentable havoc in the church of God in Holy-island, by rapine and slaughter"

Anglo-Saxon Chronicle 793AD

If you swap in some Hurricane Sandys and other disasters then things start to look pretty familiar, yet the world didn't end then and still hasn't ended now. The truth is, it's easy for us to believe in the apocalypse because it's a manifestation of a single, nearly crushing realisation.

We are damn near insignificant beyond this tiny blue rock spinning around a solitary sun. If the world ends we all go with it, along with all the great works we strove to achieve. On some deeply Darwinian level that is both a terrifying and exhilirating thought, the ultimate crucible for survival of the fittest.

In closing I leave with the gloating scientists of Nasa...


 Until tomorrow, and all the days to follow, let us say Skål! and drink together.


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