Happy New Baktun!
There’s been a bunch of hoopla lately about today being the end of the world. Supposedly, according to the Mayan calendar today is the end of a 5,125-year era. Some people took this to mean the world was going to literally end. Apparently they were unfamiliar with the way the modern calendar ends every December 31st without dire consequences – except for maybe a hangover – following the next day.
Anyway, the media has called it and the world hasn’t ended. Next thing you know, they’ll be reporting that a dog bit a man.
As I’ve written before (as in Came The Apocalypse), there’s a lot of talk these days about “The End Of The World As We Know It.”
Generally this apocalypse is talked about as a future event, usually tied to some provision favored by the person or group proclaiming The End. “The World/Civilization/Whatever will end if we don’t change our ways and start blah blah blahing.”
If you look past the paranoia and the politics, at some point you have to recognize things really have changed. The world as we knew it has already ended; the “apocalypse” has already come and gone.
Many of the problems we are seeing today may indeed be signs of an apocalypse. But those signs reveal an apocalypse that has already occurred. They reflect a period in time in which many of those in power – who are products of the old world view – are having problems coming to terms with our current, “post-apocalyptic” world. The chaos and upheaval we are experiencing is due to people who either a) don’t understand this new era or b) are disturbed by its changes and are resisting them.
These times are certainly troubling. But there is still some cause for optimism.
Young people today are growing up with an easy familiarity with today’s changed world. Unattached to old ways, they are developing an intuitive understanding of new ways of doing things in this world. Eventually they will grow into positions of authority in our political and cultural institutions, and they will successfully guide those institutions through this new world, using what they’ve learned in their lives.
When that time arrives, much of the tumult we are experiencing these days will subside. And once again we’ll be able to say “It’s the end of the world as we know it!”