••can ye pass the acid test?••

ye who enter here be afraid, but do what ye must -- to defeat your fear ye must defy it.

& defeat it ye must, for only then can we begin to realize liberty & justice for all.

time bomb tick tock? nervous tic talk? war on war?

or just a blog crying in the wilderness, trying to make sense of it all, terror-fried by hate radio and FOX, the number of whose name is 666??? (coincidence?)

Friday, May 20, 2011

The theory that the "Rapture"--or Judgment Day--will occur on May 21 appears to have originated with the 89-year-old leader of the ministry Family Radio Worldwide, Harold Camping, who earlier predicted the end of days as Sept. 6, 1994. He went back to the drawing board and says his calculations are now correct. (The Daily Beast's Bryan Curtis profiles Robert Fitzpatrick, one of Camping's most ardent followers, who gave up his life savings to spread the word about the coming day of reckoning. "For Fitzpatrick, the calculation's outlandishness confirms its rightness," Curtis writes. "'A genius could not understand this,' he says, 'because God has to open your mind to allow you to understand this.'")

Camping--an uncredentialed evangelical minister in California whose radio show is broadcast on 66 stations--took out an ad in Reader's Digest magazine proclaiming: "The Bible guarantees the end of the world will begin with Judgment Day May 21, 2011." He's also plastered the message on 2,200 billboards around the country, according to Reuters, and his followers have traveled around in caravans to spread the word. After a big earthquake on Saturday, true believers will be swept up to heaven while everyone else descends into hell before the world is officially over, he says.

Camping's full-on PR campaign for the apocalypse seems to be working. At Yahoo!, searches for "May 21 2011 Rapture" spiked 30 percent to 11,500 searches on May 17 compared to the day earlier. "May 21 2011 End of World" and other related search terms have also spiked.

A bevy of entrepreuners hope to capitalize on believers' fear. A website called "Eternal Earth-Bound Pets" is offering to care for believers' furry friends after their masters have been Raptured and can no longer care for them--for a fee, of course. (The site, which claims to be the brainchild of a group of pet-loving atheists, claims it's not a joke, but we're not so sure.) There's also You've Been Left Behind, a kind of high-tech concierge service for the chosen, which will send their digital records to un-Raptured friends or loved ones for the low, low price of $14.95. NPR has rounded up an array of jokes the prediction has sparked on Twitter and other social media sites.

In the 2,000 years of Christianity, there have been countless predictions of the end of the world, derived by just as many methods. Biblical scholars have not come to consensus over how literally, or symbolically, to interpret biblical descriptions. Or even where we are on the millennial timeline.

"If you talk to Christian theologians, you might find they do not agree as to what moment we live in now," said Mikhail Sergeev, a professor of religion at the University of the Arts in Philadelphia. "Whether the Apocalypse is in the future, or partly in the future, partly in the past, or completely in the past, or in the present."

However, followers of Harold Camping believe they know. Many trust Camping's teaching that the answer has always been in the Bible, but God has not allowed people to understand it until now.

"It's almost like a software upgrade," said Kevin Brown from South Jersey. "We couldn't run the program before he gives us an upgrade, it was there all along, but we couldn't run it before. That's a pretty close analogy."

apparently i'm wasting my time posting this, since the world will end tomorrow, but just in case the zero probability event occurs and we survive, i want you believers to know i won't be gloating.

life is hard and full of uncertainty, and the world is a dangerous place, so of course it's tempting to seek some deeper meaning behind it.

and all of us are fallible and make mistakes, so it's natural to make excuses.

but every end is a new beginning, so when you don't get what you want, stay in the struggle.

who knows? maybe you'll even find a little meaning there.

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