Some say the end is near. Some say we’ll see Armageddon soon. I certainly hope we will. – Tool (Ænema)
I’ve always held a great fascination with post-apocalyptic literature and film. Something that takes place after the shit has hit the fan and the remaining humans must cope with the breakdown of society. I want to see the population culled by at least three billion and my family and I will live among the ruins with the other survivors. I do not expect zombies or vampires or a rage virus, but we are due for a cleansing epidemic of some sort. Something that happens rapidly on a global scale before we even know what hit us would be great. The resulting collapse and disorder would damage infrastructure somewhat, but hopefully leave some technology intact. I don’t want to go back to the Stone Age; I just want to see real bears on Wall Street and the end of the white man’s reign. That end may be coming sooner than you’d think. From Maynard, Mayans, and McKenna the message is clear. The actual date may be in dispute but they agree that December of 2012 is going to be an interesting time in history. It just might possibly be the end of it.
The civilization of the ancient Mayans was based upon both unimaginable savagery and an advanced understanding of astronomy. When they weren't ripping out still-beating hearts, their High Priests mapped the heavens and created precise language and tables to chart the movements of celestial objects. The end of their 5,126-year Long Count calendar is marked by the winter solstice and the alignment of the sun with the center of the Milky Way galaxy. That date is December 21, 2012 on our Gregorian calendar. There are some scholars who claim the actual date will be the 23rd, but what’s a mere 48 hours in a 5,126-year cycle? The Mayans left no record of what would actually happen on this date, but time ends here for some reason. Maybe it’s time to make human sacrifice fashionable again before God gets angry and eats the sun.
On the other end of the technological scale, the psychotropic philosopher Terence McKenna also mapped out the arrival of what he called the Transcendental Object at the End of Time. According to his theory, which I will not pretend to understand fully, we are moving towards this Object at an ever-increasing pace through both technological advancement and psychedelic experimentation. The Object is simultaneously moving towards us in its own incomprehensible fashion. We will confront this Object on December 12, 2012, the day some have termed the Omega Point. Predictably, the Object will appear much like the monolith in Arthur C. Clarke’s 2001: A Space Odyssey and I suppose we will all grunt and shriek before it and then someone will hurl their bone-white iPod against it. McKenna, along with computer programmers, provided a mathematical model to prove his theory though the development of his Timewave Zero software. The program carefully maps out history and its conclusion is that 12/12/12 is the day that the appearance of the Object will rupture reality. The most interesting part of McKenna’s theory is that the Unknown can be experienced by many, but by each in their own way. Thus the fundamental religious mind may attempt to grasp this unknowable by seeing it as the appearance of the Virgin Mary or the second coming of Jesus or Judgment Day while the New Age or scientific mind might envision it as a visitation by an alien race. McKenna also hedged his bet by imagining a wide range of possible phenomena occurring on this date. From the extreme “soft end” in which nothing perceptible actually happens to the extreme “hard end” in which the oceans boil and the stars fall as written in Revelations.
I’m hoping for the hard end. Let’s just shoot this lame horse and move on. It is high time for the holier-than-thou to get sorted out and for the Facebook status quo to end. Sure there are going to be loved ones that suffer in the end, but they are all suffering anyway. We have reached the nadir of western civilization and it is high time to put it out of its misery. So just how does one prepare for the end of time? I’m not joining a cult on a compound or building an ark, but I’m going to make damn sure I’ve got plenty of booze on hand during those weeks and maybe even “an heroic dose” of psilocybin if I can score it. The end is nigh, so let’s all get high. I’d like to see that Transcendental Object in a McKenna state of mind. I’m ready to board the spaceships and see the stars up close or for the Rapture to come and clear the place of Christians. Even if it did go down biblically and we were all left standing in line behind the velvet rope waiting for St. Peter the bouncer to let us into heaven like it was the hottest new gay disco in town, I welcome the change. I’m up about the downfall of mankind. To quote still more song lyrics, “It’s the end of the world as we know it and I feel fine.”