Every decade or so we are faced with the greatest life-threatening situation since, well, … the last one! We were recently faced with "the end of the world" as some like to put it.
Dozens of questions ran through my mind the first time I heard about it. Who predicted it? What will it be? What should we do about it? When will it happen? When will the countless Facebook statuses end?
The end of the world as we know it was initially predicted centuries ago upon a tablet, no, not a Blackberry or Kindle tablet, but an ancient slab of rock.
Chiselled to perfection upon the rock lies hieroglyphs stating the end of our existence. The ones who chiselled it? None other than our mysterious predecessors from Mexico, the Mayans. They were proficient in everything from infrastructure to astronomy but whether they were as proficient in their predictions of the future was the question on many people’s mind.
Hindus, Christians, the Aztecs, the Incas and the Chinese had also predicted that something beyond us all will happen.
If it did happen, how would it all go down? Would aliens attack? Volcanoes erupt? Giant tsunamis?
Everyone had a different opinion. Some believed that it would be a spiritual change felt across the world. Others believed that we would collide with another planet, killing everyone or destroying the planet forever.
Some outgoing individuals even believed that PSY’s hit song "Gangnam Style" would bring upon the destruction of the Earth … though I don’t know how.
The phrase, "When 20 years of the moon’s reign have passed, another will take up his reign for 7,000 years" hints at a massive collision between an asteroid and the Earth. Nostradamus himself wrote this some 500 years ago.
I thought that if it were to happen, it would be a change in the climate, at most a major shift in the Earth’s axis and nothing more.
Many people had already started to panic. Underground shelters/bunks have been selling fast across the globe.
"We have gone from selling one a month to one a day in the past year, "says Ron Hubbard, shelter manufacturer. Hubbard will make you a luxurious bomb, nuclear, and chemical weapon-proof bunker anywhere, as long as you have around £46,000 to spend. It also comes with kitchens, toilets, beds and a fireplace!
Sadly, some people resorted to violence and extreme acts such as suicide to evade the impending doom. This trend followed the previous doomsday trends seen from Y2K.
If you were highly stressed about the "end," don’t worry! You have survived! The date given to us as our official end has once again come and gone … Dec. 21 has happily turned out to be just another big false alarm.
The important thing this Christmas is to spend time with those who matter most in our lives — our family and our friends, even if it is in that bunker you bought.
Live each day to the fullest and enjoy life’s pleasures because you never know when the world will really truly end.
Oh and Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!
» Mahesh Shunmugam is a Grade 10 student at Neelin High School.
Republished from the Brandon Sun print edition December 24, 2012