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… TURN OUT THE LIGHTS

What began on August 11, 3114 B.C. ends today …

The Mesoamerican Long Count Calendar – a.k.a. the Mayan Calendar – draws to a close on December 21, 2012.  Coincidentally, that’s the date of the Winter Solstice – which for those of you educated in South Carolina public schools refers to the shortest day of the year (i.e. the midday when the sun is at its lowest point on the horizon).

This convergence of religious and astronomical – combined with our  culture’s obsessive fixation on death and disaster – has sparked a veritable flood of eschatological theories collectively referred to as the 2012 phenomenon.  These theories differ wildly:  Some say the world will get sucked into a black hole, others claim the earth’s poles will suddenly reverse while another theory involves a mysterious “Planet X” slamming into our planet.

One way or another … a lot of people believe the world is going to end today.

For those of you interested in the facts, the onset of the so-called  “Mayan Apocalypse” has been pretty well debunked by historians and scientists – who maintain that the Maya never predicted the world would end on December 21, 2012.

“It’s a significant point in the ancient Maya calendar,” Mayan expert Dr. David Stuart told EarthSky.com last month. “Now, did the Maya ever say anything about this date? Did they ever predict anything? No – absolutely not.”

Astronomers also reject the notion that this year’s Solstice will be accompanied by some celestial cataclysm – and point out that polar reversal is a gradual process that sometimes takes as long as 10,000 years.

Christians debunk all of this end of the world nonsense, too, arguing that the “last day” – a.k.a. the “day of the Lord” – will come at a time when mankind least expects it.

“For you yourselves know perfectly that the day of the Lord so comes as a thief in the night,” the epistle Paul wrote to the church at Thessalonica.

We don’t think much about the end of the word, but when we do … the Stay Puft Marshmallow Man pops into our cabezas.

Our founding editor?  He thinks of his wife, the lovely Mrs. Sic Willie, and all the things he’d like to do to her … ;)

What do you think? Is today the day? Vote in our poll and post your thoughts in our comments section …

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