When I was in high school I was a born again christian. I was as interested in that religion and understanding its scripture as I have been in anything else I encountered in my life, so you can imagine the intellect that I brought to bible study. So much of what was taught was so obviously unbelievable that eventually the only perspective on christianity I could accept was that of C. S. Lewis and his Mere Christianity. Had I lived in another time, I would have been a Jesuit priest, and certainly a heretic in my heart.
Before I became an apostate, I was taught the millennialist belief in the bodily ascension of christians to heaven and the end of the World as We Know it. They taught me the Rapture and return of Christ was imminent, and since this was the late 1970s, all the signs pointed to the Rapture around 1984, or no later than 2000.
All complete shit.
Then, decades later, I learned about a millennialist prophecy about the year 2012.
Daniel Pinchbeck's "2012, The Return of Quetzalcoatl" collates research, interviews, and the autobiographical storytelling that is required to make sense of his topics of crop circles, alien visitation, consciousness, early-twentieth-century mystics, Mayan calendars, and the end of the world.
In Pinchbeck's book, I was looking for a synthesis of the cross-cultural theories about the end of the world in the year 2012. I found that, and more. I will turn to this book again because it is a such a great source and introduction to topics that are just on the fringe of possibility. For example, what about crop circles? Until I read "2012," I thought that I knew all about crop circles: a hoax made with boards and ropes and too much time off. I know that many crop circles are built this way, but maybe not all all of them; not the most important ones. Where could they be coming from? And what do they mean?
And what about the Mayan calendar and the Hopi prophecy pointing to December 2012 as a time when "this age" "ends?" Pinchbeck's thesis is that these prophecies indicate an evolutionary jump to another level conciousness. Well. Whatever. It could be complete shit too.
But I don't care. I hope I'm here for it, because something needs to change. We're fouling our nest and lighting it on fire. Maybe this prophecy is the same thing that the christians are looking toward with their "End Times." I really do want the christians to be correct and experience The Rapture, so that the rest of us can be "Left Alone" to build a world that we all can live in. If something wonderful happens in 2012 and a new consciousness is born, when humans take a giant step toward the Next Thing, then I want to be there, and I'm glad I was warned.