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    endoftheworld cults
    a friend of mine invited me to join a tribe today. it sounded slightly cultish (a new god, initiation rituals, survival workshops), but in general i'm interested in fringe societies, and this friend of mine is an artist, so i agreed to follow its development. but it occured to me: there are going to be a shitload of end of the world cults around 2012. i don't know too much about it, but i wonder if 2012 is just gonna be another Y2K? regardless, its crazy how aware even the strangers i encounter are that things are rapidly changing. where are the rapidly accelerating technological developments already taking me by surprise in newspaper articles leading? how insane a world are we already living in without entirely realizing it, and how much more insane can it get? will we even realize when we've reached the singularity, or will we just continue to familiarize ourselves with new technologies as they continue to deeply affect who we are as a species?

    Sun, May 20, 2007  Permanent link

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    andrewohlmann     Sat, May 26, 2007  Permanent link
    could you say anything more about this "tribe"? I love crazy stuff like this.

    ...I'm having a tough time believing that anyone is taking this 2012 stuff seriously. People will be people, I guess! If people want to believe that some seriously crazy shit will happen just because the calendar from some long dead culture said so, there's no stopping them. The mayans' calendar ends on dec 21, 2012, and because of this, "Notable Religious scholars" think that a major shift in global consciousness will happen, while others think that the world will end because of... something (usually religious in nature, like armageddon or the rapture or the second coming of alien jesus).

    I'd like to think that anyone who prides themselves as a rational thinker won't fall for this stuff—it's complete bunk, for new-agers, desperate christians, cultists, and too-far-gone potheads (or some combination of the four) only.

    As for the rate that people become aware of sudden technological breakthroughs, we can only guess. Scientific knowledge, even of the most basic, fundamental sort, still hasn't made its way around to every corner of the world. In places where modern technology barely even exists, from third-world countries worldwide to third-world counties in the U.S., a startling ground-breaking advance would hardly even make a ripple, even if it shocks the rest of the world into a standstill.
    ellysau     Sun, May 27, 2007  Permanent link
    interesting...especially because you both talk about the role of shared consciousness in this. like andrew said, there's definitely some anthropological mapping to consciousness, so something like a global shift is going to vary as an experience between cultures. i swear sometimes i think we haven't even touched on how distant our paradigms for reality are from each other...or how close they are, in other ways.
    and like you said megan, are we even going to realize, do we even realize when it's happening? change is a weird thing, it requires action to take place, but seems incomplete unless accompanied by recognition, some shift in feeling and perspective. our idea of change definitely says a lot about what's important to us- we want to feel moved by something, we want some kind of reward for experiencing life. like, in exchange for rapid technological advancement, we get a global sense of progress and the feeling that we're settling into a newly secure way of life. which has a 50/50 chance of being the case or not being the case.
    and now, i cant help but mention political power ballad "the wind of change" by german group the scorpions, who were also responsible for the seminal piece "rock you like a hurricane." im sure youve heard it on a shit radio station at some point or another, but the words are suprisingly insightful: 
    kruhiu77     Wed, Dec 12, 2007  Permanent link
    Unfortunately it is hard to be fully Oblivious in our Culture. The advances in technology have caused the spread of information to rapidly spiral out of control. Also i love the idea of a cult because a cult is simply the baby form of organized religion. At one point or another organized faith and religions were considered taboo and frowned upon in the Society they were announced to but as soon as said Society accepted them the group of believers became legit.

    The idea of Survivalists cults does not surprise me and i can envision a whole scare of maybe the same magnitude again. Word spreads fast now a days. Also i am happy that communities are making contingency plans for the worst but i can hope that belief in deities does not cloud their judgment.
    partymarty     Wed, Dec 12, 2007  Permanent link
    This thread reminded me of a great short story by Isaac Asimov called Nightfall. If you ever get the chance, I suggest reading it.

    The full text can be found here.
    jTp     Thu, Dec 13, 2007  Permanent link
    There is a very strong and growing sect of christianity called "dominionism". They are actually TRYING to bring about armaggedon. And guess what? They actually have a lot of power in the U.S. right now. Scares the living shit out of me.
    kruhiu77     Fri, Dec 14, 2007  Permanent link
    Evangelism and their goal of marriage between church and state is what scares me.

    They are throwing in presidential candidates and they have quite a bit of power in legislature.

    aeonbeat     Sun, Dec 16, 2007  Permanent link
    finally it's time for us all to stand behind the same meaning of life, intuitivelly, wisely and heartely - once and for all, to slow down and do what's right. call it whatever you want...
    First Dark     Sun, Dec 16, 2007  Permanent link
    This "12/21/2012" fervor certainly has that Y2K feel to it. I'm sure many people will be stocking up on food and getting their basement shelters ready. In the end, it's just another ledge for the faith-based community to cling onto. One can only hope that when nothing happens (at least, nothing not caused by fanatics), a fresh wave of skepticism will permeate the irrational masses.

    I've often joked with people about theories I've heard, such as the Mayans rising up from underground to save, enslave, or kill us (of course, they've been hiding beneath the Earth's surface all these years, developing a hyper-civilization). I'd like to think that most people would never buy into such an outrageous claim, but I already know too well that this is no more absurd than most popular religious beliefs. I also know that when people really believe these things, there isn't much they won't do to propagate or defend them. So I may chuckle about it, but nervously.

    That many of the theories surrounding this date have been around for so long, and that there are still five years to go, makes me even more nervous.

    Regardless, I am certain that there will need to be many revolutionary changes on a worldwide scale if humanity is to survive for another century (at most). As far as technology goes, unless we find a way to balance it with Nature without sacrificing what control we have left, there are going to be major problems. People are becoming much too comfortable with the conveniences allowed by new technology, while at the same time ignoring all possible future consequences. Unless many more people realize that "civilized" humanity is moving much too fast for its collective thought process to keep up, there will be catastrophe.

    Technology continues to advance rapidly, whilst the vast majority of human minds remain essentially the same. We need more long-term thinking and acting, rather than regressive short-term convenience.
    kruhiu77     Wed, Jan 2, 2008  Permanent link

    i don't know how many years or resources will hold out. Unless our technology speeds up and we find alternate ways to live we could be painting ourselves in a corner.
    FrankLloydWrong     Wed, Jan 2, 2008  Permanent link
    On the subject of cults.. I feel a kind of glee in researching bizarre conspiracy theories and I recently happened upon Robert Anton Wilson's "Everything is Under Control" which is basically a cross-referenced encyclopedia of cults, conspiracy, UFOs and the paranormal that is a highly entertaining read. Part of the fun in reading it is that you can endlessly spook yourself out with speculation.
    I consider it kind of a guilty pleasure, because I know that fear is such a useful tool in controlling people. To fear someone or something is to give it lots of power. The true threat of a cult is in the tactics they use to make members afraid and keep them under control.
    People throw around the term "brainwashing" a lot in talking about cults, but I never really had a clear idea of what it meant until I saw a french documentary about an organization called Landmark Forum called "Voyage au pays des nouveaux gourous", which was explicit in showing what I consider to be people being psychologically broken. It's scary and infuriating, especially since I have friends who are a part of this organization here in the US.
    I think the solution lies in understanding, revealing and demonizing the tactics, rather than the organizations themselves.
    christo     Wed, Jan 2, 2008  Permanent link
    The answer is fairly simple. The 2012 hypothesis is false. If you incorporate the scientific data that the Earth's rotation has slowed due to the moon's gravitation pull, then the Mayan calendar in and of itself would have to be altered over the thousands of years to account for this. That is why horoscopes are usually off by a couple of months and maybe even more since the astrological calendars are no longer "in line" with scientific anomalies such as the Earth's rotation. Pretty simple answer. You only need a pebble to create a wave in the ocean.
    deprofundis     Wed, Jan 2, 2008  Permanent link
    i am curious to know where everyone's thought-sources are coming from regarding this topic: who are your inspired [or lack thereof] minds for formulating your 2012 ideation, if any?

    for me it's been Terrence Mckenna, Daniel Pinchbeck, Ray Kurzweil and Richard Tarnas. while the first two have written explicitly on the topic, the latter, at least to my knowledge, have not, yet their ideas have still very much influenced how i think about 2012.

    in brief summation, i'm of the notion that 2012 is still in the creative process of being made and humans are approaching [or possibly have passed] a tipping point in the evolution of their consciousness that will [is] require [ing] them to redefine their social, planetary and cosmological identity in interest of self/planetary-preservation. the product of such a transformation will be, among others surely, a stabilization of the scientific/spiritual paradox among a majority of the earth's population and the creation of a novel myth that drives our intelligence, imagination and existence into [future] manifestation.

    ////mutations to the mythicalDNA