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It’s the End of the World as We Know it sample essay

In the last century the world has been predicted to end 9 times. These dates include: 1910, 1914, 1936, 1982, 1999, 2000, 2001, 2011, and of course 2012. Signs that “the end is near” are everywhere! They can be seen in the hundreds of doomsday websites, shows on The History Channel, and the ever so credible Hollywood film “2012”. Aside from the media influence, there are also “historical” and “scientific” theories that support the end of the world, none of which are very credible. The theories of 2012olgy and the end of the world include predictions from the Maya calendar, solar flares, Planet X, polar shift, and galactic alignment.

Thousands of years ago (AD 250) the Maya culture was very advanced for their time. They had a fully developed spoken and written language, advancements in architecture, art, and mathematical and astronomical systems. What they are commonly known for, however, is their calendar. A common misconception about the calendar is that it is similar to the calendar used today, which is not the case. Time in our culture is linear, here today gone tomorrow. In Maya culture, periods of time would be repeated through world ages. The current world age cycle that we are in is the Long Count, which is 5125 years long.

This age cycle is ending on December 21, 2012 but that does NOT mean the end of the world. They never predicted a doomsday, but rather the birth of a new era. “They see it as a great turning point. Not the end of the world, not a great off-switch in the sky, but the birth of the Fifth Age.” (John Jenkins, 2012 Story) The Maya believed that this would be a time of change and that the world would go through the “melinium of gold” ( Daniel Pinchbeck, 2012 The Return of Quetzalcoatl). The idea of 2012 being the end of the world was actually first suggested in 1987 by New Age religionist Jose Arguelles in his book The Mayan Factor: Path Beyond Technology. (DEFINE NEW AGE)

The next theory is solar flares. A solar flare is a flare of heat that comes from the sun and can cause anything from power outages to the Aura Borilis (Northern Lights). In the movie 2012, this is what starts out the cautstrophic events that take place. Solar flares are very common and every 11 years the sun reaches its Solar Maximum. This means that that the solar flares reach their highest rate at this point. This has happened through out history and will continue to happen in the future, whether the world is planned to end or not. According to NASA, “The Solar Storms are not planned to occur in 2013, not 2012 and the flares will be much less significant than the ones seen in previous years. ” (David Morrison, NASA, 2010).

The most absurd prediction in 2012ology is Planet X. Planet X is an invisible planet 4 times the size of Earth that will come crashing toward us on December 21, 2012 although astronomers have yet to find it (most likely because it’s invisible). This “planet” will then knock Earth off its axis, out of orbit, and into space forever to be lost. Donald Yeomans of NASA in the Near-Earth Object Program said, “There’s no Planet X and nothing is hurdling towards us.” NASA is very against the 2012 phenomon, they have had press confersions on the topic and have even dedicated a tab on their webpage for it.

On December 21st the Earth will be in exact allignment with the Sun in the center of the Milkyway Galaxy. This is austonishing! This is extrodinary! This… happens every year. From the years preceding 2012 to the years to come, the Earth and the Sun will always align in the middle of the galaxy and 2012 is nothing special. There will be no planetary alignment as seen in the movie 2012, the last one occured in (INSERT YEAR HERE) and will not happen again until (INSERT YEAR HERE). (David Morrison, NASA) Some 2012olist believe that because the Earth will be in the center of the galaxy that this will cause the rotation to be off balanced. Aside from the allignment happening every year, even if this once in a melinuim ordel it still would not affect the rotation of the Earth. The only things that affect the Earth’s rotation are the Sun and the Moon.

Another scarnio about how the world will end is by polar shifting. It has been scientifically proven that the poles have switched in the past, millions of years ago. David Morrison from NASA said, “There is no reason for the poles to switch and there would be no harm anyways, 2012 is a hoax,”. Donald Yeomans, also with NASA, said, “Polar reversal takes place roughly every 400,000 years and the process itself takes decades.”

There is nothing to worry about, the world is safe. According to Neil de Grasse Tyson of NASA, “Earth will be here before, during, and after 2012.” This is just another doomsday date publized by the media and unqualified scientist and historians based on little to wrong eveidence. The Mayan calenders claim that there will be a time of change, not the end of the world. Solar storms are common with the Sun and activity picks up every 11 years, so this will not be a problem until 2013 anyways.

The idea of a giant invisible Planet X that is going to crash into the Earth and send it hurdling off into space without proof is nonsense. Donald Yeomans said, “Extrodinary claims require extrodinary evidance.” and there is none in requards to Planet X. The allignment with the Sun in the center of the galaxy happens every year, although interesting, has no affect on the world or its rotation. And finally, the polar shift will not happen again for thousands of years and even when it does it will be slow and gradual. It is not the end of the world as we know it after all because the Maya Calenders, solar storms, Planet X, Sun allignment, and polar shift will not cause the world to end on December 21, 2012.

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