I have no idea how I missed this, but apparently, the biblical Judgment Day (a.k.a. The Rapture) will occur on May 21, 2011. That’s right. The Rapture will happen THIS SATURDAY. The world will end (by fire) five months later, on October 21.
Well, according to some people. But that’s not the point.
The point is, everyone has their own idea of what will cause the apocalypse and when it will happen. Here we’ve got something biblical in nature (events from the Book of Revelation) and a 2011 date. And don’t forget about December 21, 2012, the last day of the Mayan long count calendar. (Though, if the Rapture happens on Saturday, we won’t have to worry about 2012.)
So I started thinking about different possible causes of the apocalypse. Here are some of the possibilities I came up with:
- Biblical. The world ends according to the biblical apocalypticists, with the Rapture on May 21, 2011 and the end of the world by fire on October 21, 2011.
- Mayan. The world ends with the end of the Mayan long count calendar, on December 21, 2012.
- Other religious. Every religion has its own views about how and when the world will end. Any of them could be right.
- Virus. A mutating supervirus is intentionally or unintentionally unleashed on the world, turning everyone into a zombie. Or something else monster-like.
- Biological warfare. The intentional unleashing of a mutating supervirus or some other sort of mutating biological…something.
- The end of WWIII. Because, let’s face it, WWIII will probably end with a nuclear explosion of some sort.
- Nuclear explosion. Maybe a nuclear weapon (or cache of nuclear weapons) explodes accidentally, or a nuclear reactor has a meltdown. Either way, the result is a nuclear wasteland.
- Asteroid impact. Asteroid Apophis, a large asteroid about 1000 feet in diameter, is expected to pass close to Earth in April of 2029. There’s a slight chance it might hit Earth when it comes back for a second visit in April of 2036. And if Apophis doesn’t hit us, there’s an asteroid somewhere out there that might.
- Alien invasion. Finally! First contact! Only the other guys are here to initiate a hostile takeover of the planet.
Personally, I like the alien invasion idea. But that could be because I’m a geek who likes the idea of the existence of intelligent life elsewhere in the universe. I’d like this idea even more if it involved evil space monkeys. Ahem.
However, I think it’s more likely that we’ll blow ourselves up. Maybe it’ll be the end of World War 3, or maybe it’ll be an accident. Who knows? But, you know, people are fighting all the time, all over the world. And I’m sure weapons that can destroy the planet already exist. More are being researched, designed, and built. So I’d say this one is very possible.
I think the virus idea is also possible. There are a lot of undiscovered viruses and bacteria out there. Who’s to say that one of them doesn’t have the power to turn us all into brain-eating zombies? And if it’s out there, someone will find it. If that someone happens to be evil or out for world domination, well, they might just unleash it on the world. (That plan could backfire pretty quickly, though, if he/she is the first one eaten.)
What about you? What do you think the most likely cause of the apocalypse will be?