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Marketing the End of the World

by David Yeagley · December 20, 2012 · 14 Comments ·

It’s in the running now. Enough catastrophes have happened, of all manner and scope, that our collective, human psychological reaction calls for a major reality overhaul of some kind. As cyclic circumstantial crises loom up on the earth, the mind of man has developed a sort of Jungian archetype in response. We call it, The End of the World.

And it has consumed society before, fairly recently. In the mid-19th century, even Edgar Allan Poe took it seriously–as seriously as he ever took anything.


The Amazon display of my book on Poe allows
a certain amount of reading of this text. Have a look.

Or is this an understanding based on the traditions of Western Civilization? Is a cataclysmic ‘end of the world’ only a Biblical teaching? Obviously not, although the spectacular Hebrew concepts of sudden existence and sudden annihilation may have been first, oral or recorded. Genesis is certainly among the earliest depictions of cataclysm. The Hebrew version of reality always associates cataclysm with collective guilt and universal punishment. Certainly there is great moral capital to be gained from that take on reality. Indeed, the cause of catastrophe is unmistakable in scripture: it is the result of human rebellion against the Creator.

Without delving into the devil, or the Satanic-based aversion to reality, suffice it to say that the Adversary has limits (else he would be equal with God), and therefore, God is in ultimate control over disaster–even if Satan directly caused it. God is still manager of all that occurs. This is the profundity of Hebrew theodicy.

But, according to scripture, the world has ended before. (Genesis 6:5-8.) It is referred to as “the Flood.” None but eight human beings were willing to accept the escape route (Noah’s ark). Yet, the earth and water remained. All was simply turned inside out, the physiological relationship, the locale, the balance was simple rearranged. It was still earth and water. Of course, then came the message of a second ending–by fire. In this one, “the elements shall melt with a fervent heat,” but the earth will be made new. (See, Isaiah 64:1-3; 66:15,16; 65:27; I Peter 3:10; Revelation 1:7; 20:9,10; 21:1,4.)

And again, the number of humanity willing to avail themselves of the escape route (–in this second case, the Ark of the Covenant, or, the blood of the Lamb on the Seat of Mercy) is miniscule compared to the population of the earth. This is always part of the Biblical presentation: the saved are few in number. The Hebrew scriptures clearly depict the present earth as under a curse, and humanity naturally averse to its Creator. Therefore, or, as likely, only a precious few are willing to look at reality differently. Only a rare breed divorce themselves from this world–and remain sane. The “religious” of the world are generally not those among the divorced. As Jesus said, “Straight is the gate, and narrow is the way which leadeth unto life, and few there be that find it.” Matthew 7:14.

The matter of being saved as being few, elite, or chosen, (as opposed to being merely interested, or being an enthusiast, or being openly averse), may also be some profound Jungian archetype–so profound it may be exclusively Jewish. It may be a distinct collective image of the Jewish psyche alone. Of course, it is carried into the Christian faith as well.

And, in a sense, it is simply the result of concentration, or perfectionism. Perfection requires waste, in a peculiar sense. The sculptor chips away much stone to shape his image. Even the carpenter shaves off a lot of wood to square up his lumber. The performing artist must practice hours and hours, to perfect only a few moments of physical triumph. (It is not then an exclusively Jewish archetype that perfection is the rarer state, if even when speaking of human moral character.)

But to escape the ultimate catastrophe; to be saved from the horrors awaiting the natural world, the convulsions around the globe–what state of mind, body, or life shall procure that treasure?

Clearly, catastrophe is on the increase, of every grade. Thus, the market for redemption. How do we get out of it? Buy gold? Stock up on supplies? Head for the mountains? Vote Republican? Pile up guns and ammo? Watch TV news?

Who’s in charge here? Rudyard Kipling once wrote, “If you can keep your head when all about you are losing theirs and blaming it on you,” you’ll make it, at least in one sense. You’ll have escaped the demonstrable errors of hysteria–ever so common among the “low information voters,” as Rush Limbaugh calls the morally indolent (or “morons,” or “lemmings”). But will you escape the end of the world? Will having master some mental exercise of self-control redeem you from the cataclysm?

There will be no cataclysm, you might say. If there is, it won’t end everything. The earth will rejuvenate as it was designed to. Some such construct of thought will provide present psychological relief from any too real sense of fear.

In any case, the end of the world is becoming a popular subject. The Mayan bit is not particularly outstanding, actually. Just because it is not an American scientific theory doesn’t make it’s lure of specific dates to be any less foolish or extravagant. Our scientists urge global warming upon us. Modernity has numerous prophets of doom. It’s a forceful sell. It can get disruptive and disturbing to society, and with a government like our present one in Washington, such apocalyptic surges will likely be outlawed as dangerous to society.

In the mean time, we probably do very well to ponder our options here. I think we should beware of moral indolence, of shirking responsibilities, of avoiding uncomfortable encounters, all in the name of ‘keeping our heads about us.’ We mustn’t cripple ourselves by our own calculations; yet, we must be flexible enough to allow ourselves to be saved.

So then, it is probably a likely scenario that, whatever the Bible says about the end, every religious profiteer will be feverish in his pursuit of the millennium. Every conceivable scriptural interpretation will have its following. This is America, land of free enterprise and competition. That’s how we perfect things. Even Islam looks for a cataclysmic end–which they believe themselves obligated to bring about by violence. (Speaking of violence, it is the ultimate condition of human depravity which caused the Lord to destroy the earth the first time. Genesis 6:11.) It is abundantly clear that there is a profound, conscious foreboding in the world at this time in history. Everyone has a take on it.

That being the case, I would not look for redemption among any overwhelming majority.

Posted by David Yeagley · December 20, 2012 · 8:26 pm CT · ·

Tags: Bad Eagle Journal · Christianity · Jews · Media · Politics · Religion




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14 responses so far ↓

  • 1 David Yeagley // Dec 20, 2012 at 8:50 pm   

    Just looked at Drudge!

    Media outnumber doomsayers in Turkish ‘haven’…
    Fearful ‘end of world’ callers flood NASA…
    New Agers hope Dec. 21 brings new era…
    Scientists foretell cataclysms that could bring on Doomsday…
    1,000 cult members arrested in China…
    The end — or a ‘cosmic dawn’?
    ,a href=”http://www.smh.com.au/lifestyle/apocalypse-now–or-at-1011pm-to-be-precise-20121220-2bpgi.html”>Doomsdayers gather in Australia…

    Prowl for final sex romp in NY…
    ‘Preppers’ go underground…
    Freakout begins on ‘unlucky’ 2013…
    Says DRUDGE:

    APOCALYPSE NOW!

    I’m quite sure similar activities were in full swing–before the Flood. Business is business. But the end does come. Only, when?

  • 2 Thrasymachus // Dec 20, 2012 at 9:57 pm   

    We have to be just a little careful, though, about predictions. I’ve heard preachers give predictions and lived to see them NOT come true.

    I’ve also talked with people of the WWII generation, who were children at the time, and they told me that their elders — some Christian men and women — at the time believed that Adolf Hitler was the Anti-Christ. Today there are those who believe the current American president is the “Son of Perdition.” I think that both are wrong in this.

    What we do know is that our Western Civilization is seemingly dying. It is undergoing continuous, relentless fundamental change that means it can no longer possibly be what it once was. This is unquestionably a kind or form of death.

    Only the patient can survive tumultuous change. Faith generates patience when it is true Faith.

    Will there be an end of History? Well, if the history of the human race is analogous to the life of a man, qua individual, then it too must someday end, certainly. At least in the way we now know it.

  • 3 Following Him // Dec 21, 2012 at 12:11 am   

    Dr. Yeagley, you said: “… that the Adversary has limits (else he would be equal with God), and therefore, God is in ultimate control over disaster–even if Satan directly caused it. God is still manager of all that occurs.”

    I’m in total agreement with you. May I add …

    “God must be in total control of everything created … everything. That’s part of being Sovereign. If there is even one molecule that is not under His control, one tiny little speck running around in God’s created universe that He is not in control of … just one … then that means that God is not in total control of what He made. Do you know what that is alluding to? God is not God. If anything is outside of His authority, outside of His control … then He is no longer God over all things … and that can not be.”

    Thank you once again for helping me understand a little more about mankind.

    Blessings … Carl

  • 4 Bonus Gift // Dec 21, 2012 at 8:22 am   

    Two things:
    1. As you concluded: “I would not look for redemption among any overwhelming majority.” I agree; and given that many/most/all of the current cataclysmic events of our day are caused by a few men (actually one or more groups) but supported by the majority through false propaganda and other forms of brainwashing, it can only be a small minority that will see it coming.
    2. Regarding the Kipling quote (“If you can keep your head when all about you are losing theirs and blaming it on you …”; and of which I was woefully unaware), and comparing it to a quote I have often cited: “If you can keep your head while others are losing theirs, perhaps you have misjudged the situation.“ (Gustav Hasford, The Short Timers – which is the book the movie Full Metal Jacket was based on), I had to laugh at my ignorance of Poe. In the future I will give both authors their due, but more to Poe.
    Thanks for the Poe quote; and although a cliche, you truly ”can learn something every day”. Also, I would add that only a precious few will likely properly see it coming and properly diagnose the real reason(s) of the cause(s). In short, the trick isn’t to be right or wrong, it is being right for the right reason(s) and/or being wrong and knowing why you were wrong for the right reason(s). Thus, one must not only be insightful while the world is burning around you, but, in addition, you must understand the why, anything short of that and you are only fooling yourself. Finally, and timing is another matter altogeher. For example, that the US in its current form will end is likely, when it will end may not be humanly discernable with much precision (e.g., over the next decade, and with certain proverbial wheels already set in motion long ago). Anyway, thanks again for the Poe quote, it made my week.

  • 5 David Yeagley // Dec 21, 2012 at 12:37 pm   

    Maybe there’s a place for Shakespeare’s Hamlet in this: “To be, or not to be.” To be aggressive, to commit, or to withdraw, to not become involved. We can’t join everything, we can’t be a part of everything; we have to chose that to which we will commit. The responsibility, the burden of choice–separates the men from the boys, the true citizen from the lemming.

    Most voters, “low information voters,” are joiners. Followers. Trenders. Faddists. It takes real strength to think for yourself. Even if you come to a mistaken conclusion, you’re still more of a man.

    On the other hand, I didn’t design any of my clothes, any car, or the architecture of house I live in. Sometimes, you do just go with the flow.

    It’s all a bloody mix, I tell ya!

  • 6 Thrasymachus // Dec 21, 2012 at 4:22 pm   

    “On the other hand, I didn’t design any of my clothes, any car, or the architecture of house I live in. Sometimes, you do just go with the flow.” — David Yeagley

    Not to worry! At the beginning of the REPUBLIC, Plato addresses this. The division of labor is a necessity for civilization. Plato also has Socrates say that the people ought, ideally, to be content with very few “luxuries.” A very simple, Amish style life is preferred — but not yielded to or advocated — in Plato’s book.

  • 7 David Yeagley // Dec 21, 2012 at 7:50 pm   

    We certainly can’t go with the flow when it comes to salvation–at least the kind of salvation the Bible talks about, like, eternal life. The message comes again and again: most won’t make it.

    Therefore, whatever is intensely popular, with masses of followers, obviously is not the way, even though it seems right, and is definitely “the flow.”

    Some kind of psychological logistic here.

  • 8 Bonus Gift // Dec 22, 2012 at 4:11 am   

    Salvation or not, I would distinguish between fads and fashion type things vs. enduring truth. The evil among us, at least those in positions of power, often throw out things like “bread and circuses” or the next “reality show”, for example, in order not just to distract from the important parts of life but to introduce so much noise into the process that it is well nigh impossible to filter out the truth. For example, and one of my current favorite issues, is the economic solution to too much debt. Those in power say the solution to too much debt is more debt. Historically, we know that, and outside of very unusual and very temporary circumstances, the solution to too much debt is simply less debt (typically it is the extreme opposite, default, whether it be announced or not), or at least no more of it and certainly not more. This has been a fact going back oh about since Christ’s days. It’s really so simple and straightforward that small children get it. Again, when you hit the debt wall it’s time to stop taking on more debt; yet we are told the opposite of the truth (and that in my book is pure unadulterated evil).For me true evil is knowing the truth (or even not knowing it and knowing you don’t know) yet actively trying to get others to pay the price for your lies.

    How about the “fiscal cliff”? What is the problem with this somewhat or totally manufactured “fiscal cliff” issue? Well the powers that be tell us that we spend too much and take in too low of taxes. It is made to appear like we just have to increase taxes and lower spending somewhat and all will be fine. The truth is that we spend way too much, and have massively promised too much, yet those in power do not want to be associated with the inevitable realization that we cannot forever spend more than we take in (the communist Demonrats and RINOs; i.e., the truth is that in the long run the budget must balance; as there is really no such thing as a ‘free lunch’). In fact, two evil Keynesians/communists wrote a book relaying the truth (Reinhart and Rogoff’s “This Time is Different”), yet they go on talk shows and explain that the solution to imbalanced fiscal policy (i.e., the government spending too much) is for the government to spend more and take on more debt in our names. So for the evil ones the solution to too much government spending is more spending. Yet, we know (and even children know) that the solution to too much government spending is simple, the government needs to spend less and most likely even take in less in taxes (the opposite of that which the communist media and joined at the hip politicians and academics suggest). In short, when we focus on fads and fashions of our cultural Marxist overlords instead of the hard fought simple historical truth we are not just lost but destined for hell on Earth. It is not salvation I seek but the truth here and now.

    Oh and I may have forgot to add that the solution to drugged out psychotics having stolen guns and used them innocent people isn’t taking the guns away from honest forthright citizens. Evil ones never want the truth, they either change the subject or simply refuse to argue and try to bring in contradictory emotions as they shout out their lies. Again, for me it’s not so much about salvation as seeking the truth; and once I have the truth then I will seek salvation.

  • 9 Asaph // Dec 22, 2012 at 10:00 am   

    There is, of course, a bottom line – we are all under the control of two powers, two minds: God or Satan. There is no in between, no neutral ground. As Christ said – we are either with Him, or against Him. One who is not fully surrendered to the Spirit of God is under the control of another power. No human is stronger than the powers engaged in this invisible struggle for supremacy over the human race. We are free to choose Christ as Lord. Until we do, we remain a subject of the Adversary of souls. Most hate such a thought. They recoil at not being their own master. So they invent various mind games to see to it they are in control. They fall under deceptions and delusions as a result. They follow the multitude living basic outward morals and figure they are safe.

    Ultimately, because of this connection to God we either have or do not have (through new spiritual birth and life), the bottom line is not what we know, but what we are.

    I reckon when the final warnings are given multiplied millions will regard it as the truth and be satisfied because they know the truth they will be saved from destruction. But knowing truth is not enough. Knowing every detail of what is coming (if it could be known) will not secure safety. Paul said only those who love the truth will not fall under delusions coming. Christ said we must be sanctified by the truth. Head knowledge is not enough.

    If Limbaugh believes the “low information” group are the problem, I believe he is wrong. The “low patriotism” group lacking true love of God and country, is the problem. The problem is not Obama and never has been. The problem is a gutless or elitist Congress and always has been. The problem is not even evil politicians. The problem is hypocrisy in the churches of our day which have no message and no power to stand armored in Christ and fend evil off. In America, anyway, and all the West, society is crumbling because the professed Christian church has joined the ‘empire’ to one degree or another. It has been converted. And the end draws near.

  • 10 Thrasymachus // Dec 22, 2012 at 8:33 pm   

    There is an interesting article on VDare about the Left’s ongoing War against Christmas.

  • 11 Bonus Gift // Dec 23, 2012 at 3:11 am   

    And how about this one:
    http://jonrappoport.wordpress.com/2012/12/21/the-mind-control-qualities-of-brian-williams-diane-sawyer-and-scott-pelley/
    ?

  • 12 Bonus Gift // Dec 23, 2012 at 3:34 am   

    Or how could you not like one titled “Merry Christmas Infidel”?
    http://www.counter-currents.com/2012/12/merry-christmas-infidels-3/

  • 13 Thrasymachus // Dec 23, 2012 at 8:33 am   

    The Multicultural Agenda is a “We Hate White Europeans — let’s get rid of them!” program. The modern Christian church, sadly, is going along with this because of fresh error in their latest End-Times theology interpretation.

  • 14 Asaph // Dec 29, 2012 at 9:37 am   

    Funny thing about December 25th. If liberals warring against Christmas knew their facts all they would really have to do is explain that Dec 25 is an ancient pagan holiday festival which the paganized Roman Church took and made into a “Christian” festival.

    “Christmas” is Christ Mass, and it is a Roman Catholic holy day. Why Protestants (who once eschewed the day, generally) are now so entwined in it and Easter, another totally pagan festival, is interesting, indeed.

    Liberals, with all their typical feasting and revelry at this time of year, are just keeping the holidays as they were generally kept in ancient Rome.

    Putting “Christ back into Christmas” is dubious at best.

    There is a reason God had no pleasure in stating the day of His Son’s birth. The current seasonal affairs of parties, merchandising, and “merry making” show why.

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