5. We've Been Here Before.
Twelve years ago the world was supposed to end. And there were a variety of options. The Christian apocalypse sounded like Transformers meets the Passion of the Christ, and Y2K brought back the old menace Nuclear Armageddon while still making us afraid of toasters. People could chose which global annihilation to expect or fashion their own personal potpourri, "The Antichrist will utilize the technological upheaval to seize control of the globe." And if you were woefully unprepared just head to the local store to buy an end of days survival kit. Personally, I always thought these should consist of a box with a bomb inside. Open the box, boom!, ya dead... take the family with you, because who really wants to endure whatever Hell on Earth arrives? But the point is people have always predicted the world's conclusion.
Haley's Comet, Pat Robertson, Nostradamus, all failed to end the world. But faith in doomsayers is unwavering.
For example, William Miller. In 1840 William Miller made the broadest apocalyptic prediction of all time. Instead of setting the end firmly on one date, he bracketed it proclaiming that sometime between March 21, 1843 and March 21, 1844 the world would end. In fire. Whether this meant the world would take the whole year to burn is open to debate. In any event, almost 100,000 people sold all their possessions and moved to the mountains. When the end didn't come, Miller did what every professional prognosticator does: he changed the date. His second swing didn't pan out either, but ever undaunted, Miller and his remaining followers formed the Seventh-Day Adventists, whose sense the end is always on the immediate horizon is apparently the basis for a fulfilling spiritual existence. There's nothing like living in constant terror to make you appreciate what you have.
4. Solipsism: a philosophy for narcissists.
To over simplify things, Solipsism is the philosophical belief that only one's own mind truly exists. In other words, when I go to sleep the world stops... and when I die it ends. Ultimately, this means reality is entirely a personal construct, so if you reject the idea of 2012 being the end of all time it can't possibly happen. But before you return to your bong in a fit, keep in mind the down side. If this model of reality is true that means no one can die in 2012.
This seemingly supports the idea 2012 is the year everything goes down the shit pit but keep in mind the solipsist never dies. Only the phantoms of the solipsist's imagination ever "die". The obvious point being: so long as you don't die the world won't end.
For many, this might sound antithetical. However, hold all protests till the end.
People often assume everyone will be saved from whatever nightmare scenario eradicates this planet. So perhaps a reassessment of what it means to "save the world" is in order.
No one wants to see the movie where the protagonist, upon learning the world will end, fatalistically decides, "Well, we've had a good run. Ima just sit here and watch it all burn." NO! When there's impending doom there's always someone to fly the untested rocket straight onto the flaming rock and selflessly die to save us all, or into the Earth, the sun, the ocean, the solipsist, etc. Essentially, fiction has instilled the delusion that there will be, at least, five people willing to die for the rest of us. However, regardless of whatever intrepid motley crew sets out, the government has an Ark-like backup plan. As such, there's always a fucking bunker somewhere... which is sort of rooted in truth.
During the Cold War, the threat of nuclear annihilation resulted in the construction of several underground bunkers. The sole purpose of these bunkers was to spare politicians from the nuclear onslaught they (the politicians) would probably cause.
The point being in some scenarios only a small portion of the population can be saved. There's only so much room in the bunker, or the space station, or whatever. Someone is getting left behind to watch Planet X fly right up the Earth's ass. Because at the end of the end of days, stopping doomsday isn't about saving the planet, it's about saving the human race. In which case, we don't need everyone just the people society deems worthy. And the (often self proclaimed) worthiest person is whoever built the bunker, the spaceship, the MacGuffin. That way, when the end comes, some of humanity will survive. It just might not be the people we want carrying on.
If the end approaches as predicted, we're not going to be saved by some dude cut from stone with six pack abs and undeniable charm. More likely, a spindly dweeb in coke bottle glasses who no woman would ever touch will be our salvation. Assisted by his mousy female counterpart, with whom he has painfully awkward conversations, he'll devise a way to turn the Large Hardon Collider into a cannon. After all, some other dork has been tracking the planetoid Nibiru for some time. It's not like giant astrological bodies just appear out of nowhere. The CERN Cannon will then be used to blast the advancing body out of the cosmos, saving the planet Earth.
Of course, there's also Nerds' inherent skepticism which, when coupled with the scientific method, can be used to disprove the validity of any doomsday prediction. However, the aforementioned is so much cooler.
1. The Mayans
There is no science to back up the supposed Doomsday Prophecy, though there is plenty of pseudoscience... thanks History Channel. But nowadays people rarely feel the need for facts. So, although I don't expect everyone across time to think like me, I can't help pointing out Mayan architecture.
It's fucking epic. Have you seen Chichen Itza? It's so amazing it inspired a chicken recipe, and that's the least of their accomplishments. The Maya constructed pyramids and buildings as impressive as anything found in Egypt, Rome, or Greece. Yet, we're supposed to believe these people labored for years to build these structures knowing full well they'd be wiped off the face of existence. It may sound fatalistic, but how hard would you work on something you knew was not going to exist once you finished? Perhaps some kind of short sighted egotism insists on a legacy, no matter how temporary, but come on. No one is going to break their ass wide open to build something that'll be swallowed by a black hole.
But this could just be me. Not everyone is so fatalistic. As such, consider this: If the Maya could predict the obliteration of the planet with pinpoint accuracy, setting it firmly on December 21, 2012, how did they not see the Spanish Conquest coming?