The growth of expectations about end-times events alleged to take shape in 2012 are revitalizing New Age ideals and hopes, according to an analysis by German theologian Matthias Pöhlmann, published in the German journal EZW-Materialdienst (May).
Based on the Mayan calendar, various authors and groups have been claiming for several years now that dramatic events will take place on Dec. 21–22, 2012. There is no consensus on the nature of the event, which is said to be the end of a cycle: depending on different scenarios, it ranges from the end of the world to a “solar tsunami” breaking down all electronic communications, or the beginning of a new global era.
A large number of “channels” and authors have been publishing their views on the coming events. Some of them provide survivalist advice to their readers. The Internet helps spread such ideas in an unprecedented way, eventually impacting popular culture. The movie 2012, which will be launched in November 2009, should contribute to popularize them even further. As was already the case with New Age currents, adherents of which hope that the 2012 prophecies will provide a new impetus, not all forms of expectations concerning the year 2012 are catastrophic.
Several people connect it with a major evolutionary step for humankind and the start of a new cosmic cycle after a transitional period. There is little doubt, writes Pöhlmann, that as soon as year 2012 has passed, new dates will be suggested by authors on the esoteric circuit.
(EZW-Materialdienst, Evangelische Zentralstelle für Weltanschauungsfragen, Auguststrasse 80, 10117 Berlin, Germany)