The signs are all there, there is more of this and less of that than there used to be, these people are doing the things this culture or prophet predicted and it is only a matter of time before the rest of the thing he/they predicted will also happen and *poof*...
You can clear all appointments for next week because, well, there won't be a next week...
Of course, people do rather disagree about the method the Earth will decide upon for her Big Exit or, at least, ours but we all know it's coming, right? Stands to reason doesn't it? Bound to happen sooner or later...
I hardly think this is a new phenomenon...
Back when the world was, at least from a matter of the perspective of most people, a smaller place, the End of All Things could happen fairly often. People did not know anything about other countries; gosh some people didn't know about cities even! If the river burst its banks and flooded a fertile little valley, killing everyone except a few (who'd die later of disease), that's the end of the world. It's certainly the end of it for them.
The Romans were convinced that civilisation would just stop if their Empire ceased to exist to, in a manner of speaking, the world would end because, so they said, all would descend into barbarity and chaos, ultimately ending all people worth thinking about.
Smelly tribespeople who couldn't speak Latin did not count, apparently.
This raises the question which we think is a vital one to consider and, perhaps, answer;
WHAT WOULD WE HAVE TO LOSE IN ORDER FOR IT TO BE CONSIDERED "THE END"
All the humans die or, at least, most of them.
Civilisation is destroyed and our comforts with it
The internet goes down for more than a day
Our environment is wiped out and there is nothing of natural beauty left
These are, I think, the Big Four. A fitting number, I feel, because we also have the Four Stereotyped Animal-Riders of The End Bit. The role they will play in final events does vary. Will they just ride around and watch? Will they get involved directly? Are they simply good metaphor? Nobody really knows because they only show up the one time and do not, it would appear, carry out drills or rehearsals. The Big Show is, it would appear, very hush-hush and need-to-know.
Now, I know what you're thinking; there are countless ways the world could end, is not the above list too simplified?
No. It is not.
It doesn't really matter how all the humans die out; be it aliens, pandemic, natural disaster, getting dinosaured into fossils; they die out. Gone.
Whether civilisation is ended by a zombie plague, another less virulent pandemic, talking apes with great charisma, different aliens, a robot uprising or any combination of the above, it is also gone.
If rebooting the router or unplugging it then plugging it back in again 30-60 seconds later does not work then it truly is a lost cause.
However the environment is ravaged and destroyed, it will simply be a matter of deciding who is to blame. If they are dead then it makes the process much easier, utlimately.
The fact that there are so many ways, scenarios, and methods it is considered are 'canon' or 'popular' for the Big Finish should, perhaps, set your mind wandering towards where I think it should.
A Popular Passtime
Take a look inside of a bookstore, on Amazon, on Netflix or similar, at the movies or at videogames. We do love a good apocalypse don't we? The most popular forms of entertainment all focus around either;
An imminently arriving disaster that only the heores can avert.
A disaster already happened and survivers are trying to rebuild
Clues to a previous disaster ae uncovered and the heroes must tell the world to prevent a similar thing happening again.
The hero knows what's going to happen but no-one believes them then it either; gets averted dead on time or happens anyway.
Fantasy or Steampunk or Mad Max style world arises from the ruins of the old world.
Vampires or other mythical/magical creatures regain dominance with less humans around.
Totalitarian regime arises "to protect" survivors of said disaster or previously benevolent organisation/government goes that way, drunkon the power of how much humanity needs them.
In essence, we do love a good disaster or look at what might happen to humanity after one. It could be said that humans are rather a dramatic species.
You see, they are rather obsessed with the extinction of their species or, at least, the extermination of a large proportion of it. We wouldn't really call that a great survival instinct...
This past 50 years alone we have had;
Global nuclear war any time now, you wait and see
Terrorist apocalypse and "Holy" war
The Millennium Bug
Predicted year 2000 one-time meteor, magnetic field polarity switch/other
Predicted year 2012 Mayan apocalypse
Various delayed Raptures
Various global pandemics
Yet here we remain. Of course it has also been a period of near constant wars in the Middle East that people do not really talk about any more; the lives and worlds of a great many have ended as a result of those.
The point is that it appears that humanity actually wants some dramatic event with stirring orchestral music to unexpectedly occur to the world in spite of the fact that it would kill millions including some people they know or care about. Seems odd to me.
Either that or that is what "they" want us to be thinking about. As we have mentioned in previous articles, "they" control our governments and our media; they control what we see and even what we think. Of course, we can no more agree on who "they" are than we can on how the world will end.
There is a serious point being raised though; we watch for patterns and concordance and wonder whether any of you have noticed anything recently? We'll leave it there for now because we do not wish to repeat what we covered in other articles.
However our sense of always living under the weight of imminent but nebulous doom is created, we cannot deny that it is there and could, were someone of a mind, be made use of...
The world is going to end just like everyone is going to die. Sooner or later it is the one fact of which we can be certain. What each of us considers "the world" will end and none of truly know what comes next. Therein lies, perhaps, the root of our fascination; the potential for our very personal world to end quite abruptly one day.
So, we face that fear by entertaining ourselves with disasters averted or a better life for all on the other side.