Is anyone else out there as enraptured as I am with the whole Rapture story coming out of California? This is some good stuff folks – forget about Arnold’s love child and who is running for what – take a moment and focus on the California preacher who got the world’s attention when he predicted that May 21, 2011 was the end of the world. Alas, if you are reading this and not heavily drugged you likely realize we are still here (albeit, the news that someone other than Maria Shriver willingly had sex with Arnold Schwarzenegger may leave you wondering if you are in an alternate universe).
The preacher at the center of the prediction, Harold Camping, now says that he made a error. His new prediction is that the planet will cease to exist on October 21, 2011. According to Camping “it dawned on him that instead of the biblical Rapture in which the faithful would be swept up to the heavens, May 21 had instead been a “spiritual” Judgment Day, which places the entire world under Christ’s judgment” (Associated Press, InForum).
So whether you felt it or not, you were being judged on May 21. And now the world is judging the sanity of this preacher (at least those who weren’t already fairly secure in their assessment of his sanity prior to May 21). Apparently those who are the most disenchanted are his followers who were good to go on May 21 and who were disappointed to still be on firm ground come May 22nd. Now, I don’t want to tempt fate or malign anyone – who knows, Mr. Camping may just be a misunderstood prophet who made a sincere mistake (okay – I don’t personally believe that, but my mom taught me to be nice). But even having given him some latitude I have to ask, is anyone else even remotely concerned that this man has been able to amass followers?
When I read about him only one phrase comes to my mind – Fruit Loop. How is it that he has been able to get sensible folks to step in line with his beliefs but also to spend their own money? Some of his followers gave away their earthly possessions in preparation for the Rapture (although I am not sure what they thought the recipients of those possessions would do with them when the earth was obliterated). Camping didn’t give away his possessions and won’t do so in preparation for October 21st either. Hmmm…imagine that.
This isn’t the first time Camping has incorrectly predicted the end of the world. He also predicted the world would end in 1994 (and if you are asking if he was correct send me a check for $49.95 and I will send you the answer). According to the Associated Press, Camping’s nonprofit reported $18.3 million in donations and assets of more than $104 million in 2009. Again I ask, is anyone else even remotely concerned that this man has been able to amass followers…and their money??
Holy moly – who is this guy and what kind of kool-aid is he giving these folks? And in case you are sensitive to that statement given the Jonestown massacre which occurred under the so-called spiritual guidance of Jim Jones – GOOD – that is my intent. This man apparently has the ears of many. That is frightening. People spent their own money, gave their belongings away and were disappointed that the end of the world didn’t happen. Really? Am I the only one alarmed?
I am not immediately worried about the end of the world, but I am very worried about the state of our world when Camping can amass such a following and evidence so much control over rational beings. Scary stuff and reminiscent of a level of control that is dangerous. I am not an expert on religious doctrine, I have never met Camping and I don’t profess to have direct evidence to dispute his predictions of the end of the world, but I have some smarts and some common sense and I am telling you folks – Fruit Loop. And if I am wrong may God strike me down right here and now!
Day six hundred and eighty-seven of the new forty – obla di obla da