Thursday, September 29, 2016

Black Moon Apocalypse

Tomorrow night will bring a "black moon," described by this article as a lunar eclipse so complete that the Moon will practically vanish from the sky. The article goes on to explain that this phenomenon is unusual but not especially so, happening about every three years. But that doesn't stop the doomers out there from arguing that this time, for sure, it heralds the Apocalypse because it follows a solar eclipse that took place earlier this month. As usual, I'll believe it when I see it.

The spectacular Black Moon occurs when the illuminated side of the moon is caught in the shadow of the Earth, making it virtually impossible to see. The phenomenon happens roughly every 32 months, but this one holds special significance due to other universal activity this month.

The first day of September brought with it a ‘ring of fire’ solar eclipse – where the moon falls in line with the Earth and the sun above Africa, making it appear as if the sun had darkened. This, coupled with the Black Moon, has got many fearing the worst.

One conspiracy theorist wrote on Facebook: “Those signs are letting us know that Jesus is soon coming. We are approaching the end of our world and the end of life on Earth for all human being. Every day, we have to come closer to our saviour Jesus Christ. For none can escape for what is coming for the Earth.”

Another wrote: “The Lord will make the moon turn red as blood … and turn black. Sounds familiar?” When the rare double phenomenon is linked to the Bible, it can make for terrifying reading for Christians and conspiracy theorists.

Or, really, for anyone who shares their special kind of stupid. The Apocalypse, as modern evangelical Christians expound it, only dates back to William Miller in the early nineteenth century. Early Christians, including Jesus himself, would barely have recognized it at all. Similarly, for some reason, literalists who believe that it describes a distinct future event completely disregard the words of Jesus the Gospel of Matthew, that "But of that day and that hour knoweth no man."

It seems pretty clear to me that the words of Jesus should override any of the claims made by the author of Revelation, and it should also be noted that this was the position of most Christians until Miller decided that his elaborate timelines actually meant something. But Miller was proved wrong twice in his own lifetime, and the predictions made by every denomination descended from his Millerite movement have likewise always failed.

So is it at last time that we just give it up, after almost two centuries? I sure think so. And I'll make the same prediction that I do whenever a new date surfaces. Friday will come and go without any fanfare, and come Saturday we will still all be here. That prediction's a sure winner - so far, it has never failed me.

UPDATE: So as it turns out, the linked article is even wrong about the nature of the "black moon." It's not an eclipse - that is, it is not caused by the illuminated side of the Moon passing into the Earth's shadow. It's just a regular New Moon that happens to be the second one occurring this month - and freaking out over something that entirely artificial is even dumber than freaking out over an unusual eclipse. Good job, doomers!

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