Contemporary apocalyptic movements, Christian or Islamic, some violent, some not, all appear to share fantasies of a violent end, and they affect our politics profoundly. The apocalyptic mind can be demonising - that is to say, there are other groups, other faiths, that it despises for worshipping false gods, and these believers of course will not be saved from the fires of hell. And the apocalyptic mind tends to be totalitarian - which is to say that these are intact, all-encompassing ideas founded in longing and supernatural belief, immune to evidence or its lack, and well-protected against the implications of fresh data.
Consequently, moments of unintentional pathos, even comedy, arise - and perhaps something in our nature is revealed - as the future is constantly having to be rewritten, new anti-Christs, new Beasts, new Babylons, new Whores located, and the old appointments with doom and redemption quickly replaced by the next. Not even a superficial student of the Christian apocalypse could afford to ignore the work of Norman Cohn. His magisterial The Pursuit of the Millennium was published 50 years ago and has been in print ever since.
This is a study of a variety of end-time movements that swept through northern Europe between the 11th and 16th centuries. These sects, generally inspired by the symbolism in the Book of Revelation, typically led by a charismatic prophet who emerged from among the artisan class or from the dispossessed, were seized by the notion of an impending end, to be followed by the establishing of the Kingdom of God on earth. In preparation for this, it was believed necessary to slaughter Jews, priests and property owners.
Fanatical rabbles, tens of thousands strong, oppressed and often starving and homeless, roamed from town to town, full of wild hope and murderous intent. The authorities, church and lay, would put down these bands with overwhelming violence.
A few years or a generation later, with a new leader, and a faintly different emphasis, a new group would rise up. It is worth remembering that the impoverished mob that trailed behind the knights of the first crusades started their journey by killing Jews in the thousands in the Upper Rhine area. These days, when Muslims of radical tendency pronounce their formulaic imprecations against "Jews and Cru-saders", they would do well to remember that both Jewry and Islam were victims of the crusades.
Now, the slaughter has abated, but what strikes the reader of Cohn's book are the common threads that run between medieval and contemporary apocalyptic thought. First, and in general, the resilience of the end-time forecasts - time and again, for years, the date is proclaimed, nothing happens, and no one feels discouraged from setting another date.
Second, the Book of Revelation spawned a literary tradition that kept alive in medieval Europe the fantasy, derived from the Judaic tradition, of divine election. Christians, too, could now be the Chosen People, the saved or the Elect, and no amount of official repression could smother the appeal of this notion to the unprivileged as well as the unbalanced.
Third, there looms the figure of a mere man, apparently virtuous, risen to eminence, but in reality seductive and Satanic - he is the anti-Christ, and in the five centuries that Cohn surveys, the role is fulfilled by the Pope, just as it frequently is now. Finally, there is the boundless adaptability, the undying appeal and fascination of the Book of Revelation itself, the central text of apocalyptic belief.
When Christopher Columbus arrived in the Americas, making landfall in the Bahaman islands, he believed he had found, and was fated to find, the Terrestrial Paradise promised in the Book of Revelation. He believed himself to be implicated in God's planning for the millennial kingdom on earth. The scholar Daniel Wojcik in his brilliant account of apocalyptic thought in America, "The end of the world as we know it" quotes from Columbus's record of his first journey: "God made me the messenger of the new heaven and the new earth of which he spoke in the Apocalypse of St John Five centuries later, the United States, responsible for more than four-fifths of the world's scientific research and still a land of plenty, can show the world an abundance of opinion polls concerning its religious convictions.
The litany will be familiar. Ninety per cent of Americans say they have never doubted the existence of God and are certain they will be called to answer for their sins.
Fifty-three per cent are creationists who believe that the cosmos is 6, years old, 44 per cent are sure that Jesus will return to judge the living and the dead within the next 50 years. Only 12 per cent believe that life on earth has evolved through natural selection without the intervention of supernatural agency. In general, belief in end-time biblical prophecy, in a world purified by catastrophe and then redeemed and made entirely Christian and free of conflict by the return of Jesus in our lifetime, is stronger in the United States than anywhere on the planet and extends from marginal, ill-educated, economically deprived groups, to college-educated people in the millions, through to governing elites, to the very summits of power.
The social scientist JW Nelson notes that apocalyptic ideas "are as American as the hot dog".outer-edge-design.com/components/without/2023-cellphone-number.php
A Day of Judgment () - IMDb
Wojcik reminds us of the ripple of anxiety that ran round the world in April when President Reagan expressed that he was greatly interested in the biblical prophecy of imminent Armageddon. To the secular mind, the polling figures have a pleasantly shocking, titillating quality - one might think of them as a form of atheist's pornography.
But perhaps we should enter a caveat before proceeding. It might be worth retaining a degree of scepticism about these polling figures. For a start, they vary enormously - one poll's 90 per cent is another's 53 per cent. From the respondent's point of view, what is to be gained by categorically denying the existence of God to a complete stranger with a clipboard?
What is the Day of Judgment?
And those who tell pollsters they believe that the Bible is the literal word of God from which derive all proper moral precepts, are more likely to be thinking in general terms of love, compassion and forgiveness rather than of the slave-owning, ethnic cleansing, infanticide, and genocide urged at various times by the jealous God of the Old Testament.
Furthermore, the mind is capable of artful compartmentalisations; in one moment, a man might confidently believe in predictions of Armageddon in his lifetime, and in the next, he might pick up the phone to inquire about a savings fund for his grandchildren's college education or approve of long-term measures to slow global warming. Or he might even vote Democrat, as do many Hispanic biblical literalists. In Pennsylvania, Kansas and Ohio, the courts have issued ringing rejections of Intelligent Design, and voters have ejected creationists from school boards.
In the Dover case in , Judge John Jones III, a Bush appointee, handed down a judgment that was not only a scathing dismissal of the prospect of supernatural ideas imported into science classes, but was an elegant, stirring summary of the project of science in general, and of natural selection in particular, and a sturdy endorsement of the rationalist, Enlightenment values that underlie the Constitution.
Muslims believe that at the end of time, all human beings will have to face God and account for their deeds, good and bad. God will judge them accordingly, assigning reward or punishment.
The time of the Day of Judgment is not specified in the Quran but is understood to be near. Its depiction is similar to biblical accounts, with earthquakes, moving mountains, the sky splitting open, heaven being rolled back, the sun ceasing to shine, stars being scattered and falling upon the earth, oceans boiling over, graves opening, the earth bringing forth hidden sins as well as lost stories and the dead themselves, and people vainly trying to flee divine wrath.
Everyone will bow before God.
CARD KINGDOM - FROM SEATTLE TO THE WORLD!
God is our Creator and Sustainer. He created for us whatever is in the earth. All the blessings and good things we have are from Him. Actually, the main purpose of our creation is to worship God alone and to obey Him, as God has said in the Holy Quran This life we live today is a very short life. The unbelievers on the Day of Judgment will think that the life they lived on earth was only a day or part of a day, as God has said:. Did you then think that We had created you in jest without any purpose , and that you would not be returned to Us in the Hereafter?
So, God is exalted, the True King. None has the right to be worshipped but Him