I was on my home from snowboarding today (thanks to the timely arrival of a snowstorm in the Cascades) thinking of writing this entry. When I got home and turned my TV on, I found an uncanny coincidence between my planned topic and what was currently playing on the ‘History’ Channel (square quotes meant to indicate that the content of the show was not very historical).
Last night, I dreamt that I was with my family and some strange woman showed up to portend events. We were able to see certain symbols which the woman seemed able to decipher, as well as point us to other signs. Among these, she showed me a mirror in which my nose appeared broken, and then in the next moment, my neck seemed to be as well. In my dream, knowing I was planning on going snowboarding today, I wondered if that was meant to predict some calamitous injury to myself.
Now, some people might consider that a bad omen. That’s because some people are superstitious. Indeed, obviously a part of myself considered it an omen, as that’s what I thought in my dream. Suffice it to say, I am home without injury, except perhaps for some sore muscles.
It made me think however… if some injury had befallen me, even I would probably find that uncanny. At most, however, I might consider it a case of self-fulfilling prophecy. Were a similar event to befall a more superstitious person, it would be proof of precognition. However, I bet those people have days like mine all the time– that is, some dream or thought of disaster, followed by no disaster. Had I not been thinking that this would be a good blog entry, I probably would have forgotten all about my dream by the end of the day, as would the superstitious dreamer for whom no injury befell. However, if something bad did happen which could be interpreted to have been foretold, they would certainly not forget it, and would be sure to annoy all listeners of their abilities for years to come.
When I got home, I found the History Channel to have another one of those Nostradamus shows on (I think it was this one). This one includes some “lost” prophecies (really, don’t they all?) in the form of watercolor paintings found bound with some of his writings. Of course, these paintings are full of symbols subject for interpretation (assuming, that is, that it wasn’t just some ancient version of Concentration). Apparently the viewership of the History Channel eats this shit up, when they’re not watching World War II retrospectives.
Among the more hilarious statements, I had to share this:
Experts who have studied the recently discovered Lost Book manuscript… have searched its drawings for significant numbers, and have found plenty. Among them: the number “two”.
I remember watching one of these shows back around the time of the Gulf War that discussed Nostradamus’ alleged prediction of a coming third Antichrist (I guess we had two already: Hitler and your step-mother). Their implication, as I remember, was that Saddam Hussein may be that third Antichrist. Strangely enough, we were about to go to war against Saddam at the time (or had just gone, my memory’s a little hazy).
Well, of course, if Saddam were that Antichrist that would bring about Armageddon, he turned out to be a pretty shabby one. Saddam’s dead, he didn’t get anywhere near the body-count of Hitler or Stalin, he didn’t have any WMDs (unless you count the funk he must have been giving off after living in a tiny underground shelter), and none of my godly friends or relatives have miraculously disappeared yet (I know this, because I haven’t received an email yet indicating such). So… imagine my surprise when this episode of “What Past Events Can We Attribute to Nostradamus’ Predictions?” implied that the coming Antichrist was… wait for it… Steven Gutenburg! Just kidding, of course it was Osama bin Laden.
Obviously, there’s some entertainment value in thinking “what if” about the whole Nostradamus deal. I really wish the History Channel would at least make available a little bit of skepticism, in form of an actual skeptic or two to explain why the rest of the Nostradamus “scholars” are nuttier than a squirrel turd under an oak tree. Instead, the producers decided to fill their remaining time by leaping from one speculation to another.
I admit I wasn’t paying close attention by the end (as I was typing this), but I believe they concluded that Nostradamus was a secret member of the Knights Templar (nevermind that Nostradamus lived from 1503-1566, and the Knights Templar was disbanded and its leaders burned by 1314). The Knights Templar allegedly left some zodiac sign on one of their temples, and Nostradamus (or whoever painted the pictures from the “Lost Book”) painted a scorpion and sun and some dudes or something, which proves conclusively that he was indicating a star near the center of our galaxy and thus predicting either coming floods, or drought and fire (as stars are wont to predict) and a war or something, and the time for this absolutely specific calamity is pinpointed to be somewhere between 1998 and 2012. 2012, of course, corresponds to the end of the Mayan calendar, and the Mayans were absolutely genius in predicting future events (aside from, apparently, their own collapse in the 8th-9th century, and colonization by the Spanish in the 15th).
I, on the other hand, have my own prediction: History Channel will have another Nostradamus show on it before 2012. Let’s see if I can outdo the Nostradamus “experts” in predictive power.
Included below: a dramatic re-enactment of one of Nostradamus’ lost predictions:
Note the presence of these symbols:
- The crescent moon, a symbol of Islam
- A bright star, the symbol of infallible Christianity
- A many-headed beast, with horns, colored purple, signifying Babylon (modern day Iraq), and the Sunni/Shi’a divide (in case you don’t believe me, listen to the accents)
- One head of the beast is sleeping while the other consoles it with a lullaby in some ancient, unpronounceable Satanic tongue, symbolizing al-Maliki’s attempts to pacify the Sunni population; instead he puts himself to sleep, symbolizing the current battle in Basra against rival Shi’a militias.
- Finally, the two beasts embracing in sleep with the word “LOVE” appearing, signifying the abomination of homosexual love.