Ticking most of the boxes

(Description: Memo form saying, “Sorry. We tried to rapture you on ……….. But we were unsuccessful because you are: Animal / Heathen / Atheist / Scientist / Sinner / Other. We will attempt another rapture on …….”)

I’m not surprised that I wasn’t raptured. I tick four of the boxes.

Sadly, the man responsible for spreading fear among the credulous has resurfaced, and declared that it really will happen, on 21 October.

There are some sad stories about people who have spent all their life savings following this wretched man’s teaching. I am torn between sympathy for them, and a certain amount of, well, irritation and annoyance that they would be so careless with themselves, and with their trust. Scepticism for the sake of scepticism seems a hollow strategy, but so does simply trusting anyone who comes by with some clever schtick.

Whatever. Given Camping’s spectacular failure to get it right on May 21, perhaps his followers won’t be so foolish next time around.

Many thanks to Julie Fairey for pointing me to the memo.

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9 comments on “Ticking most of the boxes

  1. david winter says:

    I might actually be all of the above… I’m sure there is something quite ‘other’ about me.

    I also can’t help but feel the new date’s been (very nearly) done before

  2. Mindy says:

    I think Camplings church should have to give followers their money back. The church has enough of it after all.

  3. david winter says:

    More seriously, I feel the same way as you about a lot of skeptical topics.

    If church is a big part of someone’s life, and their pastor tells theme evolution is an idea made up by atheists to undercut their faith then of course that person won’t take to evolution, and it’s hard to judge them. Equally, someone that hears a story about vaccines, or fluoride or (I guess I have to include him) Ken Ring and doesn’t dig too deeply is doing themselves a disservice, but it’s hard to get upset about them.

    As for the contemptible fools [this phrase chosen after several others were deemed to intemperate for this blog] that actually create and spread these lies – they deserve the derision they get.

  4. david winter says:

    I thought that one couldn’t be both an atheist and a heathen.

    Ah, I’d never tracked down the definition. Seems you can choose between “A person who does not belong to a widely held religion” [tick] or “A follower of a polytheistic religion; a pagan” [cross].

  5. Mindy says:

    I like this one as well Rapture Notice

    via dexitroboper on LP

  6. Rebecca says:

    I wish that were true, but the cost of admitting that you were wrong (especially when you’ve quit your job, spent your life savings, etc) is much higher for some people – so hanging onto the next date seems a whole lot more sensible.

  7. I saw an interview with a Camping follower who sold his home, quit his job and drove to California to wait for the Rapture outside Camping’s headquarters. He said that he believed because Heaven sounded so much better than Earth. That’s not a stupid person, that’s a profoundly depressed person.

    I suspect a lot of Camping’s followers who actually went through with giving up everything are suffering from some sort of untreated, and likely undiagnosed, mental illness, be it depression, anxiety disorder, etc., and that’s why the end of the world is so attractive to them.

  8. robertguyton says:

    I’d comment but I went.

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