Why Conspiracy Theorists Think The World Is Ending Today

Bad news everybody, according to the Internet’s finest minds the world is going to end today. After humanity survived eclipse after eclipse going right back to the birth of our species, it, apparently, is not going to make it through being briefly in the shade.

Conspiracy theories surrounding April 8th’s total solar eclipse have been as numerous as they are stupid. Some have involved the European Organization for Nuclear Research (CERN), even claiming that the facility is taking time away from its usual research activities in order to contact a demonic entity known as Aiwass. 

Another conspiracy states that there will be a “massive human sacrifice event” that will take place during the eclipse, made to look like a natural disaster. If you’re looking for logic, you will walk away disappointed. The idea is based on the path of the eclipse as plotted on maps crossing with the path of 2017’s eclipse, marking where the sacrifice will begin. Which is sort of akin to believing that you’ll find treasure at the X after finding crossed paths you made in your own Strava data.

A popular idea, leading to the term trending on X (formerly Twitter), is that the eclipse will coincide with the Rapture, the idea held by a small number of Christians that the living and the dead will ascend to heaven to meet God. 

The evidence for this conspiracy theory is, again, entirely vibes-based, and aims to tie the eclipse to Biblical passages. A video posted by conspiracy theorist Alex Jones, for instance, claims that God is using the eclipse to communicate with us (having somehow lost his voice since Biblical times).

“God declared the Sun and the Moon were for signs,” the video says. “The only signs they can give is eclipses. And the nice thing about eclipses, no false prophet can manipulate it.”

Meanwhile, Congresswoman Marjorie Taylor Green claimed on X that “God is sending America strong signs to tell us to repent” in the form of “Earthquakes and eclipses and many more things to come”, to which a community note explained that eclipses occur every 18 months and are predictable well in advance, making them an unusual form of communication.

While prominent conspiracy theorists wink at biblical signs, over on social media less prominent conspiracy theorists are claiming the signs are pointing to a Rapture. One idea, if you can call it that, is that the eclipse is a sign of the apocalypse because the path of totality passes over seven US cities named Nineveh.

“In 2 King 14:25: God commanded Jonah to travel to Nineveh and warn the city of destruction; their evil reached God’s limit. The path of the eclipse over America will pass through towns named Nineveh: directly over those towns in Indiana and Ohio, and close to other Ninevehs elsewhere. The path also crosses close to Jonah, TX,” one such post claims, adding for reasons unfathomable that, “the path of the eclipse in 2017 passed over the Noah’s Ark replica in Kentucky.”

As Snopes points out, the path of totality actually only passes over two towns named Nineveh, making this one a bit of a dud.  Of course, the simplest way to test these conspiracy theories is simply to wait until tomorrow, at which point it will be clear that no apocalypse has taken place. 

In reality, the eclipse is an awesome and interesting celestial event, with the main risks being to your retinas, as well as a potential increase in road traffic accidents. Try to enjoy it for what it is rather than looking for nonsensical signs, because it really should be spectacular.

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