2013…what an ominous sounding year! I’m not given to pointless superstitions, but the negative attributes alleged to belong to the number 13 have pretty much been inculcated in us since we were all small children. So, on this New Year’s Eve in North America I have decided to look ahead at the coming year and see what can be seen.
As we enter the new year things are looking rather doubtful here on planet Earth. We have two major comets due to pass us by this year, and comets have always been seen as harbingers of doom; it’s not the comets’ fault, they are just balls of ice and dust trundling along through space, but at some point in time someone decided that they were ill portents, and throughout history that opinion has been borne out by events during or shortly after their passage. Astronomers tell us that we have a comet passing us this March, and then the big one should – assuming they are right – put on quite a show near the end of the year.
Then we have the increasing frequency of strong to severe earthquakes and volcanic eruptions. Yes, I know, the experts or semi-experts have been saying that this is just an illusion due to the increased global population, more scientific recording equipment and more news coverage. But to those of us who keep track of such things, it’s been pretty apparent that they are getting stronger and more frequent, and now the scientists are starting to talk about this increase openly. We also have to bear in mind that science, for all it’s assumptions of mastery, doesn’t know everything nor have all of the answers; let’s not forget that it wasn’t until the mid-late 60s that the notion of plate tectonics was finally accepted by mainstream science! So for whatever reason, earthquakes and volcanic eruptions are getting stronger and more frequent, and that’s never good news for the people who are affected by them.
Then we have the global economy staggering along, barely keeping itself on its feet. Whether or not Washington is able to avert a plunge over the much discussed fiscal cliff, the global economy is barely keeping its head above the sea of debt that has become the norm. The precarious state of the economy around the world won’t be able to withstand much of a bump, and there are numerous potential bumps coming over the horizon.
And finally, there is all of unrest and war happening in the world. Beyond the bloody civil war in Syria, we have the growing conflict in Mali, unrest throughout the Arab world, violence throughout much of Africa, violence in India, potential violence in the Far East…the list goes on. The probability of a major war erupting this year is pretty high, and the only people who seem to want it to never happen are the poor buggers who will suffer the most from it. Even the current President of the U.S., the man who received a Nobel peace prize before he had a chance to actually earn one, has expanded U.S. military operations – combat via drones – into several new countries. And now we are being pushed toward a Constitutional crisis here in America over gun rights, the new paradigm of ruling by decree, and even attacks on free speech and freedom of religion. The more Washington tries to widen its already expansive control over the American people the more they will push back, just as we’ve always done, only now the office of the president has given itself the means to use the already stretched military against the people they are supposed to protect. No, 2013 isn’t looking very peaceful.
So, in the face of all the doom and the gloom and all of the challenges that lie ahead in the coming year, I want to wish everyone a Happy New Year: may God bless you with wisdom and understanding, with joy and peace in the face of adversity. And may He get us all through the coming year with a minimum of personal turmoil and heartache.
A happy, safe and blessed New Year to you all!