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The end intrigues humanity. For millennia, faiths worldwide foretold how it happens – earthquakes, evil rising, saviors coming, new eras dawning. While details differ, common threads emerge: decay gives way to renewal, righteousness prevails after tribulation. From the Bible’s Book of Revelation to the Hopi Blue Star, here are 17 apocalyptic prophecies from major religions and cultures that envision the end as a transformation rather than obliteration.
Aztec: Movement of the Suns
The Aztecs predicted a time when the current era, The Movement of the Suns, would end after a series of earthquakes, floods, and famines, ushering in a new age.
Shinto: Miroku or Mappo
Shinto cosmology mentions an age called Miroku, or Mappo in Buddhism, characterized by wars, corrupt governments, and natural disasters, leading to the disappearance of the world as we know it.
Christianity: The Second Coming of Christ
Christians believe that Jesus Christ will return to earth to judge the living and the dead, marking the culmination of history and the beginning of a new eternal era. (1 Thessalonians 4:16-17)
Islam: The Appearance of Mahdi
Muslims anticipate the arrival of the Mahdi, a guided leader who will restore righteousness before the Day of Judgment. He will be followed by the return of Jesus (Isa in Islam) to defeat the false messiah, the Dajjal.
Judaism: The Coming of the Messiah
Jews await the coming of the Messiah, a descendant of King David, who will rebuild the Holy Temple in Jerusalem, gather the Jewish people, and bring world peace.
Hinduism: The Avatar Kalki
Hindus believe that in the current age, Kali Yuga, the tenth avatar of Vishnu named Kalki will appear. He will end the age of darkness and corruption, paving the way for a new era of truth and righteousness.
Buddhism: The Coming of Maitreya
Buddhists anticipate the arrival of Maitreya, the future Buddha, who will achieve complete enlightenment and teach the pure dharma, leading followers to enlightenment.
Zoroastrianism: The Savior Saoshyant
Zoroastrians believe that a savior named Saoshyant will be born to a virgin, raise the dead, and judge everyone in a final ordeal of molten metal.
Norse Mythology: Ragnarök
In Norse beliefs, Ragnarök is a series of events, including a great battle, natural disasters, and the death of major gods, leading to the submersion of the world in water and its rebirth.
Mayan: The End of the Calendar
The ancient Mayan Long Count calendar ended on December 21, 2012. While many speculated about apocalyptic events, the date passed without incident, but it remains a topic of discussion.
Hopi: The Blue Star Prophecy
The Hopi Native Americans have a prophecy about the appearance of a blue star, which will mark the beginning of a new age and the purification of the world through destruction and rebirth.
Baha’i: The Fulfillment of Prophecy
Baha’is believe that the prophecies of the world’s major religions regarding the “end times” have been metaphorically fulfilled with the coming of their founder, Baha’u’llah.
Jainism: Decline in Ethics and Morality
Jains believe in repeating cycles of time, and currently, we are in the fifth part of the declining phase where ethics, morality, and religiousness will be at their lowest.
Sikhism: The Rise of the Khalsa
Sikhs believe that before the world ends, the Khalsa (the pure ones) will rise to fight against corruption and tyranny, establishing a rule of righteousness.
Confucianism: The Age of Perfect Virtue
Confucian texts speak of a future age where perfect virtue will reign, and the world will be peaceful and orderly.
Native American: The Return of the White Buffalo
Many Native American tribes prophesied the birth of a white buffalo calf as a sign of great changes and the ushering in of an era of peace and balance.
Maori: The Cleansing of the Earth
Maori prophecies speak of a time when the earth will cleanse itself in preparation for a period of peace and spiritual awakening.