Originally Posted by ChrisL
Vince - I'm going to answer your second question first. It was both. Fulfilling the prophecies was really necessary to be able to get people focused on what was important. ... If they could have looked past the prophecies, it would have been easier, but the people were waiting....expecting. Look at several of the world religions today - still waiting, expecting. It's impossible to get people in the present moment when they are still projecting into the future.
This is an interesting point. I've contemplated on this myself, of course.
Today, a sizable proportion of people, partiularly young people, are expectant of a revelation concerning high-consciousness "aliens" among us - spiritually evolved, benevolent beings from other solar systems or galaxies who will deliberately reveal themselves
to the broad public (hence to governments and power elites, as well). Reveal themselves clearly and unequivocally.
You can look at stuff posted five years ago on the web and see that some people thought that would happen in six months (i.e., they'd reveal themselves four and a half years ago, from present time). A year ago, some were making the same sort of pronouncements (i.e., the aliens would reveal themselves six months ago). Six months ago, some were making the same sort of pronouncements (i.e., the aliens would reveal themselves about now
It's frequently a matter of a near-term event that is prophesied. Focus on the future, but on a near future.
I'm not saying "the aliens aren't there". I'm just saying the big event - the unequivocal appearance and broad public communication - hasn't occurred. So people are still focussing and being led to focus on the future.
I remember one case was studied by social scientists, which made the case well known. There was a publicly foretold date in the mid 1950s for the big arrival to happen. It didn't, and so the believers came up with a 'gloss-over' story to rationalize just why it didn't happen. Then they believed that story.
Someone once gave me a copy of a book, A History of the End of the World
(authors: Rubinsky & Wiseman), and it's filled with various prophesies of either the end of the physical Earth as a home for humanity, or the end to the old evil system amongst humanity. It looks at expectations that were held by groups of people thousands of years ago, and also much more recent examples. Interesting book.
Again, I'm not
saying that aliens will not reveal themselves and enable us to solve all our problems. Because I don't know. But I don't count on it.