I have seen a lot of things on TV lately about the year 2012. Could it be "Armageddon" or the end of the world or something along those lines? I was wondering if anyone at Ananda believed that or what if anything it could mean?
Thanks for your question. I don’t have a TV and so am not totally up on what the media is putting out these days on this subject. But I certainly have heard the rumor that "the 2012 predictions" are, indeed, the latest in a long line of "end-of-the-world" popular information (or mis-information, as the case may be).
This sort of speculation about our future and the end of the world has continuing for a long time in human history, probably as long as people have been on the planet, which Yogananda said is much, much longer than science has yet discovered.
I have heard that these particular predictions are based on the Mayan Calendar or some other such old or ancient predictions, though I’m not sure of exact details. You ask what Ananda believes about this? Well, everybody who is a part of Ananda is free to believe whatever they like about anything, of course.
But most of us prefer to stick primarily and closely to what we know Paramhansa Yogananda has said about the future, as related to us through his writings and through the teachings of his direct disciple, Swami Kriyananda, who has often reported to us what Yogananda said on this subject.
To sum it up, Yogananda said that there will be catastrophe(s), economic depression, world wars, etc., before we enter a time of peace on this planet. He didn’t give the date this would happen. But he did stress that these challenges would NOT be the end of the world. Just a needed planetary "housecleaning," to prepare the way for better times. He said that the end results of all this transition would be that the people left on earth would have "half as much materially and twice as much spiritually."
I really like that idea, don’t you?
What to do to prepare? Learn to meditate and practice it regularly. If possible, join a spiritual community and plant a garden. If it is your time to suffer or die, there’s not a lot to be done about this except to love God and gurus and keep a positive attitude going at all times. I’ve heard Swamiji say, from time to time, that the ones who do die early on, during this time of trial, might actually be the lucky ones.
It’s always important to remember that nobody really dies anyway. We shed off an old body, take a "vacation" in the astral or causal world, and then reincarnate on this or some other planet according to the lessons we need to learn. All this goes on for a VERY long time until we reach final liberation and oneness with God.
"All things are passing, but God never changes!"