The last two decades sure feel like the end time if the rise of an indefinable yet palatable sense of fear is to be considered. Let's look at the symptoms:
The hoarding of wealth. There is tons of data on how the rich are getting richer- and not spreading the wealth around as they usually do in good times- and how the poor are getting poorer, heightening the the feeling of insecurity in the future. Like a poker player who feels his luck has run out nobody is making bets.
Turning on minorities. Ah the successful tactic (see Hitler and Germany) of turning on a minority to blame for all of society's problems. Just fill in the blank with whatever minority can be vilified,is no real threat to society or has little political power. Be it illegal immigrants,a different religion/ideology from the dominant majority or a group that is well, different. Fear of the unknown triggers a fear of anything outside of the status quo. Get rid of those people and everything will return to normal.
Band aid fixes. The Earth is in trouble because of human activity. There's plenty of debate on that, but either way we are encountering environmental change and we better adapt or die. Reducing energy consumption and using resources more wisely are noble gestures but they are just that -gestures. Engaging in feel good, politically convenient band aid fixes that reduce complex interconnected problems to superficial behavior modification only deludes people into thinking they are changing the world without really changing the world How Decartesian. How pathetic. The partner in this delusion is the reliance on technology.
We have traded spirituality for technology to compensate for our short comings. We operate under the faulty assumption that technology advancement is the same as species advancement. After all, this is often the criteria for judging the intelligence of other animals. But what if we have reached the limits of technological skill and it's making things worse not better. What if we gave up questioning the moral, ethical long term consequences of our actions in favor of the clever sexy solutions tool making offers?
The rise of religious fundamentalism. Joining in the fight are the people who invented persecution. About twenty to twenty five years ago, a paradigm shift in spirituality began and humans subconsciously figured out reality was changing. The entrenched ideology did not respond well to this. So people reacted the way most do when their world view is challenged: panic, retreat. When the skeptical agnostic is suddenly struck ill they fall back on their old religious upbringing- just in case. There are no atheists in foxholes and when a big upheaval arrives it puts the fear of God in everyone. Just in case.Velikovsky's "Worlds in Collision." has plenty of examples of human reactions to calamity.
So the orthodox demand everyone shape up or else. The media joins in with Chicken Little predictions designed to stir up the public because that's their job. The result is the 2012 Mayan calendar. Except it's just the end of a cycle not the end of time.. Meanwhile, zombies are coming- better stock up on food, guns/ammo, go into survival mode, pray to God.
Most metaphysics and spiritual devotees say everyone should calm down. The shift is about our next leap in spiritual maturity. We need to outgrow our adolescent tendencies to hyperbole emotions, physical violence as an answer to any provocation and generally acting like spoiled brats.
Look how religion deals with the change that happens every 500 hundreds years or so. In the modern era the first big shift was the rise of christianity- a reaction to the wide economic, social and spiritual gap in society. The same for Islam about 600 years later. Then there was the split between Roman and Orthodox churches in 1054 C.E. The Protestant Reformation occurred 500 years ago. We are overdue for another revolution in thought to take hold. If the interesting times we live in are any indication- you better hold on to your hat cause it's going to be a bumpy ride.