Excited about the end of the world? If so, the new John Cusack flick, “2012” may be right up your alley. Or, for a more auspicious deliverance, consult the new book by Bill Gladstone, “The Twelve.” In the meantime, it’s worth remembering that the world has already ended in Sedona at least once.
The new millennium got lots of attention in Sedona, and New Year’s Eve 1999 featured at least one major spiritual gathering, in anticipation of possible end-times. Thirteen years earlier, however, was the event that really put New Age Sedona on the map: The Harmonic Convergence. Predictions based on the Mayan calendar (most prominently by Jose Arguelles) suggested that a new era would begin in August, 1987. To mark the event, ceremonies were held at sacred places around the world included the pyramids of Egypt, Machu Picchu and Stonehenge, among others.
Nobody had a bigger show than Sedona, where nearly 2,000 people made their way to Bell Rock. Some said that a spaceship would land at Bell Rock. Others said that Bell Rock itself would be the spaceship, and levitate away.
It’s easier to be cynical today, especially since Bell Rock hasn’t moved an inch. But it’s worth remembering both the enthusiasm and controversy that Sedona’s New Age community garnered back then. There were visits by Shirley MacLaine, a story on CBS’ “60 Minutes,” and warnings from the pulpits of traditional churches to watch out for Satanists.
It’s unclear what Sedonans will do to commemorate 2012, but you can be sure, we’ll do something.
After all, if the world were going to end – or a new one were about to begin – I can’t think of a nicer place to see it happen.