On the night of Friday the 30th, over most of North America and western Europe, we will be seeing a "black moon". For some idiots, this means the end of the world.
A black moon is actually just when you get two New Moons in a month. A "new moon" is a completely normal event when the moon and sun are at the same elliptical longitude. This means the moon is almost invisible in the night sky.
Obviously, a completely normal totally local astronomical event means the "End of The Universe" for new-age nuts and biblical conspiracy theorists. It's not like they need any justifications for this, but that doesn't mean they won't invent them. One of the claims is based on dubious interpretations of the bible, namely Luke 21:25 "And there shall be signs in the sun, and in the moon, and in the stars; and upon the earth distress of nations, with perplexity; the sea and the waves roaring".
Wow! It mentions the moon, that proves it! It also mentions the sun, and the rapture-kooks are bringing up the fact that there was a rare solar eclipse at the start of the month as matching proof.
But let's take a more careful look at the "Biblical Evidence". Luke 21:20, from the same apocalyptic chapter, predicts "And when ye shall see Jerusalem compassed with armies, then know that the desolation thereof is nigh " and in v.24 of the same chapter it says "and Jerusalem shall be trodden down of the Gentiles, until the times of the Gentiles be fulfilled ". So, you know, coming earlier in the chapter, one could assume those things will happen first, right? But last I checked, the IDF keeps kicking Arab ass and making sure Jerusalem stays safely in Israeli hands. There's definitely no enemy "armies" besieging Jerusalem.
As a religious historian, I'd bring up that this whole section of the gospel is actually a reference to the Roman conquest of Judea, something that already happened almost two thousand years ago, but what good are facts in the face of good old-fashioned hysteria?
The New Agers are not ones to be left out. Of course, they won't bring up the Bible, but instead will talk about how this is a "black moon" full of dire astrological implications (in Scorpio, Libra, etc.). The David Icke "British Royal Family are Lizard People" (seriously, there's a ton of people who believe that, go google it) new-age-conspiracy forums are claiming this is all a 'cover up' for some kind of dark sorcery that will be taking place.
Of course, a lot of New Agers are less 'doom and gloom' and more "white light" even in the total darkness of a black moon. One "spiritual path" website filled with a mishmash of hippie overdose said "traditionally, Black Moon's (sic) are ultra feminine", and predicted that the "entire week leading up to the black moon and the days that follow it are going to be extremely positive and peaceful". Huh. I guess we should tell that to all the people who were victims of the various shootings, BLM protests, gang warfare, terrorist attacks, and associated murders this past week.
Even the Wiccans are getting in on the act, with some Wiccan 'expert' telling People Magazine that the black moon increases the power of spells. Funny, I thought that was the full moon, and this is pretty much the exact opposite?
Remember kids: these are some of the same luminaries that predicted the Rapture was coming in 1999, and 2000, and 2001, and so on; or that predicted the world would have '3 days of darkness' on 11/11/11 (because of all the 1s!!! It's obvious!!1!!) or that the Mayans would doom us all on 2012. You know, morons.
But are you ready for the punch line that makes this soon-to-be Failed Prophecy extra extra stupid?
Here it is: "black moons" aren't rare. They're actually incredibly ridiculously common. They happen roughly once every 32 months. So this isn't like waiting around 2000 years for Jesus, or a conjunction of planets that happens only once every few centuries; the last one happened in MARCH 2014.
That's right; most of you probably have electronic devices older than this universe-altering cosmic cycle. It's not like Mayans ruled the Earth last time there was a black moon; in fact, the TV series "Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D." is several months older than the last black moon.
And again, from an astronomical/scientific standpoint a black moon is IDENTICAL to a 'new moon'. An event that happens every 28 days! Just so you are forewarned (you may want to start stockpiling food supplies or something), the next Black Moon will be on July 2019. That means there's babies being born this very day that still won't be potty trained by the next time this "super rare event" occurs.