I suppose it’s partly to do with real concern and partly to do with the aesthetic sublimity of apocolypse scenarios. The latter is why apocolyptic science fiction is so popular–there’s something about the incomprehensibility of complete emptiness that captures the imagination.
Indeed, I find fathoming our mortality and ensuing afterlife scenarios to be quite daunting. Humans, like animals, instinctively act to protect ourselves and ensure our survival and that of our offspring. The end of the world, of course, entails our ultimate – and in some cases, untimely – demise. Plus, the apocalyptic scenarios are endless and (arguably) unpredictable, so naturally the imagination is going to go nuts!
We enjoy the thrill of being in the unknown, the uncertainty. We like being scared, even though it makes us uncomfortable during the event. We like being challenged by something so grand and powerful. I think deep down, we are curious, we want to know what the end of the world will be like, so we try to make our imaginations come alive.
People are fascinated by the unknown abyss beyond death and beyond existence. Whether we want to admit it or not, we all enjoy and are fascinated by death. Death and conflicts of any nature are the top sellers in our world. If you look at the most popular movies or TV shows you will most likely find that nearly all of them have a lot of death and struggles to avoid death. The end of the world seems as if it is the ultimate thrill because it involves not only mass death, but its like staring into an empty abyss beyond what we know and imagining what lies beyond our humanly knowledge.
People have always been concerned with the end of the world, so much so that “the study of end times” is an actual field of study called eschatology. It is part theology, part philosophy, and part futurology that studies the apocalypse throughout time. The end of the world is something humans have always been fascinated throughout history and in different cultures and religions.
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