We've heard of cults believing in everything from an extraterrestrial-created human race to posthumous rides on spaceships, to the imminent arrival of the antichrist. This year, however, has given rise to cults who believe wholeheartedly that the end of the world is coming on December 21, 2012, and who are determined to avoid their own cataclysmic demise. This is why thousands of Doomsday believers are flocking to Pic de Bugarach, a tiny French town that is home to, among other things, an "upside down" mountain.Wikimedia Commons: Thierry Strub
The thousands of people who have fled to the base of Pic de Bugarach believe that the mountain itself is inhabited by extraterrestrial life forms who will save gathered humans from the end of the world in December 2012. The mountain has attracted visitors from all over the world, including the United States. Apparently, all the people who have turned Pic de Bugarach into their own personal safe haven believe that the aliens have access to a separate civilization or dimension where Doomsday will not affect them.
Indeed, these spiritualists believe that the apocalypse will serve to pave the way for a new world with the destruction of this one.
It is unclear how the aliens will spirit their human cargo to a better and safer civilization. Some seem to believe that a UFO will descend prior to December 21, while others are convinced that the mountain itself is a gateway to this separate universe. Either way, thousands more are expected to travel to Pic de Bugarach before December of this year, perhaps after they've written goodbye messages to their Facebook friends and figured out how to line their airplane seats with tin foil.
According to the Independent, this is not a new phenomenon. The upside-down mountain in Pic de Bugarach has long attracted new-agers and spiritual gurus who maintain that the mountain itself is a source of mystical energy that can do anything from heal the sick to provide enlightenment.
We've seen this before, of course, among cults who try to save one another from perceived threats to human life. Faced with the possibility of the end of the world, it is comforting to believe that an advanced and alien race will zoom in like white knights on souped-up Frisbees to save the Believers among us from extinction.
According to the Independent, however, the mayor of Pic de Bugarach laments that visitors to his picturesque town are looking for an "alien garage," and that he has called in the French authorities to deal with what he believes may evolve into a mass suicide.