Why Not Some Really Good Prophecies?
firstname.lastname@example.org (Loren I. Petrich)
I confess I find a lot of the "prophecies" in the Bible and
elsewhere to be distastefully vague. Why not some detailed ones?
Short of giving a summary of future history, one can give
(say) a description of some scientific and technological advances.
Here, I will show that one can indeed do that in terms that many of
the Bible's writers, or else a Greek philosopher like Aristotle, can
understand. I challenge you people to identify what I have described.
Here is a sample:
The Earth will be shown to move around the Sun, and the Moon
and the planets will be shown to be rocky or airy bodies. The Sun is a
giant ball of white-hot air, much like a hot fire. The stars are
objects like the Sun, but very far away, which explains their dimness.
Matter is composed of small particles, nearly a myriad of
myriads times smaller than a grain of sand, which stick together in
various combinations. However, even these particles are composed of
particles a myriad times smaller, though some of them swell to fill up
Air is a mixture of two airlike fluids, one of which makes
things burn and one of which does not.
The Earth's age is very great, 50 myriad of myriads of years,
and humanity has not been on it for very long. The Universe is
slightly older, originating from a great fireball.
Not only sea shells but the bones of giant animals will be
found in the Earth's rocks, which indicate that the Earth has had many
generations of species in its lifetime. Some of them will look like
giant snakes with elephant legs, for example. And only a myriad of
years ago, much of the land to the north was under ice, and hairy
elephants and hyenas roamed the land just to the south.
The finding of genealogies will be elevated to a central
biological principle, with it being shown that some species are
descended from others. Dogs are descended from wolves and lions from
small cats. Birds, bats, and insects are all descended from land
animals, land animals from water animals like fish, and even land
plants from water plants like seaweed.
Some living things are too small for the unaided eye to see,
and all the big ones are ultimately descended from some of these.
Humanity will be shown to be descended from monkeys, through a
sequence of ancestors that look like half-half.
Disks of glass with curved surfaces and curved mirrors will be
used to make objects seem bigger when one looks through them.
The ethereal fluid whose flow makes lightning and which causes
cloth to stick to amber will be tamed and put to work. It will be used
to make lamps that do not need oil, contraptions to make things cold
on a hot summer day, and ovens that cook from the inside out -- very
Magic boxes will be invented that run on this ethereal fluid,
and which can send sound, pictures, and writing long distances. Some
other such boxes can even do arithmetic at a myriad of myriads times
the fast of the most skilled bookkeeper. Despite their superb
transcriptional and calculational skill, it will prove difficult to
teach these boxes how to recognize voices or objects in pictures.
The copyist's craft will become virtually unneeded, due to the
invention of a stamping technique that makes a page-size stamp from
tiny, letter-size stamps. This technique will make books much more
available and abundant, and the speed of the technique makes it
possible to write little books containing the latest news and get them
out very fast. Furthermore, scrolls will go out of date, the favorite
design being stacks of paper bound together at one side. The smaller
books, especially those featuring the latest news, will simply be
stacks of paper held together by folding.
Coins will be used only for low amounts of monetary value,
being replaced by slips of paper with designs printed on them for
higher values. However, that will allow for an improvement on debasing
the coinage: all a leader has to do is just stamp out more of these
little slips to cover expenses without raising taxes, with the side
effect that the money's value goes down and down and down, sometimes
by extreme amounts.
Oxen and horses will become out of date in much of the world,
owing to the development of wagons that move without being pulled by
being pulled. These wagons will be much faster than even the fastest
racehorse, and the bigger ones will carry a hundred times as much as
even the strongest ox. These wagons will drink a kind of oil boiled
off from pitch, which will be enough in demand to be carried in giant
ships from distant parts of the world.
Road building will become an advanced art, with some roads
having no intersections with other roads, and instead going over or
under them wherever they meet. Even when roads meet, there will often
be periodically-changing lights which indicate by color who may go and
who must stop. Red is stop, green is go, and yellow is either prepare
to stop or rush through. Roads will also have their lanes marked out
by painted lines, and some roads will even have dividers in the
Despite all these efforts, there will be enormous crowds of
barely-moving wagons on the roads at many places at some times. And
like roads, places to leave these wagons will also consume large
amounts of land.
Special roads will be built from pairs of iron rails, on which
wagons with special wheels will travel. Long strings of these wagons
will travel, with three or four in front pulling nearly a hundred
others. Some such wagons will travel at ten times the speed of a
racehorse, without, of course, getting the least bit tired.
Some of these roads will be built in tunnels in large cities,
so that people can avoid crowded streets by riding the wagons that run
on these roads.
Big mechanical birds will be built that can fly very fast,
even with people on board. They will fly far enough to cross oceans on
one drink of oil.
Stone will still be used for building, but the stone will be
an artificial stone that is poured and allowed to harden. It is,
however, produced from natural stone that is baked to a powder in a
kiln. When it is ready to use, it is mixed with water and taken to the
site and poured. In this stone will often be iron bars to add
Cities will grow enormously in size, with our cities seeming
like small towns in comparison. Water will come in by pipe, and
wastewater will go out by pipe; all the pipes being underneath
streets. Garbage will be taken care of by being loaded into wagons and
taken to dumps some distance away, but the sheer volume of garbage
will make even that solution difficult.
Weapons will improve enormously in destructive power. Swords
will go out of date, being replaced with tubes that expel pellets at
high speed. Of course, horses will go out of date, being replaced by
armored war wagons, some of them with big pellet-shooting tubes. There
will also be contraptions that burst with great force, sometimes
spraying iron fragments. There will even be such contraptions big
enough to destroy whole cities at one stroke.
[I could certainly continue, but my patience has run out.]
/Loren Petrich, the Master Blaster