Recently, there have been many articles circulating on social media about babies in Europe being implanted with a subcutaneous microchip, and some are saying that this practice is a prophecy of the end times. Is the story true, and if so, does will this fulfill the Mark of the Beast prophecy foretold in the Book of Revelations?
First, it’s important to determine how the story began, how it spread, and what the prophecy is about. The original story about babies in Europe being microchipped with RFID implants appeared on a website called Top Info Post, and quickly spread around social media, getting many likes and shares. Some began linking the microchip story with a prophecy in Revelations and saying that the “Mark of the Beast” would be symbolized by this RFID (radio frequency identification) chip. Anyone who accepts the chip, say believers, will also accept the Mark of the Beast and side with Satan instead of God.
While some have said that “fringe” religious groups are the only ones warning of the prophecy being fulfilled, a quick Google search reveals that mainstream religions also accept and promote this idea. Catholic.org, for example, is one website that has a story featured about microchipping as it relates to the Mark of the Beast.
What is the exact prophecy? The prophecy in the Book of Revelations states:
And the third angel followed them, saying with a loud voice, If any man worship the beast and his image, and receive [his] mark in his forehead, or in his hand, The same shall drink of the wine of the wrath of God, which is poured out without mixture into the cup of his indignation; and he shall be tormented with fire and brimstone in the presence of the holy angels, and in the presence of the Lamb: And the smoke of their torment ascendeth up for ever and ever: and they have no rest day nor night, who worship the beast and his image, and whosoever receiveth the mark of his name.
The segment which many believers say points to the RFID chip being the Mark of the Beast is where the passage states that a man will “receive the mark on his forehead or in his hand.” They say the microchipping of babies in Europe is a sure sign that the prophecy is coming true before our very eyes.
There’s one problem with this belief, though, and that’s that babies are not being microchipped in Europe. The entire story was a hoax with no citations and it has since been debunked. Besides this, there’s the problem of prophecy only coming true via the process of confirmation bias. However, while it might be very easy for some to write off believers in the end times prophecy as fringe or lunatic religious nuts, consider this: there is an undeniable intersection where religious believers, moderate folks, staunch atheists and everyone in between all meet: the intersection of technology and the impact that technology has on people’s lives now and in the future.
It is an indisputable fact that implantable RFID chips are possible in humans. They’re already being used now in animals, and some human hobbyists have them implanted in their hands. The technology already exists; that’s without question, but it hasn’t been perfected. So far, legislation has moved away from forced implants, with several states making it illegal for employers to force employees to get microchipped. Despite this, the fact remains that RFID microchipping is a way to identify and potentially track humans, and to have all of the corresponding information stored in a database. Essentially, the microchip would act in a more robust way than smart phones do now: tracking, recording and storing complete information about a person for commercial, medical, identification and possibly, law enforcement purposes.
While some worry that babies being microchipped will fulfill the prophecy of the end times, others say there is no need for any supernatural belief whatsoever for a person to be deeply concerned about the implications of future technologies; especially technologies that track a person’s whereabouts. American society has already let expectations of privacy whittle down to nearly nothing; the culture has given up privacy in exchange for extreme gadget addiction. While consumer advocate groups like the ACLU fight every day to restore some semblance of privacy, public apathy about the issue makes the job of such groups difficult, if not impossible.
One hurdle privacy advocacy groups must face is the perception by the public that people concerned with “Big Brother” are paranoid, crazy or both. Before the NSA scandal, in which it was revealed that the US government is indeed spying on citizens, anyone taking about privacy concerns related to technology was looked at askance; as if they should make a call to the nearest lunatic asylum.
Unfortunately, the lines between paranoid fantasy, belief in the supernatural, downright mental illness and provable reality have become blurred. Now, when a person says the government is spying on him, it’s quantifiably and tangibly true. When a deeply religious person says that RFID chips exist and that microchipping humans may become a widespread reality, it’s quantifiably and tangibly true. When a religious website posts a long rant about the loss of privacy at the hands of technology gadgets up to and including RFID microchips, it’s quantifiably and tangibly true.
There’s yet another intersection where the aforementioned groups meet, too, and that is the intersection where Google hangs out; lurking around, ever-present, yet also toiling diligently to end the human race as it is currently known . Google is actively working on all kinds of programs to stop humans from being humans and create a new species of half-human, half machinated hybrids. Think that sounds crazy? Don’t take anyone’s word for it but the executives at Google themselves. Ray Kurzweil, a top Google executive, is working to rid the earth of human beings in their current form and replace them with a hybrid species. He explains that Google is working on:
an intimate merger between the technology-creating species and the technological evolutionary process it spawned…We’ll get to a point where technical progress will be so fast that unenhanced human intelligence will be unable to follow it.
To paraphrase: Kurzweil wishes to see a time when human beings exist no more, at least as they do now. Google masks projects like Singularity University and another, newer program called Calico as an attempt to “solve death,” but they want to do so by putting an end to organic human beings and creating a new species, and not everyone is convinced that’s such a good thing. Kurzweil doesn’t just want to implant microchips into people, he wants to implant nano computers into their bloodstreams and brains, creating what Kurzweil calls “non-biological” creatures. “Intelligent nanorobots will be deeply integrated in our bodies” Kurzweil says. Thus, what Google wants to do goes way beyond microchipping, and that’s not the fringe ranting of a religious lunatic; that is the quoted sentiment of a top Google executive. If Google wants to literally end humanity as it’s currently known, isn’t that, in a way, the “end times,” just not in a religious sense?
Are babies being microchipped to fulfill the prophecy of the end times? They’re not being microchipped currently, and prophecies are only fulfilled by a process called confirmation bias-the tendency of the human brain to find patterns in random data. However, it’s not the prophecy or anything supernatural that people should worry about; it’s the intersection where technology meets humanity; a potentially dangerous and unquestionably damaging intersection in a really bad neighborhood where the major players in Silicon Valley are actively trying to end what is currently known as human life, and have stated openly that they wish to do so. Thus, there is no way to say that the end game of such technologies—to further erode privacy, give Big Brother ever-increasing power and ultimately end the human race—is not reality. It is reality, and variations in the perceived cause don’t do anything to change the final outcome.
Opinion By: Rebecca Savastio
International Business Times