Russians are getting increasingly panicked about the end of the world, which according to some erroneous interpretations of the Mayan calendar is fast-approaching on December 21, 2012.
As the Apocalypse supposedly approaches, the New York Times has reported a number of strange, fear-fueled phenomena across Russia, a population which has a "penchant for mystical thinking."
From prisoners experiencing "collective mass psychosis" to citizens stocking up on essential supplies or building an imposing Mayan-style archway, Russia has caught a case of end-of-the-world fever.
But the government has put its foot down: Vladimir Puchkov, the country's minister of emergency situations, said Friday that he had access to “methods of monitoring what is occurring on the planet Earth,” and that was able to guarantee the world was not ending in December, according to The New York Times.
More from GlobalPost: Series: Apocalypse Soon
He did admit that Russia was still vulnerable to “blizzards, ice storms, tornadoes, floods, trouble with transportation and food supply, breakdowns in heat, electricity and water supply.”
Ah, right. The usual panic-inducers.
Marie McDaniel, an assistant history professor at Southern Connecticut State University who teaches courses about the Apocalypse, also argued that we're going to be sticking around for a while longer, according to the New Haven Register.
"These ideas come up all the time," McDaniel told the newspaper. "Throughout American history, we go back to this again and again."
"If we can take away the end-time narrative, then many of these threats are actually solvable," she continued. "We need to get to work on the real threats that beset earth: climate change, overpopulation, world hunger, the spreading of disease. That's harder than deciding that we will be saved if we have faith that God will protect us."