Blood moon: Will the world end tonight? Here are the conspiracy theories

When the light refracts differently in the atmosphere and hits the moon, it makes the lunar body seem red.

Tonight, a 'blood moon' is set to light up the night sky, but some people believe it could actually bring about the end of the world.

The lunar eclipse, which mostly occurs twice a year is the result of the passing in the shadow of the Earth.

When the light refracts differently in the atmosphere and hits the moon, it makes the lunar body seem red.

During a total eclipse, the entire moon is in shadow and it appears 'blood red'.

Tonight’s lunar eclipse is expected to be one of the longest seen this century, at roughly one hour and 43 minutes.

Despite its purely scientific origins, the blood moon is thought by many to be a mystical sign of doom.

Here are some of the most prominent theories.

Biblical prophecy: Some people believe that the blood moon relates to hidden messages in the bible describing the end of the world. The theory was first poplarised by ministers John Hagee and Mark Biltz in 2014, suggesting that the ongoing 'tetrad' - four consecutive lunary eclipses, is the indicator of the end of earth as described in the Bible in Acts 2:20 and Revelation 6:12.

The theory is interpreted from the Book of Joel, which says: "The sun will turn into darkness, and the moon into blood, before the great and terrible day of the Lord comes."

A similar passage from the Book of Revelations reads, “And I beheld when he had opened the sixth seal, and, lo, there was a great earthquake; and the sun became black as sackcloth of hair, and the moon became as blood.”

Horoscopes: According to astrology experts, eclipses can bring extra insights into people's lives. This week's blood moon is set to bring "clarity about knowing what your heart wants, especially when it comes to friendships", explained professional astronomer Donna Page on Women's Health as appearing in The Sun.

She predicts that the blood moon will make people re-evaluate the feelings people have about different friendships in their lives.

And if you're a Leo or Aquarius, you'll feel the greatest impact of the blood moon, while Tauruses and Scorpios can also expect some heightened insight, says Page.

Native American legend: According to the myth told by the Hupa, a Native American tribe from northern California, the moon has 20 wives and lots of pets, explains E. C. Krupp, astronomer and director of the Griffith Observatory in Los Angeles.

Most of these pets were mountain lions and snakes and when the moon didn't provide them with enough food, they attacked their master, making it bleed.

The eclipse would only be brought to an end when the moon's wives came to its aid, collecting its blood and bringing it back to health, so the legend goes.

South American myth: The Incas believed that the blood moon was the result of an attack by a mythical jaguar which ate the moon, with the resulting carnage explaining the red hue. The feared that the Jaguar would then fall to Earth to devour people. In order to prevent such an attack, they would shout and shake their spears at the moon and also beat their dogs to make them bark and howl.

African myth: Contrary to fears of ending the world, the Batammaliba people in Togo and Benin believe that the eclipse is the result of the sun and moon fighting, while the people encourage them to stop.

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