Glenn Beck explained to his audience Wednesday evening a little-known "prophecy" called "The Fourth Turning," which author William Strauss describes in a book by the same title.
Strauss, now-deceased, suggests a distinct pattern in human history. According to him, each cycle lasts approximately the length of the human life, or 80 years, and, within each cycle, there are four seasons, or "turnings."
Beck sought to explain this theory on his show Wednesday, expressing support for Strauss' ideas.
"If you read this book, this guy would have been on the cover of TIME magazine and everywhere else — if anybody would have listened to him," Beck said. "He's nailed it all. So it gives this book an awful lot of credibility."
Beck said the theory reveals that history progresses "in a circle," rather than linearly and each "season" lasts for around 20 years.
"There is winter, spring, summer and autumn," Beck said. "At the start of each season, or 'turning,' people have a change in how they feel about culture, how they feel about the country, the future."
Describing it as "eerie," Beck said each transition is marked by the same characteristics throughout history and that at the end of each cycle, there is an "awakening" that leads to a "crisis." Currently, Beck said he believes the U.S. is in the transition season between the "awakening" and the "crisis."
"It's at the pinnacle — the zenith — and then it starts falling apart and we go from a high optimism [in the awakening] to now," Beck said. "This is the unraveling period where everything begins to come undone."
Later in the episode, Beck explained the ultimate end to Strauss' theory, where the U.S. either reverts "back, literally, to the stone age," which he said "isn't going to happen," or the country recovers in some way.
"I don't know [what will happen], but we need to know our roles."
According to Beck, in order to recover from the coming "winter," it will require everyone to "sacrifice and to say, "We're in this together."
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