Today is 6th June 2006 which you can abbreviate to 6/6/6. Ordinarily this is just a date but very attractive numerically because of the triple 6s. But for christians, the number warrants attention is said to be connected to the Mark of the Beast. I remember this as more than 20 years back, one of my then favourite group when I was studying in England was the Iron Maiden, a heavy metal band. One of their more famous songs was the 'Number of the Beast' and I think the chorus more or less go like (this is a test of my memory) "...666 the Number of the Beast, Hell and fire was spawned to be released..." and repeated towards the end "...666 the Number of the Beast, 666 the one for you and me, I'm coming back I will return, And I'll possess your body and I'll make you burn, I have the fire I have the force, I have the power to make my evil take its course..."
As I type those lyrics down, I can't quite believe what I am retaining in my memory and I can't for the life of me imagine why Iron Maiden would be among my favourite groups in those days. I didn't even dress up as a head banger! Another movie that I remember when I was studying in Singapore before going off to England was 'The Omen' - it was the movie about the birth of the antichrist and I remembered there was a 666 somewhere in that movie.
I once asked a Christian friend about it and he said that in the Bible, it stated somewhere that is the number of the beast. If you googled 666, you will get lots and lots (I mean really lots) of articles about this number. There is a lot of beliefs out there. One site talked about how a number of people have superstitions or phobias about this number. One person refused to ride in a car that had a license plate with 666 on it. Another person adds a stick of gum or something to his purchases if his check-out total at the store is triple six in any way. When President and Mrs. Reagan moved out to California, their house number was 666. They had it changed to 668. Any time a bill numbered 666 is produced by a governing body like the UN or Congress, prophecy watchers give the document a good going-over to see if it has a connection with end-time events.
Wikipedia had two interesting stories about the number. One about when the giant CPU manufacturer Intel introduced the 666 MHz Pentium III in 1999, they chose to market it as the Pentium III 667 on the pretext that, since the actual clock speed was 666.666 MHz, 667 was the more accurate approximation—conveniently ignoring their own usual rounding practice: as examples, consider the earlier 66.666 MHz 486-66, the 466.666 MHz Celeron 466, or the later 866.666 MHz Pentium III 866. Another was the U.S. Highway 666, "the Highway of the Beast," was renumbered in 2003 after controversy over the supposed reference to the Biblical beast, which also made the road signs a common target for theft.
This belief despite efforts to make the correction (I learnt that the bible was translated from Greek and the Greek numeric system apparently do not have zeroes, so the 666 described was the Greek 666 and not the same as today's decimal system 666), a lot of people still seemed to believe in it. This is known as an argumentum ad populum which is Latin for "appeal to the people", in logic, is a fallacious argument that concludes a proposition to be true because many or all people believe it; it alleges that "If many believe so, it is so." In ethics this argument is stated, "if many find it acceptable, it is acceptable." It is also the basis of a number of social phenomena, including communal reinforcement and the bandwagon effect, and of the Chinese proverb "three men make a tiger".
And you thought 6/6/6 is just an interestingly numbered date!