GREENVILLE, SC - SEPTEMBER 18:   Republican presidential hopeful Ben Carson speaks to the crowd at the Heritage Action Presidential Candidate Forum September 18, 2015 in Greenville, South Carolina. Eleven republican candidates each had twenty five minutes to talk to voters Friday at the Bons Secours Wellness arena in the upstate of South Carolina. (Photo by Sean Rayford/Getty Images)
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Story highlights

Ben Carson said he would always choose to believe the situation can be improved

He also said he has no intention of dialing back his rhetoric

Washington CNN —  

Republican presidential candidate Ben Carson says the world could be approaching its end – but we may be able to change course.

When Carson was asked by journalist Sharyl Attkisson if he believed the “end of days” was near, he said, “You could guess that we are getting closer to that.”

“You do have people who have a belief system that sees this apocalyptic phenomena occurring and that they are a part of it, who would not hesitate to use nuclear weapons if they gained possession of them,” Carson told Attkisson, a former CBS News reporter, on her show, “Full Measure” that aired Sunday.

Attkisson was asking the devout Carson about his faith and feelings about religion and asked how he felt the state of the world today relates to what’s in the Bible.

RELATED: Carson’s comments offend Oregon shooting survivor

She followed up by asking if the end times could be avoided or whether it is prophesied.

Carson said he would always choose to believe the situation can be improved.

“I think we have a chance to certainly do everything we can to ameliorate the situation,” Carson said. “I would always be shooting for peace. I wouldn’t just take a fatalist view of things.”

The retired neurosurgeon has drawn fire in recent weeks with controversial comments about the Oregon community college shooting and the Holocaust, and he has a history of making waves with his remarks.

But he said in a separate interview published on Monday that he has no intent of dialing it back.

“I want people to see me as an honest person, a person who is actually willing to express what they believe” Carson told The Hill. “The way I look at it, if people don’t like that, I’d rather not be in office. I don’t want to be in office under false pretenses, just saying things people want to hear so I can get elected.”

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