Sunday, January 31, 2010
Scientism is defined as the fundamentalist pseudoscientific and pseudoskeptic belief that contemporary science is infallible.
I take the exact opposite view -- namely Prisca Sapientia i.e. the heresy of ancient wisdom.
"There is no teaching, but only recollection." -- Plato, philosopher, Meno, 380 B.C.
"Your favorite doctrine, Socrates, that knowledge is simply recollection, if true, also necessarily implies a previous time in which we learned that which we now recollect." -- Plato, philosopher, Phaedo, 360 B.C.
"... all the men in history who have really done anything with the future have had their eyes fixed on the past. I need not mention the Renaissance, the very word proves my case. The originality of Michael Angelo and Shakespeare began with digging up old vases and manuscripts." -- G. K. Chesterton, writer, What's Wrong With the World, Chapter IV: The Fear of the Past, 1910
"The safest general characterization of the European philosophical tradition is that it consists of a series of footnotes to Plato." -- Alfred N. Whitehead, mathematician/philosopher, 1929
"During the past three or four hundred years science has been rediscovered rather than discovered." -- Andrew Tomas, author, We Are Not the First, 1971
"Our science has only rediscovered and perfected old ideas." -- Andrew Tomas, author, We Are Not the First, 1971
"...the Corpus Hermeticum -- Greek and Latin translations of supposedly ancient Egyptian concepts -- Newton regarded the stream of such writings as an expression of the prisca sapientia, as it was called in Renaissance times, i.e., the wisdom of the ancients." -- I.M. Oderberg, writer, 1986
"There's a tradition of scholarship that was very popular in the Renaissance called the prisca sapientia, the primal wisdom. It claimed that there was a secret wisdom that was first trasmitted by an archetypal figure--say, for example, Moses--and then passed down through the line of successors, usually including Pythagoras, Plato, and so forth, and that this wisdom was really the ultimate tool for understanding the universe. Newton clearly believed that." -- Bill Newman, historian, November 15th 2005
"If you look at practically any of the writings of ancient civilizations, the ancient Sanskrit writings of India are the ones I'm most familiar with, speak of spaceships, of weapons resembling our modern weapons, they had, apparently, the ability to look inside the human embryo and see what was going on, so, it appears, yes, ancient peoples did have quite a bit of knowledge that perhaps, some of it that we're rediscovering." -- Michael A. Cremo, author, August 2006
"Personally I believe that when we really understand this Mill and how it works we will find out where we are in time and that's something that's very precious that I think has been lost by this linear view that anything that came before us must be more primitive. With that view, there's really nothing that we can learn in ancient history." -- Walter Cruttenden, author, October 2008
Saturday, January 30, 2010
"Our knowledge of the universe is limited, and the wealth of natural phenomena on the universal scale that remain to be discovered by the passive method of observation is unparalleled in other fields of natural science." -- Geoffrey Burbidge (astrophysicist) and Margaret Burbidge (astronomer), 1967
"As [Fred] Hoyle said, 'Any time you point a new telescope at the sky now you're only going to find what you already know is up there.'" -- Geoffrey Burbidge, astrophysicist, 2004
"What's really happening in these systems is the centers of galaxies are the places where the creation is taking place...." -- Geoffrey Burbidge, astrophysicist, 2004
"There's a large body of work going on, observational work, theoretical work, which is based on the assumption that quasars are at their cosmological distances. If it turns out seriously that we're right, then all that work is in vain. We don't know anything like as much as we think we do by saying that quasars are far away, and that's another huge problem for people to face up to." -- Geoffrey Burbidge, astrophysicist, 2004
"Geoffrey [Burbidge] does not suffer fools gladly, and it would seem to me that by his definition, all the world’s a fool." -- Hilton Ratcliffe, astronomer, May 29th 2009
"Whether or not Geoffrey Burbidge’s social skills make you feel all warm and cuddly, you will ignore him at your peril. He is arguably the most accomplished theoretical astrophysicist alive today ... I use every opportunity that comes my way to learn from him. He is without doubt one of the giants of the modern era." -- Hilton Ratcliffe, astronomer, May 29th 2009
I was hoping to go to UCSD before he died: Geoffrey Burbidge dies at 84.
Astrophysicist Geoffrey Burbidge, who with his wife and two other colleagues determined how elements are synthesized in the nuclear reactors of stars, died Tuesday at Scripps Memorial Hospital in La Jolla after a long illness. He was 84.
Widely honored for his contributions to astrophysics, cosmology and the study of radio galaxies, Burbidge became notorious in recent years for his refusal to accept the widely held view that the universe originated in a big bang, arguing instead that matter is continually created, emerging as quasars ejected from energetic galaxies.
But the English-born scientist's place in posterity is preserved by his work determining how all the heavy elements in the universe can be synthesized from the simple hydrogen atom in the intense fusion furnaces of stars.
Over a period of 18 months spent scribbling on blackboards in a windowless room at Caltech, Burbidge; his wife, Margaret; American physicist William Fowler; and British astronomer Sir Fred Hoyle overcame the roadblocks that had beset other theoreticians and provided a clear pathway to each of the elements.
Their 104-page 1957 paper in the Reviews of Modern Physics "was without question one of the most important papers of all time in astrophysics," said Mark Thiemens, dean of the division of physical sciences at UC San Diego, where the Burbidges spent most of their careers.
Astrophysicist George Fuller, director of UC San Diego's Center for Astrophysics and Space Sciences, said, "This paper laid the foundation for an entirely new kind of synthesis of astronomical observations with frontier nuclear and particle science, paving the way for much of modern astrophysics and cosmology."
Two years later, Geoffrey, then 34, and Margaret, 40, received the American Astronomical Society's highest prize for young astronomers. In 1983, Fowler received the Nobel Prize in physics for his role in the collaboration. Many of their colleagues believed that the Burbidges and Hoyle were excluded from the award because of their failure to bow to the prevailing influence of the big bang theory. Burbidge, however, never publicly expressed bitterness about his exclusion.
He later spent considerable time studying radio galaxies and was the first to determine the enormous amounts of energy involved in the radio emissions. His studies ultimately led astrophysicists to consider gravity as the energy source for these objects, as well as for quasi-stellar objects, or quasars.
"Much of the Burbidges' work revolved around the nature of quasars and active galactic nuclei," said astrophysicist Art Wolfe, a former director of the astrophysics center at UC San Diego. "During the 1960s, the Burbidges were virtually alone in their efforts to measure the masses of galaxies from the rotation speeds." Geoffrey Burbidge's penetrating ideas and questions stimulated much research by others, even though his ideas were not always confirmed.
Quasars ultimately proved to be the cause of his isolation from other cosmologists. Quasars, extremely bright objects, have a very high red shift -- a displacement in their spectra -- that is believed by big-bang theorists to mean that they are exceptionally distant from the Earth. Burbidge and Hoyle, however, argued that the quasars are emitted from relatively nearby galaxies at relativistic speeds, which accounts for their red shift.
The scientists believed that the quasars are created in these energetic galaxies and that they are the source of new matter in the universe, keeping it at a relatively steady state of mass as other matter is lost in energy-producing reactions. Their view was largely abandoned, however, after the 1964 discovery of the cosmic microwave background radiation, widely believed to be a remnant of the big bang.
The Burbidges spent recent years identifying quasars that they believed were relatively nearby and supported their point of view, but other astronomers seemed to be paying little attention.
Hoyle died in 2001. With Burbidge's death, there remain few strong proponents of this view.
"And orthodox pooh-poohing to the contrary, the pyramids really do hold many mysteries. ... no one has explained how the earliest and smallest populations could erect the largest architecture." -- Brad Steiger, author, October 1978
Unexplained Mysteries of the World: The Mystery Of The Giant Ancient Pyramids All Over The Earth. (Hat tip: Maxim Yakovenko)
Almost everyone knows about the amazing pyramids in Egypt. We will have much, much more to say about those extraordinary structures in future posts. Many people out there even know about the massive pyramids that have been found in South America. But very few people know about the pyramids that have now been discovered in China, Bosnia, the United States, Europe and Russia. The truth is that hundreds of giant ancient pyramids have now been discovered all over the world. Can all of these pyramids be attributed to one source? How could so many diverse civilizations all over the globe build such similar structures involving such advanced engineering? This is one of the truly great mysteries of the ancient world. You see, techniques were used in the construction of some of these ancient pyramids that mankind is only just now able to understand.
Friday, January 29, 2010
"... behold, a watcher and an holy one came down from heaven." -- Daniel 4:13
"This matter is by decree of the watchers, and the demand by the word of the holy ones: to the intent that the living may know that the most High ruleth in the kingdom of men, and giveth it to whomsoever he will, and setteth up over it the basest of men." --Daniel 4: 17
"... for in his days the angels of the Lord descended on the earth, those who are named the Watchers, that they should instruct the children of men, and that they should do judgment and uprightness on the earth." -- Jubilees 4:15-16
WANDJINA: A set of all-powerful and very intriguing Creation Gods.GodChecker.Com: WALLUNGUNDER.
WALLUNGUNDER, the big boss WANDJINA, came down from the Milky Way during DREAMTIME and created the earth and all its inhabitants. ...
These Gods from the Milky Way were so powerful that they didn't need to speak. So they didn't bother to have mouths.
They were definite good guys, and are still worshipped and respected Top Gods to this day. (And how many deities can still say that?)
WALLUNGUNDER: The enterprising Big Chief of the WANDJINA Gods Consortium.
He is now employed full-time as Executive Director of the Milky Way Galaxy, Inc.
Broome Gallery: Wandjina Art.
The Wandjina art tradition is central to the creation of humanity and the entire physical and spiritual world. The Wandjina is the supreme creator. This is the world's oldest unbroken spiritual art tradition dating back to around 15,000yrs possibly more. Making it arguably the world's most significant Indigenous and religious art. ...UPDATE:
In the culture of the Worora, Ngarinyin and Wunumbul tribes, which make up the Mowanjum community outside Derby, the Wandjina is the supreme spirit being.
As with most complex cultures, opinions about creation can differ. According to David Mowaljarlai (dec), a highly respected Mowanjum elder, the Worora, Ngarinyin and Wunumbul people are the three Wandjina tribes. Only these three tribes see the Wandjinas as the true creators of the land. ...
According to Mowanjum artist Mabel King (dec), during Lai Lai (the creation time), Wallungunder, the “big boss” Wandjina, came from the Milky Way to create the earth and all the people.
A CNN/Time poll from 1997 shows that 80% of Americans think the government is hiding knowledge of the existence of extraterrestrial life forms.
Similarly, a Fox News poll from 2005 shows that 79% of Americans believe in angels.
I guess that means that my view is the majority view (first time for everything).
Thursday, January 28, 2010
"... put kind medicines on it,
good ones, which they say you have been told of by Achilleus,
since Cheiron, most righteous of the Centaurs, told him about them."
-- Homer, poet, Iliad, Book XI: 830-832, 8th century B.C.
"Decide no suit until you have heard both sides speak." -- Hesiod, poet, The Precepts of Chiron, 8th century B.C. (quoted in Plutarch's Morals)
"The son of bold Ixion, Pirithous wedding Hippodame, had asked as guests the cloud-born centaurs to recline around the ordered tables, in a cool cave, set under some shading trees. Thessalian chiefs were there and I [Nestor] myself was with them there." -- Ovid, poet, Metamorphoses, Book XII, 1st century B.C.
"The Centaurs, however, becoming drunken assaulted the female guests and lay with them by violence, whereupon both Theseus and Lapiths, incensed by such a display of lawlessness, slew not a few of them and drove the rest out of the city. Because of this the Centaurs gathered their forces, made a campaign against Lapiths, and slew many of them, the survivors fleeing into Mt. Pholoe in Arcadia and ultimately escaping from there to Cape Malea, where they made their home. And the Centaurs, elated by these successes, made Mt. Pholoe the base of their operations, plundered the Greeks who passed by, and slew many of their neighbours." -- Diodorus Siculus, historian, The Library of History, Book IV, 71:3-4, 1st century B.C.
"Other human figures were to be seen with the legs and horns of goats: some had horses' feet: while others united the hind quarters of a horse with the body of a man, resembling in shape the hippocentaurs." -- [Lucius C.] Alexander "Polyhistor", tutor, 1st century B.C.
"In the sanctuary of Theseus is also a painting of the battle between the Centaurs and the Lapithae. Theseus has already killed a Centaur, but elsewhere the fighting is still undecided." -- Pausanias, geographer, Description of Greece, Book I: Attica, 2nd century
"956 B.C. There was a war between the Lapithae and the people of Thessaly, who are called Centaurs." -- Isaac Newton, alchemist/mathematician, Revised History of Ancient Kingdom's, 1721
Centaurs Identified In Antiquity
Science Daily: Color of Dinosaur Feathers Identified.
ScienceDaily (Jan. 28, 2010) — The colour of some feathers on dinosaurs and early birds has been identified for the first time, reports a paper recently published in Nature.
The research found that the theropod dinosaur Sinosauropteryx had simple bristles -- precursors of feathers -- in alternate orange and white rings down its tail, and that the early bird Confuciusornis had patches of white, black and orange-brown colouring. Future work will allow precise mapping of colours and patterns across the whole bird.
Wednesday, January 27, 2010
"It is the theory that determines what can be observed." -- Albert Einstein, mathematician, 1926
"I'll see it when I believe it." -- Halton C. Arp, astronomer, 2007
Science Daily: Is the Hobbit's Brain Unfeasibly Small?
ScienceDaily (Jan. 27, 2010) — Homo floresiensis, a pygmy-sized small-brained hominin popularly known as 'the Hobbit' was discovered five years ago, but controversy continues over whether the small brain is actually due to a pathological condition. How can its tiny brain size be explained?
"Special relativity was the result of 10 years of intellectual struggle, yet Einstein had convinced himself it was wrong within two years of publishing it. He had rejected his theory, even before most physicists had come to accept it." -- Lee Smolin, physicist, 2004
Science Daily: Single Photons Observed at Seemingly Faster-Than-Light Speeds.
ScienceDaily (Jan. 27, 2010) — Researchers at the Joint Quantum Institute (JQI), a collaboration of the National Institute of Standards and Technology and the University of Maryland at College Park, can speed up photons (particles of light) to seemingly faster-than-light speeds through a stack of materials by adding a single, strategically placed layer.
Tuesday, January 26, 2010
"... the only explanation possible is that the legends must be true." -- John H. Parker, archaeologist, The Archaeology of Rome, 1877
"... all the talk, all the legends, must be true." -- Paige W. Christiansen, historian, The Story of Mining in New Mexico, 1975
"During my researches into the origin of the Micronians [Homo sapiens] in our most ancient [Zentraedi] records I found an old legend. ... It presented a warning to the Zentraedis [giants] to keep our hands off any Micronian planet. ... It is my considered opinion my Lord [Breetai] that we should cease relations with this planet [Earth] immediately." -- Steve Kramer, writer, Exedore, Zentraedi Minister of Affairs, Robotech: The Macross Saga, Episode 5: Transformation, March 8th 1985
"Then the legends must be true." -- Steve Kramer, writer, Exedore, Zentraedi Minister of Affairs, Robotech: The Macross Saga, Episode 23: Reckless, April 3rd 1985
Monday, January 25, 2010
"When a distinguished but elderly scientist states that something is possible, he is almost certainly right. When he states that something is impossible, he is very probably wrong." -- Arthur C. Clarke, author, 1962
Asimov, I., The Truth Isn't Stranger Than Science Fiction -- Just Slower, The New York Times, Feb 1984
Two astronauts floated free in space last week before their shuttle touched down in Florida yesterday. They were not tethered. They left the spacecraft and returned to it on their own.
Those of a certain age were reminded of Buck Rogers comic strips of the 1930's and 40's. All of it - the space walk, the rocket ship, the backpack - happened there. Those still better acquainted with science fiction (or s.f. and not the barbarous ''sci-fi'') know of stories that dealt with such strange phenomena even earlier. Hugo Gernsback, editor of the first s.f. magazine, was writing about reaction motors that kept men in flight, in Earth's atmosphere as well as in space, in 1911. It took reality only three-fourths of a century to catch up.
The trip to the Moon, accomplished in 1969, followed by more than a century the first attempt to describe such a voyage with some attention to scientific detail. That was Jules Verne's ''From the Earth to the Moon'' published in 1866. Verne's launch mechanism was a giant cannon. The idea was impractical and, in a sense, outdated, for rocketry in connection with a Moon flight had already been mentioned by Cyrano de Bergerac. Yes, the fellow with the nose was also a science fiction writer. His story was published in 1655, 30 years before Isaac Newton demonstrated that, at least in principle, a rocket could carry people to the Moon, and that as far as was known, then or now, only a rocket would do the trick. Rocketry, then, lags three centuries behind science fiction. And what now? Will further advances in space overtake and outstrip science fiction once and for all? No danger! The National Aeronautics and Space Administration is talking of a permanent space station occupied by a dozen astronauts at a time. But Gerard O'Neill suggested space settlements, virtual cities of 10,000 or more, back in 1974, following serious suggestions - advanced by scientists in the early 1960's - for building solar power stations in space. And even those were not original notions. Back in 1941, Isaac Asimov (that's the fellow writing this piece) published ''Reason,'' a story that described in some detail a solar power station in space. In 1929, Edmond Hamilton wrote ''Cities in the Air'' in which cities declare their independence of Earth's surface and loft themselves into the atmosphere. It was not quite space, but it paved the way for James Blish, who began his stories about cities of the cosmos in 1948. By the time stations and power plants are built in space, they will have lagged behind science fiction for at least half a century. Once we have space stations, we will be able to take longer space trips. Using materials mined on the Moon, sometimes mentioned in space travel stories of the 1930's, and the special physical conditions of space, ships much larger than those practical on Earth's surface could be manufactured and launched. They could be manned by people accustomed to space travel who would be psychologically fit, as Earth-bound folk are not, to spend months or even years in transit. Of course, it is all old hat in science fiction, where interstellar travelers have wandered the solar system since the 1920's.
After the solar system come the stars. The nearest stars would take years and decades to reach - even if we went at the speed of light, which in theory is the fastest possible. If we went at reasonable less-than-light speeds, it would take generations. There are various strategies for dealing with this space-time problem - every one of them pretested in science fiction. Arthur Clarke's story ''2001: A Space Odyssey'' placed astronauts into frozen hibernation to wait out the long journey. Poul Anderson's book, ''Tau Zero,'' was one of many that had astronauts take advantage of the relativistic slowing of time at high speeds. Back in 1941, Robert Heinlein described in ''Universe'' a large ship - actually a small world - whose passengers were ready to spend millenia, and countless generations, to reach their starry destination.
Will faster-than-light travel be possible? My inclination is to say ''No,'' though I know it is unwise to be too categorical in such things. Back in 1928, Edward E. Smith wrote ''The Skylark of Space,'' the first story of interstellar travel using faster-than-light speeds. He invented the inertialess drive, which is probably impossible and which, in any case, would only achieve light- speed, nothing more. Still, the principle remains.
What kind of mind is required to think of things to come a generation and more ahead? Nothing unusual, judging by my own. It's just a matter of knowing science and technology and the way they have developed, and of thinking what the next steps might logically be - and thinking and thinking. People expect dramatic shortcuts, but it all boils down to the dull, hard work of thought. Which doesn't mean that science fiction writers have anticipated everything. Their record isn't that good. For instance, they concentrated on space flight under direct human control and never realized what could be done by remote-controlled probes. They foresaw computers but missed their true role in space flight. No one, for example, predicted the advent of the microchip, the computer's compactness and versatility, and how essential it would become to piloting, say, a shuttle. Science fiction writers missed all sorts of activities that could be performed in space. We had trips to the Moon, but no weather satellites, no communication satellites (though Arthur Clarke first described them in a nonfiction piece in 1945), no navigation satellites. Oddly enough, although we foresaw both television and landings on the Moon, no one anticipated reality by describing a landing on the Moon that was watched by hundreds of millions of people on Earth as it happened. Only the comic strip ''Alley Oop'' came close. The conclusion is this. It is unlikely that science and technology, in their great sweeps, will outstrip science fiction. In many small and unexpected ways, however, there were and undoubtedly will continue to be surprises that no science fiction writer - or scientist, for that matter - has thought of. It is these surprises that are the excitement and glory of the human intellectual adventure.
Sunday, January 24, 2010
"That the design of the Platonic Timaeus embraces the whole of physiology and that it pertains to the theory of the universe, discussing this from the beginning to the end, appears to me to be clearly evident to those who are not entirely illiterate." -- Proclus, philosopher, 5th century
"Hence the fire which is there (in the heavenly bodies) is light; and it is not proper to disturb the discussion of it, by directing our attention to the gross and dark fire of the sublunary region." -- Proclus, philosopher, 5th century
"It is also evident that the middle elements should be in the heavenly bodies, but that different elements should abound in different parts of the celestial regions." -- Proclus, philosopher, 5th century
Saturday, January 23, 2010
"You only find complete unanimity in a cemetary." -- Abel Aganbegyan, economist, 1987
For the most part that's true, but if there is one person I see eye to eye with on every issue I can think of it's the great Louis Hissink.
He stands head and shoulders above even the rest of the Electric Universe crowd and I am very grateful for his friendship and guidance: The Fallacy of Magnetic Reconnection.
The following list of physical phenomena are imaginative absurdities because they have not been physically observed.I have nothing to add.
1. Neutron stars (made of matter comprising 100% neutrons)
2. Dark Matter
3. Dark Energy
4. Black Holes
5. Magnetic Reconnection (physically impossible)
6. Frozen magnetic fields (physically impossible)
7. Biological Evolution (not observed empirically)
8. Plate Tectonics (no physical mechanism)
9. The Big Bang
10. Expanding Universe
11. Curved space
12. Gravity waves
Friday, January 22, 2010
"For a long time, people didn't really start to believe that asteroids could really hit the Earth and make a noticeable impression until the discovery of Meteor Crater. In fact, evidence proved that it had to have resulted from an asteroid impact. A scientist named Eugene Shoemaker found shocked quartz at the bottom of the crater and it's only possible to get this particular kind of glass with extremely high temperatures and pressures generated in an extremely short amount of time." -- Amy Mainzer, astronomer, March 4th 2008
Here's another idiotic mainstream article that totally ignores catastrophic meteorite impact events but at least there is one paragraph that makes sense.
Science Daily: Humans Caused Demise of Australia's Megafauna, Evidence Shows.
But one site in western NSW -- Cuddie Springs -- stood out as an anomaly. Fossils of super-sized kangaroos, giant birds and the rhino-sized Diprotodon (the largest marsupial ever to roam Australia) were found in the same sedimentary layers as stone tools, leading some scientists to previously claim "unequivocal evidence" of a long overlap of humans and megafauna.
Thursday, January 21, 2010
Oannes or Dagon is the aquatic extraterrestrial from Sirius and from whom the Dogon tribe derive their name.
[Lucius C.] Alexander "Polyhistor": Berossus: Of the Cosmogony and Deluge
At Babylon there was (in these times) a great resort of people of various nations, who inhabited Chaldæa, and lived in a lawless manner like the beasts of the field.The same is confirmed in the Western Hemisphere by Von Humboldt.
"In the remotest times, before the Moon accompanied the Earth, according to the mythology of the Muysca or Mozca Indians, the inhabitants of the plain of Bogota lived like barbarians, naked, without any form of laws or religious worship." --Alexander Von Humboldt, naturalist, Researches, 1814
Alexander Polyhistor continues:
In the first year there appeared, from that part of the Erythræan sea which borders upon Babylonia, an animal destitute of reason, by name Oannes, whose whole body (according to the account of Apollodorus) was that of a fish; that under the fish's head he had another head, with feet also below, similar to those of a man, subjoined to the fish's tail. His voice too, and language, was articulate and human; and a representation of him is preserved even to this day.
This Being was accustomed to pass the day among men; but took no food at that season; and he gave them an insight into letters and sciences, and arts of every kind. He taught them to construct cities, to found temples, to compile laws, and explained to them the principles of geometrical knowledge. He made them distinguish the seeds of the earth, and shewed them how to collect the fruits; in short, he instructed them in every thing which could tend to soften manners and humanize their lives. From that time, nothing material has been added by way of improvement to his instructions. And when the sun had set, this Being Oannes, retired again into the sea, and passed the night in the deep; for he was amphibious. After this there appeared other animals like Oannes, of which Berossus proposes to give an account when he comes to the history of the kings. Moreover Oannes wrote concerning the generation of mankind; and of their civil polity; and the following is the purport of what he said:
"There was a time in which there existed nothing but darkness and an abyss of waters, wherein resided most hideous beings, which were produced of a two-fold principle. There appeared men, some of whom were furnished with two wings, others with four, and with two faces. They had one body but two heads: the one that of a man, the other of a woman: and likewise in their several organs both male and female. Other human figures were to be seen with the legs and horns of goats: some had horses' feet: while others united the hind quarters of a horse with the body of a man, resembling in shape the hippocentaurs. Bulls likewise were bred there with the heads of men; and dogs with fourfold bodies, terminated in their extremities with the tails of fishes: horses also with the heads of dogs: men too and other animals, with the heads and bodies of horses and the tails of fishes. In short, there were creatures in which were combined the limbs of every species of animals. In addition to these, fishes, reptiles, serpents, with other monstrous animals, which assumed each other's shape and countenance. Of all which were preserved delineations in the temple of Belus at Babylon.
News Daily: Love in London is as rare as finding aliens.
LONDON, Jan. 19, 2010 (Reuters) — Romance may happen every day, but finding true love in London is as rare as aliens in the galaxy, says one London-based economist.
Peter Backus, a teaching fellow of economics at the University of Warwick, has calculated that he has a 0.00034 percent chance of finding love in the British capital using the same "Drake" equation scientists use to determine the potential number of extra-terrestrials in our galaxy.
American astronomer and astrophysicist Frank Drake devised his namesake equation in the early 1960s.
The 31-year-old Backus -- who lives on a narrow boat in central London -- is not even that particular about his ideal match, requiring only that she be a London-based female, aged 24-34, with a university education.
"I am not trying to be an elitist or anything," he said about his educational requirements. "Everyone has preferences. I just think we would have more in common."
Further reducing his chances, he has estimated he would be physically attracted to just five percent of the women meeting all these criteria.
This means there are about 10,500 women in Britain who tick all the boxes for Backus, he said -- just above the 10,000 potential communicative civilizations that could exist in the Milky Way according to the Drake equation.
So just 0.14 percent of Londoners and 0.017 percent of the British population meet Backus's own requirements, he said.
But a relationship takes two.
If this economist's dream women are equally as fussy as he is, his chances of finding someone who will return his affections plummets to just 0.00034 percent, he said.
"There are 26 women in the UK with whom I might have a wonderful relationship. So, on a given night out in London there is a 0.00034 percent chance of meeting one of these special people," he said.
"That's a 1 in 285,000 chance. Not great."
But love can still defy the odds right on your doorstep. Since writing his paper on the equations of finding love, Backus has started dating his neighbor Rose. She meets his age requirement, has a university degree and also lives on a boat.
Wednesday, January 20, 2010
Joe Carroll: Texas Wildcatter Moncrief Hits Latest Gusher Beneath Old Fields. (Hat tip: John A. Bailo)
Jan. 20 (Bloomberg) -- William “Tex” Moncrief, the billionaire wildcatter and scion of one of the founding families of the Texas oil industry, is betting the key to finding new gushers is to go deeper than anyone has gone before.
Moncrief agreed in September to help finance McMoRan Exploration Co.’s $70 million Davy Jones well off the Louisiana coast in exchange for a 10 percent stake in the prospect. The gamble paid off last week, when New Orleans-based McMoRan said the well hit what may be one of the biggest Gulf of Mexico oil and gas discoveries in decades.
Moncrief bought a piece of Davy Jones after being impressed by McMoRan’s success with a former Exxon Mobil Corp. well known as Blackbeard at a then-record depth of 32,997 feet (10,057 meters). He said he’s eager to invest in more projects with McMoRan Co-Chairman James “Jim Bob” Moffett, a friend of 50 years and a pioneer in finding oil miles beneath old fields.
“I knew Jim Bob took in that old Exxon Blackbeard well and went deeper with it to make it work,” Moncrief, 89, said in a telephone interview from the headquarters of closely held Moncrief Oil in Fort Worth, Texas. “I’ve drilled lots of deep wells. Sometimes when you don’t find what you’re looking for, you have to just keep on going.”
The biggest find so far in Moncrief’s 64 years in the oil patch was the Madden field in Wyoming, which he tapped at almost 28,000 feet underground in 1969. Four decades after its discovery, Madden is pumping out enough natural gas to rank as the state’s fifth-biggest producer, according to the Wyoming Oil and Gas Commission.
“Tex has always been very aggressive and willing to go after deals,” said A.V. Jones, owner of Van Operating Ltd., an Albany, Texas-based oil producer. “He’s been a leader as far as going after some of the deep stuff that takes real money to make it play.”
McMoRan said today that its Davy Jones well found additional hydrocarbon-bearing sands after drilling deeper following the discovery announced last week. The well was drilled to 28,603 feet, all but about 20 feet of that beneath the seafloor. It has found 200 net feet of productive sands and will go deeper, according to McMoRan.
Tuesday, January 19, 2010
Science Daily: Why Hasn't Earth Warmed as Much as Expected? New Report on Climate Change Explores the Reasons.
ScienceDaily (Jan. 19, 2010) — Planet Earth has warmed much less than expected during the industrial era based on current best estimates of Earth's "climate sensitivity" -- the amount of global temperature increase expected in response to a given rise in atmospheric concentrations of carbon dioxide (CO2). In a study to be published in the Journal of Climate, a publication of the American Meteorological Society, Stephen Schwartz, of Brookhaven National Laboratory, and colleagues examine the reasons for this discrepancy.
Monday, January 18, 2010
A Baptist so-called "Moderator" on the pro-censorship and anti-freedom of speech website Christian Forums banned me for saying Jesus Christ is an extraterrestrial.
According to the so-called Christian "moderator," who has obviously never read the Bible, it is blasphemy to believe that Jesus Christ's words are true.
"...ye are of this world; I am not of this world." -- Jesus Christ, extraterrestrial, John 8:23
"My kingdom is not of this world: if my kingdom were of this world, then would my servants fight, that I should not be delivered to the Jews: but now is my kingdom not from hence." -- Jesus Christ, extraterrestrial, John 18:36
Sunday, January 17, 2010
James P. Hogan: (Un)Settled Science - Hole in the AGWzone Layer! (via Louis Hissink's Crazy World.)
When beliefs that are normally regarded as the province of science become subject to an ideology that decides in advance what answers are required and censors the evidence in ways that steer beliefs toward them, then, regardless of what incidental use might be made of computers, satellites, and other kinds of advanced engineering and technology, what's going on isn't science. But most of the world has never learned to tell the difference – or maybe cared that much.
Friday, January 15, 2010
Steve Smith: Betelgeuse.
Betelgeuse is notable for gigantic "bubbles of hot gas" that are in constant motion—bubbles as large as the star itself. Since it has been observed to eject massive amounts of stellar material, greater than six-times its diameter, it has been proposed that Betelgeuse is undergoing violent vertical oscillations just beneath its surface. It is that energetic motion that is causing the "hot gas" to blast into space, just as bubbles in boiling water erupt with puffs of steam.
The Electric Star theory provides another explanation. An explanation that relies on the electrical connection stars have with their galactic neighborhood, and with the Universe. Stars shine because electricity flows through each galaxy. As has been written in these pages many times, stars can be thought of as giant spheres of slow-motion lightning. It is this simple hypothesis that best matches observational evidence.
Retired Professor of Electrical Engineering Don Scott wrote in his acclaimed book The Electric Sky that a star's size, luminosity, and color have little to do with its age. Stars fall into position on the Hertzsprung-Russell diagram because of the input they receive from galactic electrical circuits. As Dr. Scott wrote, the primary indicator for a star's behavior is the current density at its surface. Stars do not rely on internally generated fusion fires to supply them with energy.
Red giant stars are relatively cool but extremely bright, so they are interpreted to be quite large. Scott proposes that the "giant" characteristic is a result of an exceptionally broad corona and not because the stellar disc is oversized. The star might be small inside its extended, energetic atmosphere. The fact that Betelgeuse has a temperature measurement of about 2900 Celsius calls into question the thermonuclear model of stars. How can such cool temperatures create a radiative output that is so extreme?
Physicist and Electric Universe advocate Wal Thornhill also proposes an electrical model for Betelgeuse, and red supergiant stars, in general. Electric currents in space are primarily due to the flow of electrons through interstellar plasma, and not the movement of positive ions. This means that stars are lacking in electrons because of a charge separation process. Stars can be considered "positive anodes in a galactic glow discharge." Therefore:
“Red stars are those stars that cannot satisfy their hunger for electrons from the surrounding plasma. So the star expands the surface area over which it collects electrons by growing a large plasma sheath that becomes the effective collecting area of the stellar anode in space. The growth process is self-limiting because, as the sheath expands, its electric field will grow stronger. Electrons caught up in the field are accelerated to ever-greater energies. Before long, they become energetic enough to excite neutral particles they chance to collide with, and the huge sheath takes on a uniform ‘red anode glow.’ It becomes a red giant star."
Betelgeuse is an electric star, and the bright regions are areas where electric currents are flowing with the greatest Amperage.
Thursday, January 14, 2010
"The form of the corona and the motion of the prominences suggest that it [the sun] is a magnet." -- George E. Hale, astronomer, 1913
Science Daily: Giant Magnetic Loop Sweeps Through Space Between Stellar Pair.
ScienceDaily (Jan. 14, 2010) — Astronomers have found a giant magnetic loop stretched outward from one of the stars making up the famous double-star system Algol. The scientists used an international collection of radio telescopes to discover the feature, which may help explain details of previous observations of the stellar system.
"This is the first time we've seen a feature like this in the magnetic field of any star other than the Sun," said William Peterson, of the University of Iowa.
The pair, 93 light-years from Earth, includes a star about 3 times more massive than the Sun and a less-massive companion, orbiting it at a distance of 5.8 million miles, only about six percent of the distance between Earth and the Sun. The newly-discovered magnetic loop emerges from the poles of the less-massive star and stretches outward in the direction of the primary star. As the secondary star orbits its companion, one side -- the side with the magnetic loop -- constantly faces the more-massive star, just as the same side of our Moon always faces the Earth.
Wednesday, January 13, 2010
"For the past 150 years, early humans have been regarded as inferior to us, unable to create art, think abstractly, or even to speak." -- John Feliks, scholar, 2009
"... early peoples such as Homo erectus, Homo ergaster, Neanderthals, and Homo heidelbergensis were just as intelligent as we are in today's modern world." -- John Feliks, scholar, 2009
Science Daily: Use of Body Ornamentation Shows Neanderthal Mind Capable of Advanced Thought
ScienceDaily (Jan. 12, 2010) — The widespread view of Neanderthals as cognitively inferior to early modern humans is challenged by new research from the University of Bristol published in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.
Professor João Zilhão and colleagues examined pigment-stained and perforated marine shells, most certainly used as neck pendants, from two Neanderthal-associated sites in the Murcia province of south-east Spain (Cueva de los Aviones and Cueva Antón). The analysis of lumps of red and yellow pigments found alongside suggest they were used in cosmetics. The practice of body ornamentation is widely accepted by archaeologists as conclusive evidence for modern behaviour and symbolic thinking among early modern humans but has not been recognised in Neanderthals -- until now.
Tuesday, January 12, 2010
"Indeed the face is pale; ... what the ancestors foretold has arrived...." -- Ipuwer, scribe, Papyrus 1, date debated
"Indeed, the women are barren and none conceive." -- Ipuwer, scribe, Papyrus 1, date debated
"... pestilence is throughout the land, blood is everywhere, death is not lacking..." -- Ipuwer, scribe, Papyrus 2, date debated
"Indeed, many dead are buried in the river; the stream is a sepulcher and the place of embalmment has become a stream." -- Ipuwer, scribe, Papyrus 2, date debated
"Indeed, the land turns around as does a potter's wheel..." -- Ipuwer, scribe, Papyrus 2, date debated
"Indeed, the river is blood, yet men drink of it. Men shrink from human beings and thirst after water. Indeed, gates, columns and walls are burnt up, while the hall of the palace stands firm and endures. " -- Ipuwer, scribe, Papyrus 2, date debated
"Indeed, men are few, and he who places his brother in the ground is everywhere." -- Ipuwer, scribe, Papyrus 2, date debated
"Indeed, the desert is throughout the land, the nomes [districts] are laid waste, and barbarians from abroad have come to Egypt." -- Ipuwer, scribe, Papyrus 3, date debated
"Indeed, gold and lapis lazuli, silver and turquoise, carnelian and amethyst, Ibhet-stone and [. . .] are strung on the necks of maidservants." -- Ipuwer, scribe, Papyrus 3, date debated
"Indeed, hair [has fallen out] for everybody, and the man of rank can no longer be distinguished from him who is nobody." -- Ipuwer, scribe, Papyrus 4, date debated
"Indeed, the children of princes are dashed against walls...." -- Ipuwer, scribe, Papyrus 4 & 5, date debated
"Indeed, that has perished which yesterday was seen...." -- Ipuwer, scribe, Papyrus 4 & 5, date debated
"Indeed, all animals, their hearts weep; cattle moan because of the state of the land." -- Ipuwer, scribe, Papyrus 5, date debated
"Indeed, everywhere barley has perished ...." -- Ipuwer, scribe, Papyrus 6, date debated
"Behold, he whose hair is fallen out...." -- Ipuwer, scribe, Papyrus 8, date debated
"They cover their faces through fear of the morrow." -- Ipuwer, scribe, Papyrus 16, date debated
"Thus saith the LORD, In this thou shalt know that I am the LORD: behold, I will smite with the rod that is in mine hand upon the waters which are in the river, and they shall be turned to blood. And the fish that is in the river shall die, and the river shall stink; and the Egyptians shall lothe to drink of the water of the river." -- Exodus 7:17-18
"And the fish that was in the river died; and the river stank, and the Egyptians could not drink of the water of the river; and there was blood throughout all the land of Egypt." -- Exodus 7:21
"And all the Egyptians digged round about the river for water to drink; for they could not drink of the water of the river." -- Exodus 7:24
"Behold, the hand of the LORD is upon thy cattle which is in the field...." -- Exodus 9:3
"And the LORD did that thing on the morrow, and all the cattle of Egypt died: but of the cattle of the children of Israel died not one." -- Exodus 9:6
"So there was hail [meteorites], and fire mingled with the hail, very grievous, such as there was none like it in all the land of Egypt since it became a nation. And the hail smote throughout all the land of Egypt all that was in the field, both man and beast; and the hail smote every herb of the field, and brake every tree of the field. Only in the land of Goshen, where the children of Israel were, was there no hail." -- Exodus 9:24-26
"And the flax and the barley was smitten...." -- Exodus 9:31
"And the children of Israel did according to the word of Moses; and they borrowed of the Egyptians jewels of silver, and jewels of gold, and raiment: And the LORD gave the people favour in the sight of the Egyptians, so that they lent unto them such things as they required. And they spoiled the Egyptians." -- Exodus 12:35-36
"Once the choice was made for the First Intermediate Period reasons were found to date it to the beginning of the period or even to the last years of Pepi II in the Old Kingdom." -- John van Seters, archaeologist, December 1964
"And these were not miracles seen just by a couple of people, these were events that have been seen by the entire nation. More than this, the population of Egypt was involved, and if we think a little more, these events could not have been even limited to the land of Egypt." -- Immanuel Velikovsky, polymath, 1966
"No, if these things happened, really happened, they must be not only in Biblical source but also Egyptian source in the first place. Egyptian record. I looked for it; I found it. [An] Eyewitness [Ipuwer] describe[s] the catastrophe -- the very same plagues. Strange was to me that the translator of the papyrus [The Admonitions of Ipuwer] now in Holland in [the] museum of the University of Leiden and there since more than a hundred years, [the] papyrus translated in 1909 by Gardiner, he didn't even feel that the very same verses that he translate[d] in modern English he could read in the story of the plagues in King James Version. This was observed a case of some scotoma. But scotoma was with all of us. How is it that a book that was read more than any other book, translated into scores of languages, commented upon by many commentators through so many generations, but none of them was seeing or reading stone for stone and fire for fire?" -- Immanuel Velikovsky, polymath, 1966
"Most Egyptologists agree that the Pyramid complex of King Neferkare Pepi II, the last major monument of the Old Kingdom, exhibits the same high quality of craftsmanship as its predecessors and gives no hint of the Dark Age soon to engulf all aspects of Egyptian civilization." -- Barbara Bell, archaeologist, 1971
"Pepi II ... appears to have had the longest reign in Egyptian history and perhaps in all history. The Turin Royal Canon credits him with upwards of ninety years. One version of the Epitome of Manetho indicates that he 'began to rule at the age of six and continued to a hundred.' Although modern scholars have questioned this, it remains to be disproved." -- William K. Simpson, historian, The Ancient Near East: A History, 1971
"Ipuwer had been understood by earlier scholars to be an attack by Ipuwer on a ruler, probably Pepi II." -- R. J. Williams, professor, 1981
"... research strongly suggests Moses and the Israelites went into bondage during the reign of Pharaoh Pepy II, the 'Pharaoh of the Oppression'" -- J.J. Williams, historian, Who Was the Pharaoh of the Exodus?, 1994
"One of the names in the family of Pepy II is an exact match to a name given in the Book of Jasher. This is the chief wife of Pepy II. In the Book of Jasher it states that the wife of Melol, the pharaoh of the oppression, was named Alparanith. The chief queen of Pepy II was named Neith (or Nith). This is very probably the same name and therefore the same person." -- J.J. Williams, historian, Who Was the Pharaoh of the Exodus?, 1994
"According to the Midrash, the Pharaoh of the Exodus was named Akidam and he had a short reign of four years. The Pharaoh who preceded him, whose death prompted Moses' return to Egypt (Exodus 2:23, 4:19), was named Malul. Malul, we are told, reigned from the age of six to the age of 100. Such a long reign - 94 years! - sounds fantastic, and many people would hesitate to take this Midrash literally. As it happens though, Egyptian records mention a Pharaoh who reigned for 94 years, and not only 94 years, but from the age of six to the age of 100! This Pharaoh was known in inscriptions as Pepi (or Phiops) II. The information regarding his reign is known both from the Egyptian historian-priest Manetho, writing in the 3rd century BCE, and from an ancient Egyptian papyrus called the Turin Royal Canon, which was only discovered in the last century." -- Brad Aronson, scholar, 1995
"Gerald E. Aardsma, Ph.D., has proposed an alternate solution, one that solves these problems and does justice to both biblical and secular scientific evidence. He has shown that the correct biblical chronology date for the Conquest is ca. 2400 B.C., not ca. 1400 B.C. By this solution, it is the ca. 2400 B.C. destruction at Jericho, shown in the charts above, which must be credited to Joshua." -- The Biblical Chronologist, 1996
"Ipuwer, an ancient Egyptian sage. He perhaps served as a treasury official during the last years of Pepi II Neferkare (reigned c. 2294 - c. 2200 BC)...." -- The New Encyclopaedia Britannica, Volume 6, 2002
"H. Frankfort, in an article published in 1926, brought together in support of this interpretation, archaeological evidence for many Syrian related button seals which first appear in Egypt, according to Frankfort, during the Sixth Dynasty about the time of Pepi II .... On the basis of the button seals, he concludes that the value of the Admonitions of Ipuwer (which was thought to refer to the time of Pepi II) as an 'historical document' was established." -- Thomas L. Thompson, historian, 2002
"The end of the reign of Pepi II led into the First Intermediate period...." -- Richard Lobban, historian, Historical Dictionary of Ancient and Medieval Nubia, 2004
"There are many petroglyphs which depict ostriches and a few that depict giraffes. Butzer (1961) has used relative frequencies of the appearance of these animals in petroglyphs to gauge the changing climate. This evidence fits well with the three OK inscriptions, at least one of which is from the reign of Pepy II, which tell of digging wells (inscriptions DN28, ML01, ML12). While it is possible that these people could be simply pioneering a new route, it seems more likely that the old sources of water were drying up. Additional weight is given to the latter argument by a passage from a document known to Egyptologists as the 'Admonitions of Ipuwer,' which described conditions during the First Intermediate Period." -- Rusell D. Rothe, et al., Pharaonic Inscriptions From the Southern Eastern Desert of Egypt, Eisenbrauns, 2008
Frankfort, H, Egypt and Syria in the First Intermediate Period, The Journal of Egyptian Archaeology, Volume 12, Number 1/2, Pages 80-99, Apr 1926
Van Seters, J., A Date For The 'Admonitions' In The Second Intermediate Period, Journal of Egyptian Archaeology, Volume 50, Pages 12-23, 1964
Bell, B., The Dark Ages in Ancient History: I . The First Dark Age in Egypt, American Journal of Archaeology, Volume 75, Number 1, Pages 1-26, Jan 1971
Williams, R.J., The Sages of Ancient Egypt in Light of Recent Scholarship, Journal of the American Oriental Society, Volume 101, Number 1, Pages 1-19, 1981
Aardsma, G.E., A New Approach to the Chronology of Biblical History from Abraham to Samuel, 1993
What is the Missing Millenium Discovery?, The Biblical Chronologist, 1993
In 1990, Dr. Aardsma proposed a major adjustment to traditional biblical chronology. He proposed that the "480" of 1 Kings 6:1 was originally "1,480" but the Hebrew letters corresponding to the "one thousand" were lost at an early stage of copying.Williams, J.J., and Parry, C., Who Was the Pharaoh of the Exodus?, 1994
This proposal is applied in the second time chart at left. The new biblical date for the Exodus becomes ca. 2450 B.C., and prior biblical events are similarly shifted to earlier times, by exactly 1000 years relative to traditional biblical chronology.
This change is radical, and at first unimaginable. However, as one begins to examine the archaeology at the new dates, the harmony between biblical and secular accounts is overwhelming. Egypt is struck by national disaster, effectively causing the collapse of the Old Kingdom at the end of the sixth dynasty. The trail of the Israelites in the desert at the time of the Exodus, and remains of their encampment dating to exactly this time period have been found. Both Jericho and Ai were destroyed ca. 2400 B.C., with destruction layers accurately fitting the biblical descriptions. The evidence that Dr. Aardsma's proposal is correct has become overwhelming and continues to mount.
This discovery and the ensuing research have resolved the conflicts between biblical and secular histories prior to the United Kingdom period. Dr. Aardsma's research has also led to many exciting discoveries surrounding early biblical events such as Noah's Flood. Conservative, Bible-believing scholarship today has an answer for those who claim that the Old Testament stories are mere fabrications. This discovery is of extreme significance to anyone who believes the Bible or studies biblical archaeology.
Aaronson, B., When Was the Exodus?, Jewish Action, 1995
Is Bryant Wood's Chronology of Jericho Valid?, The Biblical Chronologist, Volume 2, Number 3, 1996
DeMonocal, P.B., Cultural Responses to Climate Change During the Late Holocene, Science, Volume 292, Number 5517, Pages 667-673, Apr 2001
Thompson. T.L., The Historicity of the Patriarchal Narratives: The Quest for the Historical Abraham, 2002
Stanley, J-D., et al., Nile Flow Failure at the End of the Old Kingdom Egypt: Strontium Isotopic and Petrologic Evidence, Geoarchaeology, Volume 18, Issue 3, Pages 395-402, Feb 2003
Lobban, R., Historical Dictionary of Ancient and Medieval Nubia, 2004
Drysdale, R., at al., Late Holocene Drought Responsible for the Collapse of Old World Civilizations is Recorded in an Italian Cave Flowstone, Geology, Volume 34, Number 2, Pages 101-104, Feb 2006
Arz, H.W., et al., A Pronounced Dry Event Recorded Around 4.2 ka in Brine Sediments From the Northern Red Sea, Quaternary Research, Volume 66, Issue 3, Pages 432-441, Nov 2006
Rothe, R.D., et al., Pharaonic Inscriptions From the Southern Eastern Desert of Egypt, Eisenbrauns, 2008
Monday, January 11, 2010
Another informative gem from the greatest science reporter living today.
Steve Smith: The Interstellar Medium.
A diffuse cloud of gas surrounds the Solar System. What is holding it together?
It is often stated that space is a vacuum. It is true that the material in space is at a far lower density than any vacuum that can be created on Earth, but matter does exist in the regions between stars and galaxies. The best pumped vacuums on Earth typically reach a 0.1 millimeter spacing between individual atoms.
Between stars, there is one atom per cubic centimeter, while in the Milky Way's galactic halo they are estimated to be ten centimeters apart. The regions of least density are in the intergalactic voids, where it is theorized that there is only one atom for every ten cubic meters.
The Interstellar Medium (ISM), through which the Solar System and all other star systems are moving, consists of a mass of gas and dust primarily composed of hydrogen and helium, with an admixture of dust grains that are less than one-tenth of a micron in size. One micron is equal to one-millionth of a meter, so the dust is almost as small as the frequency of blue light (0.450 microns).
The size of the dust particles means that blue light is scattered when it passed through the ISM, so more red light reaches Earth than it would without the dust. This phenomenon is called "interstellar reddening", and is the same effect that causes reddening of the sunrise and sunset. Dust clouds lit from the side by starlight appear blue, on the other hand, for the same reason that Earth's sky is blue: blue light is scattered by Earth's atmosphere.
What the dust is and where it came from is not known, but astrophysicists speculate that it is ejected from stars. Supergiant stars are often seen with immense clouds of dust surrounding them. However, deep space images also reveal dust lanes thousands of light-years in circumference looping around many galaxies.
One important characteristic of the ISM is that it contains ionized particles, as well as neutral molecules. It is those electrons and positive ions that are critical to understanding the behavior of the ISM and how the Solar System interacts with it.
Although the ISM is extremely diffuse, if charge separation takes place in different regions, a weak electric field will develop. An electric field, no matter how weak, will initiate an electric current.
According to a recent press release, there is an unexpected cloud of gas and dust that is encompassing the Sun's heliosheath. Prior to the discovery, conventional understanding did not predict that it would be there because high pressure supernova shockwaves should have blown it away.
However, according to Merav Opher of George Mason University: "Using data from Voyager, we have discovered a strong magnetic field just outside the Solar System. This magnetic field holds the interstellar cloud together and solves the long-standing puzzle of how it can exist at all."
On August 20, 1977, NASA launched the Voyager 2 mission on a multiyear journey to the outer Solar System. Voyager 1 was launched on a faster, shorter trajectory on September 5, 1977. Voyager 1 passed through the Sun's termination shock in December 2004. Voyager 2, traveling a different path, did the same in August 2007. It was data from those "old-timers" that provided the information for Opher's assessment of the ISM.
What is the heliosheath? When Voyager 1 experienced "unusual events" as it approached the boundary between the Sun and interstellar space, Electric Universe advocate Wal Thornhill explained that the spacecraft was entering a "double layer", or Langmuir plasma sheath between the solar plasma and the plasma of the ISM.
It is a well-known principle that electric currents generate magnetic fields. Since Opher's research team has found magnetic fields strong enough to hold tenuous clouds of gas and dust together against the influence of hypothetical supernova explosions, then electric currents must be flowing through the ISM in order to create those fields.
Whenever an electric discharge takes place in plasma, the current flow is compressed inward by induced magnetic fields. This effect is known as a "z-pinch", and is a foundational principle of Electric Universe theory. The compression can be so intense that plasma is squeezed down into solid particles. Indeed, stars and galaxies are thought to owe their existence to massive electric currents forming cosmic z-pinches in the vast clouds of plasma that make up 99% of the Universe.
In conclusion, the ultra-fine dust, magnetic fields, influences on spacecraft, and the heliosheath, itself, are all manifestations of the electric force. Electricity will eventually supplant gravitational theory as the primum mobile of existence. Meanwhile, patient observations continue to support Electric Universe concepts.
"You can imagine that I look back on my life's work with calm satisfaction. But from nearby it looks quite different. There is not a single concept of which I am convinced that it will stand firm, and I feel uncertain whether I am in general on the right track." -- Albert Einstein, mathematician, March 1949
"Special relativity was the result of 10 years of intellectual struggle, yet Einstein had convinced himself it was wrong within two years of publishing it. He had rejected his theory, even before most physicists had come to accept it." -- Lee Smolin, physicist, 2004
Physics World: Pulsar bursts move 'faster than light'.
Every physicist is taught that information cannot be transmitted faster than the speed of light. Yet laboratory experiments done over the last 30 years clearly show that some things appear to break this speed limit.... ...I predict the crackpots will be falling over each other out of the woodwork proclaiming that Relativity has been "proven" to be correct, without even bothering to understand why light can travel faster than the alleged constant c.
Using the Arecibo Observatory in Puerto Rico, they took radio data of the pulsar PSR B1937+21 at 1420.4 MHz with a 1.5 MHz bandwidth for three days. Oddly, those pulses close to the centre value arrived earlier than would be expected given the pulsar's normal timing, and therefore appeared to have travelled faster than the speed of light.
Sunday, January 10, 2010
Sidebar overhaul with new section on archaeoastronomy.
"Dost thou not know, Asclepius, that Egypt is the image of the Heaven?" -- Hermes Trismegistus, mage, Asclepius, Book IX, Chapter XXIV, date debated
"... there was war between the Lydians and the Medes for five years; each won many victories over the other, and once they fought a battle by night. They were still warring with equal success, when it happened, at an encounter which occurred in the sixth year, that during the battle the day was suddenly turned to night. Thales of Miletus had foretold this loss of daylight to the Ionians, fixing it within the year in which the change did indeed happen. So when the Lydians and Medes saw the day turned to night, they stopped fighting, and both were the more eager to make peace." -- Herodotus, historian, Book I:74, ~440-420 B.C.
"... coasting along the planet Mars, which, as is well known, is five times smaller than our own little globe, they [Sirians] saw two moons. These have escaped the observation of our astronomers." -- Voltaire, philosopher, Micromegas, 1752
"The starting-point of creation is the star which revolves round Sirius and is actually named the 'Digitaria star'; it is regarded by the Dogon as the smallest and heaviest of all the stars; it contains the germs of all things. Its movement on its own axis and around Sirius upholds all creation in space. We shall see that its orbit determines its calendar." -- Marcel Griaule and Germaine Dieterlen, anthropologists, The Dogon, 1954
"... I am convinced that the history of mathematical astronomy is one of the most promising fields of historical research. I hope that this will become evident...." -- Otto E. Neugebauer, archaeoastronomer, The Exact Sciences in Antiquity, 1957
"The wondrous thing is: how could Kepler have known of the red spot in Jupiter, then not yet discovered? It was discovered by J. D. Cassini in the 1660’s, after the time of Kepler and Galileo. Kepler’s assumption that Galileo had discovered a red spot in Jupiter amazes and defies every statistical chance of being a mere guess. But the possibility is not excluded that Kepler found the information in some Arab author or some other source, possibly of Babylonian or Chinese origin. Kepler did not disclose what the basis of his reference to the red spot of Jupiter was — he could not have arrived at it either by logic and deduction or by sheer guesswork. A scientific prediction must follow from a theory as a logical consequence. Kepler had no theory on that. It is asserted that the Chinese observed solar spots many centuries before Galileo did with his telescope. Observing solar spots, the ancients could have conceivably observed the Jovian red spot, too. Jesuit scholars traveled in the early 17th century to China to study Chinese achievements in astronomy." -- Immanuel Velikovsky, polymath, ~1960-70
"Maya astronomy is too important to be left to the astronomers." -- J. Eric S. Thompson, archaeologist, 1974
"How could the ancient and secret traditions of an African tribe contain highly precise information about invisible stars in the Sirius star system? Some of it has only been discovered very recently by modern scientists, half a century after it was recorded by anthropologists studying the tribe." -- Robert K. G. Temple, author, The Sirius Mystery, 1976
"A master plan for the three pyramids of Giza based on the configuration of the three stars of the belt of Orion." -- Robert G. Bauval, author, 1989
"He [Robert K. G. Temple] was baffled as to how the Dogon could have known of the existence of Sirius B, given that it is barely visible using a very powerful telescope (it was only in 1970 that the first photograph of Sirius B was obtained with great difficulty by the astronomer Irving Lindenblad). Most people today remain ignorant of the existence of Sirius B and not many would even be aware of Sirius A, so how could the Dogon have had accurate information concerning Sirius B in the 1950s?" -- Robert G. Bauval, author, The Orion Mystery: Unlocking the Secrets of the Pyramids, 1994
"The situation regarding The Sirius Mystery has changed completely since the initial edition of the book was published in 1976. At that time the Dogon tribal tradition insisted upon the existence of a third star in the system of Sirius which modern astronomers could not confirm. Some critics said this proved the hypothesis of the book to be false. If the earth had been visited by intelligent beings from the system of the star Sirius in the distant past, and they had left behind all this precise information about their star system, the fact that they described the existence of a third star, a Sirius C, whose existence could not be confirmed by modern astronomy rendered the whole account untrustworthy. However, the existence of Sirius C has now been confirmed after all." -- Robert K. G. Temple, author, The Sirius Mystery, 1998
"Though we may try, we cannot really appreciate the degree to which the minds of the ancients were preoccupied with astronomical pursuits." -- Anthony F. Aveni, archaeoastronomer, Skywatchers, 2001
"We are constantly amazed at the seemingly impossible accomplishments of our ancestors." -- Anthony F. Aveni, archaeoastronomer, Skywatchers, 2001
"Stonehenge is perhaps the most famous example of an ancient structure believed to have served an astronomical function. In 1964, astronomer Gerald Hawkins wrote Stonehenge Decoded, thus rekindling an idea made popular at the end of the nineteenth century by Sir Norman Lockyer ( 1964). Hawkins hypothesized that the magaliths standing for 5,000 years on the plain of southern Great Britain constituted a calendar in stone, each component situated deliberately and precisely to align with astronomical events taking place along the local horizon. Detailed works (Alexander Thom 1967, 1971) and cultural syntheses (Euan MacKie 1977, Clive Ruggles 1999, Rodney Castledon 1987, and Aveni 1997) have since helped solidify the basis of our understanding of ancient megalithic astronomy as part of an unwritten record of astronomical achievement. The Stonehenge controversy was responsible for a resurgence in interest in the interdisciplinary field of astroarchaeology, a term first coined by Hawkins (1966) to encompass the study of astronomical principles employed in ancient works of architecture and the elaboration of a methodology for the retrieval and quantitative analysis of astronomical alignment data. The alternate term, archaeoastronomy, came to embody the study of the extent and practice of astronomy among ancient cultures." -- Anthony F. Aveni, archaeoastronomer, Skywatchers, 2001
"In the Americas, investigators from diverse fields have turned their attention to archaeoastronomical pursuits. As a result of cooperation among them, there has been added to the literature an increasing body of evidence relating to the role of astronomy in the lives of the ancient people of this hemisphere. The slow process of integration of the results of these investigations into the mainstream of human intellectual history continues." -- Anthony F. Aveni, archaeoastronomer, Skywatchers, 2001
"Only within the last century have we begun to gain a full appreciation of the magnitude and sophistication of ancient New World cultures. Calendrical documents reveal that mathematics and astronomy were among the intellectual hallmarks of the Maya, who emerge as a people thoroughly devoted to these disciplines." -- Anthony F. Aveni, archaeoastronomer, Skywatchers, 2001
"... people living over seven thousand years ago may have possessed technical knowledge in astronomy and physics more advanced than our current understanding of the same subjects." -- Robert M. Schoch, geologist, 2002
"Even cursory initial consideration of the locations of the six Orion stars in question (Alnitak, Alnilam, Mintaka, Betelguese, Bellatrix, and Meissa) suggests that the megaliths probably represented them." -- Thomas G. Brophy, archaeoastronomer, 2002
"By even the more conservative estimate, these are by far the most certain ancient megalithic astronomical alignments known in the world." -- Thomas G. Brophy, archaeoastronomer, 2002
"Pursuing further what one would expect to be the logical meaning of the alignment distances in a chart, namely the actual distances to the stars, just for fun I looked up our current measures for the astrophysical distances to these stars. The best star distances astronomers have been able to measure are from the Hipparcos Space Astronomy satellite parallax measurements. Astonishingly, these Hipparcos astrophysical distance measurements match the megalith distance pattern quite well." -- Thomas G. Brophy, archaeoastronomer, 2002
"Ancient cultures were often more realistic in their relationship with the heavens. In recent decades we have come to recognize the astronomical sophistication of ancient non-Western cultures. Otto Neugebauer's 1957 Exact Sciences in Antiquity became a foundation text and spurred the beginning of a new interdisciplinary field, archaeoastronomy. " -- Dick Teresi, author, 2002
"Biot (1846) and Humboldt (1850) were the pioneer western astronomers who firstly introduced the historical Chinese astronomical records to North America." -- Zhen-Ru Wang, astronomer, November 2006
"It just intrigues me to think that if I could find one of our 'recent relatives,' Cro-Magnon man for example, he would probably correct me because he would be more familiar with the sky and he would know the constellations just a little bit better than people do today." -- Matt Malkan, professor, February 19th 2008
"One wonders whether this proves a special arcane knowledge of Sirius B, or even a planetary system around Sirius, on the part of Voltaire." -- Noah Brosch, astronomer, Sirius Matters, 2008
Saturday, January 9, 2010
Science Daily: What Came First in the Origin of Life? New Study Contradicts the 'Metabolism First' Hypothesis.
ScienceDaily (Jan. 9, 2010) — A new study published in Proceedings of National Academy of Sciences rejects the theory that the origin of life stems from a system of self-catalytic molecules capable of experiencing Darwinian evolution without the need of RNA or DNA and their replication.
The research, which was carried out with the participation of Mauro Santos, researcher of the Department of Genetics and Microbiology at Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona (UAB), has demonstrated that, through the analysis of what some researchers name "compound genomes," these chemical networks cannot be considered evolutionary units because they lose properties which are essential for evolution when they reach a critical size and greater level of complexity.
Friday, January 8, 2010
"While, however, the statements which the Ancients made on these points were correct, they yet omitted to defend their arguments with logical proofs; of course they never suspected that there could be sophists so shameless as to try to contradict obvious facts. ... For I find that a great many things which have been conclusively demonstrated by the Ancients are unintelligible to the bulk of the Moderns owing to their ignorance -- nay, that, by reason of their laziness, they will not even make an attempt to comprehend them; and even if any of them have understood them, they have not given them impartial examination. The fact is that he whose purpose is to know anything better than the multitude do must far surpass all others both as regards his nature and his early training. And when he reaches early adolescence he must become possessed with an ardent love for truth, like one inspired; neither day nor night may he cease to urge and strain himself in order to learn thoroughly all that has been said by the most illustrious of Ancients. And when he has learnt this, then for a prolonged period he must test and prove it, observing what part of it is in agreement, and what in disagreement with obvious fact; thus he will choose this and turn away from that. To such an one my hope has been that my treatise would prove of the very greatest assistance. Still, such people may be expected to be quite a few in number, while, as for the others, this book will be as superfluous to them as a tale told to an ass." -- Galen, philosopher/physician, On the Natural Faculties, Book III, 2nd century
Thursday, January 7, 2010
"The example of the magnet I have hit upon is a very pretty one, and entirely suited to the subject; indeed, it is little short of being the very truth." -- Johannes Kepler, astronomer/mathematician, 1609
"It is therefore plausible, since the Earth moves the moon through its species and magnetic body, while the sun moves the planets similarly through an emitted species, that the sun is likewise a magnetic body." -- Johannes Kepler, astronomer/mathematician, 1609
"But come: let us follow more closely the tracks of this similarity of the planetary reciprocation [libration] to the motion of a magnet, and that by a most beautiful geometric demonstration, so that it might appear that a magnet has such a motion as that which we perceive in the planet." -- Johannes Kepler, astronomer/mathematician, 1609
There is a giant magnet at the center of the Milky Way. It is the "black hole" in the logic, or rather lack thereof, of gravitation.
Science Daily: Center of Milky Way's Magnetic Attraction Ten Times Stronger Than Rest of Galaxy.
ScienceDaily (Jan. 7, 2010) — An international research project involving the University of Adelaide has revealed that the magnetic field in the centre of the Milky Way is at least 10 times stronger than the rest of the Galaxy.Is it my imagination or is Australia starting to dominate science?
The evidence is significant because it gives astronomers a lower limit on the magnetic field, an important factor in calculating a whole range of astronomical data.
Researchers from the Max-Planck-Institute for Nuclear Physics, the University of Adelaide, Monash University and the United States have recently published their findings in Nature.
Dr Roland Crocker, the lead author, and Dr David Jones both worked on the project while based at Monash University and the University of Adelaide's School of Chemistry and Physics. The two physicists are now based at the Max-Planck-Institute for Nuclear Physics in Heidelberg, Germany.
"This research will challenge current thinking among astronomers," Dr Crocker says. "For the last 30 years there has been considerable uncertainty of the exact value of the magnetic field in the centre of the Milky Way. The strength of this field enters into most calculations in astronomy, since almost all of space is magnetised," he says.
Dr Jones says the findings will affect diverse fields, from star formation theory to cosmology.
"If our Galactic Centre's magnetic field is stronger than we thought, this raises additional questions of how it got so strong when fields in the early universe are, in contrast, quite weak. We know now that more than 10% of the Galaxy's magnetic energy is concentrated in less than 0.1% of its volume, right at its centre," he says.
Dr Jones completed his PhD at Adelaide, studying the Galactic Centre magnetic field under the supervision of Dr Raymond Protheroe, Associate Professor of Physics at the University of Adelaide, and Dr Crocker, a former postdoctoral researcher at the University.
"The Milky Way just glows in radio waves and in gamma-rays produced by collisions of energetic particles, and is brightest near its centre. Knowing the magnetic field there helps us understand the source of the radio and gamma-rays better," says Dr Protheroe.
The Australian Research Council provided funding for the project.
Wednesday, January 6, 2010
"One can, then, conceive the production, by purely mineral means, of all natural hydrocarbons. The intervention of heat, of water, and of alkaline metals -- lastly, the tendency of hydrocarbons to unite together to form the more condensed material -- suffice to account for the formation of these curious compounds. Moreover, this formation will be continuous because the reactions which started it are renewed incessantly." -- Marcellin Berthelot, chemist, 1866
"Hydrocarbons can be re-defined as a 'renewable resource, rather than a finite one' (Gurney 1997)" -- Peter R. Odell, economist/geologist, 2004
Casselman, B., and Chazan, G., Cramped on Land, Big Oil Bets at Sea, The Wall Street Journal via Yahoo! News, January 6th 2010 (Hat tip: Jeffery Keown)
Chevron is leasing the Clear Leader, which floats in 4,300 feet of water in the Gulf of Mexico, to drill for oil through nearly five miles of rock.
Big Oil never wanted to be here, in 4,300 feet of water far out in the Gulf of Mexico, drilling through nearly five miles of rock.
It is an expensive way to look for oil. Chevron Corp. is paying nearly $500,000 a day to the owner of the Clear Leader, one of the world's newest and most powerful drilling rigs. The new well off the coast of Louisiana will connect to a huge platform floating nearby, which cost Chevron $650 million to build. ...
"These discoveries are changing the debate," says Ed Morse, chief economist for LCM Commodities, a brokerage firm. What remains unclear, he says, is whether the deepwater projects will ensure that new discoveries continue to meet demand.
Many in the industry argue the new fields have expanded the limits of where the industry can find oil, potentially delaying a decline in global production.
"There are vast unexplored areas in deep water, so tremendous opportunities for growth," says Steven Newman, president of Transocean Ltd., which owns the Clear Leader rig. ...
Adding to the challenge: The oil that Chevron was pursuing lay beneath a thick layer of salt, which disrupts seismic sound waves and blurs the images like a smudge on a camera lens. The company had to analyze the data with supercomputers to clear up that distortion.
Star Tribune: NASA's new planet-hunting telescope finds two new mystery objects, unlike stars or planets (Hat tip: Fungus)
"The universe keeps making strange things stranger than we can think of in our imagination," said Jon Morse, head of astrophysics for NASA.Unlike stars or planets, planets, or stars?
The new discoveries don't quite fit into any definition of known astronomical objects, and so far don't have a classification of their own. Details about the mystery objects were presented Monday at a meeting of the American Astronomical Society in Washington.
For now, NASA researcher Jason Rowe, who found the objects, said he calls them "hot companions."
How hot? Try 26,000 degrees Fahrenheit. That's hot enough to melt lead or iron.
There are two leading theories for what the objects might be and those theories cover both ends of the cosmic life cycle:
_Rowe suggests they are newly born planets. New planets have extremely high temperatures, and in this case Rowe speculates they might be only about 200 million years old.
_Ronald Gilliland of the Space Telescope Science Institute says they could be white dwarf stars that are dying and stripping off their outer shells and shrinking.
"This is shaping up to be one of those historic battles in science. There are people who believe one thing. There are people who believe another. There are people who believe everything, and people who don't know what to believe. It's quite a mess." -- Thomas Kaye, paleontologist, October 9th 2008
Tuesday, January 5, 2010
"Preludes of science. -- Do you really believe that the sciences would ever have originated and grown if the way had not been prepared by magicians, alchemists, astrologers, and witches whose promises and pretensions first had to create a thirst, a hunger, a taste for hidden and forbidden powers?" -- Friedrich W. Nietzsche, philosopher, The Gay Science, Aphorism 300, 1882
Excerpt from G. K. Chesterton's "The Ballad of the White Horse" (1911).
The Vision of the King
Before the gods that made the gods
Had seen their sunrise pass,
The White Horse of the White Horse Vale
Was cut out of the grass.
Before the gods that made the gods
Had drunk at dawn their fill,
The White Horse of the White Horse Vale
Was hoary on the hill.
Age beyond age on British land,
Aeons on aeons gone,
Was peace and war in western hills,
And the White Horse looked on.
For the White Horse knew England
When there was none to know;
He saw the first oar break or bend,
He saw heaven fall and the world end,
O God, how long ago.
For the end of the world was long ago,
And all we dwell to-day
As children of some second birth,
Like a strange people left on earth
After a judgment day.
For the end of the world was long ago,
When the ends of the world waxed free,
When Rome was sunk in a waste of slaves,
And the sun drowned in the sea.
When Caesar's sun fell out of the sky
And whoso hearkened right
Could only hear the plunging
Of the nations in the night.
Monday, January 4, 2010
"The word 'heresy' not only means no longer being wrong; it practically means being clear-headed and courageous. The word 'orthodoxy' not only no longer means being right; it practically means being wrong." -- G. K. Chesterton, philosopher, Heretics, Chapter I: Introductory Remarks on the Importance of Orthodoxy, 1905
"Man can be defined as an animal that makes dogmas. As he piles doctrine on doctrine and conclusion on conclusion in the formation of some tremendous scheme of philosophy and religion, he is, in the only legitimate sense of which the expression is capable, becoming more and more human." -- G. K. Chesterton, philosopher, Heretics, Chapter XX: Concluding Remarks About Orthodoxy, 1905
"The modern world is filled with men who hold dogmas so strongly that they do not even know they are dogmas." -- G. K. Chesterton, philosopher, Heretics, Chapter XX: Concluding Remarks About Orthodoxy, 1905
"We all believe in fairy-tales, and live in them." -- G. K. Chesterton, philosopher, Heretics, Chapter XX: Concluding Remarks About Orthodoxy, 1905
"Truths turn into dogmas the instant that they are disputed. Thus every man who utters a doubt defines a religion." -- G. K. Chesterton, philosopher, Heretics, Chapter XX: Concluding Remarks About Orthodoxy, 1905
"A man cannot be wise enough to be a great artist without being wise enough to wish to be a philosopher. A man cannot have the energy to produce good art without having the energy to wish to pass beyond it." -- G. K. Chesterton, philosopher, Heretics, Chapter XX: Concluding Remarks About Orthodoxy, 1905
"Without education, we are in a horrible danger of taking educated people seriously." -- G. K. Chesterton, philosopher, The Illustrated London News, ~1905-1907
"I met a man the other day who did not believe in fairy tales. I do not mean that he did not believe in the incidents narrated in them--that he did not believe that a pumpkin could turn into a coach. He did, indeed, entertain this curious disbelief. And, like all the other people I have ever met who entertained it, he was wholly unable to give me an intelligent reason for it. He tried the laws of nature, but he soon dropped that. Then he said that pumpkins were unalterable in ordinary experience, and that we all reckoned on their infinitely protracted pumpkinity. But I pointed out to him that this was not an attitude we adopt specially towards impossible marvels, but simply the attitude we adopt towards all unusual occurrences." -- G. K. Chesterton, philosopher, The Dragon's Grandmother, The Illustrated London News, Dec 1906, reprinted in Tremendous Trifles, 1909
"... the view that fairy tales cannot really have happened, though crazy, is common." -- G. K. Chesterton, philosopher, The Dragon's Grandmother, The Illustrated London News, Dec 1906, reprinted in Tremendous Trifles, 1909
"It is much easier to believe in a million fairy tales than to believe in one man who does not like fairy tales." -- G. K. Chesterton, philosopher, The Dragon's Grandmother, The Illustrated London News, Dec 1906, reprinted in Tremendous Trifles, 1909
"Can you not see that fairy tales in their essence are quite solid and straightforward; but that this everlasting fiction about modern life is in its nature essentially incredible?" -- G. K. Chesterton, philosopher, The Dragon's Grandmother, The Illustrated London News, Dec 1906, reprinted in Tremendous Trifles, 1909
"... the chief object of education is to unlearn things." --G.K. Chesterton, philosopher, All Things Considered, 'An Essay on Two Cities', 1908
"When learned men begin to use their reason, then I generally discover that they haven't got any." -- G. K. Chesterton, philosopher, The Illustrated London News, November 7th 1908
"I know of men who believe in themselves more colossally than Napoleon or Caesar. I know where flames the fixed star of certainty and success. I can guide you to the thrones of the Super-men. The men who really believe in themselves are all in lunatic asylums." -- G. K. Chesterton, philosopher, Orthodoxy, Chapter II: The Maniac, 1909
"Reason is itself a matter of faith. It is an act of faith to assert that our thoughts have any relation to reality at all." -- G. K. Chesterton, philosopher, Orthodoxy, Chapter III: The Suicide of Thought, 1909
"It is the reality that is often a fraud." -- G. K. Chesterton, philosopher, Orthodoxy, Chapter IV: The Ethics of Elfland, 1909
"I would always trust the old wives' fables against the old maids' facts." -- G. K. Chesterton, philosopher, Orthodoxy, Chapter IV: The Ethics of Elfland, 1909
"My first and last philosophy, that which I believe in with unbroken certainty, I learnt in the nursery. ... The things I believed most then, the things I believe most now, are the things called fairy tales. They seem to be the entirely reasonable things. They are not fantasies: compared with them other things that are fantastic. ... Fairyland is nothing but the sunny country of common sense." -- G. K. Chesterton, philosopher, Orthodoxy, Chapter IV: The Ethics of Elfland, 1909
"In fairy land we avoid the word 'law'; but in the land of science they are singularly fond of it." -- G. K. Chesterton, philosopher, Orthodoxy, Chapter IV: The Ethics of Elfland, 1909
"Granted, then, that certain transformations do happen, it is essential that we should regard them in the philosophic manner of fairy tales, not in the unphilosophic manner of science and the 'Laws of Nature.' When we are asked why eggs turn into birds or fruits fall in autumn, we must answer exactly as the fairy godmother would answer if Cinderella asked her why mice turned into horses or her clothes fell from her at twelve o'clock. We must answer that it is MAGIC. It is not a 'law,' for we do not understand it's general formula." -- G. K. Chesterton, philosopher, Orthodoxy, Chapter IV: The Ethics of Elfland, 1909
"All the terms used in the science books, 'law,' 'necessity,' 'order,' 'tendency,' and so on, are really unintellectual .... The only words that ever satisfied me as describing Nature are the terms used in the fairy books, 'charm,' 'spell,' 'enchantment.' They express the arbitrariness of the fact and its mystery. A tree grows fruit because it is a MAGIC tree. Water runs downhill because it is bewitched. The sun shines because it is bewitched. I deny altogether that this is fantastic or even mystical. We may have some mysticism later on; but this fairy-tale language about things is simply rational and agnostic." -- G. K. Chesterton, philosopher, Orthodoxy, Chapter IV: The Ethics of Elfland, 1909
"But the cool rationalist from fairyland does not see why, in the abstract, the apple tree should not grow crimson tulips; it sometimes does in his country." -- G. K. Chesterton, philosopher, Orthodoxy, Chapter IV: The Ethics of Elfland, 1909
"... we forget that we have forgotten." -- G. K. Chesterton, philosopher, Orthodoxy, Chapter IV: The Ethics of Elfland, 1909
"All roads lead to Rome; which is one reason why many people never get there." -- G. K. Chesterton, philosopher, Orthodoxy, Chapter VI: The Paradoxes of Christianity, 1909
"The baby has known the dragon intimately ever since he had an imagination. What the fairy tale provides for him is a St. George to kill the dragon." -- G. K. Chesterton, philosopher, Tremendous Trifles, The Red Angel, 1909
"... men invent new ideals because they dare not attempt old ideals. They look forward with enthusiasm, because they are afraid to look back." -- G. K. Chesterton, philosopher, What's Wrong With The World, Chapter IV: The Fear of the Past, 1910
"The future is a refuge from the fierce competition of our forefathers." -- G. K. Chesterton, philosopher, What's Wrong With The World, Chapter IV: The Fear of the Past, 1910
"... all the men in history who have really done anything with the future have had their eyes fixed on the past. I need not mention the Renaissance, the very word proves my case. The originality of Michael Angelo and Shakespeare began with the digging up of old vases and manuscripts." -- -- G. K. Chesterton, philosopher, What's Wrong With The World, Chapter IV: The Fear of the Past, 1910
"... If I am to discuss what is wrong, one of the first things that are wrong is this: the deep and silent modern assumption that past things have become impossible." -- G. K. Chesterton, philosopher, What's Wrong With The World, Chapter IV: The Fear of the Past, 1910
"As for science and religion, the known and admitted facts are few and plain enough. All that the parsons say is unproved. All that the doctors say is disproved. That's the only difference between science and religion there's ever been, or will be." -- G. K. Chesterton, philosopher, Manalive, 1912
"... to me existence is a perpetual fairy tale, because I have forgotten all about it." -- G. K. Chesterton, philosopher, The New Jerusalem, 1920
"If there were no God, there would be no atheists." -- G. K. Chesterton, philosopher, Where All Roads Lead, 1922
"Fallacies do not cease to be fallacies because they become fashions." -- G. K. Chesterton, philosopher, The Illustrated London News, April 19th 1930