Saturday, 3 December 2011
Thursday, 4 August 2011
Tuesday, 28 June 2011
For a podcast interview with the author, Charles C. Mann, visit: http://www.electricpolitics.com/podcast/2011/06/gbekli_tepe_1.html
Saturday, 9 April 2011
The footage clearly shows a ball of light pulsing for around eight seconds on the
horizon in Tokyo during the aftershock.
It registered 7.1 on the Richter scale and struck 40 miles east of Sendai along the
same fault line as last month's quake.
We take a look at several theories as to what could have caused the bizarre
phenomenon, from the plausible to the wacky, and get some insight from an
The most widely circulating explanation is that this was an 'earthquake light' -
literally a light that appears in the sky during times of seismic activity.
There have been a number of recorded instances of these - at Kalapana in 1975,
L'Aquilla in 2009 and Chile in 2010 - but the phenomenon is not universally
accepted in the scientific community.
Dr David Robinson, an earthquake researcher at Oxford University, told
Yahoo! News one reason why these might happen.
"The idea is that just before an earthquake, you might get some build up of stress
just prior to the event.
"People have invented all kinds of mechanisms whereby this stress gets released as
an electromagnetic excitation of the upper atmosphere, which can cause things like
lights appearing, similar to the Northern Lights."
The problem with this theory, said Dr Robinson, was that no-one has yet come up
with a plausible reason for why this actually happens. "Anything which is caused
by an unknown mechanism is dubious," he said.
A second issue is that while there have been several recorded instances of
'earthquake lights', they don't happen during every earthquake.
"There are satellites up there that record every thunderstorm that happens on
earth. If you're getting something similar to a flash of lightning during an
earthquake then they're going to measure it, but that's not happening."
There are a couple of other explanations that could explain this though. The
first concerns quartz. When tectonic plates containing the mineral rub against
each other, they create intense electric fields (called piezoelectricity). This could
manifest itself as flashes of light.
A second, tantalizing possibility is these lights could actually predict upcoming
quakes. This theory suggests that before a quake, the ground 'exhales' radon,
which results in light emissions in the atmosphere. Dr Robinson says this is
"clutching at straws" though.
He doesn't rule out earthquake lights, but feels the subject needs more study.
"Just because they can't be explained doesn't necessarily make them not true.
But until anyone comes up with a plausible mechanism it will be on the fringes
of earthquake study."
Another possible theory for the burst of light is that it was some kind of
electrical explosion. It's been speculated that the flash was an electrical
transformer exploding after being struck by the quake.
During Thursday'squake 3.6million homes in North East Japan area lost power,
traffic signals and road lights also stopped working. 900,000 houses were still
affected on Friday afternoon.
A spokesman for the Tohuku Electric Power Company said six power plants in the
area went down after the tremor and power lines throughout the area were
damaged, making this explanation a possibility.
A US 'superweapon'
We're into the outlandish territory now. Many commentators, including oddball
conspiracy theorist David Icke, have said the footage was evidence of 'Haarp'
(High Frequency Active Auroral Research Program).
Based in Alaska, this weather program was set up by the US Air Force, Navy and
University of Alaska to research the upper atmosphere (the ionosphere) with a view
to improving satellite communication.
Some have speculated that Haarp can physically change weather conditions, and
the project's been blamed for triggering floods, hurricanes, droughts, the earthquakes
in Haiti and Pakistan and even Gulf War Syndrome. Mind control is another one of
its supposed capabilities.
Suffice to say the events in Japan have also been attributed to this 'superweapon' -
with former governor of Minnesota and pro-wrestler Jesse Ventura telling Piers
"The US's HAARP weapon system can cause natural disasters, including
earthquakes and tsunamis like the one that happened in Japan."
Whenever grainy handheld footage of a glowing light in the sky surfaces, it's only a
matter of time before it's held up as evidence of UFOs. This video is no exception.
A quick YouTube search reveals a spate of alien sightings in the build up to the
Japan earthquake, with little green men spotted above Kyoto and the Sakurajima
Volcano. Even Chinese news agency Xinyua reported UFOs flying over Mount Fuji
An alien spacecraft was also spotted during recent Japanese news coverage of the
Earthquake, but this was later confirmed to be a helicopter.
Friday, 8 April 2011
'There are more things in heaven and earth, Horatio,Than are dreamt of in your philosophy.'(Hamlet, Act I, Scene 1)
'They say here "all roads lead to Mishnory." To be sure, if you turn your back on Mishnory and walk away from it, you are still on the Mishnory road. To oppose vulgarity is inevitably to be vulgar.'
Thursday, 31 March 2011
Throughout the Japanese quake ordeal, this image kept coming into my mind...
"Behind the Great Wave at Kanagawa" (神奈川沖波裏), from 36 Views of Mount Fuji, Color woodcut, 10 x 15 in; Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York. Although it is often used in tsunami literature, there is no reason to suspect that Hokusai intended it to be interpreted in that way. The waves in this work are sometimes mistakenly referred to as tsunami (津波), but they are more accurately called okinami (沖波), great off-shore waves."
The Great Wave at Kanagawa (from a Series of Thirty-Six Views of Mount Fuji), Edo period (1615–1868), ca. 1831–33Katsushika Hokusai (Japanese, 1760–1849); Published by EijudoPolychrome ink and color on paperThe preeminence of this print—said to have inspired both Debussy's La Mer and Rilke's Der Berg—can be attributed, in addition to its sheer graphic beauty, to the compelling force of the contrast between the wave and the mountain. The turbulent wave seems to tower above the viewer, whereas the tiny stable pyramid of Mount Fuji sits in the distance. The eternal mountain is envisioned in a single moment frozen in time. Hokusai characteristically cast a traditional theme in a novel interpretation. In the traditional meisho-e (scene of a famous place), Mount Fuji was always the focus of the composition. Hokusai inventively inverted this formula and positioned a small Mount Fuji within the midst of a thundering seascape. Foundering among the great waves are three boats thought to be barges conveying fish from the southern islands of Edo. Thus a scene of everyday labor is grafted onto the seascape view of the mountain.
Tuesday, 15 March 2011
A recent prediction by astrologer, Richard Nolle about the link between the impending 'Supermoon' on the 19th of March and natural disasters such as the Japan quake and tsunami of the 11th of March has sparked some controversy in the press of late.
The Full Moon on the 19th of March 2011 will be the closest that the Moon has gotten to the earth in approximately 18 years (close to the length of one Saros cycle in terms of eclipses). Naturally this has led to speculation that its gravitational pull on the liquid beneath the earth's surface will be greater, thus triggering volcanic eruptions and earthquakes as well as phenomena such as tsunami's.
NASA scientists, however, beg to differ, saying that even the combined gravitational pull of the Sun and Moon (which straddle either side of the earth during any Full Moon) is not enough to affect tectonic plate movement. See this article: NASA Scientist Explains Science Behind 'Supermoon' Phenomenon.
Having said that, although I should make it clear that I am extremely sorry for the devastation it has brought to the people of Japan and do not wish to make light of this terrible tragedy, it is interesting that the earthquake itself was enough to affect the earth's axis, shortening the day by a few microseconds. (See: Day the Earth moved: How the earthquake tilted the world's axis by 25cm (and could even cost us a microsecond a day)
Naturally such arguments are based on standard 'cause and effect' models, rather than the cosmic sympathy paradigm used by astrologers that doesn't involve 'rays' of any kind, so the two camps are actually speaking different languages. Or rather, because scientists are not able to physically 'measure' the relationship between the Moon and the Earth beyond that of gravity (and opposed to any other more sensitive or subtle relationship that might exist between them) they are not willing to admit the possibility that there may be a connection that they are not yet aware of. Which is typical I s'pose. On the one hand, they are not prepared to speculate beyond what they know, which is fair enough. However, they always act as if they have the definitive answer, which is not so cool as far as I am concerned, because in a lot of circumstances, they say stuff as if it were the final word on something, only for that theory to be disproved several years later.
Of course, astrologers can be just as bad when it comes to claiming that astrology offers a failsafe way to predict future events. Plainly, in practice, this is not always the case. Astrology is a tricky and slippery business, as I have discovered on numerous occasions, including this one, where I have ended up re-calculating the Quake chart about three times!
At any rate, without wishing to get involved in that debate again (See my previous posting on Solar Flares) I thought we might look at a chart for the Japan quake to see if it has anything symbolic to say to us about the quake...
Significantly, the chart has Leo rising, pointing to issues of leadership, especially kingship. It is common knowledge that in recent years, Japan has had a relatively large number of leadership/government changes and has slowly been losing its position as the world's third superpower, thanks to the rise of its neighbour, China. In a recent interview on BBC Radio 4, Henry Tricks, the head of The Economist's Japan Bureau, said:
Although Japan is still a tremendous powerhouse....more recently, the picture that the outside world has of Japan is a much bleaker one - one of economic stagnation and deflation, and this to a certain extent, represents the problem that Japan faces in terms of being the fastest ageing country on earth, the country with one of the lowest birth rates on earth, and politically, there's been a turnover of governments that is breathtaking in its speed , and shocking in the sense that I think in the last 20 years, there have been 14 prime ministers....It reflects a growing sense that Japan has lost its way...(See: BBC Radio 4 - Japan's Food Dilemma)
Note the theme of old vs young, birth vs old age mentioned here, which chimes in with Japan's natal chart's (I am using Marjorie Orr's info which is 12 noon on 11 February 1889, Tokyo) nodal axis, which falls in the signs of Cancer and Capricorn....More on this in the next posting when we discuss Saturn in detail.
The new prime minister, Naoto Kan, only recently came to power, succeeding the Richard Gere-like figure of Junichiro Koizumi, who was only in power for 5 years (2001-6). Commentators are already saying that, like Hurricane Katrina did for George W. Bush, this event has the potential to make or break the current regime and affect Japanese politics for years to come. (See: Post-tsunami Japan looks to PM Kan for leadership)
Significantly,... Firmicus [Maternus] also oncludes older Greek terminology, which informs us that the 8th house was known as Epicataphora , which means 'falling down into the Underworld.' The 2nd house was known as Anaphora,'rising up from the Underworld,' illustrating that although both were regarded as portals to the underworld and incorporated darker elements in their symbolism, there was an important distinction - the 8th was the portal of entry, the 2nd of release.
"Among the various fifth- and sixth- century noble clans, over which the Imperial clan had as yet failed to establish more than nominal supremacy, were several that worshiped an ancestral sun.The Imperial clan, at this stage, did not. Its primary deity was the agricultural kami Takamimusubi. It was contact with Korea, Matsumae believes, that reoriented the royal family's gaze from the earth sunward.Sun worship was common in the Korean kingdoms," he explains, "and royal founding ancestors were frequently named as children of the sun. In order to deal with these kings on an equal basis, the Yamato rulers had to claim lineage of equal dignity.The sun's majesty was self-evident; the earth's apparently was not."
The latter, positive aspects between Chiron and the nodes suggest that out of these fated (nodes) actions, healing can come - Chiron representing a significant wound that needs caring for, as well as gurus or teachers who have much wisdom to impart. It will be interesting to watch and see if any philosophical, healing or religious figure emerges in the months to come who can offer Japan some guidance in how to, for instance, move past the great wound that was Hiroshima - another cultural memory that has come to the fore with the nuclear explosions generated as a consequence of this natural disaster.
Naturally, with the focus firmly on the explosions at the Fukushima nuclear plant, one has to consider the role of Pluto in the Quake chart. Although close to the north node, Pluto is not actually forming a conjunction, so we cannot say that it plays into the nodal axis the way that it did in the Chile chart. It is in Capricorn, ruled by Saturn in the 5th house of the chart - which is associated, ironically, with birth, pleasure, as well as good fortune. However, it is also square both to Jupiter, the planet of good luck, and to Mercury, which we have already established, is conjunct to Uranus. Naturally, with radiation sickness becoming a worry, its is perhaps symbolically apt that Capricorn happens to be the sign ruling the 6th house cusp - the house of health, illness and daily life - and, in traditional astrology, is the house of bad fortune. (See for example, Vettius Valens or Firmicus Maternus)
Jupiter is approaching an opposition with Saturn (with an orb of 5 degrees) which is in the 3rd house of communications. Clearly this disaster, which is now being billed as worse than the Three Mile Island event, and on a par with Chernobyl in terms of scale, is not going to result in good PR or improved support for the current regime - according to reports, voter support for the Prime Minister and the centrist Democratic Party of Japan (DPJ), which he leads, had sunk to around 20% before all this happened, so this may well be the straw that breaks the camel's back. My sense is that, in terms of timing, that the the nuclear disaster is likely to reach its peak when these aspects perfect or reach exactitude....
One ray of hope may lie in the grand trine between the lunar nodes, Neptune and the Part of Fortune - also in Libra in the 3rd house of local communities and communication, along with Saturn. This large and harmonious triangle feeds into a diamond, with a minor grand trine created by the north node, Neptune and the part of Fortune.
'The Lot of Fortune, being connected to the Moon and the physical body, is able to show physical well-being and acquisition of goods, which presumably will lead to some kind of happiness.'
Essentially, it is about worldly fortune and good health, which bodes well in the 3rd house - the house in which the Moon is said to rejoice. This perhaps suggests that this event will eventually bring local communities closer together and get the notoriously Stoic and repressed Japanese to express their feelings a bit more openly - with each other and with the world.
Thursday, 17 February 2011
Putting aside the astrological activity of the Moon briefly, it would seem as though the Sun is once more stirring up life on earth...
The BBC today reported that three solar flares, including a so-called X-flare - the strongest type of flare, and the biggest of its kind since 2006, will be reaching the earth today and tomorrow. The ultra-violet radiation from this type of activity has the potential to knock out power grids and disrupt the workings of communications and technological equipment such as satellites. More information on how this occurs can be found here: http://sdo.gsfc.nasa.gov/mission/spaceweather/effects.php
A multi-media video of this flare in action can also be viewed on the NASA website.
I can personally report my telephone handset beeping as if it was being put back in the cradle several times this afternoon, even though nobody was touching it at the time.
From an astrological point of view, I find this interesting for two reasons: firstly, the Sun is currently in Aquarius - a sign associated with technology via its ruler, Uranus. Secondly, from a traditional astrological perspective, the Sun is said to be in Detriment when in Aquarius, suggesting that the interaction of solar energy and technology is not always likely to be positive one.
According to scientists from NASA's new Solar Dynamics Observatory, the Sun is currently moving towards a high point of activity in its 11-year cycle known as 'solar maximum' which will reach its peak around 2012/13 - no doubt adding fuel to the fire of those doomsayers fond of the Mayan calendar and the predictions of mass flooding tied up with their astrological folklore.
At this time, we could be in for a phenomenon known as a 'mass coronal ejection' This tends to occur roughly every 100 years and aside from creating spectacular displays of the aurora borealis (or northern lights) has the potential to knock out digital and electrical infrastructure for significant periods as well as disrupt magnetic devices such as compasses. The last one occurred 150 years ago in 1859, making this event well overdue.
It will be interesting to see whether this has any impact on the weather or indeed, on human or animal physiology.
Journalist, Lynne McTaggart, author of 'The Field: The Quest for the Secret Force of the Universe', and editor of the newsletter, 'What Doctors Don't Tell You' has been doing research into the effects of solar flares on psychic phenomenon. In an interview with podcaster, Kelly Howell, she asserted that radioactivity caused by solar sunspots and flares affects the magnetic energy shield that surrounds the earth. This in turn, she believes can affect living creatures in a number of ways.
McTaggart has collected a number of scientific studies that show that geomagnetic storms can affect the hearts of humans, thickening the blood and causing cardiovascular problems such as strokes and heart attacks. Naturally, this is interesting from an astrological point of view, given that the Sun rules the heart in medical astrology.
Solar activity also appears to affect the brain, possibly because nerve impulses appear to be magnetic in nature. McTaggart quotes one four-year study which found correlations between geomagnetic variations and the rise in admission to two New York mental institutions. Of course the jury is still out about this, as several studies have also shown that the Full Moon appears to have an equally strong effect on people's behaviour, no doubt the source of the word 'lunatic.'
For more info, visit: http://www.wddty.com/weathering-geomagnetic-storms_1.html
A whole science has developed around the idea of the link between planetary and biological rhythyms. Known as Chronobiology, it appears to bear out what all those ancient astronomers and philosophers maintained - that all living things are affected by the planets, particularly the sun, which sets and regulates our biological cycles. One scientist suggests that this synchronism may be set when we are still in the womb as a result of information sent from our mother's pineal gland which has been shown to be responsive to light and dark and that sets our circadian rhythms.
Of course, many critics will at once point out that it is never a good idea to mix science and astrology up - that both systems are based on entirely different philosophies - the one focused around physical cause and effect; and the other based on symbolic correspondences that is ultimately founded on the premise that the entire universe is intimately co-related and interlinked, functioning as one great soul or organism.
As I pointed out in the Introduction to my MA Cos Div Dissertation, however, it is only westerners with their dualistic outlook on life that separate nature from spirit - this was not so for many ancient cultures, including those that developed astrology. Nor was it ever true for eastern cultures like the Chinese who, for centuries, considered the I Ching divination system to be one of their greatest scientific achievements.
Of course, the debate on this subject continues to rage as scientists and astrologers fight to defend their corners - the most recent example of this being the disparaging remarks made about astrology by scientist Brian Cox on the BBC TV programe, 'Stargazing Live'. (see the newspaper report about it at: http://www.guardian.co.uk/science/the-lay-scientist/2011/jan/24/1)
Deborah Houlding has written an excellent refutation of this and other critiques of astrology, such as the suggestion of a 13th zodiac sign. Have a read by following this link: http://www.skyscript.co.uk/13thsign.html
Tuesday, 15 February 2011
Since the Chile earthquake of 27 February 2010, there have been several eclipses that have also coincided with small earthquakes, especially here in the UK. According to the BBC, the UK experiences up to 300 minor earthquakes a year but only major ones are reported.
Interestingly, at 23h00 on the 22nd of December 2010, a magnitude 3.6 earthquake rocked the northeast of England, with tremors felt across Cumbria, Lancashire, south-west Scotland, parts of Yorkshire, Northumberland and the Isle of Man.
This just happened to coincide with a LUNAR ECLIPSE, which officially reached perfection at 08h13 GMT on the 22nd of December.
Strangely, the day before the corresponding SOLAR ECLIPSE on the 4th of January 2011, another magnitude 3.6 quake occurred at 21h03 GMT on the 3rd of January in Ripon, North Yorkshire - in a similar vicinity to that of the Cumbria quake...More details can be found at the website of the British Geological Survey: http://www.earthquakes.bgs.ac.uk/recent_events/uk_special/ripon_03_jan_2011.pdf.
Although not ever seismic event appears to coincide with soli-lunar phenomenon, it does seem as though there is some sort of relationship at work. If there does turn out to be a link, then it would certainly help explain why ancient civilisations such as the Mesopotamians viewed eclipses with such fear, with steps being taken to protect the king from harm - in some cases, by using a 'body double' or substitute to take his place, as it were. (See: Jean Bottéro, Zainab Bahrani, Marc Van De Mieroop, 1995, Mesopotamia: writing, reasoning, and the gods, University of Chicago Press, p.145)
It seems to me worth commenting that since this most recent eclipse, we have had a fair amount of astrological activity involving the lunar nodes that seems to have coincided with mass movements of note, such as the demonstrations in Egypt, Tunisia and Algeria, all of which appeared to kick off at around about the time that Jupiter formed a t-square with the nodal axis (currently near the cusp of Cancer and Capricorn) as it ingressed from Pisces into Aries. Both came into exact orb of each other around the beginning of February and have since been separating slowly. It will be interesting to see whether something similar occurs when Uranus finally enters Aries around the 12th of March...
Although seemingly unrelated, Jupiter and Uranus actually formed a conjunction in the late degrees of Pisces on the SAME DAY as the SOLAR ECLIPSE in January 2011! These two planets were also within a degree of each other and on the horizon axis of the Cumbria earthquake chart (see above) close to the Descendant.
Of course I should also mention that a stellium of planets in Sagittarius and Capricorn were also surrounding the Sun and North Node (therefore opposing the Moon) at the time. These included: Mercury (24 deg. Sag) Pluto (5 deg Cap) and Mars (11 deg Cap).
On a personal note, perhaps the reason I am so aware of these events is that the nodal axis is currently almost exactly hitting my natal Jupiter at 1 deg Capricorn, whilst transiting Jupiter squares my natal Jupiter from Aries.