“In the beginning was the word.
And the word was with God.
And the word was God.”
Rabbi Meir, one of the most important teachers of the Mishnah [early part of the Talmud], relates:
“When I was studying with Rabbi Akiba, I used to put vitriol in the ink and he said nothing. But when I went to Rabbi Ishmael, he asked me: My son, what is your occupation? I answered: I am a scribe [of the Torah]. And he said to me: My son, be careful in your work, for it is the work of God; if you omit a single letter, or write a letter too many, you will destroy the whole world…”
Quoted from within: On The Kabbalah And Its Symbolism
Gershom Gerhard Scholem
Shocken books – New York 1969
Before 13.7 billion years ago, there was nothing.
This is the only possible conclusion we can draw from the redshift of galaxies. I mean, what other possibilities are there that even come close to this most obvious, rational, and straight-forward of conclusions.
All other theories have been thoroughly investigated, passionately debated, and meticulously debunked.
Then, out of this nothingness, there was a phenomenal explosion, from a single “point” in this nothingness, which “had” all the “energy” in “the universe” (which did not yet exist), yet the energy was there, before 13.7 billion years ago, before nothing became something and time started.
Where did that energy come from, and how was it condensed into a single point in nothingness, before time started?
Those are interesting questions that we are working full-time to answer. The answer is just around the corner. We will let you know when we finally figure that one out. We think the answer will fit into a single equation – that’s what we’re looking for – a single equation to combine all other equations, so that you can know anything about the whole universe using a simple one-line formula and your pocket calculator.
At a small fraction of an earth-second after nothingness became somethingness, at the point when the universe was at the convenient size that a human can hold it in the palm of his or her hand, the size of the universe doubled 100 times over, in less than an earth-second.
For some reason, the momentum from this insanely powerful inflation slowed down so that things could start coming into existence and begin to assemble themselves together. (but, don’t worry, the inflation will kick in again, 7 billion years later, for some other reason) Where did the initial momentum from inflation go? Gravity. The explosion, which doubled the universe’s size 100 times in a split second – all that momentum was amazingly slowed down by Gravity. But, there was no matter yet, so Gravity would have to wait a few more seconds (at least).
Then, particles that produce light appeared, and the first period of creation was over, and the light was good, and it was so.
Then, lifeless sub-atomic entities joined up to make lifeless atoms.
All while being flung out from the starting spot in the universe, still with all that momentum, they managed to pull it off and make some atoms, which can then pull other atoms together (Gravity). Finally. There we go. Inflation can finally be slowed down.
And so, 180 million years after creation, Gravity conquered the momentum of the explosion of the big bang. Such an awesome powerful force, found itself interrupting the momentum of the explosion, (yet the expansion continues to this day, and in fact is accelerating now, (yet Gravity held it back (temporarily (just enough for the first stars to get going))))
When that most awesome and powerful force, Gravity, the most powerful force in the universe, and the only one that affects celestial events and processes, when this fierce immense force, brought so much hydrogen in one spot, against the will of the universe to expand, the pressure ignited a nuclear explosion, and the hydrogen was fused into helium, in an endless reaction that will sustain itself for billions of years.
And we called these first nuclear explosions, “stars”, and they were good, and thus concludes the second period of creation. There were no solar systems yet – just stars, because there was only hydrogen In The Beginning. We will have to wait until after a whole bunch of stars explode, in order to get sexier atoms like iron and oxygen and silicon.
How many billion years until we get enough star-dust to form the first proper solar system? Not sure, but it can’t take that long, because our own solar system formed under ten billion years after creation, so probably only 1 or 2 generations of stars, max, in order to produce all of the heavier elements, in time for our solar system to form, with a very generous portion of these heavier elements.
And so, the first generation of stars matured and finally exploded, bringing heavy elements to the universe.
Finally! Heavy elements for the first time ever, after the first batch of exploding stars, after Gravity slowed the power of the big bang (temporarily), and now the explosion is back to accelerating. Yay! We are so lucky to have our solar system form in time to have the heavier elements, but before the (new) dark energy acceleration rips the fabric of the universe apart! Yay!
As this first batch of stars were maturing, they started aligning themselves in rotating groups, but very primitive galaxies, which look like a mess of primitive stars just jumbled about, like an ugly stir-fry prepared in haste by a junior assistant to the assistant prep cook in training. Our galaxy, the milky way, was born around 3 billion years after creation. So, our poor spiralling galaxy has only had the opportunity to spiral 40 times!
Ya, our galaxy, the milky way, takes 250 million years to make a full rotation, so, throughout the life of this spiralling entity, it has only spiralled maximum 40 times!
Wait…. Why did it start rotating?
We’re working on that one too.
So, at 4.5 billion years ago, only 9.2 billion years since the beginning of time and of matter itself and of any existing thing coming into being, and only 6.2 billion years since the birth of the milky way, this cloud of rarefied gas, without any rocks or solids of any kind, just individual atoms, which finally includes heavier elements, finds itself collapsing in on itself, and, it takes a disc shape and starts rotating.
Uh… Why did it start rotating?
We’re working on that one full-time as well.
But…. Hold on a minute…. How can gravity possibly produce a rotating mo-
Shhhushhh! Pay attention!
Then, the amazing colossal force of Gravity brought dust particles in the cloud and they magically accreted and held on to each other so tightly, with all-mighty Gravity, that when they hit another dust particle, they could still stick together. All this Gravity-fusing of dust gave us rocks and other such dense things….. eventually….. And God called the planet “earth”, and there was the evening, and the morning, the 3rd period of creation, and it was good.
Why is the earth spinning?
We’re close to answering that one too. Patience! All will be revealed.
How many years did it take for all these rocks to fuse from space dust in a rotating disc powered by nothing but Gravity, overcoming the acceleration of dark energy at the same time?
Hey now, hold on a sec….
Then, the inner core of the earth started rotating in the opposite direction of the molten rock that surrounds it, but this never slows the spinning of the earth.
Wait… What? Have you lost your quasars?
You heard it right. Sit down. The initial momentum of the solar system accretion disc is enough to power this dynamo for the entire duration of the solar system’s existence, for as long as earth is spinning. The friction of the dynamo within the earth is irrelevant. Earth will carry on with the same angular momentum forever.
You heard me!
Pfffffff! Why the heck is the earth spinning in the first place?
You heard me!
Next: The first few years of the solar system saw a pretty rough start, unfortunately, with the earth and moon getting bombarded by millions upon millions of big rocks, but that (almost) never happens anymore, because they almost all got cleaned up in the formation of the solar system. This is how all of the thousands upon thousands of observed and well-documented solar system accretion discs work, which we can see in outer space.
Then, the earth started wobbling.
What? What fresh rank garbage nonsense are you now trying to dump on….
Just take my word for it, it just started wobbling. The sun and moon decided to shake things up on earth a bit, so they started to conspire to significantly change where due north points to in the sky, like a spinning top on a table, wobbling around, tracking all the zodiac constellations, completing a perfect cycle every 25,772 years, by a magical (I mean, gravitational) process – a sort of elaborate long-term, yet extremely precise, tug-o-war, with the Moon and Sun playing the same exact game over and over again, every 25,772 years, for millions of years, with incredible precision, inducing climate variations every cycle – every 25,772 years, like the Sahara turning green, then back to desert, then back to green again, with every cycle of this precession of the background of stars (I mean, earth’s wobble), because……. ……… um…….. ……… well……. ……. because……. there is ever-so-slightly more sun hitting a different proportion of land instead of water, by the slight difference in the distance to the sun at different points in the earth’s orbit (which never changes itself).
OK, now you really have to stop and explain this dense pile of steaming fresh steer manure.
Just trust me – this is well-documented and peer reviewed, and the computer models show exactly this happening. Simulations don’t lie!
The solar system itself has stayed solidly, permanently, fixed, in a very very very stable position, for 4.5 billion years and will stay put, here, for its entire existence. It has not wandered a millimeter from its original position, and sits isolated from all other solar systems, and the system itself does not rotate, as a whole – the only motion is the orbiting and spinning motions of its parts – the system itself is stationary and static. For example, the north poles of all the planets do not turn with the solar system – they only wobble on their own accord, at independent rates, because the whole solar system itself does not rotate – only the individual planets orbit around the sun, without any common rotation among them all together.
Then, for the first time in the insanely short history of the universe, life popped into existence by the inert lifeless interactions between inert lifeless molecules in one of the first few oceans formed in the universe (seeing as heavy elements were a relatively novel introduction to solar systems), and then this lifeform started (by total random jostling actions between lifeless chemicals), this lifeform began to swim around. These first forms of life in the universe are mindless zombies, as they remain so to this day, just operating according to the random jostling of molecules, from development to death. Just little robots in the ocean, little chemical dumb robots, following only what the possible chemical reactions can produce. The periodic table of the elements, along with simple billiard-ball physics, and unbending rules of interaction between chemicals, explains how life came to be, and how life operates today. If you had a big enough calculator, you could predict your next move, your next thought, everything about you, how you will live, and how you will die – just lifeless billiard-balls bouncing around like mechanistic clockwork.
Do you refund tuition here?
Some of these dumb chemical machines interacted randomly with other dumb molecular robots to team up and swim together for some unmotivated, un-purposeful reason, unintentionally, without being conscious of one another’s contribution or value to the other, and so, multi-cellular creatures came to be! Presto! Just random chemical activity between chemical machines, all acting in isolation, not communicating in any way other than chemical signals pre-determined by a chemical code, out of their control.
These simple creatures gradually and steadily changed over time by utterly random mutations in the robotic machine called the DNA molecule, and these completely random mutations gave us everything from our pancreas, heart, toes, everything – just random heartless robotic purposeless accidents of adding or deleting from the DNA machine code, from lifeless chemicals just bouncing around all over the place. The cells are governed entirely by DNA and their environment (other lifeless chemicals and other groups of lifeless chemicals, bouncing around them on the outside), they do not have a say in what happens to them day to day. Every action they take, and by extension, every action we take, as multi-cellular creatures, are dictated solely by what we know of as the laws of chemistry and physics – we have no choice, from moment to moment, other than what chemistry and physics allow, from moment to moment – lifeless chemicals interacting without purpose, in a single understandable fashion, explained in full detail by modern chemistry and physics. Nobody is truly culpable for what they do, because any thing anybody ever does is predetermined by the simple rules of physics and chemistry. What do we need a courtroom for – everybody is the same, intentions are only brought about by the single pre-defined interaction between lifeless chemicals and particles, in a single possible way, so nobody is guilty of anything. Instead of pleading insanity, we all could just plead ourselves as victims of predetermined unbending physics and chemistry!
I thought I had enrolled in a science class.
Over the years, the fossil record and the geological record in the rocks were formed by peaceful continuous gradual erosion and deposition, in a steady, polite, and constant accumulation or erosion of strata, at the same rate as they are deposited or eroded today. Just as we see things happening today, this is how it has always been happening – one water drop at a time, one gust of wind at a time, one grain of sand at a time, one snowflake at a time.
The earth is always the same temperature, and volcanoes and earthquakes have always occurred at the same intervals, for billions of years. There are no significant recurring or random concentrations of these processes.
There are no significant persistent disturbances to the earth that would throw off this gradual accretion and erosion of rock strata. Well, there was the dinosaur comet, but that was a loooooong time ago, and comets are basically so rare we never have to worry about one in our lifetime. In any case, comets are just cold snowballs – they should just melt when entering the atmosphere. It’s not as if they are massive heavy menacing rocks.
200,000 years ago, after 4.5 billion years of seeing mindless zombie-like creatures emerge from random chemical interactions, and watching most go extinct (>%99.9 of species on earth have already extinct), the universe finally finally finally produced a creature with a living soul. Finally! Therrrrre we gooooo. Thank God (I mean Gravity). And the first thought in the universe transpired. Poof! Ta-da! And that precious first living soul, thinking the first thoughts the universe had ever produced, is our first ancestor – the first anatomically modern human, 200,000 years ago, and we have exclusive bragging rights for this achievement (brought about by chance random chemical interactions sustaining themselves somehow). I guess we are pretty lucky to be around for the first 200,000 years of creatures thinking in the universe! I don’t know about you, but I get a fuzzy feeling when I think how special we are.
Unfortunately, the first 180,000 years of the first thinking creature in the universe was a downright miserable affair. All that happened was: we walked around in loin cloths, sharpened some stones into spearheads, and hunted wholly mammoths in an unceasing unforgiving endlessly frigid ice age that lasted unbroken for the first 180,000 years of our existence. No tasty tropical fruit, no exotic tropical tree-nuts, no avocadoes. No writing, no construction, no trade, no roads, no boats, no beer, nothing other than tough uncooked gamey meat, bitter berries on the bushes, tough roots from the ground, and terrible conversation without any language, and uncomfortable rocky beds in damp and dreary caves.
20,00 years ago, after wandering the earth in loin cloths, sleeping in caves, eating hand to mouth, and grunting to one another, for 180,000 years, the first humans finally find the Americas.
Therrrrrrre we goooooo. We finally made it, after 180,000 years. We never had a simple boat, and nobody ever took a simple sailing trip on the ocean currents. Nobody could possibly have navigated an ocean without a chronometer. Stars are insufficient for navigation.
Between 12,900 years ago, and 11,600 years ago, we decided to set out to kill and consume more mammoths than there were humans around, and so we drove them to extinction, and herded them into mass graves, to leave them flash-frozen with all of their flesh intact, and guts still full of temperate veggies, in Siberia, for sport, I guess. Then we killed off all the giant beavers, all the giant ground-sloths, all the giant Irish elk, all the elephants of North America, along with all the sabertooth cats, altogether exterminating over 150 species of large animals, all in just over a thousand years, leaving only a few mammoths on a few islands around Alaska for another couple thousand years – a few escapees from the human-induced genocide. Must’ve been quite the barbecue! Vast numbers of populations of over 150 mega-fauna, all hunted to extinction by humans, in just over 1200 years, and entire herds murdered only for sport – not for meat, left uneaten, with half-digested meals in their stomachs. We had such cruel ancestors! Sheeeesshh!
Up until around 11,600 years ago, we never built a city, we never built a road, we never fashioned a wheel, writing was never imagined, mathematics was impossible, not a single anatomically modern human soul, for 190,000 years, noticed that seeds are the start of a new plant, and so they never bothered to store any and sow them the following year. Seeds, they thought, were just an ornament. Such a pity. Nobody domesticated an animal. Nobody made a dog sled. Nobody tamed a horse or camel and put a saddle on it. Nobody built a house or a barn for the animals. Nobody ever made a road to connect houses and barns. Nobody ever had plumbing. And certainly nobody ever ever ever could have possibly ever never ever made use of electricity. It is outrageous to even think this thought. To even suggest such a possibility is outright sacrilege, and you will immediately lose your job as a professor, and get your funding for research cut to zero, and for good reason.
We will have to wait until a society, so sophisticated that it needed an army of slaves to support it, where most of the population was superstitious, and “witches” were being burned at the stake, and cholera was still thought to be conveyed by the “miasma”; to finally understand and use electricity. Yes, that’s what’s required. And it can only be discovered by white people alone. To present evidence that non-white-people were smart enough to have used electricity – well, why should we be bothered by such fallacious claims.
Carbon dioxide alone drives changes in climate and has never ever never never ever been seen on earth in its current insanely high concentration. We are threatening the very existence of life on earth by burning the remnants of dinosaurs. We are threatening the very existence of the first species with a living soul in the whole universe! We should be careful with our unique gift from God (I mean lifeless chemistry and physics)!
Coastlines should always remain the same.
Glaciers should not change.
The weather in my backyard has to be the same from year to year, and from generation to generation, because I pay my bills, I pay my taxes, and I am therefore entitled to a steady climate on this earth.
The earth has enjoyed the same exact temperature, for billions of years, and only now, once we started driving Humvees, and smoking cigars, has the earth ever ever ever experienced such a sudden, stupendously intense, incredibly serious, unimaginably intolerable heat wave, causing untold wild hurricanes, scorched earth, storms never seen on earth before, the death of the oceans, the encroachment of deserts permanently, the exhaustion of all freshwater, and the melting of glaciers like they’ve never experienced beforehand, along with quickly drowning people on islands and coastlines, too quick to relocate, spreading disease and pestilence in its wake, and the heat wave will spread sooo far out of control that no mechanism in the cosmos will be able to reverse this “runaway” effect, leading us inexorably to wholesale hellfire, where we will seek only to swim in a pool full of ice cubes, with a thick coating of sunblock 3000, or hide in the shade, day after day, to even have a semblance of a normal life.
We are the pinnacle of creation, and we will continue to only evolve, and we could only possibly have come from monkeys (monkeys could not possibly have come from us), and this happened very very very recently, and we are the first ones to invent the wheel, because that is soooo hard to do, and our evolution was this linear progression. No sea-saw of getting worse / better / worse / worse / worse / better / better / worse / better / better / better / worse, or any other of infinite possible series of situations. There is no form of species change other than just linear forward progression, “evo”lution, following a smooth line on the x/y chart, always better / better / better / better, and the most recent activity has to go from monkey, then ape-man, then grunting Neanderthal, to sexy modern human, within a geological blink of an eye, all from random interactions between lifeless disinterested molecules.
It’s all wrapped up in a nice little neat package, which fits in textbooks comfortably, and can be grasped in the mind with ease and simplicity. We are enjoying the pinnacle of human existence – we are the bestest – and our glory is unsurpassed, and we have nothing to learn, and history is over, and science has figured it all out, and archaeology has scoured and analysed and puzzled over every square inch of all sites, and anything to be known about geology, astrophysics and quantum physics is already known, and for any question there is an expert on-call with the answer derived from the strict a-political application of the scientific method alone, and that’s it! Yay!
Ahhhhhhhhhhh….. Now we can just sit back, relax, fold out a lawn chair, crack open a nice cold beer, and enjoy watching the shooting stars.
Ahhhhhhhhhhh….. The shooting stars. I just love watching the shooting stars. Ahhhhhhhhhhh…..
Wait a mi…. H-H-H-Hang on now…. That there shooting star is getting mighty big lookin’…. Uhhhhhhhh… Guys……. Uhhhhhhhh…
Flying through space, at a speed of 40,000 miles per hour, on a February morning, in 2013, a rock, with a diameter of a bowling lane, found itself caught by the gravity of the earth, and starts pummelling through (what it feels to be) a very thick atmosphere, over the city of Chelyabinsk.
Unable to withstand the massive buildup of heat and pressure, at 18 miles above the city, the rock exploded. ‘Exploded’ is a massive understatement. It was 30 times brighter than the sun. The shockwave injured 1400 people (from 18 miles up, that’s impressive). The blast was 25 times more powerful than Hiroshima. Luckily it burst 18 miles up in the air.
It could very easily have been misinterpreted as an enemy attack, because we all think that man alone dominates the heavens and the earth.
If it had struck the city directly, while not being misinterpreted as a nuclear blast, we would’ve learned from this serious lesson, and our priorities might be very different today, as this might have spawned international efforts to avoid this from happening again. Let’s hope that people can be convinced without having to go through so much bloodshed to wake us up, and start casting our attention up at the sky, instead of fighting over the tax-rate and worrying about stimulating the economy. You want to stimulate the economy and create jobs? Get busy building some space gadgets to deflect the doomsday rocks!
In July 1994, when fragment “G” from comet Shoemaker-Levy-9, exploded above Jupiter, it was visible from earth, and left a cloud larger than the earth, and this cloud lasted for almost a year:
On February 12th 1947, eyewitnesses in the Sikhote-Alin Mountains, observed around 10 tonnes of space rock, brighter than the sun, descending from the north. The bright flash and the deafening sound were observed for 190 miles around the point of impact. A smoke trail, estimated at 20 miles long, remained in the sky for several hours.
As the rock entered the atmosphere, it began to break apart, and the fragments fell together.
At about 3 miles above ground, the largest mass apparently broke up in a violent explosion.
The strewn field of meteorites covered an elliptical area of about half a square mile. Some of the fragments made impact craters, the largest of which was about 85 feet across and 20 feet deep. Fragments of the rock were also driven into the surrounding trees.
On August 13th 1930, over the area of the Curuçá River in Brazil, three space-rocks exploded into tremendous fireballs a mile above the jungle floor. The resulting “hurricane of flame” destroyed 800 square miles of rainforest.
The locals thought it was the end of the world.
Electric Plants Wrecked As Strange Visitor Appears on Michigan Indiana Line.
Chicago November 27 1919
“Telegraph snd telephone communication and electric lighting plants in cities in southern Michigan and northern Indiana were out of commission today as a result of a remarkable phenomenon, believed by several scientists to have been a gigantic meteor which, rushing earthward from the east appeared to dissolve as it approached the earth near Athens, Michigan, last night.
The phenomenon is reported to have assumed various forms in its race earthward, ranging from a brilliant illumination to a heavy rain accompanied by heavy thunder.
The phenomenon was seen over Chicago by several persons. It was reported here shortly before 8 o'clock. It appeared over the lake and resembled in appearance an extraordinarily prolonged flash of heat lightning.
Athens, Battle Creek, and Three Oaks Michigan, report considerable damages to property. At Athens, it is said, there was an earthquake, continuing for fully three minutes accompanied by a heavy rain and windstorm, a loud clap of thunder, and a flash of light in the sky of longer duration than lightning.
At La Porte, South Bend, Fort Wayne, Warsaw, and other Indiana points, windows were broken by the concussion.
The Calumet Electric Light Company, at Kalamazoo Michigan, and several smaller plants throughout this section of the country were temporarily disabled.”
On June 30th 1908, in the Tunguska region of central Siberia, an area of inaccessible forest, surging rivers and roadless steppe, a tongue of blue-white flame shaped like a “spear”, “cylinder” or “pipe” or “pillar”, 140 feet long (like a 14 story building), this menacing fireball larger and more brilliant than the sun, streaked across the sky, at an angle, leaving a trail of dust behind it, and accompanied by a deafening roar, thunderous crashes and, after around ten minutes of having 2 suns shining in the sky, a terrific explosion, between 3 and 6 miles above ground:
A black mushroom-shaped cloud rose up to the stratosphere.
Above that, a huge (forked???) pillar of flame (plasma maybe???) shot upwards, slicing the heavens in two.
The blast is estimated to have had the power of roughly 1000 Hiroshimas.
770 square miles of forest were uprooted and laid flat like new mown hay, all pointing away from the single blast point.
A 5.6 “earthquake” ensued.
A giant pressure wave swept around the earth, twice.
The pendulums of seismographs went haywire.
People were thrown to the ground.
Horses were thrown to the ground.
Buildings creaked and groaned.
The air vibrated.
The waters of rivers backed up against their current flow direction.
The driver of a train on the recently completed trans-Siberian railway stopped his engine in the steppe believing it had been derailed.
Farther away from the epicenter, subterranean rumblings were felt and heard, but without sharp earthquake jolts – more of a strange gentle swaying, to and fro.
The following nights were marked by fiery glows and brilliant skies.
From England, there was a spooky twilight emanating from the south-east.
Cricketers were enjoying matches at night.
People could read a newspaper after midnight.
Comet Biela was one menacing demon that astronomers started to track in 1772, and found that its periodicity was around 6.6 years. It was observed to split into two, but we lost track of it after 1852.
Whenever this happens, it is almost always certainly bad news.
On October 8th, 1871, residents of Peshtigo Wisconsin, a town of 1700 poor unsuspecting souls, at around 7 or 8 pm, saw fireballs falling from the sky in a meteoric display. Then, in the distant horizon, a glow in the heavens appeared and started to grow, with a menacing rolling unceasing thundering sound, growing louder and louder. Before they could start to run for the river that runs through the town, an immense firestorm swept Peshtigonians off their feet, and everything just started moving horizontally.
Roofs on homes flew off horizontally as chimneys crashed to the ground.
Rail cars were flying up in a “tornado of fire”.
Trees were being uprooted.
The very air itself seemed to be on fire as far as the eye could see into space.
Even those that made it to the river found their hair and clothing combusting spontaneously when exposed to the air.
That night, at the same hour, Chicago was burnt to the ground, wholesale, as were a dozen other cities, in an area crossing 4 states.
This made an impression on the survivors. Many were convinced that Armageddon was at hand.
Afterwards, they were astonished to find entire great Maple forests, uprooted and laid flat like “new-mown hay”.
At least 1200 souls perished in this near-instant hellfire from the sky, in Peshtigo alone.
Now, although Biela, the now-fragmented double-comet was expected a full year later - in September 1872, it was, by then, no longer 2 large fragments, but a massive meteor shower (3000 meteors per hour) observed in late November instead. So it might be the case that the comet, which had already fragmented into two pieces, had split up even further.
It is entirely possible that a breakup-event itself sent some comet fragments in slightly different directions, causing some to not only enter into an earth-crossing orbit, but also sending it our way 1 year sooner than expected.
This might also explain why we lost track of the comet, due to a change in its periodicity, and the fact that smaller bits are harder to see.
November 13th 1833:
“A great shower of shooting stars seen between midnight and morning in various parts of North America. The meteors appeared to diverge from the vicinity of y-Leonis, and were most abundant about 4 am. Sky clear and moon in the second day past the change.”
November 13th, 1832
“An extensive shower of shooting stars seen between midnight and morning, in various and widely distant parts of the globe. The moon (five days past the full,) much diminished the brilliancy of the spectacle.”
April 20. “A great shower of shooting stars after midnight, seen in the northern and middle portions of the United States. Sky clear and moon only a few hours before the change.”
November 12th 1799.
“A great shower of shooting stars, seen chiefly between midnight and morning, in various parts of Europe and America. The light of the moon (then at the full,) greatly impaired the splendor of the display.”
October 4. “A clear night, great Shooting of Stars between 9 and 10 o’Clock, all shot from S. W. to N. E. [Qu. N. E. to S. W.] one like a comet in the meridian very large, and like fire, with a long broad train of fire after it, which lasted several minutes; after that was a train like a row of thick small stars for twenty minutes together, which dipt N.”
“On August 18, 1716, meteors were seen all over Europe, from 8 P.M. to 3 A. M.”
“On January 4, 1717, there was a shower of fire at Quesnoy."
A small space rock, detonating with the power of a nuclear bomb, by encountering our protective atmosphere, occurs roughly once every two weeks.
A space rock about the size of a house flies between the earth and moon, about once a day.
A space rock about the size of a football field flies between the earth and moon, about once a month.
The big ones make an ominous pass about once every couple years.
During the last 150 years of mass media, we have seen multiple reports of major space-rocks severely pummel the earth.
Surely we should expect that this has occurred with similar frequency when we didn’t have seismographs, cameras, newspapers, and billions of witnesses.
Surely we should expect that this will recur many more times to come.
Surely we should prepare for this, and foresee obstacles we need to adapt to, and overcome, and do it gracefully and in good time.
In order to do this, we need to understand the full nature of the true threats we face, and stop focusing all our attention on minor or insignificant threats, and much less on fabricated or otherwise baseless fears, like alien invasion, or artificial intelligence taking command of earthly affairs.
For instance: comets are not dirty snowballs, they are stratified, cratered, heavy, dry, rocks, just like asteroids; and Jupiter’s gravity is not the only force that can cause comets to break apart or to change orbit.
· Comet Elenin broke up as a result of a coronal mass ejection. Only a faint dust cloud remained.
· Comet Holmes, in 2007, after moving away from the sun for 5 months, suddenly disintegrated and flared up to an extent where its coma was larger than the sun! That’s right! It was the largest object in the solar system! Spectacular, yet also ominous (if it were closer). 2 days earlier, a severely sharp spike in solar activity was recorded.
· Comet Schwassman-Wachmann-3 disintegrated, without the help of Jupiter.
· Comet Linear suffered the same fate as Elenin, breaking up into just a dust cloud.
· NASA’s Stardust mission, which sent a probe to comet Wild 2, capturing bits from the comet in Aerogel receptacles, captured 0 water molecules, and much much worse, it captured highly ordered crystalline minerals (rocks), which can only be produced under conditions found in the habitable zone (requiring high temperatures in some cases, or requiring the presence of liquid water, where liquid water requires pressure, like atmospheric pressure). The hypothetical Oort cloud, where they allege comets originate, cannot possibly have provided conditions even remotely conducive to the production of such minerals, like olivine, a common volcanic rock.
· Countless direct pictures and video, close-up to comets, have clearly shown that comets are rocky, dry, cratered surfaces. Not dirty snowballs. Dirty rocks! Fearsome, large, heavy, ominous, dirty, space-rocks!
· The alleged vent-holes, where water is allegedly expelled from alleged sub-surface pressure chambers allegedly heated by the sun, have not been observed. The observed "jets" that we see even emanate from the dark side of the comet (again, without vent holes).
· What they observe in the coma, using spectroscopy, is not water. It is hydroxyl (OH). These are not the same. Hydroxyl can be produced by other chemical reactions.
Here is a selection of photos from the rocky surface of Mars, with boulders strewn all over the place, stratified rock formations, craters, mesas and peaks:
Oh, wait, whoops! These are pictures from comet 67P! My bad!
Comets are so easily confused with rocky, stratified features from the habitable zone! My mistake!
It is clear that we have yet to even begin to appreciate the complex nature of our environment – our polluted celestial environment.
It is a scientific pursuit ripe for discovery and begging fresh insight.
Excessive cold can be just as deadly as excessive heat.
Excessive cold is the predominant state of affairs on the surface of the earth, as evidenced by ice core data, where deep ages of ice take up the majority of geological time (at least during the last few million years).
During the Great Frost of 1683–84, the worst frost recorded in England, the Thames river was completely frozen for two months, with the ice reaching a thickness of 11 inches in London. Solid ice was reported extending for miles off the coasts of the southern North Sea (England, France and the Low Countries), causing severe problems for shipping and preventing the use of many harbours. Near Manchester, the ground was frozen to 27 inches. In Somerset, the ground was frozen solid to more than 4 feet!
The severe weather of the 1590’s marked the beginnings of the peak of the Little Ice Age, a regimen of climatic extremes that would last over two centuries. There were records of unusual heat and of record cold, like the winter of 1607, when savage frosts split the trunks of many great trees in England.
A modern European transported to the height of the Little Ice Age would not find the climate very different, even if winters were sometimes colder than today and summers very warm on occasion too. There was never a monolithic deep-freeze, rather a climatic seesaw that swung constantly backwards and forwards, in volatile and sometimes disastrous shifts. There were arctic winters, blazing summers, serious droughts, torrential rain years, often bountiful harvests, and long periods of mild winters and warm summers. Cycles of excessive cold and unusual rainfall could last a decade, a few years, or just a single season. The pendulum of climate change rarely paused for more than a generation.
Climate change varied not only from year to year, but from place to place. The coldest decades in northern Europe did not coincide with those in, say, Russia, or the American West. For example, eastern North America had its coldest weather of the little ice age in the nineteenth century, but the western United States was warmer than in the 20th century.
In Asia, serious economic disruption, far more threatening than any contemporary disorders in Europe, occurred throughout much of the continent during the 1600’s. From the 1630’s, China’s Ming empire faced widespread drought. The government’s draconian response caused widespread revolt, and Manchu attacks from the north increased in intensity. By the 1640’s, even the fertile Yangtze River Valley of the south suffered from serious droughts, then catastrophic floods, epidemics and famine. Millions of people died from hunger and the internecine wars that resulted in the fall of the Ming dynasty to the Manchus in 1644. Hunger and malnutrition brought catastrophic epidemics that killed thousands of people throughout Japan in the early 1640’s. The same severe weather conditions affected the fertile rice lands of southern Korea, where, again, epidemics killed hundreds of thousands.
Only a few short cool cycles, like the two unusually cold decades between 1590 and 1610, appear to have been synchronous on the hemispheric and global scale.
Sunspots are an indication of high solar activity (output of solar radiation, which reaches the earth). Solar activity drives our climate, and it affects nearly all human affairs and pursuits, directly or indirectly, especially in times when 4 out of 5 people are subsistence farmers, almost entirely dependent on crop yields, not just to make money, but just to be able to eat well, and survive the winters, and keep enough grain for seed for the next season.
During the worst period of 1672–1699, telescope observations revealed fewer than 50 sunspots for the whole period.
Whenever this happens, it is almost always certainly bad news.
Note that the Great Frost (1683-4), is centered on the worst period of minimum sunspot observation (1672–1699), which is centered on a wider period of reduced sunspot observation (1645-1715), which is centered on a period of volatile and often icy conditions, spanning a couple hundred years (late 1500’s to early 1800’s), which saw the glaciers advance to levels not seen in 10,000 years!
From 1687 to 1692, cold winters and cool summers led to a series of bad harvests. On April 24, 1692, a French chronicler complained of “very cold and unseasonable weather; scarce a leaf on the trees.” Alpine villagers lived on bread made from ground nutshells mixed with barley and oat flour. In France, cold summers delayed wine harvests, sometimes even into November. Widespread blight damaged many crops, bringing one of the worst famines in continental Europe since 1315 and turning France into what a horrified cleric, Archbishop Fenelon, called a “big, desolate hospital without provisions”. Finland lost perhaps as much as a third of its population to famine and disease in 1696-97, partly because of bad harvests but also because of the government’s lack of interest in relief measures.
On several occasions between 1695 and 1728, inhabitants of the Orkney Islands off northern Scotland were startled to see an Inuit in his kayak paddling off their coasts. On one memorable occasion, a kayaker came as far south as the River Don near Aberdeen.
The period between 1645 and 1715 was remarkable for the rarity of aurora borealis and aurora australis, which were reported far less frequently than either before or afterward. Between 1645 and 1708, not a single aurora was observed in London’s skies. When one appeared on March 15th 1716, none other than Astronomer Edmund Halley wrote a paper about it, for he had never seen one in all his years as a scientist – and he was sixty years old at the time. On the other side of the world, naked eye sightings of sunspots from China, Korea, and Japan between 28 BC and 1743 AD provide an average of six sightings per century, presumably coinciding with solar maxima. There were no observations, whatsoever, between 1639 and 1700, nor were any aurora reported.
The variability of the sun’s output was not the only factor affecting climate change during the Little Ice Age:
A few volcanoes made matters much much worse by shading the dimming the sun even more. For example, in 1600, a volcano in Peru hurled massive rocks and around 20 cubic kilometers of ashy debris high into the air, covering the surrounding 300,000 square kilometers with ash, descending for 10 days, some of it even making it to Greenland and Antarctica. The sun and moon were darkened for months.
Whenever this happens, it is almost always certainly bad news.
The next summer, 1601 was the coldest since 1400, throughout the northern hemisphere. Summer sunlight was so dim in Iceland, there were no shadows. In central Europe, the sun and moon were “reddish, faint, and lacked brilliance”. Western North America lived through the coldest summer of the previous 400 years, with below-freezing temperatures. Scandinavia saw the coldest years of the previous 1600. Constant haze.
Russia was blindsided by a famine that cut its population by a third between 1601 and 1603.
Estonia’s population was reduced by half.
Volcanic events produced at least four more major cold episodes during the 1600’s (although none rivalling the insane 1600 global haze)
The identities of these eruptions remains unknown except for that of January 4, 1641, when Mount Parker on Mindanao in the Philippines erupted with a noise “like musketry”. Wrote an anonymous Spanish eyewitness: “By noon we saw a great darkness approaching from the south which gradually spread over the entire hemisphere…..By 1 pm we found ourselves in total night and at 2 pm in such profound darkness that we could not see our hands before our eyes”. A nearby Spanish flotilla lit lanterns at midday and frantically shovelled ash off its decks, fearing, in the darkness “the Judgement Day to be at hand”. The dust from the eruption affected temperatures worldwide.
Around the mid-1800’s, after this Little Ice Age - after hundreds of years of miserable unpredictable climate swings, generally in the cold direction, the sunspots kicked back into full swing again, and things finally started warming up, and the climate finally settled down to more steady and predictable patterns.
It had been 500 years since this comfortable stability has been seen, and, in the mid-1800’s, this resurgence of solar output ushered in a new age of discovery, growth, exploration, and prosperity. Thank goodness!
No more famine and plagues from torrential rains? Sweet!
It’s nice to see that, these days, everybody is soooo thankful for this dramatic change in fortune! Yay! Thank you Sunshine! Keep up the good work!
Around the mid-1800’s, glaciers started melting again, finally stopping their threatening encroachment on poor alpine villagers, having recently grown to their greatest extent in the last 10,000 years.
Sea passages, formally clogged with ice, were being traversed again.
We should feel lucky to have survived the Little Ice Age, and lucky to have made it through to these more stable conditions, with a healthy sun.
Thing is, the sun’s radiance and splendour can be a blessing, and it can also be a serious curse:
On September 1st, 1859, after the Little Ice Age had wrapped up, and glaciers had started melting, before we really started burning coal and gas to a degree that could affect the climate in a significant way; sunspot activity was now going insane, with solar astronomer Richard Carrington being so impressed, he decided to make a drawing of it:
Whenever this happens, it is almost always certainly bad news.
The next time we see something like this brewing, we must all head underground or near water, and turn off and unplug anything electrical that’s important or expensive to replace, like big water pumps, and isolate the precious high-voltage transformers!
As Carrington was mesmerized by this insanely wild activity on the surface of the sun, as he stared through his telescope, a massive kidney-shaped ejection started flaring up, growing out from the giant spot on the sun, and then, poof! It disappeared.
Whenever this happens, it is almost always certainly bad news.
18 hours later, our poor tiny earth was fully engulfed in a dense storm of charged particles.
Telegraph lines were zapped.
Some telegraph operators could continue to send and receive messages despite having disconnected their power supplies.
Auroras were seen in the Caribbean.
Gold miners in the US Rockies woke up and started making breakfast, while being puzzled at still being so tired from the labours of the previous day.
You could read a book at night.
Those who happened to be out late on Thursday night had an opportunity of witnessing another magnificent display of the auroral lights. The phenomenon was very similar to the display on Sunday night, though at times the light was, if possible, more brilliant, and the prismatic hues more varied and gorgeous. The light appeared to cover the whole firmament, apparently like a luminous cloud, through which the stars of the larger magnitude indistinctly shone. The light was greater than that of the moon at its full, but had an indescribable softness and delicacy that seemed to envelop everything upon which it rested. Between 12 and 1 o'clock, when the display was at its full brilliancy, the quiet streets of the city resting under this strange light, presented a beautiful as well as singular appearance.
Australian gold miner C.F. Herbert:
I was gold-digging at Rokewood, about four miles from Rokewood township (Victoria). Myself and two mates looking out of the tent saw a great reflection in the southern heavens at about 7 o'clock p.m., and in about half an hour, a scene of almost unspeakable beauty presented itself, lights of every imaginable color were issuing from the southern heavens, one color fading away only to give place to another if possible more beautiful than the last, the streams mounting to the zenith, but always becoming a rich purple when reaching there, and always curling round, leaving a clear strip of sky, which may be described as four fingers held at arm's length. The northern side from the zenith was also illuminated with beautiful colors, always curling round at the zenith, but were considered to be merely a reproduction of the southern display, as all colors south and north always corresponded. It was a sight never to be forgotten, and was considered at the time to be the greatest aurora recorded... The rationalist and pantheist saw nature in her most exquisite robes, recognising, the divine immanence, immutable law, cause, and effect. The superstitious and the fanatical had dire forebodings, and thought it a foreshadowing of Armageddon and final dissolution.
This must have made an impression on many people.
Imagine how natural events like this could have made an impression on earlier civilizations as well!
As far back as the ice cores go, the earth has clearly never enjoyed a stable temperature!
Who in the world came up with this silly notion in the first place?
As far as the ice core data can tell us, the earth has always oscillated by at least 2-4 degrees from whatever average there may exist over a few hundred or a couple thousand years. That’s a fact. And then there are the unexplained serious dips and spikes.
What this graph shows is ice-core concentrations of the heavier oxygen 18 versus the lighter oxygen 16 atoms, within water molecules. What happens is, during hot times, the heavier water, with the oxygen 18 atoms is more easily evaporated from the oceans, and so you get more of the heavier water molecules deposited on the glaciers. In colder times, the heavier atoms are not as easily evaporated, so you get a greater concentration of lighter water - with the lighter oxygen 16 atoms, accumulating on the glaciers instead.
Each vertical notch on the graph represents around 2 degrees of difference, centigrade.
The horizontal axis is the number of thousands of years before present.
The very right side of the graph is the start of the end of the last great ice age, but, as you can see, the Younger Dryas period interrupted what should have been a gradual warming up, out of the great ice age. Instead, something happened around 13,000 years ago that caused an enormous dip in temperatures, lasting over a 1000 years – which was hell on earth, wiping out the majority of large animal species, and reducing the numbers of surviving populations significantly. And then something else happened, at around 11,600 years ago, to induce a wildly sharp increase in temperatures, marking the true end of the last great ice age.
So, I guess, if humans are the only cause of climate change, I guess, at 11,600 years ago, we all started driving SUVs way too much, so that’s what was responsible for that roughly 8-degree C immediate temperature increase, with sea levels rising as a result, marking the end of the last ice age. Sure. That makes a ton of sense. I guess this finally proves that advanced human civilizations go wayyyyy back in time!
Whenever one proposes some evidence to prove some seemingly outlandish theory, like the universe being infinite, or concerning the intelligence of plants or of single cells, one is repeatedly told that “correlation does not equal causation”. True. It does not. Just because you can correlate two things together with some line of evidence, this does not necessarily prove that one causes the other. This is a point of logic no one can argue against.
The temperature swings in the ice cores are indeed correlated, as Al Gore’s scissor-lift graph shows, with the CO2 levels showing the same dips and spikes as the oxygen-isotopes-in-glacial-ice-water dips and spikes (which indicates the temperature at the time). So, yes, there is a correlation between CO2 and temperature.
Now, why are all those who claim that humans alone drive climate, exempt from the scrutiny of “correlation does not equal causation”? The scissor-lift graph is a graph which only shows a correlation. The way it is presented prevents any analysis of which precedes which or if the two are precisely in phase (dips in CO2 match precisely dips in temperature; and spikes in CO2 match spikes in temperature).
So, which is it:
· Does CO2 change occur first, and then the temperature changes accordingly?
· Are they both in phase, matching up perfectly?
· Or, does temperature change occur first, and then the CO2 changes accordingly?
Well, we could devote our talent and our resources to understanding and addressing countless other natural factors affecting climate, especially the Sun’s output, space-rocks hitting land, space-rocks hitting oceans, volcanoes, ocean currents, etc…, which deserve greater attention, by far. Or we could devote our attention to serious actual proven environmental concerns, such as polluted rivers, polluted air, polluted oceans, Fukushima, oil spills, salting and erosion of soil, nitrification of run-off, hog farm cesspools, deforestation and reforestation, fish stock decimation and replenishment, etc… Or, we could spend our resources, both capital and human, on preparing for and adapting to inevitable calamities of all sorts, like preparing for and recovering from hurricanes, or tsunamis, or torrential rains, or volcanoes, or earthquakes, or droughts, or solar flares.
Because, it is obvious, from Al Gore’s own scissor-lift graph, that:
FIRST, THE TEMPERATURE CHANGES;
THEN, THE ATMOSPHERIC CO2 CHANGES
Again, time, on this chart, goes from right to left, starting at 800,000 years ago.
The red line is temperature, the blue and purple are CO2.
It is well-known today, that when the oceans warm up, they off-gas CO2; and when they cool down, they absorb CO2. With the oceans having 38,000,000,000 tons of carbon dioxide stored within them, and being able to change temperature relatively quickly, and with the oceans covering most of the surface of the earth; it is almost certainly the primary mechanism that explains the correlation between CO2 and temperature.
But, I guess, “correlation does not equal causation”. Right? Eh?
“During the whole summer of 1635, no less than during that of 1636, signs of this sort were seen: burning stars running together in the heavens in great numbers and falling to the earth.”
“From March to August, 1636, not one drop of rain. This Numigen plague raged most at new and full moon. It was presaged by great Jostling and Falling of fiery Stars south or west, many fewer birds than ordinary, &c.”
In spring of 1490, in the Ch'ing-yang district of China:
"Stones fell like rain in the Ch’ing-yang district. The larger ones were about 1.5 kg, and the smaller ones were about 1 kg. Numerous stones rained in Ch'ing-yang (city). Their sizes were all different. The larger ones were like goose's eggs and the smaller ones were like water-chestnuts. More than 10,000 people were struck dead. All of the people in the city fled to other places."
“An eclipse of the sun happened on the second of the Calends of October. [Sept. 30.] Stars like fire were also seen falling from heaven in many parts of Italy.”
“Many stars of a fiery appearance fell down. At this time pestilence invaded nearly the whole of Italy.”
October 22nd “In the year 1366, on the day after the festival of the eleven thousand virgins, [Oct. 22] from midnight until daylight, stars were seen falling in streams from heaven, and in such multitudes that no man could count them.”
During the 1200’s (A.D.), Greenland and Iceland experienced increasing cold. Sea ice spread southward around Greenland and in the northern-most Atlantic, creating difficulties for Norse ships sailing from Iceland as early as 1203. Unusual cold brought early frosts and crop failures to Poland and the Russian plains in 1215, when famine caused people to sell their children and eat pine bark. During the 1200’s, some Alpine glaciers advanced for the first time in centuries, destroying irrigation channels in high mountain valleys and overturning larch forests.
While colder temperatures afflicted the north, Europe as a whole benefited from the change (during the 1200’s). The downturn in temperatures in the Arctic cause a persistent trough of low pressure over Greenland and enduring ridges of high pressure over north-western Europe. A period of unusually warm, mostly dry summers between 1284 and 1311, in which May frosts were virtually unknown, encouraged many farmers to experiment with vineyards in England. After the start of the 1300’s however, the weather turned unpredictable:
THE GREAT FAMINE
The deluge began in 1315, seven weeks after Easter. “During this season (spring 1315) it rained most marvellously and for so long”, wrote a contemporary observer, Jean Desnouelles. Across northern Europe, sheets of rain spread in waves over the sodden countryside, dripping from thatched eaves, flowing in endless rivulets down muddy country lanes. Wrote chronicler Bernado Guidonis: “Exceedingly great rains descended from the heavens, and they made huge and deep mud-pools on the land.” Freshly plowed fields turned into shallow lakes. City streets and narrow alleys became jostling, slippery quagmires. June passed, then July with little break in the weather. Only occasionally did a watery sun break through the clouds, before the rain started again. “Throughout nearly all of May, July and August, the rains did not cease.” complained one writer. An unseasonably cold August became an equally chilly September. Such corn and oats as survived were beaten down to the ground, heavy with moisture, the ears still soft and unripened. Hay lay flat in the fields. Oxen stood knee deep in thick mud under sheltering trees, their heads turned away from the rain. Dykes were washed away, royal manors inundated. In central Europe, floods swept away entire villages, drowning hundreds at a time. Deep erosion gullies tore through hillside fields where shallow clay soils could not absorb the endless water. Harvests had been less than usual in previous years, causing prices to rise, but that of 1315 was a disaster. The author of the Chronicle of Malmesbury wondered, like many others, if divine vengeance had come upon the land: “Therefore is the anger of the Lord kindled against his people, and he hath stretched forth his hand against them, and hath smitten them.”
Europe was a continent of constant turmoil and minor wars, of endless killings, raids, and military expeditions. Many conflicts stemmed from succession disputes and personal rivalries, from sheer greed and reckless ambition. The wars continued whatever the weather, in blazing sunshine, or torrential rain, armies feeding off villages, leaving empty granaries and despoiled crops in their train. War merely increased the suffering of the peasants, who lived close enough to the edge as it was. But the rains of 1315 stopped military campaigning in its tracks.
“And what a wonder! Some knights who were sitting on a magnificently outfitted horse gave the horse and their weapons away for cheap wine; and they did so because they were so terribly hungry.”
The catastrophic rains affected an enormous area of northern Europe, from Ireland to Germany and north into Scandinavia. Incessant rain drenched farmlands long cleared of woods or reclaimed from marsh by countless small villages. The farmers had plowed heavy soils with long furrows, creating fields that absorbed many millimeters of rain without serious drainage problems. Now they became muddy wildernesses, the crops flattened where they grew. Clayey sub-soils became so waterlogged in many areas that the fertility of the topsoil was reduced drastically for years afterward.
(previous to the rains of 1315+), as rural populations grew during the 1200’s, many communities had moved onto lighter, often sandy soils, more marginal farming land that was incapable of absorbing sustained rainfall. Deep erosion gullies channelled running water through ravaged fields, leaving little more than patches of cultivable land. In parts of southern Yorkshire in northern England, thousands of acres of arable land lost their thin topsoil to deep gullies, leaving the underlying rock exposed. As much as half the arable land vanished in some places. Inevitably, crop yields plummeted. Such grain as could be harvested was soft and had to be dried before it could be ground into flour. The cold weather and torrential rains of later summer 1315 prevented thousands of hectares of cereals from ripening fully. Fall plantings of wheat and rye failed completely. Hay could not be cured properly.
Hunger began within months. “There began a dearness of wheat….From day to day the price increased,” lamented a chronicler in Flanders. By Christmas 1315, many communities throughout north-western Europe were already desperate.
Few people understood how extensive the famine was until pilgrims, traders, and government messengers brought tales of similar misfortune from all parts. “The whole world was troubled.” wrote a chronicler at Salzburg, which lay at the southern margins of the affected region. King Edward II of England attempted to impose price controls on livestock, but without success. After the hunger grew worse, he tried again, placing restrictions on the manufacture of ale and other products made from grain. The king urged his bishops to exhort hoarders to offer their surplus grain for sale “with efficacious words” and also offered incentives for the importation of grain. At a time when no one had enough to eat, none of these measures worked.
The hunger was made worse by the previous century’s population growth. In the late 1000’s, England’s population of about 1.4 million had risen to 5 million by the beginning of the 1300’s. France’s inhabitants (that is, that part of Europe now lying within the country’s modern boundaries) increased from about 6.2 million in the late 1000’s, to about 17.6 million or even higher. By 1300, with the help of cereal cultivation at unprecedented altitudes and latitudes, Norway supported half a million people. Yet economic growth had not kept pace with population. There was already some sluggishness in local economies by 1250, and very slow growth everywhere after 1285. With growing rural and urban populations, high transportation costs, and very limited communication networks, the gap between production and demand was gradually widening throughout northern Europe. Many towns and cities, especially those away from the coast or major waterways, were very vulnerable to food shortages.
In the countryside, many rural communities survived at near-subsistence levels, with only enough grain to get through one bad harvest and plant for the next year. Even in good years, small farmers endured the constant specter of winter famine. All it took was a breakdown in supply lines caused by iced-in-shipping, bridges damaged by floods, an epidemic of cattle disease that decimated breeding stock and draught animals, or too much or too little rainfall, and people went hungry.
Most close-knit farming communities endured the shortages of 1315 and hoped for a better harvest the following year. Then the spring rains in 1316 prevented proper sowing of oats, barley and spelt. The harvest failed again and the rains continued. Complained a Salzburg chronicler of 1316: “There was such an inundation of waters that it seemed as though it was THE FLOOD.” Intense gales battered Channel and North Sea. Storm-force winds piled huge sand dunes over a flourishing port at Kenfig near Port Talbot in south Wales, causing its abandonment. Villages throughout northern Europe paid the price for two centuries of extensive land clearance. Flocks and herds withered, crops failed, prices rose, and people contemplated the wrath of God. The agony was slow: famine weakens rural populations and makes them vulnerable to disease, which follows almost inevitably in its train. The prolonged disaster is familiar from modern-day famines in Africa and India. People first turned to relatives and neighbours, invoking the ties of kin and community that had bound them for generations. Then many families abandoned their land, seeking charity from relatives or aimlessly wandering the countryside in search of food and relief. Rural beggars roamed from village to village and town to town, telling (often false) stories of entire communities abandoned or of deserted meadows and hillsides.
By the end of 1316, many peasants and labourers were reduced to penury. Paupers ate dead bodies of diseased cattle and scavenged growing grasses in fields. Villagers in northern France are said to have eaten cats, dogs and dung of pigeons. In the English countryside, peasants lived off foods that they would not normally consume, many of them of dubious nutritional value. They were weakened by diarrhea and dehydration, became more susceptible to diseases of all kinds, were overcome by lethargy, and did little work. The newborn and the aged died fastest.
Community after community despaired and slowly dissolved. Thousands of acres of farmland were abandoned due to a shortage of seed corn and draught oxen, and to falling village populations. Huge areas of the Low Countries, inundated by the sea after major storms and prolonged rains, were so difficult to reclaim that major landowners could hardly persuade farmers to resettle their flooded lands. Across the North Sea, in the Bilsdale area of northeast Yorkshire, homesteaders in the late 1200’s had cleared hundreds of acres of higher ground for new villages. A couple of generations later, knots of hamlets, each with its own carpenters, foresters, and tanners, flourished on the newly cleared land. But climatic and economic deterioration, the 1316 famine, disease, the Scottish raids caused all of them to be abandoned by the 1330’s. The hamlets became tiny single-family holdings, and the communities dispersed. Throughout northern Europe, small farming communities on marginal land were abandoned, or shrunk until their holdings were confined to the most fertile and least flood-prone lands.
The cold and wet conditions brought profound hardship to homesteads almost everywhere. Many free landowners, forced to sell or mortgage their farms, were reduced to the basest poverty. Thousands of farmers became laborers, especially in areas around London and other large cities, where there was much demand for food and such tasks as plowing were made more laborious by the wet, clogged soils. Real estate records and rent lists reveal a dramatic increase in land transactions, as richer landowners exploited their poorer neighbours and families deeded field to their children to enable them to survive. Compared with 1315, for example, the manor of Hindolveston in Norfolk witnessed a 160 percent increase in surrenders of property by tenants in 1316, and a 70 percent overage in 1317. In most cases, a handful of rich farmers bought out their poorer colleagues. One Adam Carpenter acquired five parcels of land in 1315 alone. By the time the rush of transactions abated, he had acquired forty-seven.
The year 1316 was the worst for cereal crops throughout the entire Middle Ages. In many places, the crops simply did not ripen. Where wheat could be harvested, the plants were stunted, the yields pitiful.
Downey mildew attacked French grapes, so vines never reached their proper maturity and “there was a great failure of wine in the whole kingdom of France.” Chroniclers complained of shortages and harsh taste. The vineyards of Neustadt in Germany were hard hit: 1316, “a trifling quantity of wine”; 1317, “very little wine.” That of 1319 was “sour,” while the cold in 1323 was so extreme that the root stocks died. Not until 1328, six years after the famine ended, was there “very much and exceptionally good wine.”
The weather attacked not only crops but animals. Just feeding them in winter became a serious headache. The fields were so damp that, even if hay could be mowed, the crops could not dry in the open. Stored in a barn, uncured hay rots, builds up heat and methane gas, and can burst into flames unless turned regularly. What drying ovens and kilns were available were used to dry unripened grain for human consumption. The worst for animals came later in the famine years. The bitterly cold winter of 1317/1318 used up the already depleted fodder stocks. When these ran out, farmers had to turn their animals out to forage for themselves in short-lived warmer spells. Thousands of head starved or froze to death in their pastures. Sheep suffered especially badly from the cold, for prolonged snow and frost early in the year make lambing a risky proposition. The raw summer brought virulent rinderpest, which attacked cattle with diarrhea, dehydration, and intestinal failure. Thousands of putrefying carcasses were burnt or buried in mass graves. A parasitic worm infection called liver fluke reduced sheep and goat flocks by as much as 70 percent in some places.
“The great dying of beasts” continued into the early 1320’s, bringing severe shortages not only of livestock but of manure for the fields. The impact was felt immediately. Oxen and horses lay at the heart of the rural economy, the former used extensively for plowing. Teams of oxen, often owned jointly by several families, plowed heavier soils for entire communities and were heavily used by medieval manors. Inevitably, the stock shortage translated into fewer hectares plowed, abandoned fields, and lower crop yields. Only pigs were relatively unaffected. Fast-breeding swine were abundant until the shortfall in bread, beef and mutton caused people to increase the amount of pork in their diet and herds were decimated.
In the towns, the urban poor ate less bread. Wrote a Flemish observer in 1316: “The people were in such great need that it cannot be expressed. For the cries that were heard from the poor would move a stone, as they lay in the street with woe and great complain, swollen with hunger.” In Flanders, bread was no longer made from wheat, but from anything that was available. Sixteen Parisian bakers were caught putting hog dung and wine dregs in their loaves. They were placed on punishment wheels in public squares and forced to hold fragments of the rotten bread in their hands. People went days without eating and assuaged hunger pangs by eating leaves, roots, and the occasional fish taken from a stream. Even King Edward II of England had trouble finding bread for his court. Famine was often more severe in cities and towns than in the countryside, with widespread diarrhea and lethargy resulting from “strange diets”. The hungry suffered greatly from the intense winter cold. There had not been so many deaths from disease or such instability in towns within living memory. Robbery with assault became commonplace as thieves stole anything that could be eaten or sold for food, be it hay, timber, or church roof lead. Piracy flourished as desperate locals preyed on fishing boats and grain vessels.
Beggars flocked to the cities from the countryside. In the Low Countries, they gathered in large groups, scavenged the middens that lay outside town walls or “grazed like cattle” in the fields. Bodies littered cultivated land and were buried in mass graves. The mendicants spread disease. In the town of Tournai in modern-day Belgium, 1316 was “the year of the mortality”. Gilles de Muisit, abbot of Saint-Martin de Tournai, wrote: “men and women from among the powerful, the middling, and the lowly, old and young, rich and poor, perished daily in such numbers that the air was fetid with the stench”. Huge communal cemeteries entombed the previously segregated dead, rich and poor alike. In Louvain, a wagon from the hospital “loaded with six or eight corpses twice or thrice a day continuously carried pitiable little bodies to the new cemetery outside the town”. Between 5 and 10 percent of Flanders’s urban population perished in the Great Famine.
By 1317, as the rains continued through another wet summer, people everywhere despaired. The church performed complex rogation ceremonies to pray for divine intervention. Guilds and religious orders in Paris processed barefoot through the streets. In the dioceses of Chartres and Rouen, chronicler Guillaume de Nangis saw “a large number of both sexes, not only from nearby places but from places as much as five leagues away, barefooted, and many even, excepting the women, in a completely nude condition, with their priests, coming together in procession at the church of the holy martyr, and they devoutly carried bodies of the saints and other relics to be adored”. After generations of generally good harvests and settled weather, they believed divine retribution was at hand for a Europe divided by wars. Rich and poor alike endured the punishment of God.
Northern Europe never again endured a hunger as catastrophic as that of 1315. Later famines, however local, served as reminders of the great fragility of society. Not until the late 1600’s in England, and more than a century later in France, did new agricultural methods and crops, much improved commercial infrastructures, and large-scale food imports significantly reduce the threat of famine.
A weakened Europe was now operating under compromised social and economic conditions, ravaged top-soils, more unpredictable weather, while still employing agricultural methods which provide, even under the best climate conditions and with a healthy soil structure, only marginal returns and meagre stores of food. Scarcity of food compromises the body’s ability to fight disease. Without this downturn in the climate, it is entirely possible that the black death of 1347-1351 would never have happened. The plague is still alive and well in rodents and fleas today. If it were not for our clean streets, and very well-stocked grocery stores, granted by a healthy sun above us, this ever-present threat would almost certainly resurface.
July 26. “In this year, on the 7th of the Kalends of August, the night was most serene and the air exceedingly pure, so that the milky way was as manifest as in the clearest winter night, although the moon was in her eighth day. And to our surprise, stars were seen falling from heaven, swiftly darting on all sides. Most remarkably, thirty or forty were seen to shoot or fall at the same instant, so that two or three would fly together in the same track. Of course, if these had been real stars, (which no man of sense supposes) not one would have been left in the sky. It belongs to the astrologers to interpret this portentous appearance; but to all the beholders it was a most stupendous and wonderful spectacle.”
“In the year 599, on the night preceding Sunday the last day of the month Moharrem, [October 19, A. D. 1202,] the stars rushed across the heavens from east to west, and glided to the right and left, like grasshoppers in a field. This continued until dawn. The inhabitants cried out with terror, and fervently implored the mercy of the Most High. A similar occurrence happened in the year of the holy mission of the Prophet, [A. D. 611,] as well as in the year 241, [A. D. 855.]
“At the beginning of the year [596 of the Hegira, commencing Oct. 22, 1199], the stars were seen coursing through the heavens, and afterward the water was very low. During the same year the sovereign of Egypt was dethroned by his uncle Melic-aladel”
Relation de l'Egypte
Arab doctor in Bagdad
Translated and enriched with historical notes and critiques by:
M. Silvestre De Sacy
Paris, 1810, 4to. book 2, chap. 2, p. 340.
First quoted in part by M. Fraehn, (sup.)
The passages occur at pp. 117 and 118 of the Tubingen edi tion of 1789.
April 4 “In the year of our Lord 1122, on the day before the nones of April, at the fourth watch of the night, while the brethren were chanting the Synaxis nocturnalis, innumerable stars were seen falling, and as it were raining down, throughout the world.”
“On the twelfth of February, at Bari, a town in Italy, were seen by day several stars in the sky, sometimes apparently running together, and sometimes apparently falling to the earth.”
“A comet was visible in February, from 3 o'clock to 9 for twenty five days at the same hour. In Judea this comet was seen fifty days decreasing. Shortly after the stars seemed to rain down from heaven.”
“During many nights stars were seen to rain down at intervals, but so thick and fast, that one would have said they were flakes from the celestial orbs.”
April 4 “This year Easter was on the 8th of the Kalends of April. And, after Easter, on the festival of St. Ambrose, that is on the 2d of the Nones [4th of April], over almost all this land and for nearly the whole of the night, stars were seen falling from heaven in manifold ways, not one or two at a time, but so thickly that no man could count them.”
“At this period, so many stars fell from heaven that they could not be counted. In France the inhabitants were amazed to see one of them of great size, fall to the earth, and they poured water on the spot, when to their exceeding astonishment, smoke issued from the ground with a hissing noise.”
“The year 1094 was very remarkable for the number and fashion of gliding stars, which seemed to dash together in manner of a conflict.”
“M. Muncke states that in the year 1090, according to the chronicles of that period, shooting stars appeared in considerable numbers, during several consecutive nights.”
In the Comptes Rendus of the French Academy of Sciences, (1837, I, 532,) it is stated that M. de Paravey had found in an ancient history of Anjou, an account of a remarkable fall of shooting stars which happened A. D. 1060. The date of the month was not mentioned in the history.
“In the year 420, in the month Radjab, [beginning July 16, A. D. 1029], fell many stars with great noise and very vivid light.”
Soyuti, Hist. Cair. fol. 338.
First quoted by Von Hammer
Comptes Rend. 1837, I, p. 293.
Cited also by M. Fraehn.
“In the year 323 [Hegira], several violent shocks of an earthquake were felt in Egypt, the third of Dhu’l- kaada: [Oct. 5, A. D. 935] about the same time, many of those meteors called falling stars, of a very remarkable kind, likewise appeared in Egypt.”
Modern Part of the Universal History
8vo. Lond. Vol. 2. 1780. p. 333. (Hist. of the Arabs.)
931 or 934
“In the same year appeared signs in the heavens among the stars, which appeared some falling and others blazing like torches, on the fourteenth day of October, the second day of the moon.”
Notes found on a Calendar; and printed at the end of Chronicom Cavense
Muratori, Rerum Italicarum Scriptores
26 tom. fol. Mediol. 1723, etc. t. vii, p. 961.
912 or 913.
“I will here add what I have seen in a commentator on the Astronomical Aphorisms of Ptolemy, the last of which begins thus:
‘Shooting stars indicate dryness of the air; if they all go towards the same quarter of the heavens, they foreshow winds which will blow from that quarter, but if they scatter in all parts of the heavens they indicate the drying up of the water, disturbances in the atmosphere, and the incursions of armies moving in various directions… … In the year 300 [beginning Aug. 17, A. D. 912] the same phenomena were seen in all parts of the sky; the flow of the Nile was bad, and there were troubles and agitations in the country.’
These are doubtless very strong signs, but they are common to all regions; and not peculiar to Egypt.”
Same source as the next entry:
“I remember that in the year 290 [of the Hegira, beginning Dec. 4, A. D. 902] there were seen in Egypt burning meteors which scattered themselves through the sky and filled the whole expanse; they caused great terror and increased continually. A short time after, a great dearth of water was felt in this country: the Nile rose only thirteen cubits, and violent disturbances arose which caused the ruin of the dynasty of the Toulounis in Egypt.
Relation de l'Egypte
Arab doctor in Bagdad
Translated and enriched with historical notes and critiques by:
M. Silvestre De Sacy
Paris, 1810, 4to. book 2, chap. 2, p. 340.
First quoted in part by M. Fraehn, (sup.)
The passages occur at pp. 117 and 118 of the Tubingen edition of 1789.
“In the month Djolkaada of the year 289, (of the Hegira,) died king Ibrahim ben Ahmet, and during the same night were seen great numbers of stars, which moved, as if they had been darted through the atmosphere, from a culminating point, and rushed down on the right and left, like rain. On account of this phenomenon, this year was called the year of stars.”
Conde: Hist. de la Domination des Maures en Espagne, I, 397
quoted by M. Fraehn, (as above,) who states that the date is the 24th or 25th October, A. D. 902.
First quoted in part by Von Hammer
Comptes Rend. Acad. Sci., 1837, I, 293.
“The whole hemisphere was filled with those meteors called falling stars, the ninth of Dhu’lhajja, (288th year of the Hegira,) [A. D. 901, November 25th , from midnight till morning, to the great surprise of the beholders, in Egypt.”
Modern Part of the Universal History
8vo. Vol. 2, p. 281. Lond. 1780. (Hist. of the Arabs.)
November 14th “In the year 286 (of the Hegira,) there was an earthquake in Egypt, on Wednesday, the 7th of the month Djolkaada, from midnight until morning, and the stars called Schuhub, (luminous meteors,) were in extraordinary commotion, going from east to west, and from north to south, in such a manner that no mortal could look at the heavens.”
Elmacini Histor. Saracen., Arab. et Lat., op. Erpenii, p. 181
quoted by M. Fraehn, L'Institut, No. 252, p. 350
October 17. “This year there was a fall of stars during the night preceding the first day of the month Djomadi II, (Hegira 241,) which continued from the beginning of the night until dawn. At the same period earthquakes were felt in all parts of the world.”
Cod. 521. Acad. Sci. fol. 51
cited by M. Fraehn, in a communication to the Imp. Acad. Sci. of St. Petersburgh
Dec. 1, 1837;
quoted in L’Institut, Paris, No. 252, p. 350. Oct. 25, 1838.
“An earthquake at Aix a few days before easter, and a violent hurricane. Another comet in aries. And for several days together, very many little twinkling fires like stars, ran up and down in the air; great tempests of wind followed.”
General Chronological History of Air, Weather, Seasons, Meteors
Dr. Thomas Short
Vol. I, p. 86.
In the Saxon Chronicle, under date of A. D. 793, it is stated that fiery dragons [a common term for very brilliant meteoric fire-balls], were seen flying through the air.
“In the second year of his reign, [49th emperor of Japan, Koonin] there happened a storm of thunder and lightning dreadful beyond expression. It rained fire from Heaven, like stars, and the air was filled with a frightful noise.”
“On Saturday, the fourth day of January, stars were seen falling as it were from heaven.”
also known as Dionysius of Tel Mahre
Patriarch of Antioch, and head of the Syriac Orthodox Church from 818 until his death in 845.
Giuseppe Simone Assemani
“In the month of March, stars were seen falling from heaven, so that all the beholders imagined that the end of the world had come. There was also a great drought, and the fountains were dried up.”
Stephanis Chronographia : Hist. Byz. Scr. Corp. tom. 6, p. 291
See also Hist. Miscella, lib. 22, Muratori: Rer. Ital. Scr. tom. 1, p. 159
Calvisii Opus Chronol. fol. 1685, p. 634.
This is the shower referred to A. D. 763, in Ernst Chaldni's Feuer Meteore
“At that time happened a fearful sight and a strange portent resulting from an appearance in the sky. It began about candle-lighting and was visible during the whole night, causing surprise and great fear in all the beholders. For it seemed to them as though all the stars left their appointed places in the heavens, and descended towards the earth. But when they came near the ground, they were one and all suddenly dissipated without doing any damage whatever. Many assert that this astonishing sight was witnessed throughout the whole world.”
Saint Nikephoros I
Writer and Ecumenical Patriarch of Constantinople
744 or 747
“And the stars came forth shooting exceedingly.”
“In the 8th moon, on the day Ou-Chin [September 4?] there appeared many hundreds of shooting stars scattering themselves on all sides.”
“There was a great running of stars from evening until morning, so that everyone was greatly terrified, and exclaimed: “the stars are falling.’”
“Appeared a Comet for three Weeks. “
General Chronological History of Air, Weather, Seasons, Meteors
Dr. Thomas Short
Vol. I, page 64
“There happened a great chasing of stars from evening until morning, so that everyone was amazed, and cried out: “The stars are falling”! We never knew anything like it!”
Theophanes the Confessor
Byzantine chronicler (~759 – ~818))
“There was a great running of stars, so that all were astonished, and exclaimed: “See the stars are falling! We don’t know what is to happen.”
Byzantine historian living in the 1000’s
This is the shower referred to A. D. 533, in Ernst Chaldni's Feuer Meteore
“There was a sore famine in Italy.”
General Chronological History of Air, Weather, Seasons, Meteors
Dr. Thomas Short
Vol. I, page 64
“Was an earthquake at Pompeiopolis, which swallowed multitudes of people. Blood rained from the clouds, a grievous mortality followed.”
General Chronological History of Air, Weather, Seasons, Meteors
Dr. Thomas Short
Vol. I, page 64
In February of 535, Chinese folks heard a loud bang coming from the south-west. This points in the direction of Indonesia’s string of volcanoes, 3000 miles away.
In a vaguely-dated passage from the Indonesian Book of the Kings, put together in the 1850’s, but based on ancient sources; some time during the 1st millennium:
“A mighty thunder, which was answered by a furious shaking of the earth. Pitch darkness, thunder and lightning, and then came forth a furious gale, together with a hard rain. A deadly storm darkened the entire world. In no time, there came a great flood. When the water subsided, it could be seen that the island of Java had been split in two, thus creating the island of Sumatra.”
In the Nanxi ancient chronicles, from southern China:
“Yellow dust rained down like snow. It could be scooped up in handfuls.”
The years between 535 and 542 saw the most severe episode of cooling in the last 2000 years. The cooling and its impacts was (at least initially) global, and its aftereffects shaped how the modern world developed. It brought down the last vestige of the Roman empire. It set the stage for the popularization of the Qur’an and Islamic civilization to flourish for hundreds of years thereafter.
Tree rings from Ireland, Sweden, Finland, California and Chile show that tree growth virtually stopped cold in its tracks starting around 535, and after barely recovering, dropped sharply again in 542. It was so severe, that tree-cells that are usually made during winter months, were in fact being made through summer as well – as if it was frosty all summer.
Snow fell in China. In August.
The Gaelic Irish Annals record “a failure of bread” between 536 and 539.
Peru suffered a drought.
A “dense dry fog” was reported in Europe, the Middle-East and China.
In normally warm Mesopotamia, the winter was a “severe one, so much so that from the large and unusual quantity of snow, the birds perished”, says the chronicle written by Zacharias of Mytilene.
Syrian bishop John of Ephesus, noted strange disturbances in the sun, between 535-536:
“There was a sign from the sun, the likes of which had never been seen or reported before. The sun became dark, and the darkness lasted for 18 months. Each day, it shone for about 4 hours, but this light was only a feeble shadow. Everyone declared that the sun would never recover its full brilliance again.”
“The fruits did not ripen, and the wine tasted like sour grapes.”
Roman statesman Cassiodorus:
“The sun seems to have lost its usual light, and is bluish in color. We marvel to see no shadows of our bodies at noon, to feel the mighty vigour of the sun’s heat wasted into feebleness, and the phenomena which accompany a transitory eclipse prolonged through almost a whole year. The moon too, even when its orb is full, is empty of its natural splendour.”
“We have had a spring without mildness, and a summer without heat. The months which should have seen our crops mature, were chilled by north winds. Rain is denied, and the reaper fears new frosts.”
The Byzantine historian Procopius, in the year 536, in his report on the wars with the Vandals:
"During this year, a most dreadful portent took place. For the sun gave forth its light without brightness, like the moon, during the whole year, and it seemed exceedingly like the sun during an eclipse, for the beams it shed were not clear, nor such as it is accustomed to shed.”
Zacharias of Mytilene:
“The sun began to be darkened by day, and the moon by night.”
Roman official and academic John the Lydian:
“The sun became dim for nearly the whole year.”
“The fruits were killed at an unseasonal time.”
In the Bei Shi ancient chronicles, from northern China, in an entry for April/early-May 535:
“Because of drought, there was an imperial edict, which ordered that in the capital (Chang’ An), and in all the provinces, commanderies and districts, one should bury the corpses.”
By the fifth month, the situation had deteriorated to such an extent, that in the capital itself, the government was forced to provide water for the population at the city gates.
Soon the drought became so intense that hundreds of thousands of square miles of normally fertile or semi-fertile land became totally arid. The evidence suggests that huge dust storms began to rage.
As the drought worsened in 536, the Bei Shi says, in the central Chinese province of Xi’an, seven or eight out of every ten people died. Survivors were forced to eat the corpses of the dead.
In early 537, in nine provinces in north China, the drought continued but was increasingly interrupted by hail. Then finally, in 538, the drought ended, but the climatological chaos continued. There were now huge floods. In the summer of that year, the toads and frogs were said to be “croaking from the trees”, so torrential was the rain. The instability continued into the 540’s, with major droughts in 544, 548, 549, and 550.
In the Nihon Shoki, the ancient chronicle of Japan, in 540, the Japanese Great King lamented:
“Food is the basis of the empire. Yellow gold and ten thousand strings of cash cannot cure hunger. What avails a thousand boxes of pearls to him who is starving of cold.”
“A great comet appeared. Fiery battles, with abundance of blood, were seen in the air, followed by great inundations in France, from excessive rains; the Tyber overflowing made terrible slaughter. On the 12th of the Calends of July, the Sun was so eclipsed, that the stars were seen.”
General Chronological History of Air, Weather, Seasons, Meteors
Dr. Thomas Short
Vol. I, page 65
The setting of the legends of King Arthur is that his kingdom was reduced to a wasteland. The legends say that he died in 539 or 542. The legends tell of terrible “blows” that rain down from the sky, onto Arthur’s people.
As he rode thus through the land, he found trees down and grain destroyed and all things laid waste, as if lightning had struck in each place, and unquestionably it had struck in many places, though not everywhere. He found half the people in the villages dead, both bourgeois and knights, and he found labourers dead in the fields. What can I tell you? He found the kingdom of Listinois so totally destroyed that it was later called by everyone the Kingdom of Waste Land and the Kingdom of Strange Land, because everywhere the land had become so strange and wasted.
Ice cores from Greenland and Antarctica show evidence of substantial sulphate deposits in around 533–534 (give or take 2 years), which indicates the presence of a global acidic dust veil, which could be from a volcano, or from exploding space-rocks. Space rocks contain about 6 percent sulphur. They can also hit rocks on earth which may contain sulphur. But, the evidence that Krakatoa exploded with intensity, seems to also coincide really well, especially with the report from China, and of “blood raining from the clouds” at Pompeiopolis.
If space rocks can induce significant seismic activity (as was recorded during the Tunguska air-burst), then it should be entirely plausible that fault lines under existing pressure, and volcanoes under existing pressure, could be nudged into releasing those pressures, from the enormous seismic waves resulting from high-velocity massive rocks from space.
So, maybe the events of 535 involved both space rocks, and Krakatoa, one triggering the other? If so, humanity could not have possibly been prepared for such a severe double-punch.
Sunlight not only allows for crops to grow, but also cooks off fungal populations as crops mature. When the land is in shade, think of the underside of a rubber mat at a restaurant that hasn’t been cleaned in months. Things get rank. Things putrefy.
Leaf surfaces get covered in mildew which reduces photosynthesis. Crops like the potato succumb to fungal pressures very easily, and prefer good ventilation, and enjoy a good strong dose of sunlight every day. And it’s not just a matter of cooking off surface fungal populations, the plant’s own internal immune system is weakened by less sunlight, so that things like root-rot infections are harder to keep at bay.
At the same time, lack of incoming sunlight reduces evaporation of water to form clouds, which would water the crops in the first place. Not only this, but regular vegetation in the countryside, which holds the topsoil in place, preventing erosion, can also perish during a drought, which can then cause wind-erosion or flash-flood-erosion afterwards, once the plant roots have withered.
So, in 535, exploding space-rocks and/or a massive volcano, entombed the earth in a dry dense haze, for 18 months.
The blanket of dust significantly cut the amount of incoming solar radiation.
The lack of solar radiation reduced rainfall and weakened crops and natural vegetation.
The lack of solar radiation might also have slowed the convective currents in the oceans.
With fewer roots holding topsoil in place, the wind created dust storms, whisking the topsoil away.
Lack of rains also means lack of fresh water, and reduced sanitation.
When the rains returned, flash floods further eroded topsoil.
Flash floods and erosion also means less freshwater retained.
Crop failures led to bad nutrition and social stresses.
Bad nutrition and stress led to weakened immune systems.
Weakened immune systems and bad sanitation let infections proliferate.
And once again, as has happened countless times before, and as will happen countless times again (if we don’t pay attention to our celestial environment) unprepared peoples, worldwide, plunge into darkness, and we are tested to the limits of our adaptability, as well as the strength of our moral fibre:
At the peak of the Justinian Plague, five to ten thousand people perished each day, in Constantinople alone. When the figure reached a quarter-million, city officials stopped counting.
In the very first case of the plague in recorded history, twenty-five million souls would perish between 541 and 542 of a strain of the plague where you might see your hands fall off, after rotting away, starting from the fingertips. The bacterium, however, was only the final blow. Space rocks and/or volcanoes, and more importantly: the resulting lack of incoming solar radiation was the real culprit.
For the next 200 years, a weakened Europe saw periodic outbreaks of this form of the plague take roughly the same number of lives again.
After slowly inching our way out of this climate chaos and its repercussions, over the course of the two disease-rich centuries that followed 535, having reduced Europe to a primitive state of precarious survivalism, with decimated populations, gradually, starting around the late-800’s, and lasting until the late-1200’s, we enjoyed a generally climatically calm and settled warm period – the last period in which there were many individuals who read the Bible and Qur’an in a non-literal, symbolic way:
THE MEDIEVAL WARM PERIOD
~900 to ~1300
“For (much less than) five centuries, Europe basked in warm, settled weather, with only the occasional bitter winters, cool summers and memorable storms. Summer after summer passed with long, dreamy days, golden sunlight, and bountiful harvests. Compared with what was to follow (and what preceded it), these centuries were a climatic golden age. Local food shortages were not unknown, life expectancy in rural communities was short, and the routine of backbreaking labour never ended. Nevertheless, crop failures were sufficiently rare that peasant and lord alike might piously believe that God was smiling upon them.”
“As the Medieval Warm Period dawned and the Vikings crossed to Greenland and North America, Europe was a patchwork of feudal states and warring lords, unified only by the Christian faith. King Charlemagne founded his Frankish empire in 800. The Holy Roman Empire came into being in 962 but offered little security. The Norsemen ravaged the northern coasts for more than two hundred years, then acquired a veneer of culture from the lands where they settled. Knut the Dane, or “Canute the Great” (1016-35), famous for his attempts to control the tides, presided over a North Sea empire that linked Britain and Denmark. William the Bastard, Duke of Normandy, conquered the kingdom of England in 1066. He parceled out his new domains among his Norman lords and created a feudal realm, a dense network of contractual relationships, which connected the highest to the lowest in the land. Not that the vagaries of the weather made William’s task easier. Persistent north-westerly winds delayed his Channel crossing until October. Furthermore, two centuries of warm conditions had caused significant sea-level rises. A shallow fjord extended deep into eastern England as far as Norwich. The low-lying English fenlands became a labyrinth of shallow channels and islands so difficult of access for an invader that the Anglo-Danish inhabitants of the city of Ely, led by Hereward the Wake, were able to hold off the Normans for a decade after 1066.”
“Despite wars, crusades, schism and other strife, the Medieval Warm Period was a bountiful time for Europe. Most years passed with good harvests and enough to eat. Average summer temperatures were between 0.7 and 1.0 degrees C above levels in the 1900’s. Central European summers were even warmer, as much as 1.4 degrees C higher than their modern averages. May frosts, always a hazard for heat-loving crops, were virtually unknown between 1100 and 1300. The summer months were consistently sufficiently warm and dry for vineyards to spread across southern and central England, as far north as Hereford and Welsh borders. Commercial vineyards flourished 300 to 500 kilometers north of their limits in the 1900’s. During the height of the Medieval Warm Period, so many lords quaffed prime English wines that the French tried to negotiate trade agreements to exclude them from the Continent.”
“Rural and urban populations rose sharply… … New villages sprang up on hitherto un-cleared lands. Thousands of hectares of woodland fell before farmers’ axes… … Warmer summers and mild winters allowed small communities to grow crops on marginal soils and at higher altitudes than ever before – 350 meters above sea level on hills of Dartmoor in south-western England, on the Pennine Moors in the northeast, where, in the 1200’s, shepherds complained about the encroaching cultivation of prized grazing range, and on the summits of south-eastern Scotland’s Lammermuir Hills, 320 meters above sea level. Today, neither Dartmoor nor the Pennine Moors support crops and the upper limit of cereal growth in the Lammermuirs is well below that of 1250. In 1300, one farm owned by Kelso Abbey in southern Scotland had over 100 hectares of land under cultivation, supported 1400 sheep and sixteen shepherds’ households – all at 300 meters above sea level, well above today’s limit. By the same year, thousands of farmers had settled on high ground and on marginal lands throughout England and Scotland, which placed them at risk of crop failure.“
“In Scandinavia, settlement, forest clearance, and farming spread 100 to 200 meters farther up valleys and hillsides in central Norway, from levels that had been static for more than 1000 years. What was grown around Trondheim and hardier grains such as oats as far north as Malagan, at latitude 62.5 degrees north. The height change hints at a rise in summer temperatures of about a degree centigrade, a similar increase to that across the North Sea in Scotland. Farming became considerably easier in the Scottish highlands as a result, as forests spread outward into hitherto treeless environments. Far to the south, in the Alps, tree levels rose sharply and farmers planted deeper and deeper into the mountains. During late prehistoric times, numerous copper mines had flourished in the Alps until advancing ice sealed them off. Late medieval miners reopened some of the workings when the ice retreated. Higher rainfall spread over much of southern Europe and the western Mediterranean. As a result, some Sicilian rivers were navigable in ways that would be impossible today. Medieval bridges, like the one in Palermo, still span them, but are far longer than now necessary, simply because the rivers were wider nine hundred years ago.”
1315 was the first step in blotting out the memory of the Medieval Warm Period, which had seen, in certain regions, a significant portion of Jewish, Muslim and Christian practitioners, interpreting Semitic Scripture in a non-literal way.
After 1315, especially once Andalusia (Moorish Spain) was kicked out, and the inquisition forced everybody, especially those with non-orthodox interpretations of Semitic Scripture, to convert or die; the complex symbolism underlying the texts was thereafter studied by very few, and only in secret.
As a society plummets into darkness, and things get desperate (space-rocks, earthquakes, volcanoes, too much solar activity, not enough solar activity, drought, floods, wind storms, erosion, crop failure, famine, cannibalism, pestilence, plague, refugees, piracy, war, etc…), there is less time or patience for the finer study of Semitic Scripture, in detail, and pondering its many layers of meaning. People are tired, hungry, and want easy answers, and the literal reading satisfies the soul so much more readily than boring mystical complicated tedious speculations about an alleged infinite universe, and the underlying symbolism of scripture, with intricate tapestries of interconnected symbols interwoven across books, which, on the surface, pretend to disagree between one another.
A regular peasant won’t have time to learn Aramaic, Ethiopic, Coptic, Nabatean, Arabic, Hebrew, and other Semitic languages, and compare their vocabularies in a systematic way, to discern fine layers of letter-play between the major works of Semitic Scripture. They might not even have had time to learn to read and write in their own native tongue! But, they would, nevertheless, yearn to understand what happened to all of their friends and family that perished from the plague, and why it happened, and what to make of a short life of 30-40 years, and maybe feel good once a week, in an awe-inspiring building with hypnotic music and hair-raising speeches, with a sense of larger purpose and hope for rewards to come.
The authors of Semitic Scripture understood that this recurs. Often.
These are robust texts, with a built-in survival mechanism.
They understood that, at times, the obviously symbolic texts will only be read literally.
They knew very well of the recurrence of serious floods and serious fires, and of their consequences.
So they hid the symbolic code in the letters of the same words that describe the surface fictional narrative.
Each letter in the common Semitic Alephbet represents a fundamental aspect of the infinite eternal universe.
Reverting back to a literal interpretation of scripture is a natural consequence of natural climate change, affecting the natural state of human affairs, naturally.
The authors understood that this will happen again and again. The key is that, if copied correctly, the original scripture can eventually, once the climate returns to amenable, and with civilization returning to a state where much spare time can be devoted to studying the finer details; the underlying symbolism can be appreciated, and the fictional literal reading can be put into context.
For this to work, the original books must absolutely be copied correctly, no matter how the translations may vary. So, it doesn’t matter if there are 37 different versions of the Qur’an in Pashto, but it does matter if the original Arabic source is messed with.
What is the purpose of all this, you might ask? Well, one reason is that wild zealotry will always flourish, at all times, even in good times, in all places, among all peoples, guaranteed, for sure, without doubt; and so to hypnotize the zealous, which are often in the majority, as is the case today, and so to hypnotize the “devout”, who often have crazy and wacky objectives for us all – they seduce billions of people to focus their wackiness on these specific books, drawing these types of souls in with outlandish tales of defying the laws of nature; then, during ages of prosperity, they can all be snapped out of hypnosis, and find that the stories they have devoted their hearts and minds to, represent in fact a very rational and logical view of an infinite eternal universe governed not only by physics and chemistry, but also by the souls of living entities, which are each animated by infinite living souls within, and affected by infinite living souls outside of them, and infinite living souls moving through them.
This exceptional period, the Medieval Warm Period, especially at its height between around 1120 to 1280, is the last vestige (in the written historical record), of a widely-understood non-literal reading of Semitic scripture. Before this, the Justinian plague wiped out much memory, and after this, the famine induced by the 1315+ rains, the plagues of 1347-1351, the inquisition, the criminal destruction of the 1000 Mayan Codices and other historical records in the Americas by the Spanish; and other calamities, both human-induced and natural, wiped out our memory even further.
If we are at all interested in ecological sustainability, and if we are at all concerned with fully addressing fundamentalism (wild zealotry), and if we are at all concerned about the survival and quality of life of our descendants, we would do well to study this little nugget of time. Not only does this period point to solving past riddles, but studying this period guides us to understanding what’s in store for our future. Even if it was only a small minority of educated literate practitioners during a small portion of this Medieval Warm Period, their works are essentially the only works that remain which clearly treat the Bible and Qur’an as precious fictional documents hiding symbols which represent fundamental things found in the cosmos.
Modern proud “educated” people look down upon the authors of the Bible and Qur’an, and ridicule those who today believe in their literal surface interpretation alone.
Modern proud “educated” people assume that the people who wrote the Bible and the Qur’an actually believed in physical talking snakes, actually believed in talking donkeys, actually believed in magic carpet rides, literal walking on water, actual turning water into wine, and eating from a literal “Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Bad”, and eating from an actual physical literal “Tree of Life”, in a geographical garden of “Delights”.
Modern proud “educated” people assume that the Bible and Qur'an are not worth reading because the authors didn’t understand natural law and didn’t understand that there is no such thing as a “Tree of Knowledge of Good and Bad” – that such things do not exist, therefore the texts are completely without value. Genius assumption!
Modern proud “educated” people never consider the possibility that things in the Bible and the Qur'an are symbols. They assume the authors were either trying to fool people or were themselves fools, and those are the only two possibilities.
Modern proud “educated” people refuse to investigate the Bible and the Qur'an. They allow themselves ignorance when it comes to these books, and don't bother to actually study the material for what it is. They show disrespect to those who read these texts literally and with zeal, without even having read the material, much less having contemplated on the symbolic meaning. They are therefore not following the scientific method in their blind dismissal of Semitic scripture. There is a difference between scepticism and science. A huge difference. Scepticism can in fact, as in this case, impede science.
The perfect analogy would be to imagine, two thousand years from now, some fundamentalist believers in the written scripture of The Lord of the Rings, with wild tales of feats contradicting natural law. Maybe they would have rituals like “the passing of the ring”, with elaborate ceremonies commemorating the success of their saviour, the great Frodo, and his disciples, Gandalf the resurrected one riding a gleaming white horse, the fat one always eating up all the provisions in secret, and the devious devil-traitor Schmeegle, who betrays him in the end. Maybe their churches are instead little hobbit huts, and instead of a choir, they have elves chanting Gaelic hymns. Maybe some of them infiltrate the history departments of universities of the 39th century, to promote a version of history identical to the histories recorded in the canonical 3 books, drawing upon the non-canonical works such as The Hobbit – the earliest witness to the main orthodox triplet of surviving manuscripts of The Lord of the Rings, the existing copies of which, in several different languages, have been pieced together in a composite manner, to arrive at the true historical record of our saviour, the great Frodo, and the exploits of Saint Samwise the Glutton of HobbitonShire.
Proud “educated” people, in the 41st century, might then look upon the writing of The Lord of the Rings, as an evil attempt to seduce impressionable minds that trees are able to walk and talk, having no symbolic value underlying the fictional narrative. The symbolism of the trees demolishing the factory, run by goblins that hacked down their friends in the forest, would likewise be completely lost on proud “educated” people. They would allow themselves to not even read the texts directly. They would literally allow themselves to be ignorant of the text of The Lord of the Rings. The text does not follow natural law, therefore the text has no value, therefore proud “educated” people wouldn’t need to study it, employing the rigours of investigation (expending effort), in order to understand it, in order to assess its true value, or to de-programme those who believe in it literally (which would be super-easy, because the symbolism is obvious).
Even with millions upon millions of “educated” people on earth today, there were more individuals during the height of the Medieval Warm Period enjoying and promoting a non-literal interpretation of Semitic scripture, than can be found in all of today’s religious followings, or spiritualist crystal-sniffing groups, or even in secular circles, or humanist and atheist circles, and especially in mainstream academia, or anywhere else! Mainstream history is in fact based on the Bible. It starts 6000 years ago, between the two rivers mentioned in the garden of Eden. Then, we are taught about how slaves build great works of stone in Egypt, which matches the very next book in the Bible, Exodus. We often hear about the “historical Jesus”, the “historical Muhammad”, etc… We present our children with movies with Charlton Heston playing Moses, physically parting waters, and Jesus-movies-of-the-week with a bearded cloaked dude actually literally walking on water. At the same time, when opening a textbook, we are told that kings Solomon and David were actual historical figures, based on actual archaeological finds; while many publicly-funded universities have theology departments, and history departments staffed with devout religious professors, who do not question the historicity of Semitic scripture at all, in fact, it is the basis – the framework of their curricula!
We should therefore respect the authors of the Medieval Warm Period, who demonstrated better sense than millions of proud ostensibly educated people today. Let us take a glimpse, with deep admiration, at the writings of the Medieval Warm Period, the the last time anybody knew anything worth knowing about the Bible or the Qur’an:
"Jewish Sufi manuscripts discovered during the late 1800’s in the Cairo Genizah (a hidden attic in an ancient Synagogue) have shed great light on the close relationship between Jewish and Muslim mystics of medieval times. From the 1000’s to the 1300’s, Jewish mystics translated and freely quoted from Sufi mystical writing, and some pursued the spiritual path under the guidance of Sufi masters. Similarly, during almost the same period, Jewish mystics in Persia and Turkey shared a devotional spirit with the Muslim mystics of their time. Many read Hebrew translations of the works of Rumi and Sa'adi. “
“The Jewish mystics in the Sufi tradition were sometimes called hasidim ("devotees", "pious ones"). Although this movement, and the Hasidei Ashkenaz movement which arose in Germany during the 1200’s, were not connected historically with what later became known as Hasidism – the ecstatic religious movement which began in the 1700’s in Poland – they foreshadowed many of its elements..."
"... Maimonide's son Abraham and grandson Obaydyah were mystics in the Sufi tradition."
The Holy Name
Miriam Bokser Caravella
(publisher: Radha Soami Satsang Beas)
pages 13, 14
The literature of the Sufis is of very much the same style as the Kabbalistic literature:
“Instead of marginal comments alongside the Qur’an or full treatises in which substantial Qur’anic passages are cited in full and discussed, the commentaries of early Sufis have come down to us in the form of discussions instigated by the mention of a key Qur’anic word that can then suddenly jump to a new Qur’anic term and a new discussion.”
Early Islamic Mysticism
Micheal A. Sells
New York/Mahwah 1996
The Talmud is a record of various rabbinic discussions which outline and explore Jewish civil and religious laws and also provides commentary on the Hebrew scriptures. It was compiled between the 100’s and 400’s (AD).
'Kabbalah' was not the only term used in Jewish literature to denote a sort of esoteric understanding of scripture:
“The Talmud speaks of sitrei torah and razei torah (“secrets of the Torah”)”
“In the mystical literature from the close of the Talmudic period and afterward, the terms ba’alei ha-sod (“masters of the mystery”) and anshei emunah (“men of belief”) already occur.”
“In the period of the Provencal [French] and Spanish Kabbalists the Kabbalah is also called hokhmah penimit (“inner wisdom”), …… and the Kabbalists are often called maskilim (“the understanding ones”), with reference to Daniel 12:10, or doreshei reshumot (“those who interpret texts”), a Talmudic expression for allegorists.”
“From the beginning of the 1300’s the name Kabbalah almost completely superseded all other designations.”
Gershom Gerhard Scholem
New York Quadrangle / New York Times Book Co
The Torah is likened to a nut by some Kabbalists. Just as a nut has an outer shell and an inner kernel, so too does the Torah. Moses de Leon(1240 – 1305) used the acronym PaRDeS to denote four levels of meaning in the Torah:
“…P stands for peshat, the literal meaning, R for remez, the allegorical meaning, D for derasha, the Talmudic and Aggadic interpretation, S for sod, the mystical meaning.”
On The Kabbalah And Its Symbolism
Gershom Gerhard Scholem
New York 1969
“Every letter and every word in every section of the Torah have a deep root in wisdom and contain a mystery from among the mysteries of understanding, the depths of which we cannot penetrate…”
Abraham bar Hiyya (1065 – 1136 AD)
Quoted from within: On The Kabbalah And Its Symbolism
Gershom Gerhard Scholem
Shocken books – New York
which took it from:
‘Megillath ha-Megalle, Berlin, 1924 page 75.’
“Just as in the body of a man there are limbs and joints, just as some organs of the body are more, others less, vital, so it seems to be with the Torah. To one who does not understand their hidden meaning, certain sections and verses of the Torah seem fit to be thrown into the fire; but to one who has gained insight into their true meaning they seem essential components of the Torah. Consequently, to omit so much as one letter or point from the Torah is like removing some part of a perfect edifice. Thence it also follows that in respect of its divine character no essential distinction can be drawn between the section of Genesis 36, setting forth the generations of Esau [a seemingly superfluous passage], and the Ten Commandments, for it is all one whole and one edifice.”
Rabbi Azriel of Gerona (1160 – 1238 AD)
Quoted from within: On The Kabbalah And Its Symbolism
Gershom Gerhard Scholem
Shocken books – New York
who cites it only as a quote within:
by Azriel of Gerona page 37.
Azriel of Gerona: in his Kabbalistic commentary on the Talmudic Aggadah.
In a separate footnote, Perush Aggadoth is cited as: ed. Tishby.
“Alas for the man who regards the Torah as a book of mere tales and [everyday] matters. If this were so, we might even today write a Torah dealing in [everyday affairs] and still more excellent. In regard to earthly things, the kings and princes of the world possess more valuable materials. We could use them as a model for composing a Torah of this kind. But in reality the words of the Torah are higher words and higher mysteries…
…When fools see a man in a garment that seems beautiful to them, they do not look more closely. But more important than the garment is the body, and more important than the body is the soul. So likewise the Torah has a body, which consists of the commandments and ordinances of the Torah, which are called gufe torah, (“bodies of the Torah”). This body is cloaked in garments, which consist of worldly stories. Fools see only the garment, which is the narrative part of the Torah; they know no more and fail to see what is under the garment. Those who know more see not only the garment but also the body that is under the garment. But the truly wise, the servants of the Supreme King, those who stood at the foot of Mount Sinai, [penetrate right through to the] soul, which is the true foundation of the entire Torah…
…Wine cannot be kept save in a jar; so the Torah needs an outer garment. These are the stories and narratives, but it behoves us to penetrate beneath them.”
Rabbi Simeon in the Zohar – III 152a
This is a synthesis of the translations found in:
The Zohar translated by Harry Sperling, Maurice Simon and Dr. Paul Levertoff
The Soncino Press 1949 – volume 5 page 211;
and: On The Kabbalah And Its Symbolism
Gershom Gerhard Scholem
Shocken books – New York 1969
The first two paragraphs follow On The Kabbalah And Its Symbolism with the exceptions enclosed in brackets which follow The Zohar(Soncino Press), and the third paragraph is taken entirely from The Zohar(Soncino Press) seeing as it is not found in On The Kabbalah And Its Symbolism.
The dating of the Zohar is a subject of contention, but, the earliest copies date to the Medieval Warm Period.
“Verily the Torah lets out a word and emerges a little from her sheath, and then hides herself again. But she does this only for those who know and obey her. For the Torah resembles a beautiful and stately damsel, who is hidden in a secluded chamber of her palace and who has a secret lover, unknown to all others. For love of her he keeps passing the gate of her house, looking this way and that in search of her. She knows that her lover haunts the gate of her house. What does she do? She opens the door of her hidden chamber ever so little, and for a moment reveals her face to her lover, but hides it again forthwith. Were anyone with her lover, he would see nothing and perceive nothing. He alone sees it and he is drawn to her with his heart and soul and his whole being, and he knows that for love of him she disclosed herself to him for one moment, aflame with love for him. So is it with the Torah, which reveals herself only to those who love her. The Torah knows that the mystic [hakim libba, literally, the wise of heart] haunts the gate of her house. What does she do? From within her hidden palace she discloses her face and beckons to him and returns forthwith to her place and hides. Those who are there see nothing and know nothing, only he alone, and he is drawn to her with his heart and soul and his whole being. Thus the Torah reveals herself and hides, and goes out in love to her lover and arouses love in him. Come and see: this is the way of the Torah. At first, when she wishes to reveal herself to a man, she gives him a momentary sign. If he understands, well and good; if not, she sends to him and calls him a simpleton. To the messenger she sends to him the Torah says: tell the simpleton to come here that I may speak to him. As it is written [Prov. 9:47]: ‘Whoso is simple, let him turn in hither, she saith to him that wanteth understanding.’ When he comes to her, she begins from behind a curtain to speak words in keeping with his understanding, until very slowly insight comes to him, and this is called derashah.[derashah means here the mode of interpretation practiced by the Talmudists, by which they derived the exoteric oral doctrine from the words of Scripture in accordance with certain fixed norms] Then through a light veil she speaks allegorical words [millin de hida] and that is what is meant by haggadah. Only then, when he has become familiar with her, does she reveal herself to him face to face and speak to him of all her hidden secrets and all her hidden ways, which have been in her heart from the beginning. Such a man is then termed perfect, a ‘master’, that is to say, a ‘bridegroom of the Torah’ in the strictest sense, the master of the house, to whom she discloses all her secrets, concealing nothing. She says to him: do you see now how many mysteries were contained in that sign I gave you on the first day, and what its true meaning is? Then he understands that to those words indeed nothing may be added and nothing taken away. And then for the first time he understands the true meaning of the words of the Torah, as they stand there, those words to which not a syllable or a letter may be added and from which none may be taken away. And therefore men should take care to pursue the Torah [that is, study it with great precision], in order to become her lovers as has been related.”
Zohar, II, 99a-b
Quoted from within:
On The Kabbalah And Its Symbolism
Gershom Gerhard Scholem
Shocken books – New York 1969
Abū Ḥāmid Muḥammad ibn Muḥammad al-Ghazālī (‘Ghazali’, or ‘Algazel’ for short), (1058-1111), was one of the most celebrated scholars in the history of Sufi Islamic thought. Although he doesn’t specifically explain that the letters are imbued with meaning, he wrote at length about the hidden meaning of the Qur’an. It might be that the reason he doesn’t explain the symbolism of the letters in his writings is because of his contention that the esoteric meanings should not be divulged to the common man.
The Heritage of Sufism
Edited by Leonard Lewison 1999
pages 255, 256
“ ‘Ali said, “If I wished I could load seventy camels with the [interpretation] of the opening Surah of the Koran.” What is the meaning of this, when the [outward – surface] interpretation [of this surah] is extremely short? Abu al-Darda’ said, “A man does not understand until he attributes [different] perspectives to the Koran.” A certain scholar said, “For every verse there are sixty thousand understandings, and what remains to be understood is even more.” Others have said, “The Koran contains seventy-seven thousand two hundred sciences, for every word [in it] is a science, and then that [number] can be quadrupled, since every word has an outward aspect, an inward aspect, an end and a beginning.”
"The Prophet’s repetition of [the phrase] “In the name of God, the merciful, the compassionate” twenty times was only for the purpose of pondering its [inner] meanings. Otherwise its explanation and [interpretation] are so obvious that someone like him would not need to repeat it. Ibn Mas’ud said, “He who desires the knowledge of the ancients and the moderns should ponder the Koran,” and that is not something that can be attained merely by its [outward – surface] interpretation.”
“The rejection of [outward – surface] meanings is the opinion of the Batiniyya, who, being one-eyed, looked only at one of the two worlds and did not recognize the correspondence between the two and did not understand its significance. Similarly, the rejection of the [inner] meanings is the position of the Hashwiyya. Whoever takes only the outward meaning is a Hashwi, and whoever takes only the inward meaning is a Batini, but whoever combines the two of them is perfect. For this reason the Prophet said, “The Koran has an outward aspect, an inward aspect, an ending, and a beginning.”
"One should not neglect the learning of outward [interpretation] first for there is no hope of reaching the inward aspect before having mastered the outward. One who claims to understand the secrets of the Koran without having mastered its outward [interpretation], is like a man who claims to have reached the main room of a house without having passed through the door…”
Quoted from within: The Heritage of Sufism
Edited by Leonard Lewison 1999
pages 238, 239, 250, 251, 252
One fascinating mystery of the Qur’an is that at the head of 29 suras (chapters) are individual letters. For example, at the head of sura 2, there is written: ALEF, LAMED, MEM: q d f And that’s it. No explanation. Just seemingly random individual letters.
“Throughout the ages, scholars both Muslim and European, have pondered and wrestled with these mysterious letters, advancing a great number of theories, sometimes fanciful and far-fetched, to explain their origin and meaning.”
Quran And Bible
M.S. Seale 1978
In the Naqshbandiyya-Mujaddiya order of the Sufis, there are a series of contemplative practices, one of which is the Contemplation of the Reality of the Qur'an:
“When an adept attains this stage, he receives the blessings, and perceives the light of the Eternal Speech of God and learns its arcane secret. He finds that every word of the Koran is expressive, significant and pregnant with meaning.
… At this stage, the meaning of the abbreviated letters [chapter-heading letters] of the Koran is revealed, but this cannot be expressed in words.”
Contemplative disciplines in Sufism
Dr. Mir Valiuddin
East-West publications (UK) Ltd. 1980
The core of Sufism arose during the medieval warm period, crystalized during the medieval warm period, and most authors worth mentioning lived during the medieval warm period.
I think it is very telling that the Qur’an was popularized just before the medieval warm period, and then this was immediately followed by a period with large numbers of individuals interpreting the Qur’an in a non-literal fashion.
The Sufis, however, are not the only Islamic tradition that sees meaning in the words and individual letters of the Qur'an, the Isma’ilis also held similar beliefs:
“[In an] early Isma’ili text: the second treatise of the Kitab al-kashf, which the Isma’ili tradition attributes to Ja’far b. Mansur al-Yaman, … … the Arabic alphabet, which consists of twenty-eight consonant signs, is divided into four groups of seven letters each, and thus into four heptads, from the combinations of which all words – and with them the very things they signify – come into being.”
Mediaeval Isma’ili History and Thought
Edited by Farhad Daftary
New York, N.Y. : Cambridge University Press, 1996
The source is cited within this book as:
Ja’far b. Mansur al-Yaman, Kitab al-Kashf, ed. R Strothmann (London, etc., 1952)
pp 48 ff.;
ed. M. Ghalib (Beirut, 1984)
pp. 54 ff.
Isma’ilism was born at the dawn of the medieval warm period.
The earliest known Isma’ili cosmology describes individual letters in the process of creation:
“Then God breathed into it a spirit and directed at it a voice: “Be!” (kun), thus it came into being with God’s permission. All things were made by God through creating them (mubda ‘atan) from the letters kaf and nun [KAF and NOON] [making the word kun. … Then through the waw [VAWV] and ya’ [YUHD], which became a name for what is above it, calling it therefore kuni. ”
Studies in Early Isma’ilism
S. M. (Samuel Miklos) Stern
Jerusalem Magnes Press, Hebrew University ; Leiden
E.J. Brill, 1983
“Certain esoteric schools of Islamic thought, such as the Isma’ili Shi’is, developed teachings about the letters of the alphabet to represent the human form and face. Entire portraits were created using only the names Allah, Muhammad, and ‘Ali. Sufi-influenced groups – such as the Bektashi order in Ottoman lands, the Hurufi (“letter”) sect, and the Nuqtawi (“dot”) school – employed letter-symbolism and diagrams to convey their teachings; their elaborate metaphysical speculations on the cosmic significance of the letters were frequently combined with messianic activism. Quasi-magical treatments of the Arabic alphabet associated with the circle of the sixth Shi’i Imam, Ja’far al-Sadiq, were elaborated in connection with the occult sciences…”
“… In terms of discipline, the most important class of Sufi practices involving the word was the recitation of divine names as a kind of meditation [dikr, pronounced zikr by non-Arabs]. The movement towards interiorization of the Qur’an that was so decisive for the development of Sufism lent itself especially to the practice of meditation in which the [ninety nine] names of God are chanted over and over again, either in solitude or in company, aloud or silently.”
The Shambala Guide to Sufism
Carl W. Ernst
Shambala – Boston & London 1997
pages 91, 92
The most widely used dhikr of all was the name Allah. Here is how it is carried out in the Chishtiyya order of the Sufis:
“… the seeker retires into a secluded place and contemplates that the word Allah is written on his heart in golden letters and that he is reading it with zest and fervour, and that he is in the presence of Allah. He should be engrossed enough in these thoughts as to lose awareness of his own individual being.”
“At the beginning of this contemplation, the heart is filled with the resplendent light of the golden letters of Allah; then gradually the Alif [ALEF] (of Allah) disappears from sight and only a ring of light remains. This ring gradually assumes the form of a big circle, and in this circle many unseen worlds will be seen. The seeker should not pay attention to them and be lost in this spiritual exhibition. All this will result in complete absorption and the state of fana or ‘total effacement’ will follow. The seeker attains the rank of persons who have attained total annihilation in God (fana-fi-Allah).”
Contemplative disciplines in Sufism
Dr. Mir Valiuddin
East-West publications (UK) Ltd. 1980
The Chishtiyya order of the Sufis was established at the beginning of the Medieval Warm Period, in 930.
In the Qadiriyya order of the Sufis, it is written concerning the use of Allah as a dhikr:
“Allah, Allah is the name of the pure Essence of the Friend.
This great name is meant for attaining His proximity.
Allah, Allah, what good taste this name reveals,
Every letter of this word intoxicates life with the wine of love.”
Contemplative disciplines in Sufism
Dr. Mir Valiuddin
East-West publications (UK) Ltd. 1980
The Qadiriyya order of the Sufis was established near the peak of the Medieval Warm Period, in the 1100’s.
Mawlānā Jalāl ad-Dīn Muhammad Balkhī (or ‘Rumi’ for short), (1207-1273):
“Do not apply musk to the body, rub it on the heart. What is musk? The sacred name of him who is full of majesty.”
Contemplative disciplines in Sufism
Dr. Mir Valiuddin
East-West publications (UK) Ltd. 1980
Abū abd-Allah Muhammad ibn-Ali ibn Muhammad ibn al-`Arabi al-Hatimi al-TTaa'i (or ‘Ibn Arabi’ for short), (1165-1240):
“One night (in a vision) I saw myself conjoined with all the stars of the heaven, being united to each one with a great spiritual joy. After I had become joined with the stars I was given the letters (of the alphabet) in spiritual marriage. I told this vision of mine to one who would take it to a man versed in visionary lore, bidding him conceal my name. When he related my vision to the man, he said: “This is a measureless ocean and the one who has seen the vision shall have revealed to him knowledge of the highest things, of mysteries, of the properties of the stars, such as will be shared by no one in his time.” ”
Sufis of Andalusia
The Ruh al-quds and al-Durrat al-fakhirah of Ibn ‘Arabi
Translated by R.W.J. Austin
School of Oriental Studies, University of Durham
In a biographical sketch of Ibn ‘Ababi’s life, before the main translation
Beshara publications 2002
Now, if we return to the Kabbalists, we find much of the same sort of passages:
“Prepare to meet your God. Prepare to devote your heart. Purify your body and select a special place where no one in the world can hear your voice. Be totally alone. Sit in one spot in the room or the loft, and do not reveal your secret to anyone. If you can, do this by day, even for a little while, but the best way is to do it at night. As you prepare to speak with your Creator, to seek the revelation of his power, be careful to empty your mind of all mundane vanities. Wrap yourself in your tallit and put your tefillin on your head and your hand so that you will be filled with the awe of Shekhinah, who is with you at this moment. Wear clean garments, all white if you can. All this helps immensely in focusing your awe and love. If it is night, light many candles, until your eyes shine brightly.”
“Then take hold of ink, pen and tablet. Realize that you are about to serve your God in joy. Begin to combine letters, a few or many, permuting and revolving them rapidly until your mind warms up. Delight in how they move and in what you generate by revolving them. When you feel within that your mind is very, very warm from combining the letters, and that through the combinations you understand new things that you have not attained by human tradition nor discovered on your own through mental reflection, then you are ready to receive the abundant flow, and the abundance flows upon you, arousing you again and again.”
“Now turn your thoughts to visualizing the Name and its supernal angels, imagining them as if they were human beings standing or sitting around you, with you in the middle like a messenger about to be sent on a royal mission, waiting to hear about it from their lips, either from the king himself or from one of his ministers. Having imagined this vividly, prepare your mind and heart to understand the many things about to be conveyed to you by the letters being contemplated within you. Meditate on them as a whole and in all their detail, like one to whom a parable, a riddle, or a dream is being told, or like one perusing a book of wisdom, pondering a passage beyond his grasp. Interpret what you hear in an uplifting manner, approximating it as best you can. Based on what you understand of it, evaluate yourself and others. All this will happen after you fling the tablet from your hands and the pen from your fingers, or after they fall by themselves due to the intensity of your thoughts.”
Abraham Abulafia (1200’s)
Quoted from within: The Essential Kabbalah
Daniel C. Matt
The quote is cited as being from:
“Abraham Abulafia (thirteenth century),
Hayyei ha-Olam ha-Ba,
in Adolph Jellinek, Philosophie und Kabbala, Erstes Heft
(Leipzig: Heinrich Hunger, 1854)
Ha-Qabbalah shel Sefer ha-Temunah ve-shel Avraham Abulafia
(Jerusalem: Akademon, 1969)
Scholem, Major Trends in Jewish Mysticism, 136-137.
“…place in front of the eyes of your mind the letters of God’s name, as if they were written in a book in Hebrew script. Visualize every letter extending to infinity. What I mean is: when you visualize the letters focus on them with your mind’s eye as you contemplate infinity. Both together: gazing and meditating.”
Isaac of Akko (1200’s-1300’s)
Quoted from within: The Essential Kabbalah
Daniel C. Matt
The quote is cited as being from:
“Isaac of Akko (thirteenth-fourteenth centuries)
see Gottlieb, Mehqarim be-Sifrut ha-Qabbalah, 235-
This proliferation of a non-literal approach to Semitic scripture, with references to symbolic meaning invested in the individual letters, may seem strange to see in prominence. Many Kabbalists did not call themselves “Kabbalists”. Many simply called themselves “Rabbis”.
Before the events of 535, there was a similar trend, but with even stranger and more quirky and colourful views of Semitic scripture. There were at least 4 distinct forms of early Christianity. For example, the Marcionites promoted a ‘docetic’ view of Christ (not a flesh and bone being):
The phenomenon of Jesus, his historical and bodily existence, and above all the human form of Jesus, was mere semblance without any true reality. Broadly it is taken as the belief that Jesus only seemed to be human, and that his human form was an illusion.
At around the 100’s, we see strange Gospels, which are no longer included in our regular accepted canonical orthodox Bible. For good reason. Can you imagine a priest standing up to deliver Sunday morning’s sermon, and having to field questions from puzzled little-old-lady-churchgoers, after reading from The Infancy Gospel of Thomas:
The narrative opens with the young Jesus playing by the ford of a stream. Taking some clay, he models twelve sparrows. But, we are told, it was a Sabbath when he did this. A Jewish man passing by sees what Jesus has done and hurries off to tell his father, Joseph, that his son has profaned the Sabbath (by “making” things). Joseph comes and upbraids Jesus for violating the Law. Instead of apologizing or repenting for a sin, Jesus claps his hands and cries to the sparrows: “Be gone!” They immediately come to life and fly off chirping.
This opening story is indicative of much to come in the narrative. Jesus cannot be faulted for breaking the Sabbath (he has effectively destroyed all evidence of malfeasance!), and already as a young child he is seen as the author of life, not bound to human rules and regulations.
One might have expected that with such supernatural powers, Jesus would have been a useful and entertaining playmate for the other kids in town. As it turns out, however, the boy has a temper and is not to be crossed. When another child accidentally runs into him on the street, Jesus turns in anger and declares, “You shall go no further on your way.” The child falls down dead. Jesus later raises him from the dead, along with others that he cursed on one occasion or another.
And Jesus’ wrath is not reserved for other children. Joseph sends him to school to learn to read, but Jesus refuses to recite the Greek alphabet. His teacher pleads with him to cooperate, until Jesus replies with a scornful challenge: “If you really are a teacher and know the letters well, tell me the power of Alpha and I’ll tell you the power of Beta.” More than a little perturbed, the teacher cuffs the boy on the head, the single largest mistake of an illustrious teaching career. Jesus withers him on the spot. Joseph is stricken with grief and gives an urgent order to his mother: “Do not let him go outside. Anyone who makes him angry dies.”
As time goes on, however, Jesus begins using his powers for good – saving his brother from a deadly snake bite, healing the sick, and proving remarkably handy around the house: When Joseph miscuts a board and is in danger of losing an important customer, Jesus performs a miracle to correct the mistake. The account concludes with Jesus as a twelve-year-old in the Temple, surrounded by scribes and Pharisees who hear him teach and who bless Mary for the wonderful child she has brought into the world.
It is interesting that our modern King James bible has no mention of Jesus forming clay birds and breathing life into them, but the Qur’an does, in Sura 3, verse 49, and Sura 5, verse 110.
It should be obvious, from this and many other points of logic, that the Qur’an was not written in isolation, and is very much an integral part of a single piece of composition – a single cohesive contiguous storyline – the unified group of Semitic scriptural works, written in harmony and for combined effect.
This period, before the events of 535, saw the compilation of the Talmud, with little nuggets like these, which allude to letter-symbolism within the Old Testament:
"A scribe must provide a distinguishing mark for the section beginning "And it came to pass when the ark set forward" both at its beginning and at its end, because it is a book on its own."
Talmud: tractate Soferim 6:1
"The HAY (t) of Ha-Adonai (t-qrga) must be longer than any other HAY, because it is a word on its own."
Talmud: tractate Soferim 9:6
"… Bezalel knew how to combine the letters by which the heavens and the earth were created."
Talmud: tractate Berakoth 55a
In the Talmud were various guidelines concerning the copying of manuscripts. There were guidelines for the preparation of the skin of the parchments, the preparation of the ink, the repairing and discarding of scrolls, the proper handling of scrolls, the use of foodstuffs when dealing with scrolls, the qualifications of the scribes, etc… But the guidelines which most concern us here are these:
· The words written could not be duplicated from memory but had to be reproduced from an authentic copy that the scribe had before him.
· The scribe had to say each word aloud as he wrote it.
· Letters and words had to be spaced at a certain distance. No word could touch another and no letter could touch another.
· Each scroll had to be checked within thirty days of its writing or it was condemned.
· If a sheet of parchment had one mistake on it, the sheet was condemned.
· If there were three mistakes found on any page, the whole manuscript was condemned.
· Every word and every letter in a completed scroll was meticulously counted. If a letter or word was omitted, the manuscript was condemned.
This list is a reduced version of the one found all over the web.
I have often come across this list, but I could only verify a portion of it.
The Talmud is huge and I’ve searched what few tractates I thought might provide the direct quotes.
I could only find a few of the items in tractate Sefer ha-Torah, chapter 2, rules 1 & 2
chapter 3, rules 4 & 5
tractate Soferim chapter 3 rules 7, 8 & 9
chapter 5, rules 6, 10 & 11
and tractate Kiddushin 30a
From this same period, we find a strange, short and very cryptic book, the Sepher Yetzira:
"He hath formed, weighed, transmuted, composed, and created with these twenty-two letters every living being, and every soul yet uncreated… …For He indeed showed the mode of combination of the letters, each with each, Aleph with all, and all with Aleph. Thus in combining all together in pairs are produced these two hundred and thirty-one gates of knowledge."
The dating of the Sepher Yetsira is not established
It could be from the Talmudic period, between the 100’s to 400’s AD
Around 600 BC:
“At the head of the Egyptian delta, where the river Nile divides, there is a certain district called the district of Sais, and the great city of this district is also called Sais, and is the city from which sprang Amasis the king. And the citizens have a deity who is their foundress and she is called in the Egyptian tongue Neith, which is asserted by them to be the same who the Greeks called Athene.
Now, the citizens of this city are great lovers of the Athenians, and say that they are in some way related to them.
Thither came Solon [the Greek], who was received by them with great honour; and he asked the priests, who were most skilful in such matters, about antiquity, and made the discovery that neither he nor any other Greek knew anything worth mentioning about the times of old.
And wishing to lead them on to talk about early times, he embarked on an account of the earliest events known here [in Greece] telling them about Phoroneus, said to be the first man, and Niobe, and how Deucallion and Pyrrha survived the flood, and he traced the genealogy of their descendants, and attempted to reckon how many years old were the events of which he was speaking, and to give the dates.
Thereupon, one of the priests, who was of very great age, said: ‘O Solon, Solon. You Greeks are but children. There’s no such thing as an old Greek.’
Solon, hearing this, said, ‘What do you mean?’
‘I mean to say, that in mind you are all young. There is no old opinion handed down among you by ancient tradition, nor any science which is hoary with age. And the reason is this: There have been, and there will be again, many different calamities to destroy mankind, the greatest of them by fire and water, lesser ones by countless other means.
Your own story of Phaethon, child of Helios [which personifies the sun], who harnessed his father’s chariot, but was unable to guide it along his father’s course and so burnt up things on earth and was himself destroyed by a thunderbolt, is a mythical version of the truth that there is at long intervals a variation in the course of the heavenly bodies and a consequent widespread destruction by fire of things on the earth.
When this happens, those who live in the mountains or in high and dry places suffer more than those living by rivers or by the sea. As for us, the Nile, our own regular saviour, is freed to preserve us in this emergency.
When, on the other hand, the gods purge the earth with a deluge of water, the herdsmen and shepherds in the mountains escape, but those of you who live in cities are swept by the waters into the sea. But here [in Egypt] water never falls on land from above either then or at any other time, but rises up naturally from below.
This is the reason why our traditions here are the oldest preserved, though it is true that in all places, [including Egypt], human beings are always increasing or decreasing in number – except in places where it is excessively cold or excessively hot [without any populations at all].
In our temples we have preserved from earliest times a written record of any great or splendid achievement or notable event which has come to our ears whether it occurred in your part of the world, here, or anywhere else. Whereas with you and other nations, having just provided yourselves with letters and other necessities of civilization; when the stream from heaven descends like a pestilence, it leaves only those of you who are destitute of letters and education; and thus you have to begin all over again as children.”
From Plato’s Timaeus
Plato specifies that the date given to Solon, by the Egyptian priests, of the major deluge, which saw Atlantis struck by earthquake and inundation, as 9600 BC, so 11,600 years ago. This is the precise geologically accurate date of the end of the last great ice age. This date is the most significant date, geologically speaking, in the last few tens of thousands of years, that can now be seen in the ice cores, and represents a severe and sudden rise in temperature, to the tune of 8-10 degrees centigrade, with sea levels rising.
For a fairy tale, this is a very magical coincidence!
According to mainstream understanding, 9500 BC is when agriculture officially “started” in the alleged “cradle of civilization”. Before this: no agriculture – at all – ever.
From around 9500 BC, the eight Neolithic founder crops: emmer wheat, einkorn wheat, hulled barley, peas, lentils, bitter vetch, chick peas, and flax - were cultivated in the Levant.
When myths, from across the world, on separate continents, describe fiery chariots, earthquakes and a global flood, long ago, with survivors finding refuge on mountaintops, with Solon’s Atlantis “myth” specifically giving a date of 9600 BC, it is entirely ridiculous for us to assume that the topsoil at the alleged “invention” of agriculture was above layers of soil that would have preserved evidence of agriculture prior to 9500 BC!
In other words: when an ancient “myth” says that another ancient “myth” – the one of Phaethon, “son” of the Sun, losing control of the Sun’s chariot, is actually not a myth but a “fictional version of the truth”, specifying that at precisely 9600 BC there was a huge flood washing away the surface of the earth clean, and people had to start over again with things like agriculture, it is strongly dismissed as silly fairy tales, and labeled, to this day, “pseudo-history”. At the same time, we are force-fed the absolute assertion that there cannot possibly have been agriculture before 9500 BC, and before that, we were only hunter gatherers eating bitter berries and chasing after game with stone spears, because there is no evidence of these crops in the soil strata before this time period!
Lucky somebody saved some seeds!
If the precise dates provided by Plato, matching the precise ice-core data, marking the precise end of the last great ice age, along with the logic of this argument, are not absolutely entirely obvious and fully convincing to you, the reader; Plato himself described this process, during many more floods since the mega-flood of 9600 BC, as clearly washing away the top-soil (at least around Athens), in his description of antediluvian Athens, before 9600 B.C. :
“And the soil was more fertile than that of any other country and so could maintain a large army exempt from the calls of agricultural labour. As evidence of this fertility we can point to the fact that the remnant of it still left is a match for any soil in the world for the variety of its harvests and pasture. And in those days quantity matched quality.”
“What proof then, can we offer that it is fair to call it now a mere remnant of what it once was? It runs out like a long peninsula from the mainland to the sea, and the sea basin round it is very deep. So the result of the many great floods that have taken place in the last nine thousand years (the time that has elapsed since then) is that the soil, washed away from the high land in these periodic catastrophes, forms no alluvial deposit of consequence as in other places, but is carried out and lost in the deeps.”
“You are left (as with little islands) with something like the skeleton of a body wasted from disease; the rich, soft soil has all run away, leaving the land nothing but skin and bone. But in those days, the damage had not yet taken place, the hills had high crests, the rocky plain of Phelleus was covered with rich soil, and the mountains were covered by thick woods, of which there are some traces today.”
From Plato’s Critias
In the Colorado and Utah area, there is a native people called the Utes (pronounced “Yutes”), which gave us the word “Utah”.
Once upon a time, the Hair-God was sitting with his family by the campfire in the woods, anxiously awaiting the return of the Wayward-Sun-God. Wearied with long watching, the Hair-God fell asleep, and the Wayward-Sun-God came so near, that he scorched the naked shoulder of the Hair-God. Foreseeing the vengeance which would thus be wrought, he fled back to his cave beneath the earth. The Hair-God awoke in great anger and speedily determined to go fight the Wayward-Sun-God.
After a long journey, with many adventures, the Hair-God came to the brink of the earth, and there watched long and patiently, until at last, the Wayward-Sun-God, coming out, the Hair-God shot an arrow at his face, but the fierce heat consumed the arrow, before it had finished its intended course. Then another arrow was thrown, but it was also consumed. And another. And still another, until a single arrow remained in his quiver, and this was a magical arrow, that had never missed its mark. The Hair-God, holding it in his hand, lifted the arrow-tip to his eye, and immersed it in a divine tear. Then the arrow was sped and struck the Wayward-Sun-God full in the face, and the Wayward-Sun-God was severed into a thousand fragments, which fell to the earth, causing a great conflagration.
Then the Hair-God, fled from the destruction he had wrought. As he fled, the burning earth consumed his feet, consumed his legs, consumed his body, consumed his hands and his arms, all were consumed save his head, which bowled across all of the valleys and the mountains, fleeing this destruction of the burning earth. Until, at last, swollen with heat, the eyes of the Hair-God burst and the tears gushed forth in a flood, which spread over the earth and extinguished the fire. The Wayward-Sun-God was now conquered, and he appeared before the council of the gods to await sentence. In that long council, were established the days and the nights, the seasons and the years, and the length thereof. And the Sun-God was condemned to travel across the firmament by the same trail, day after day, until the end of time.
Ancient depictions and characterisations of space-rocks and coronal mass ejections, (events which are way more common than is assumed or even postulated or even imagined these days), are never depictions of smiling happy faces bringing gifts and good cheer and spectacular wonders for us to sit back and marvel at, like a free fireworks display. Many ancient peoples knew very well, that these are menacing “fire-breathing dragons”, harbingers of serious doom, and should be feared.
I have very fond memories, as a child, of the Chinese new-year celebrations. It made an impression on me, because, as a small child, it was clear that this dragon was not a friendly character. Firecrackers are used to freak the crowd out. The dragon doesn’t just happily come to greet the spectators – it menaces them – it is up in your face. It is obviously a message, meant to strike fear into your heart, which left a mark on the human story and the human psyche, at its very core.
We would do well to pay attention to ancient traditions, around the world.
We are told that ancient mythology is just that: “myth” (invented fantasy), and does not follow any sort of common sense or rationality, and has no historical value, other than giving a sense of the mindset of folks at the time – primitive “god”-worshiping morons.
At the very same time, we are force-fed truly outlandish fairy-tales and myths, far more ridiculous, daily, in school and on TV:
· We find ourselves in the middle layer of a big universal sandwich, where we are able to view the top-most and bottom-most structures in the universe, from our vantage point in the middle, with the instruments we have at our disposal today.
· There could be parallel universes, or multiple universes.
· Our common sense, which tells us that there are only 3 “dimensions”, is completely false, and we should not trust our rational mind when we are told to add time as a physical dimension, in a universe which can also have 1-dimensional things, and 12-dimensional things.
· If there is a cat in a box, it is both dead and alive, at the same time, until you open the box, at which point the two simultaneous states “collapse” into either one, and it will then be either dead or alive, but only once you open the lid!
· The electron is indivisible, but, when a single electron is shot at 2 separate slits, an interference pattern emerges, but it is certain that it is indivisible – that it is not a field of smaller bits! It must still be a singular thing! But it interferes with itself! You must abandon your common sense here, and imagine an incomprehensible and paradoxical “wave-particle duality” of an indivisible fundamental building block to the universe.
· If you want to advance in physics, you must abandon all concepts of linear time, because it is possible to travel through it. Don’t use your own rational judgement here. The mathematics allows for wormholes, so you must believe in their existence.
· Cells are chemical robots. Their “internal machinery” consists of “energy factories” and “assembly lines”.
· The DNA molecule along with cellular environmental conditions, explain %100 of cellular behaviours, and the behaviours of multi-cellular creatures. Any trait you have, like strength, can be said to be something like %35 genetic, and %65 from your environment. Bone density = %27 genetic, %73 environment. Jealousy = %82.5 genetic, %17.5 environment. Cells have no say, at all, in any action they conduct. Every thing a cell does is governed precisely and totally (%100) by genetics and its environment alone. Not even %1 credit is given to the living minds of your living cells. They have no say in any matter, day after day.
· But most DNA is “junk”, and we can blast these “junk” regions with genes we want to insert for profit, because these “junk” regions have no value at all – just leftovers from old software that nobody bothered to delete.
· Energy can exist independently from matter.
· There was an origin to Life. Before that: no Life.
· There was a beginning in time. Before that: nothing was going on.
· There might be an end of time. After which: nothing will be going on.
· All human populations before 10,000 years ago were literally “uncivilized”. No “civilization” before 10,000 years.
· We are the first humans to do science.
· We are the first ones to make things like lenses, which would allow for the fabrication of microscopes and telescopes.
· We are more evolved than any other species, ever.
· All the sediment layers in rock are the result of continuous gradual accretion.
· All erosion is the result of peaceful gradual pleasant rainfall, streams and rivers slowly and politely carving out river basins and canyons.
· The motion of all the planets, asteroids and comets is regular, unchanging, eternal, predictable, and peaceful. Asteroids stay in their ‘belt’, and comets maintain their periodicities.
· The sun is a constant provider of a standard amount of ever-present output that we will enjoy endlessly and without interruption, and without excesses.
· No mass extinctions have occurred since 65 million years ago. We have nothing to worry about in the near future.
· We have been gifted this planet, and we are here simply to enjoy its benefits, and we can put our heads in the sand, because there is a regular pre-ordained order to the earth, and we deserve and are entitled to peaceful settled conditions, and we are the pinnacle of creation – the best the earth has ever witnessed, because the evolutionary curve only points upward.
· The solar system doesn’t move. Its immediate surroundings, in the galaxy, always remains the same.
· The earth wobbles, as the result of a gravitational tug-o-war between the sun and the moon, working on the slightly oblate spheroidal shape of the earth – a bulging of the earth at the equator, repeating a precise wobble every 25,772 years, walking us through the ages of the zodiac.
· Planets form out of a rotating disc – a rotational motion powered only by gravity – a force with no such observable directionality.
· Hard rocks accreted from rarefied dust in this accretion disc. From dust bunnies to diamonds, in the vacuum of space.
· At the same time, the rotating accretion disk, powered by gravity alone, induced an incredibly powerful angular momentum in the earth and other planets, spinning at incredibly fast rates.
· Galaxies rotate by means of gravity alone – a force with no such observable directionality.
· Solar systems, with planets, took many generations of stars exploding to offer the heavier elements, yet our solar system formed 1/3 the time since creation – allowing only 1-2 generations of exploding stars (if that).
· Black holes!
· And then, let’s sprinkle multiple truckloads of fairy dust on top, to make it all work together: Dark Matter and Dark Energy! Without these, the whole fabric of the universe falls apart, because Einstein’s space-time continuum has to be right (what other possibilities are there?)!
These modern science myths are way more ridiculous than ancient myths of “flying fire-breathing dragons” with long filamentary hair and twin whiskers, and battles in the sky between “running stars”, and “wayward suns” causing problems, or of ancient “flying machines”, and global floods with people heading for mountaintops, and global fires with people heading for the water’s shore.
For starters: the Earth does not wobble!
If there Earth were to wobble - independently of the solar system - this would obviously impede our ability to calculate lunar eclipses, requiring an adjustment of 1 degree in the sky every 72 years; and meteor showers would change dates of observation by 1 day every 72 years!
We do not adjust our eclipse calculations for the alleged wobble of the Earth (if we did, every 72 years, we would have to adjust our predictions by a full degree in the sky – that’s significant!). After 720 years, that would be a full 10 degrees in the sky which we would have to account for! This is not how things work.
We do not adjust our calculations of when known meteor streams will hit – like the Perseids peaking August 11th/12th (if we did, every 72 years, we would have to adjust the date by 1 day – that’s significant!). After 720 years, we would be looking for the Perseids ten days prior to what we are accustomed! This is not how things work.
This is obvious, and kind of embarrassing to have to point out. Precession of the equinoxes can only be the result of the entire solar system rotating. This is pretty basic stuff, which has yet to be realized by mainstream astronomers, astrophysicists or planetary scientists. This basic lack of an integrated approach to celestial models, demonstrates the state of infancy of modern astronomy, highlights the flaws in specialization of career-driven focus on specific things out of context with others, and highlights the fatal flaws of relying on mathematicians alone for answers to very important questions, or for providing the big-picture required for an accurate integrated cosmology.
Atoms were first thought to be indivisible. The very word “atom” means “unbreakable” in Greek, but not only this, the Greek concept of the “atom”, is precisely the idea of fundamental building blocks to the universe. We adopted this simple-minded model of the universe from people who believed in celestial spheres.
Then, in the early 1900’s, we smashed the alleged fundamental “atom” lego-blocks, and found that they were made up of smaller bits! Whoops! This should have smashed the notion of atomism along with it. Instead, it is now assumed that sub-atomic particles are indivisible – fundamental building blocks for the universe! Oy!
Big bang theory rests heavily on the notion of atomism. Without atomism, each of the parts that explodes from The Beginning, has more parts within it to consider, and those parts would be made of smaller parts to consider, and so on, to infinity.
The nature of fundamental building blocks has not been explained or even described, at all, by anybody. They are simply assumed. This is not science, it is philosophy. How can such a thing exist in the first place? What is the nature of something which has no parts to it? It is impossible to fathom. Are the fundamental building blocks empty inside? What shape would these smallest parts have then? Just a point? This point would have to have a shape, even if it is a sphere, right? Well, would not the fact that you could observe one side of the sphere as opposed to its other side, reveal that it has multiple parts to it? No? OK. Describe the surface of this empty thing then. Is it simply that there is nothing there and the surface is simply the boundary of the void within and the things outside of it? Can things fall into this void? Does the void remain void if something falls into it? And if there is just a void in these fundamental building blocks, then how can they be building blocks of anything at all? In other words, how can anything that is made of nothing constitute larger things?
Atomism is highly unintelligible.
And what of the edge to the universe – into which it exploded? What is the nature of the edge of the universe?
An edge to the universe is highly unintelligible.
A finite universe is highly unintelligible and highly irrational and defies common sense.
The hypothesis of a finite universe, based on atomism, is as childish and simplistic as the flat-earth hypothesis and reveals much about the psychological needs of modern physicists for a simple easy universe to work with. It is only a hypothesis, because no test has been conducted to prove it, no theoretical model has been formulated to describe and explain it, and nobody works on it, to develop and investigate this highly philosophically suspect claim. Worse, it has been falsified with each new instrument developed, and has massive theoretical challenges which, if considered even with a cursory glance, clearly and massively falsify even its possibility.
Atomism, and the hypothesis of a finite universe do not even need to be falsified, because they’ve never been proven, in the least, and they have not even been described theoretically.
The more rational default assumption is that there are infinite types of entities within infinite types of entities, and some entities may be so unique and fleeting that they do not belong to any “type”. Therefore, there cannot possibly be a single equation to the universe, which is what simple-minded mainstream physicists openly admit to crave to attain. A fully accurate mathematical model of the universe would require infinite equations, describing infinite ever-changing processes, putting the labours of physicists in context, with equations only referring to the small portion of the universe in which our eyes and instruments can probe. And even the equations describing the various physical processes which we can observe would therefore not be able to be combined into a single equation.
The above argument, about atomism, is the key point of this work, the key point of Semitic scripture, and the key point which falsifies the modern cosmological blunders, and is the key to understanding the next detailed page concerning the nature of an infinite Tree of Life, and of the symbolic meaning of the letters of Semitic scripture. This is the core nugget of logic which informs this work – the glue which makes everything else in this work come together.
Imagine it highlighted with special colours, in all-caps, with many more exclamation points, with various fireworks emanating from each sentence, loaded with more cynical jabs at the simple-minded physicists who promote the childish notion of atomism as fact to schoolchildren worldwide, for nearly a century, without any evidence, and without any explanation at all of its basic tenets.
Logic trumps Science.
We are told that the universe, “before” it started, was just a “singularity” – where just “pure energy” was bound in an infinitely dense and infinitely small “spot”.
All things are in motion, in infinite different ways. Nothing ceases to move, ever. Even when things are hitting other things – they remain in motion – just changing direction. Even when things are imperceptibly still, if you were to zoom in with enough magnification, you would eventually notice some sort of motion.
All infinite entities never cease to encounter other entities, and never cease to change in their motion and resistance. There is nowhere to hide – no vacuum where you can avoid encountering things.
It is useful to see patterns of similar motion and resistance and associate those similar events together into a concept of a particular form of energy, but energy does not exist in of itself, it is a property of actual real things moving around and bumping into other real things.
Before we found out that air consisted of actual physical particles, maybe some people came to believe that wind energy was a thing, in of itself, separate from physical things.
Some forms of entities may be so small that we cannot detect them, although we may be able to observe their motion and resistance. For example, gravity is super-small yet-to-be-detected entities streaming through us, and they flow through everything because they are so small. Gravity proves that there are entities smaller than our instruments have yet been able to observe.
The observable “warping” effect, seen as gravitational lensing, indicates that outer space is not a true vacuum, and that whatever is being “warped”, is actual physical entities being shoved around by other physical entities.
The theory of an infinite universe predicts that within space which seems empty, there will always be an infinite number of entities there, but they may be very very very small, smaller than the smallest entities we have been able to observe so far. Therefore, a light wave travelling through outer space, is travelling through stuff, and cannot possibly be unaffected by that stuff, and cannot possibly travel for an infinite distance.
The primary argument used against the theory of the universe being infinite is that, if it were, the sky would be infinitely bright because an infinite number of stars would shine above us. This assumes that outer space is empty space, and that light waves do not slow down, ever – they encounter no resistance in the alleged vacuum. Also, this argument (which is called Olbers’ paradox) also assumes that an infinite universe would have an infinite number of stars – which is not at all the case.
"Infinite Density" and "Infinite Smallness" are impossibilities.
If something were to be infinitely dense, it could never unpack itself at all. Infinity cannot be subtracted from to get a smaller infinity – infinite density would never come out of infinite density – it would be limitless – it would be numberless – it would be beyond comprehension and beyond observation – it would disallow the possibility of anything ever unglueing itself from anything else, ever.
If something were to be infinitely small, it would never expand into anything of any size or shape, whatever the rate of expansion you might attribute to it. How can anything be infinitely small in the first place? If something were to be infinitely small, it would fill no space, it would not exist, at all, in the first place.
A finite universe is highly unintelligible, irrational, and defies common sense.
A finite universe is a truly wild “myth”, and is the basis for modern mainstream physics.
A universe which has always existed, which will always exist, and which has infinite entities within infinite entities, is the more rational conclusion, and is the only one that conforms to natural law and known physical observations.
A finite universe is an irrational fabrication, cooked up by a narrow-minded primitive philosophical assumption: atomism, by folks who are looking for simple lego-blocks to explain the whole universe, and simple equations to explain their behaviour.
Atomism has nothing to do with science. It is philosophy.
Cosmology is not a science, even though it depends heavily upon investigation and observation.
"Infinite Density" and "Infinite Smallness" are not mathematical terms. They just sound like it.
There are no Dimensions.
There are infinite ever-changing directions.
No part of the infinite universe stays the same from one moment to the next, so whatever direction you point toward in one moment, will disappear the next.
Imagine a perfect pair of dice, with smooth sides, sitting on a table. Even if you conjure up, in your mind – the three dimensions of a 6-sided die, as pointing to specific directions (in your room); in relation to the earth, the planes of the dice are always pointing to new directions in the sky, as the earth spins. Also, if you had a strong enough microscope, you would be able to notice imperfections on the surface of the dice, and at the molecular/atomic level, where things are ever jostling (bouncing around), so there is never truly a flat surface pointing in a single direction in the first place.
If you think this example is unfair, then: where is your magical static unchanging frame of reference in the universe to which your alleged 3 Dimensions are aligned?
3D is a useful figment of our minds, helping us to pinpoint things in space.
2D is also a useful concept, but there is no such thing as a truly flat entity that disappears completely when seen on edge, as was promoted in an unwatchable Star Trek episode.
Concepts such as 1-dimensional things, and 12-dimensional things, are wild fantastical embarrassing mythical fabrications of our modern mathematically-centered myopic career-driven theoretical physics.
Not only are there no perfectly flat surfaces to offer any real absolute Dimensions, other fictions are also cooked up and served forcefully by the church of mathematics, such as the notion of the value of Pi, as being an example of proof that math is the ultimate method to understand the universe. Math is the “language of the universe” they allege. They proclaim: “Behold! We know and understand any and every circle in the universe, in any realm. We have found a universal truth!”
There is no such thing as a perfect circle in an infinite universe. There is infinite detail to any circle, where at some point the value of Pi will not be the same. No two circles are the same, and are all constantly changing. Zoom into the edge of any “perfect” circle, made from whatever materials, and you will eventually find (if you had a strong enough microscope), that your perfect circle has imperfections, which become more and more exaggerated the more you zoom in. Not only this, but any living creature or non-living instrument which goes about observing this “perfect” circle, will invariably see it from some sort of skewed angle – creating imperfections, however minute they may seem.
The term “universe” means: all that there was, is, and ever will be. The whole shebang! %100 The whole kit and caboodle. Lock, stock, and barrel.
There cannot be more than one “whole shebang”.
You cannot have parallel “whole shebangs”.
You cannot have a succession of “whole shebangs”.
And the whole shebang most definitely cannot wrap around itself!
“How can one describe the universe at the beginning of time? I now think I can show how the universe was spontaneously created out of nothing according to the laws of science. The universe exists because the laws of general relativity and quantum theory allow and require it to exist. If I’m right, the universe is self-contained, and governed by science alone.”
In a lecture at the university of California at Berkley, 2007
We can put our trust in many aspects of Science – particularly in the fields where observation and experiments are accessible (close to our size), like in basic medicine, basic chemistry, basic geology, basic engineering principles, etc… The method works wonders to investigate and discern the nature of things near to our own size and within our reach.
Scientists would be much more helpful if they were to pause to reflect way deeper, before making definite assertions about deep time, and about the super-small and the super-large, and about human antiquity, and most importantly, about the nature of Life and the mind of living creatures.
“In the late 1800’s, the great German historian Leopold Van Ranke, in the last years of his career, set out to write his own Universal History, which he called A World History, and it was left unfinished upon his death in 1886. Writing in the 1880’s, he was well aware of the challenge of Darwinism, and the nature of geological time, he knew that the archaeologists were digging up the fossils and antiquities of Man, but as he wrote in the preface to his first volume:
“The province of history is limited by the means at her command, and the historian would be overbold who should venture to unveil the mystery of the primeval world – and of the relation of Mankind to God and Nature. The solution of such problems must be entrusted to the joint efforts of Theology and Science.”
-Leopold Van Ranke
“The opening chapters of his book then go on to narrate the story of Genesis. That Genesis should still be relevant in 1886, is not that remarkable. In certain circles, the habit of writing histories that begin in Eden have never abated. It is significant only because many historians in the United States and elsewhere, consider Leopold Van Ranke to be the father of the modern discipline of history. He may have accepted that something existed on the other side of the veil, but he chose to consign that history to Theology and Science.”
“Now, that pair, Theology and Science, do not exactly make ideal foster parents. Ranke’s own history was sandwiched between several important volumes in the early history of the warfare between Science and Religion, which were being published in the latter decades of the 1800’s, and the theologians and scientists have been duking it out ever since. Yet historians, in the tradition of Ranke, continued to watch indifferently from the sidelines, and this is because History, for all intents and purposes, tells a story that is chronologically and geographically indistinguishable from Genesis.”
“Though the history has been translated into secular terms, it still begins in Mesopotamia, and it still begins 6000 years ago. To this extent, History gives no comfort to the disciplines who are still fighting the time wars.”
“Ranke aside, the textbooks that emerged in the United States in the 1880’s, textbooks, part of the new history curricula, typically start, you can go look at them, typically start with the fully formed pyramids of Egypt. None of this was a problem as long as humanity’s deep past remained unknown and concealed. But in the 1800’s, geologists, archaeologists, and biologists, began pulling aside the veil that had hitherto obscured our knowledge of the speechless past. This is what troubled figures like Leopold Van Ranke, whose careers had spanned the time-revolution of the 1860’s, for how could he hope to keep the time of Judeo-Christian history, uncontaminated by the tens of thousands of human fossils and eoliths that had been dug up by the 1880’s. The only solution was an epistemological one – to declare that these kinds of sources are not suitable for History!”
“As French historians, disciples of Leopold Van Ranke … … wrote in an important manual of historical methodology published in the 1890’s:
“The historian works with documents. Documents are the traces that have been left of the thoughts and actions of men of former times. For want of documents, the history of immense periods of the past of humanity is destined to remain forever unknown. For there is no substitute for documents.”
“No documents, no history. In the wake of this epistemological move, scientific history came to be restricted to written documents.”
“Just to summarize: Why documents? Well, it eliminates the threat posed by archaeology, a threat not only to the sacred history, that people like Leopold Van Ranke still believed in, but also the bewildering threat of: how the hell are we going to write a history that embraces all of that time.”
“So what are we left with? A historical framework, that by chronological and geographical sleight of hand, continues to teach the history told by Genesis.”
“I was teaching in New York State, and I went to the New York State social studies high school curriculum and had a look at when that curriculum began history, and it began in 4000 BC. That’s when history began. I was chatting with high school history teachers and I asked them: “do you know why they chose 4000 BC?”. First city? No – the first city is younger than that. Howbout writing? Nope, that’s 800 years after that. What they didn’t know is that 4000 BC is pretty much the same date that Archbishop Ussher had assigned, in the 1600’s, to the creation of the world (October 23rd, 4004 BC).”
“This made me wonder: is it possible, that the field of History, is in some way, some small way, complicit with Young-Earth-Creationism?!”
Daniel Lord Smail, professor of history at Harvard
Beyond Belief: Enlightenment 2.0, Symposium, 2007
During the Gold Rush, in the Sierra Nevada mountains, near Sonora California, gold miners had dug deep tunnels into Table Mountain.
They found anatomically modern human bones and hundreds of human artefacts, like multiple stone mortars and pestles, ladles, and obsidian spear points.
“In 1891, George F. Becker told the American Geological Society that in the spring of 1869, Clarence King, director of the Survey of the Fortieth Parallel, and a respected geologist, was conducting research at Tuolomne Table Mountain. Becker stated:”
“At one point, close to the high bluff of basalt capping, a recent wash had swept away all talus and exposed the underlying compact, hard, auriferous gravel beds, which were beyond all question in place. In examining the exposure for fossils, he [King] observed the fractured end of what appeared to be a cylindrical mass of stone. The mass he forced out of its place with considerable difficulty on account of the hardness of the gravel in which it was tightly wedged. It left behind a perfect cast of itself in the matrix and proved to be part of a polished stone implement, no doubt a pestle.”
“Mr. King is perfectly sure this implement was in place and that it formed an original part of the gravels in which he found it. It is difficult to imagine a more satisfactory evidence than this of the occurrence of implements in the auriferous, pre-glacial, sub-basaltic gravels.”
“From this description and the modern geological dating of the Table Mountain Strata, it is apparent that this object was over 9 million years old.”
James Carvin, describing a hatchet found at Table Mountain:
“This is to certify that I, the undersigned, did about the year 1858, dig out of some mining claims known as the Stanislaus Company, situated in Table Mountain, Tuolumne County, opposite O’Byrn’s Ferry, on the Stanislaus River, a stone hatchet… with a hole through it for a handle. Its size was four inches across the edge, and length about six inches. It had evidently been made by human hands. The above relic was found about sixty to seventy-five feet from the surface in gravel, under the basalt, and about 300 feet from the mouth of the tunnel. There were also some mortars found, at about the same time and place.”
The Auirferous Gravels of the Sierra Nevada of California
Harvard University’s Peabody Museum of Natural History
Dr. Josiah Dwight Whitney
State Geologist of California
In 1870, Llewellyn Pierce, describing a 31.5-inch-wide mortar found in the Boston Tunnel Company mine, at Table Mountain:
“Thls is to certify that I, the undersigned, have this day given to Mr. C. D. Voy, to be preserved in his collection of ancient stone relics, a certain stone mortar, which has evidently been made by human hands, which was dug up by me, about the year 1862, under Table Mountain, in gravel, at a depth of about 200 feet from the surface, under the basalt, which was over sixty feet deep, and about 1,800 feet in from the mouth of the tunnel. Found in the claim known as the Boston Tunnel Company."
A skull fragment found at Table Mountain, is housed at The Museum of the Natural History Society of Boston:
From a shaft in Table Mountain, 180 feet below the surface, in gold drift… Overlying strata of basaltic compactness and hardness. Found July, 1857. Given to Rev. C.F. Winslow by Hon. Paul K. Hubbs, August 1857.
On August 2, 1890, J H. Neale, supervisor and chief engineer of Montezuma Tunnel at Table Mountain, signed the following statement about discoveries made by him:
“In 1877 Mr. J.H. Neale was superintendent of the Montezuma Tunnel Company, and ran the Montezuma Tunnel into the gravel underlying the lava at Table Mountain, Tuolumne County. … The mouth is approximately 1200 feet from the present edge of the solid lava cap of the mountain. At a distance of between 1400 and 1500 feet from the mouth of the tunnel, or of between 200 and 300 feet beyond the edge of the solid lava, Mr. Neale saw several spear heads, of some dark rock and nearly one foot in length. On exploring further, he himself found a small mortar 3 or 4 inches in diameter and of irregular shape. This was discovered within a foot or two of the spear-heads. He then found a large well-formed pestle, now the property of Dr. R. I. Bromley, and nearby a large and very regular mortar, also at present the property of Dr. Bromley."
“All of these relics were found the same afternoon, and were all within a few feet of one another and close to the bed-rock, perhaps within a foot of it. Mr. Neale declares that it is utterly impossible that these relics can have reached the position in which they were found excepting at the time the gravel was deposited, and before the lava cap formed. There was not the slightest trace of any disturbance of the mass or of any natural fissure into it by which access could have been obtained either there or in the neighbourhood.”
The layer of gold-bearing gravels where they found these bones and tools, is dated to between 38-55 million years old.
In these layers of gold-bearing gravels are also plant and animal fossils that date to between 38-55 million years old.
Layers above have been dated, using the Potassium-Argon method, up to 33 million years old.
“In a paper read before the American Geological Society and published in its journal, geologist George F. Becker (1891. pp. 192-193) said:”
"It would have been more satisfactory to me individually if I had myself dug out these implements, but I am unable to discover any reason why Mr. Neale's statement is not exactly as good evidence to the rest of the world as my own would be.”
“He was as competent as I to detect any fissure from the surface or any ancient workings, which the miner recognizes instantly and dreads profoundly. Someone may possibly suggest that Mr. Neale's workmen 'planted' the implements, but no one familiar with mining will entertain such a suggestion for a moment .... The auriferous gravel is hard picking, in large part it requires blasting. and even a very incompetent supervisor could not possibly be deceived in this way. In short, there is, in my opinion, no escape from the conclusion that the implements mentioned in Mr. Neale's statement actually occurred near the bottom of the gravels, and that they were deposited where they were found at the same time with the adjoining pebbles and matrix."
J.D Whitney, Harvard-educated, chief geologist of California, was the one who reported these findings. Mount Whitney is named after him. His report was published by Harvard University.
Dr. William Holmes, an anthropologist working at the Smithsonian Institution, dismissed the report, which was full of proper geologic evidence, with this argument:
“If Professor Whitney had fully appreciated the story of human evolution as it is understood today, he would have hesitated to announce the conclusions formulated, despite the imposing array of testimony with which he was confronted.”
The fact that species change has been confused with a very specific story of human evolution, and of human antiquity. Note how William Holmes above said it was “…the story of human evolution as it is understood today…”. That’s precisely right – it’s a story.
These are two separate concepts:
· “house pets were bred from wild animals”
· “humans recently evolved over extremely short geological time-scales, and civilizations only arose starting 6-10 thousand years ago, and there was no writing, mathematics, astronomy or engineering before that, and pyramids can only have been built within 6000 years, because there was no culture other than primitive stone-age farmers, hunters, and gatherers before 6000 years ago, and before 11,500 years ago, only cave-people hunting and gathering food, could possibly have existed, because things only ever evolve, including civilization.”
This is a fact. Not a theory.
We could just call it “The Fact of Species Change”.
“It is impossible for anatomically modern humans to have roamed this earth before a couple hundred thousand years ago, because we have found no fossil evidence for this, and human civilizations only arose starting maximum 11,500 years ago, and before that we were only cavemen and cavewomen, and after that, only after that, we have the wheel, cities, writing, mathematics, etc… because we have not found skyscrapers or power saws or microscopes or telescopes or cellphones, in the archaeological record before 11,500 years ago”.
This is a very specific and narrow theory, that requires loads of evidence, yet to be presented. And, there’s plenty of evidence to the contrary.
It is not logical to treat this as the default assumption.
There are plenty of other reasonable scenarios. It only took us a few hundred years to go from tossing our sewage into the streets, burning witches at the stake, and shipping slaves as cargo as casually as we do commodities like sugar or rice; all the way to plastic surgery and robots on Mars. A few millennia can present enough of an opportunity to go from primitive barbarism to super-computers. And it would only take a few millennia to wipe clean all traces of our advanced accomplishments if we were hit by a huge space-rock or solar ejection. There’s nothing to suggest that it has never happened before. The earth is littered with craters. The assumption that we are the first to do science is a philosophical opinion, not some sort of scientific fact, and does not represent some logical default position to take.
Termites have not changed much, over millions of years. They are termed “living fossils”.
It should therefore be entirely possible that anatomically modern humans have been around for millions of years as well, and could even be a necessary part of the living network of interactions that sustains life itself on earth - protecting earthly life from space-rocks, solar outbursts, severe fires, severe floods, severe droughts, severe cold, and whatever other nasty calamities that would threaten to extinguish or smother surface-life here – on this open-faced surface roasting around a weird giant ball of plasma, with rocks flying all over the place. We might be the ones regularly saving seeds, and preserving “two of each beast”.
This links to a tedious 3-hour movie detailing why Big Bang is Big Baloney.
There is more than Gravity at work in the celestial realm,
Dark Matter will never been observed, because it does not exist,
Redshift does not always indicate speed of recession (Doppler shift),
The microwave background did not prove the Big Bang model,
Space-time is a ridiculous concept, and requires the universe to either expand or contract,
The mathematical solutions for big-bang were first introduced to Einstein by a priest,
Quasars are ejected from Galaxies,
Black holes do not exist,
The edge of the observable universe has highly-structured galaxy clusters,
Dark Energy has already been massively falsified by the Coincidence Scandal,
Dark Energy will never be observed, because it does not exist,
Science can be political, with biased factions, and not always rational,
The alternative-ancient-history community is culpable for historicizing the Bible, just as much as the church.
This next page delves deeper into the nature of an infinite ever-changing eternal universe,
populated by infinite living entities;
and a cursory glance at the mystical symbolism referring to this infinite universe,
within the letters of the Semitic languages.
NOTES ON THIS PAGE
The rocky, stratified, and cratered, surfaces of comets, as well as their tendency to disintegrate under various stresses from the Sun, is taken from the work of the Thunderbolts project, at Thunderbolts.info.
I highly recommend interested souls to view the materials provided by the Thunderbolts project. You may not agree with Venus having been a comet, or that mars was ejected from Jupiter, but that being said, they have presented various strong theoretical challenges to mainstream cosmology.
Episode three of their major feature-length series Symbols of an Alien Sky, is focused on the nature of comets. I highly recommend viewing this masterpiece.
For the detailed account of the 1908 Tunguska event: The Tungus Event, by Rupert Furneaux, 1977, Panther Books. Yes, that is how this book is entitled: “Tungus”, and not “Tunguska”.
The alternative view of the Peshtigo firestorm is presented by Randall Carlson, in Fire From the Sky, Turner Original Productions, Inc, A Time-Warner Company, 1997. This documentary also details the frequency of the roughly bi-weekly nuclear-strength air-bursts from space-rocks hitting our atmosphere, as evidenced from a US military study.
Randall Carlson is also the fellow who pointed out the research (4 papers written by qualified glaciologists and others in the field), which demonstrate that CO2 follows temperature changes, and not the other way around. I highly recommend delving into Randall’s websites – GeoCosmicRex.com and SacredGeometryInternational.com. You will probably disagree with his specific statements about sacred geometry, and the values of precession, and values of standard measures as they relate to megalithic construction and medieval warm period cathedral building, but, even in these presentations, he provides much tasty food for thought, while also showing a genuine concern for avoiding catastrophe in the future – a rare trait these days, and really, in the end, this is the only thing that matters, regardless of the details of decoding the riddles of the past.
For the eye-witness accounts of comets, meteors, and their associated effects on climate:
Contributions towards a History of the Star-Showers of Former Times
Communicated by Edward C. Herrick, Rec. Sec. of the Conn. Acad.
Read before the Connecticut Academy of Arts and Sciences, April 28, 1840; and since revised.
Printed in The American Journal of Science and Arts
Volume 39, 1840 Pages 349+
“A full account of the showers of shooting stars which have visited our planet, would much enlarge our knowledge of the system of bodies from which we receive these brilliant strangers. But a mere catalogue even, of all these displays is too much to hope for, inasmuch as some of them have doubtless been concealed by clouds, and others witnessed only by barbarians. Of those which have been preserved by the historian, a complete collection cannot at present be made in this country, owing to the insufficiency of our means of historical inquiry.”
General Chronological History of Air, Weather, Seasons, Meteors. Dr. Thomas Short London 1749
The accounts from 535 come from a great documentary called Catastrophe: Part 1: The Day the Sun Went Out & Part 2: How The World Changed. The principle investigator for this documentary is David Keys, who is archaeology correspondent for the London daily paper, The Independent, “consulting over 80 experts on drought, famine, floods, cosmic and ecological disasters, epidemics, and ancient wars. He scoured the chronicles from the 500’s and 600’s AD, from all over the world.” His book is entitled: Catastrophe: An Investigation into the Origins of the Modern World (2000).
Also, for the events of 535, a Wikipedia page provided many of the quotes: Extreme Weather Events of 535-536.
The detailed accounts from the Little Ice Age and the Medieval Warm Period are taken from:
The Little Ice Age
Basic Books, New York, New York, 2000
This is an absolutely excellent book, very well written, full of insight, and written with respect for the victims of natural climate change.
To be fair, he puts way more emphasis on human-induced climate change to explain modern climate change, than would be evident from the quotes and their context in this page. He does, however, conclude that we do not understand the sun enough to say what proportion of influence it has over other factors. He describes the situation on page 212:
“Part of the reason we don’t know to what extent our present climate change is natural has to do with the sun. The sun has always been a dynamic player in global climate change, but the extent of its influence is still a mystery. Research has hardly begun.”
And then he goes on to describe complicated theories about the workings of the sun, with our preliminary investigations using new sound waves to penetrate the photosphere. And then he mentions solar wind briefly, and presents another theory:
“When numerous coronae cover the solar surface, the increased solar winds produce greater terrestrial cloud cover, and average temperatures drop. The importance of this effect is still unknown.
And then he mentions the 11-year solar cycle, and how we don’t understand that either:
“Solar radiation is never constant, making it a possible cause of climate change, and a factor in the current warming. Over the past twenty years, space-based measurements of solar radiation, the first accurate data on these fluctuations, have revealed eleven-year cycles that correspond to the well-known eleven-year cycle of sunspots. Solar intensity is greater at times of higher sunspot activity. Proxy measurements from tree rings and ice cores chronicle these cycles and longer term fluctuations in earlier centuries. We know solar activity was high during the 1100’s and 1200’s, the height of the medieval warm period. Present levels of solar irradiance are higher than periods of unusually low sunspot activity during the Sporer Minimum (1425-1575), the Maunder Minimum (1645-1715), and the Dalton Minimum (1790-1820).
After describing the infancy of solar science, he then categorically states that the sun has not contributed enough to explain current temperatures, and that the sun will not give out more intensity, because it has maxed out, relative to the last 8000 years, so we don’t need to worry about its impact on global climate.
This is extremely frustrating and disappointing to read, in the concluding paragraphs of a book that details the climate dips of 1315 and the 1600’s, with the consequences for society, with concurrent sunspot activity nearly disappearing, and concurrent auroral activity disappearing; and then with the Carrington event marking a clear change in solar output concurrent with glaciers melting and temperatures rising in the 1850’s; to then suggest that the sun is not important in the future of our climate, points to a simplistic model of our future on this planet where, we are told: the only threat is more and more heat, not the return of cold, which is an incredibly dangerous view, out of touch with long-term ice-core records, and out of touch with relatively recent events – The Great Frost, The Great Famine, and the events around 535, with the most severe cooling in the last 2000 years, with all of its aftereffects.
The condensed re-telling of The Infancy Gospel of Thomas, was relayed by Bart D. Ehrman, in Lost Christianities: The Battles for Scripture and the Faiths We Never Knew, page 205. If you are interested in learning more on these earlier forms of Christian faiths, his work is pretty much the best place to start.
The flaws in the Luni-Solar theory of earth’s axial precession (The so-called “Wobble” of the Earth allegedly caused by gravitational influences of the moon and sun) (which should be called the “Loony-Solar” theory of precession) was pointed out by Walter Cruttenden, in Lost Star of Myth and Time, an excellent book.
This book is a thorough brainstorm on the cause of precession, and of world ages. If you are interested in long cycles of time, ancient mythology, and precession, this is the perfect starting point. It is a great book to read before attempting to digest Hamlet’s Mill. He established the Binary Research Institute: BinaryResearchInstitute.com, as well as the Conference on Precession and Ancient Knowledge.
You will almost certainly be scratching your head while reading this book, because it asks more questions than answers (which is the same with nearly all books on alternative ancient history), and is very much at odds with other theories of precession, but he brings up so many good points, and chapter 4, laying out the mechanics of precession, is the best comprehensive analysis of the subject I have yet to come across, and essentially represents a deathblow to the LuniSolar theory of precession.
The seemingly outlandish evidence for extreme human antiquity, at Table Mountain, in California, during the gold rush is the work of Michael Cremo and Richard Thomson, in a thick detailed forbidding tome called Forbidden Archaeology, The Hidden History of the Human Race, section 5.5.3 - Tuolumne Table Mountain.
These accounts were featured front-and-center in the documentary Mysterious Origins of Mankind, narrated by none other than Charlton Heston. As you might imagine, having Heston relay these findings made mainstream scientist heads explode, attacking the producers and the network that aired it with full fury, insisting that the FCC censure and fine the network that aired it.
You will need a lot of coffee to even begin to consider to attempt to read this book through. Being 900 pages long, they thankfully decided to make an abridged version, entitled simply The Hidden History of the Human Race.