Author Maurice Cotterell spoke about the solar minimum and the historical implications of sunspot activity on civilization. The movement of the planet Mercury causes the winding up of the sun's magnetic fields, which then leads to the generation of sunspots, he explained. There are three cycles of sunspots that occur over 11 1/2 years, 187 years, and 18,139 years, and certain ancient cultures were aware of these periods, he contended. For instance, the Mayans foresaw that their culture would die out around 70 AD, because a low sunspot period would lead to decreased fertility and a mini-ice age, he noted. If our current solar inactivity continues, it's possible it could counter the effects of global warming.
Solar activity can also affect personality and behavior, said Cotterell. He noted studies which correlated increased number of accidents occuring during periods of higher magnetic activity on the sun. Particularly strong X-flares from the sun might damage our satellites, and because we don't have a back-up system in place, communications could be knocked out on a global scale, he warned.
In discussing his study of Mayan prophecy, Cotterell disputed the idea of 2012 as an end date for civilization. Yes, the Mayans had four calendrical cycles that returned to 0 on this date, but they also had four other cycles that continued on, he said. Dec. 21, 2012 just marks the end of a 144,000 day cycle, he added.
Appearing in the first half-hour, cultural pioneer and philosopher Gregory Sams talked about his concept of the sun as a living, sentient entity. It's "a highly conscious being on a level that is inconceivable to us," he said.
A 47-million-year-old fossil of a primate may be the long sought missing link between humans and apes. Nicknamed "Ida," the lemur-like creature had opposable thumbs, and fingernails instead of claws. More here.
Bumper music from Tuesday May 19, 2009