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Mystery of Britain’s ‘Franken-mummies’

Via:Telegraph

It is one of Britain’s most intriguing archeological mysteries.

When two almost perfectly preserved 3,000-year-old human skeletons were dug up on a remote Scottish island, they were the first evidence that ancient Britons preserved their dead using mummification.

The scientists who uncovered the bodies also found clues that one of them – a man buried in a crouching position – was not a single individual, but had in fact been assembled from the body parts of several different people.

The discovery began a 10-year investigation into what had led the bronze-age islanders to this strange fate.

Now, a new study using the latest in DNA technology has found that the two skeletons together comprise the remains of at least six different individuals, who died several hundred years apart.

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The Great New England Vampire Panic

Via:Smithsonian

Children playing near a hillside gravel mine found the first graves. One ran home to tell his mother, who was skeptical at first—until the boy produced a skull.

Because this was Griswold, Connecticut, in 1990, police initially thought the burials might be the work of a local serial killer named Michael Ross, and they taped off the area as a crime scene. But the brown, decaying bones turned out to be more than a century old. The Connecticut state archaeologist, Nick Bellantoni, soon determined that the hillside contained a colonial-era farm cemetery. New England is full of such unmarked family plots, and the 29 burials were typical of the 1700s and early 1800s: The dead, many of them children, were laid to rest in thrifty Yankee style, in simple wood coffins, without jewelry or even much clothing, their arms resting by their sides or crossed over their chests.

Except, that is, for Burial Number 4.

Bellantoni was interested in the grave even before the excavation began. It was one of only two stone crypts in the cemetery, and it was partially visible from the mine face.

Scraping away soil with flat-edged shovels, and then brushes and bamboo picks, the archaeologist and his team worked through several feet of earth before reaching the top of the crypt. When Bellantoni lifted the first of the large, flat rocks that formed the roof, he uncovered the remains of a red-painted coffin and a pair of skeletal feet. They lay, he remembers, “in perfect anatomical position.” But when he raised the next stone, Bellantoni saw that the rest of the individual “had been com­pletely…rearranged.” The skeleton had been beheaded; skull and thighbones rested atop the ribs and vertebrae. “It looked like a skull-and-crossbones motif, a Jolly Roger. I’d never seen anything like it,” Bellantoni recalls.

Subsequent analysis showed that the beheading, along with other injuries, including rib fractures, occurred roughly five years after death. Somebody had also smashed the coffin.

The other skeletons in the gravel hillside were packaged for reburial, but not “J.B.,” as the 50ish male skeleton from the 1830s came to be called, because of the initials spelled out in brass tacks on his coffin lid. He was shipped to the National Museum of Health and Medicine, in Washington, D.C., for further study. Meanwhile, Bellantoni started networking. He invited archaeologists and historians to tour the excavation, soliciting theories. Simple vandalism seemed unlikely, as did robbery, because of the lack of valuables at the site.

Finally, one colleague asked: “Ever heard of the Jewett City vampires?”

In 1854, in neighboring Jewett City, Connecticut, townspeople had exhumed several corpses suspected to be vampires that were rising from their graves to kill the living. A few newspaper accounts of these events survived. Had the Griswold grave been desecrated for the same reason?

In the course of his far-flung research, Bellantoni placed a serendipitous phone call to Michael Bell, a Rhode Island folklorist, who had devoted much of the previous decade to studying New England vampire exhumations. The Griswold case occurred at roughly the same time as the other incidents Bell had investigated. And the setting was right: Griswold was rural, agrarian and bordering southern Rhode Island, where multiple exhumations had occurred. Many of the other “vampires,” like J.B., had been disinterred, grotesquely tampered with and reburied.

In light of the tales Bell told of violated corpses, even the posthumous rib fractures began to make sense. J.B.’s accusers had likely rummaged around in his chest cavity, hoping to remove, and perhaps to burn, his heart.

Headquartered in a charming old schoolhouse, the Middletown Historical Society typically promotes such fortifying topics as Rhode Island gristmill restoration and Stone Wall Appreciation Day. Two nights before Halloween, though, the atmosphere is full of dry ice vapors and high silliness. Fake cobwebs cover the exhibits, warty gourds crowd the shelves and a skeleton with keen red eyes cackles in the corner. “We’ll turn him off when you start talking,” the society’s president assures Michael Bell, who is readying his slide show.

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Graham Hancock interviewed for New Dawn magazine

See: http://www.grahamhancock.com/tours/lectures.php for details on Graham’s upcoming speaking events in the US, Australia and the UK during October, November and December 2012.
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As the Mayan Calendar comes to an end (most interpretations of the Mayan Long Count place this epic event on or near 21 December 2012), and over 17 years after he first published his seminal book on the subject, Fingerprints of the Gods: The Evidence of Earth’s Lost Civilization, Graham Hancock speaks out about the state of our planet, consciousness, time travel, and what he has learned on his remarkable journey through life.

In this provocative and often poignant interview, Graham speaks passionately and at length on these, and many other emotionally charged subjects, such as Atlantis, the significance of Göbekli Tepe, and his own experience with marijuana, ayahuasca, and DMT.

The interview is by Andrew Gough, who met with Graham in July 2012 in Graham’s home in the English West Country. A condensed version of the interview can be found in the September 2012 edition of New Dawn Magazine [http://www.newdawnmagazine.com/], and an extended version will be featured in The Heretic Magazine [http://thehereticmagazine.com/] (a new history and mystery magazine for which Andrew is Editor) on 1 November 2012, and still another version will be featured on Andrew’s ‘Arcadia’ [http://www.andrewgough.com/] website soon after that.

Kucinich Calls Out Monsanto: Americans Demand GMO Labeling

“In 1992 the Food and Drug Administration decided that genetically modified organisms (GMOs) are the functional equivalent of conventional foods. They arrived at this decision without testing GMOs for allergenicity, toxicity, anti-biotic resistance and functional characteristics. As a result hundreds of millions of acres of GMO crops were planted in America without the knowledge or consent of the American people: no safety testing and no long term health studies.

“The FDA has received over a million comments from citizens demanding labeling of GMOs. Ninety percent of Americans agree. So, why no labeling? I’ll give you one reason: The influence and the corruption of the political process by Monsanto. Monsanto has been a prime mover in GMO technology, a multi-million dollar GMO lobby here and a major political contributor.

“There is a chance that Monsanto’s grip will be broken in California where a GMO labeling initiative is on the ballot. And here in Congress, my legislation HR 3553 will provide for a national labeling law. Americans have a right to know if their food is genetically engineered. It’s time for labeling and for people to know how their food is being produced.”

Curiosity rover comes across strange rock

Via:NASA

Image credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech

The drive by NASA’s Mars rover Curiosity during the mission’s 43rd Martian day, or sol, (Sept. 19, 2012) ended with this rock about 8 feet (2.5 meters) in front of the rover. The rock is about 10 inches (25 centimeters) tall and 16 inches (40 centimeters) wide. The rover team has assessed it as a suitable target for the first use of Curiosity’s contact instruments on a rock. The image was taken by the left Navigation camera (Navcam) at the end of the drive.

The rock has been named “Jake Matijevic.” This commemorates Jacob Matijevic (1947-2012), who was the surface operations systems chief engineer for the Mars Science Laboratory Project and the project’s Curiosity rover. He was also a leading engineer for all of the previous NASA Mars rovers: Sojourner, Spirit and Opportunity.

Curiosity’s contact instruments are on a turret at the end of the rover’s arm. They are the Alpha Particle X-Ray Spectrometer for reading a target’s elemental composition and the Mars Hand Lens Imager for close-up imaging.

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Hallucinations caused by lightning

Via:Mind Hacks

A 23-year-old mountain climber was hit by a lightning bolt and awoke in hospital to find herself experiencing bizarre hallucinations.

The case, reported in BMJ Case Reports, describes how the healthy young woman was mountaineering with her climbing partner when they heard heard cracking thunder and were thrown to the ground by a massive shockwave.

The air rescue team took her to hospital and she was put in a drug induced coma for three days as she was disoriented and extremely agitated.

When she awoke, her world was somewhat different.

In the evening, still awake and 6 h after extubation, strange phenomena occurred. These exclusively visual sensations consisted of unknown people, animals and objects acting in different scenes, as if in a movie. None of the persons or scenes was familiar to her and she was severely frightened by their occurrence. For example, an old lady was sitting on a ribbed radiator, who then became thinner and thinner, finally vanishing through the slots of the radiator. Later, on her left side a cowboy riding on a horse came from the distance. As he approached her, he tried to shoot her, making her feel defenceless because she could not move or shout for help.

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Sounds of Space: “Chorus” radio waves within Earth’s magnetosphere

The audio ‘Chorus’ in this video was recorded on Sept. 5, 2012, by RBSP’s Electric and Magnetic Field Instrument Suite and Integrated Science (EMFISIS).

For more info about the auroral chorus phenomena visit: captaincynic.com

Audio Credit: University of Iowa
Visualisation Credit: NASA/Goddard Space Flight Center

 

First Ever Etruscan Pyramids Found in Italy

Via:Discovery

Image David George

The first ever Etruscan pyramids have been located underneath a wine cellar in the city of Orvieto in central Italy, according to a team of U.S. and Italian archaeologists.

Carved into the rock of the tufa plateau –a sedimentary area that is a result of volcanic activity — on which the city stands, the subterranean structures were largely filled. Only the top-most modern layer was visible.

“Within this upper section, which had been modified in modern times and was used as a wine cellar, we noticed a series of ancient stairs carved into the wall. They were clearly of Etruscan construction,” David B. George of the Department of Classics at Saint Anselm, told Discovery News.

As they started digging, George and co-director of the excavation Claudio Bizzarri of the Parco Archeologico Ambientale dell’Orvietano noted that the cave’s walls were tapered up in a pyramidal fashion. Intriguingly, a series of tunnels, again of Etruscan construction, ran underneath the wine cellar hinting to the possibility of deeper undiscovered structures below.

PHOTOS: Open House: Etruscan Site Reveals Domestic Treasures

After going through a mid-20th century floor, George and Bizzarri reached a medieval floor. Immediately beneath this floor, they found a layer of fill that contained various artifacts such as Attic red figure pottery from the middle of the 5th Century B.C., 6th and 5th century B.C. Etruscan pottery with inscriptions as well as various objects that dated to before 1000 B.C.

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Acoustic levitation

It’s not a magic trick and it’s not sleight of hand – scientists really are using levitation to improve the drug development process, eventually yielding more effective pharmaceuticals with fewer side effects.

Scientists at the U.S. Department of Energy’s (DOE) Argonne National Laboratory have discovered a way to use sound waves to levitate individual droplets of solutions containing different pharmaceuticals. While the connection between levitation and drug development may not be immediately apparent, a special relationship emerges at the molecular level.

At the molecular level, pharmaceutical structures fall into one of two categories: amorphous or crystalline. Amorphous drugs typically are more efficiently taken up by the body than their crystalline cousins; this is because amorphous drugs are both more highly soluble and have a higher bioavailability, suggesting that a lower dose can produce the desired effect.

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Bolivia Gives Legal Rights To The Earth

Via:Worldtruth.tv

Image Source NASA

Law of Mother Earth sees Bolivia pilot new social and economic model based on protection of and respect for nature.

Bolivia is to become the first country in the world to give nature comprehensive legal rights in an effort to halt climate change and the exploitation of the natural world, and to improve quality of life for the Bolivian people.

Developed by grassroots social groups and agreed by politicians, the Law of Mother Earth recognises the rights of all living things, giving the natural world equal status to human beings.

Once fully approved, the legislation will provide the Earth with rights to: life and regeneration; biodiversity and freedom from genetic modification; pure water; clean air; naturally balanced systems; restoration from the effects of human activity; and freedom from contamination.

The legislation is based on broader principles of living in harmony with the Earth and prioritising the “collective good.” At its heart is an understanding that the Earth is sacred, which arises from the indigenous Andean worldview of ‘Pachamama’ (meaning Mother Earth) as a living being. An initial act outlining the rights – which was passed by Bolivia’s national congress in December 2010 and paves the way for the full legislation – defines Mother Earth as a dynamic and “indivisible community of all living systems and living organisms, interrelated, interdependent and complementary, which share a common destiny.”

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Reincarnation Evidence: Stevenson’s Research

Philosophy professor Dr. Robert Almeder of Georgia State University discusses reincarnation and societal reactions, focusing especially on the work of the late Dr. Ian Stevenson.

Source:ial.goldthread.com

Full video here:In Another Life: Reincarnation in America

Puzzling Little Martian Spheres

Via:NASA

Image credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech/Cornell Univ./ USGS/Modesto Junior College

Small spherical objects fill the field in this mosaic combining four images from the Microscopic Imager on NASA’s Mars Exploration Rover Opportunity. The view covers an area about 2.4 inches (6 centimeters) across, at an outcrop called “Kirkwood” in the Cape York segment of the western rim of Endeavour Crater. The individual spherules are up to about one-eighth inch (3 millimeters) in diameter.

The Microscopic Imager took the component images during the 3,064th Martian day, or sol, of Opportunity’s work on Mars (Sept. 6, 2012). For a color view of the Kirkwood outcrop as Opportunity was approaching it two weeks earlier, see PIA16128 .

Opportunity discovered spherules at its landing site more than eight-and-a-half years earlier. Those spherules were nicknamed “blueberries.” They provided important evidence about long-ago wet environmental conditions on Mars because researchers using Opportunity’s science instruments identified them as concretions rich in the mineral hematite deposited by water saturating the bedrock. A picture of the “blueberries” from the same Microscopic Imager is PIA05564 .

The spherules at Kirkwood do not have the iron-rich composition of the blueberries. They also differ in concentration, distribution and structure. Some of the spherules in this image have been partially eroded away, revealing concentric internal structure. Opportunity’s science team plans to use the rover for further investigation of these spherules to determine what evidence they can provide about ancient Martian environmental conditions.

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Dog stands guard over deceased owner’s grave for six years

By

An extremely dedicated dog has continued to show its loyalty, keeping watch on its owner’s gravesix years after he passed away.

Capitan, a German shepherd, reportedly ran away from home after its owner, Miguel Guzman, died in 2006. A week later, the Guzman family found the dog sitting by his grave in central Argentina.

Miguel Guzman adopted Capitan in 2005 as a gift for his teenage son, Damian. And for the past six years, Capitan has continued to stand guard at Miguel’s grave. The family says the dog rarely leaves the site.

“We searched for him, but he had vanished,” widow Veronica Guzman told LaVoz.com. “We thought he must have got run over and died.

‘The following Sunday we went to the cemetery, and Damian recognized his pet. Capitan came up to us, barking and wailing as if he were crying.”

Adding to the unusual circumstances, Veronica says the family never brought Capitan to the cemetery before he was discovered there.

“It is a mystery how he managed to find the place,” she said.

Cemetery director Hector Baccega says he and his staff have begun feeding and taking care of Capitan.

“He turned up here one day, all on his own, and started wandering all around the cemetery until he eventually found the tomb of his master,” Baccega said.

“During the day he sometimes has a walk around the cemetery, but always rushes back to the grave. And every day, at six o’clock sharp, he lies down on top of the grave, stays there all night.”

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Arctic hunt finds mammoth remains

Via:BBC

A Russian-led expedition has found what it says are well preserved mammoth remains in Siberia but has downplayed reports that the material could be used to clone the ancient beast.

The skin and bone were recovered from a tunnel dug into the permafrost in the Ust-Yansk area of the Yakutia region on Russia’s Arctic coast.

The team hopes to find intact DNA that can be used to reproduce the creature.

But a member of the group told Reuters news agency this was doubtful.

“We are counting on our region’s permafrost to have kept some cells alive. But it is unlikely,” said Semyon Grigoryev, a professor at North-East Federal University (NEFU).

Most of the scientific community is highly sceptical that any mammoth cloning project could succeed. Genetic material still present in ancient remains would be so degraded as to make the task impracticable, experts say.

Mammoths first appeared in the Pliocene Epoch, 4.8 million years ago.

What caused their widespread disappearance at the end of the last Ice Age remains unclear; but climate change, overkill by human hunters, or a combination of both could have been to blame.

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Dark Energy Is Real, Say Astronomers

Via:Science Daily

Image created by NASA and ESA

After a two-year study led by Tommaso Giannantonio and Robert Crittenden, scientists conclude that the likelihood of its existence stands at 99.996 per cent. Their findings are published in the Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society.

Professor Bob Nichol, a member of the Portsmouth team, said: “Dark energy is one of the great scientific mysteries of our time, so it isn’t surprising that so many researchers question its existence.

“But with our new work we’re more confident than ever that this exotic component of the Universe is real — even if we still have no idea what it consists of.”

Over a decade ago, astronomers observing the brightness of distant supernovae realised that the expansion of the Universe appeared to be accelerating. The acceleration is attributed to the repulsive force associated with dark energy now thought to make up 73 per cent of the content of the cosmos. The researchers who made this discovery received the Nobel Prize for Physics in 2011, but the existence of dark energy remains a topic of hot debate.

Many other techniques have been used to confirm the reality of dark energy but they are either indirect probes of the accelerating Universe or susceptible to their own uncertainties. Clear evidence for dark energy comes from the Integrated Sachs Wolfe effect named after Rainer Sachs and Arthur Wolfe.

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