Wednesday, April 29, 2009

NASA Sees Potential Solar Problems in 2012

A group of NASA researchers have added startling reinforcement to the gathering concerns about the year 2012. In a report entitled Severe Space Weather Events: Understanding Societal and Economic Impacts, they describe consequences of solar flares unleashing waves of energy capable of disrupting Earth’s magnetic field, overwhelming high-voltage transformers with vast electrical currents and short-circuiting the planet’s energy grids.

According to the report, the next period of intense solar activity is expected in 2012, and coincides with the presence of an unusually large hole in Earth’s geomagnetic shield. But, according to Wired magazine, the report has received relatively little attention, perhaps because of 2012’s supernatural connotations. Mayan astronomers supposedly predicted that 2012 would mark the calamitous "birth of a new era."

Whether the Mayans were on to something won’t be known for several years. But Lawrence Joseph, author of Apocalypse 2012: A Scientific Investigation into Civilization’s End, told Wired magazine: "I’ve been following this topic for almost five years, and it wasn’t until the report came out that this really began to freak me out."

Click here for the complete Wired article.
Click here to purchase a copy of the Severe Space Weather Events report.


Sylvie said...

Funny, I never thought of the 2012 Mayan thing as "supernatural". They were astronomers, and have been correct on everything else astronomically speaking. I figured they were predicting an anomalous event in our galaxy for that time, based largely on the science as they knew it.

It has happened before and the Earth is still here. I'm sure we'll manage. It's an interesting time to be alive, IMO. Hopefully it won't turn out to be a total dud.

Gregory LeFever said...

I agree with you, Sylvie. Especially on the 'supernatural' part, which I mindlessly lifted right from the Wired article without a second thought.

I admit I've been distressed to already see the cable TV build-up to 2012, nearly all of it designed to instill fear and anxiety, much like the Y2K non-event of the year 2000 millennial passage. Very little is being said about the Mayan concept of moving to a new age, especially one of potentially increased enlightenment and harmony.

Evidently fear provides higher viewer ratings than harmony. If today is any indication, the fear mongering should reach a crescendo over the next two years. (I wonder sometimes if I'm just adding to it with posts like this one.)

I hope trying to scare your fellow humans will not be part of the new age.

christopher said...

Greg you are right about the fear mongering. I have seen the History channel shows. There are bunches of books too. Many opinions seem to stress the darker side because other prophecies besides the Maya prophecy do so, perhaps because it sells better. Many are linked together.

I saw another opinion, however, that the Mayan calender ended at the long count basically because they didn't need to go further, it being so far in their future. It was not in this opinion that they were so strongly concerned about some end of the world, but that they could easily add more when they needed to. That article showed the way the calendars the Mayans used meshed like gears to generate identified dates. I liked that down to earth opinion.

There is a real astronomical alignment "pinpointed" by the date in 2012, a merging of two cycles, but the one is precise, earth-centered, the winter solstice, and the other MUCH more arbitrary and collapsed, alignment with the galactic center, not at all clear where it really is, but it is close to where they think, just like much of astrology, from the actual spacetime to a two dimensional chart and some other listed measurements. The fact is that this alignment is geocentric and chosen with the irregularity smoothed out.

However, intuitives are getting into this act. And there really is a cycle, and it seems possible that the winter solstice is actually a good timing mechanism, itself a yearly cycle extreme, mapping the shortest northern hemisphere day.


Gregory LeFever said...

Lots of good information, Christopher! Thanks for your insightful comments.

On the fear front, you mention the actual planetary alignment that'll occur 12/21/12. I noticed recently how some people are saying that the "galactic center" with which Earth and the sun will align is actually a black hole in the center of the universe, spelling doom for us all.

More to come ...

christopher said...

To consider the alignment is a are we not aligned with the center of the galaxy right now? :) I mean in such a way that whatever is at the center, and scientist generally agree that a typical galactic black hole resides there, does not now affect us. There is an alignment of special nature at the winter solstice, 2012, but it is mainly based on the ways that we have decided to divide things up, a map of the sky that requires an inner earth centered logic, and not an alignment that the universe itself has decided.

Things would get out of kilter if we were basing things on our life on Mars, for example. The ecliptic plane would shift a touch, and the seasons would shift completely. The tropical zodiac would completely change and the zodiac of constellations would shift a little. Our vision a galactic central alignment would be subtly different, and taking the Mars/Sun relationship as primary would alter planetary alignments considerably, including how Terra would now replace Mars in the dynamic.

This is not to say that I doubt the basic issue of galactic alignment, just that I would argue for temperance, based on the geocentric and ethnocentric impositions on the data.

By the way, writing it that way, it's a slam dunk the numerologists are involved - 12/21/12 - and nine is a completion number, a final result, and preparation for the changeover to the new regime - unless your math is base nine, as an example of imposition. The system of measure creates a great many of the issues.

Gregory LeFever said...

Those are very provocative comments, Christopher, and your years of study are showing. If I'm understanding you about the nature of "alignment" and what's being aligned with what, I couldn't agree more.

The numerology aspect had not occurred to me because I have only passing knowledge of it, but appreciate you making that astute observation regarding 12/21/12.

christopher said...

I am indeed a serious student of astrology and other systems, Greg, but I also know some of the sciences better than average and learned from my Dad the dangers of the illusion of central position. I am not sure how much of the 2012 stuff is part of that illusion :)

The illusion places me (or us) in the center of the universe. Thus if we set it up, then because it is us, then it's right. And if we divide space to base 12, time to base 60, the year to base 12, and the rest of our math to base 10, all of these are right and natural. But then I Ching and computers are base 2 numbers.

Oh yes, metric is base 10. What? Chaos. A dozen eggs on it! Not everyone agrees, and the Romans used Roman Numerals.