by Robert M. Schoch
One of my major conclusions is that the last ice age ended abruptly
circa 9700 BC due to a major solar outburst (or series of
outbursts). Solar activity is intimately tied to climate changes on
Earth, which in turn have major effects on life on our planet,
For example, in historical times during the Maunder Minimum (circa 1645 to 1715) the Sun appeared to "shut down" or go dormant (as reflected in the rarity of sunspots), corresponding on Earth to the middle of the "Little Ice Age" (which in totality lasted from circa 1500 to circa 1860).
At the end of the "Little Ice Age," in 1859, the Sun "burped," spewing out two coronal mass ejections (CMEs), accompanied by solar flares and other solar activity, that hit Earth. This become known as the Carrington Event (named after British astronomer Richard Carrington who observed a solar flare that preceded the main event).
At the time unusual
auroras were seen around the world due to the solar outburst, and
the primitive mid-nineteenth century telegraph lines were overloaded
by the incoming charged particles and accompanying geomagnetic
A Carrington-level event
could knock out modern electronics around the globe, bringing
computer systems, electrical grids, the Internet, communications,
satellites, and much more to a standstill. 2
Prior to 9700 BC sophisticated cultures - civilization - had developed (witnessed dramatically by the archaeological remains found at Göbekli Tepe in southeastern Turkey).
This early cycle of
civilization was devastated by the
solar outbursts of circa 9700 BC and a solar-induced dark age (or SIDA for short, an acronym coined by my wife Catherine Ulissey)
ensued for thousands of years until civilization fully re-emerged in
places such as Mesopotamia and Egypt during the period of circa 4000
BC to 3000 BC.
If a Carrington-level
event, much less a solar outburst at the level of that at the end of
the last ice age, were to hit us today, power lines would be
disabled, the cooling systems and other components of nuclear power
plants would be compromised, and we would have
type situations or worse around the world releasing
radioactivity into the environment, compounding all of the other
problems brought on by the failure of modern electronic and
electrical systems. 3
I suspect very high! I do not want to be a scaremonger or doomsayer, but there is evidence to suggest that our Sun is going through a volatile period, with major ups and downs in activity. 4
Some researchers suggest that although the Sun was very active in the last few decades, it has in recent years gone into a quiescence period. Some even claim we might be headed for another "ice age" (whether a mini or major ice age). 5
I feel this is an invalid extrapolation of the limited data we have.
That is, we should not extrapolate from a few years (or even a couple of decades) of relatively low solar activity to the conclusion that we are imminently entering another ice age. Indeed, the Sun may suddenly become active again, or it might undergo a major solar outburst even in the midst of an overall period of relative inactivity.
The 1859 Carrington Event occurred
between a solar minimum and a solar maximum during a rather mediocre
solar cycle; based on short-term methods of analyses, it is unlikely
to have been predicted even with modern techniques (at the time,
scientists were not even aware of the modern concept of major solar
outbursts so no one was even attempting such predictions).
The implication is we may experience a major solar outburst in the very near future. Indeed, in July 2012 a significant solar outburst barely missed hitting Earth. 7
If the eruption had occurred just a week or so earlier it would have been Earth-directed, and most likely destroyed or compromised much of our modern electronic and electrical technology and infrastructure.
Even now, years later, we would still be attempting to rebuild the modern world.
And the July 2012 event
occurred during our current solar cycle, 8 which has been unusually
quiet overall, to the point that (as noted above) some people
predict a partial solar shutdown and a "mini ice age" or even the
beginning of a true ice age.
I wonder, in all seriousness,
A Conscious Sun?
Solar flares and accompanying coronal mass ejections (CMEs)
can erupt from sunspots, so sunspots and their activity are a
potential short-term indicator of an impending major solar outburst
that, if Earth-directed, could cause massive devastation to our
modern technological society, as might have happened if the July
2012 solar eruption had hit us.
Then, as they move around to the side and back of the Sun (as viewed from Earth; the Sun rotates on its axis and of course Earth revolves around the Sun), these same sunspots begin firing again, increasing their activity dramatically.
It is as if the Sun is aware of Earth’s
presence and is attempting to avoid spewing a major solar outburst
(whether a solar flare, CME, or some other type of solar eruption)
directly at us.
Stars typically move around the centre of the galaxy in which they are located. Standard theory predicts that stars closest to the galactic centre should revolve more rapidly than those farther from the centre (just as Mercury travels more rapidly around the Sun than does Saturn, which is much farther from the Sun).
However, this proves not to be the case.
On the whole, stars farther from the galactic centre move more rapidly than stars closer to the galactic centre; it is as if all of the stars are mounted on a huge rotating wheel. Another problem with standard theory is that the masses of clusters of galaxies (as best as can be calculated based on our observations) are not great enough to hold the clusters together gravitationally.
To address these issues, the concept of "Dark Matter" has been hypothesized.
In simple terms, Dark Matter, which according to its advocates is said to compose the majority of matter in the universe, is essentially undetectable except for its gravitational effects on visible matter and radiation.
Supposedly, Dark Matter can explain the anomalous movements of stars and the clustering of galaxies.
In one of his articles, Gregory Matloff defines,
The existence of such consciousness in stars, which
are following a herding instinct (similar to a school of fish
swimming together or a flock of birds flying together), would
adequately explain their otherwise anomalous motions. Is this a
simpler explanation than invoking Dark Matter?
Young stars emit intense jets of material, often bipolar but not necessarily symmetrical.
Asymmetric jets exuded by young stars could be used to preferentially change and adjust their trajectories. Mature stars, such as our Sun, emit a "solar wind" consisting of electrically-charged particles. Variations in the intensity, in various directions, of the solar wind could change the path of the star.
One must remember that, as Matloff points out, changes in the trajectory of a star that may be "significant" to the star over its long lifetime of millions or billions of years (our Sun is estimated to be nearly five billion years old) may appear trivial or imperceptible to us.
The use by our Sun of jets and variations in the solar wind to express will and volition could be related to the idea that our Sun may consciously attempt to avoid throwing solar eruptions toward Earth - and if this is the case, it is then also the case that the Sun could consciously decide at some point to hit Earth with a major solar outburst.
Is this what happened at the end
of the last ice age, circa 9700 BC? Or was the solar outburst at
that time an "accident"?
Electromagnetic radiation pressure seems like a plausible possibility, although little work has been done to model how great the variation would have to be to change a star’s trajectory.
Possibly changes in electromagnetic radiation could be used volitionally by stars for other purposes, such as communication among themselves.
Psychokinesis (also known as telekinesis or mind-over-matter) has, to my satisfaction, been demonstrated to exist among biological organisms such as humans. 12
Whether psychokinesis could (or does) exist among other conscious entities,
such as possibly stars, is currently unknown - although I am not
aware of any theoretical reason why it should not.
A common notion, which is not to say it is correct (all too often common notions and "common sense" are wrong), is that consciousness and volition (at least in nature) can only occur in carbon-based forms of biological organisms, and many people would limit the notion of consciousness to "advanced" biological organisms like vertebrates, mammals, or, according to some, only human beings.
However, various researchers have argued
that consciousness may arise at a quantum level and may not be
limited to familiar biological organisms such as ourselves.
As it turns out, according to such analyses, the conditions conducive to the manifestation of consciousness may occur on and in stars.
Indeed, at a more fundamental level, consciousness may be inherent to the manifestation of matter and exist throughout the universe - with most conscious beings taking forms other than "biological organisms," yet we as carbon-based life forms may have a difficult time recognizing consciousness in other forms of matter.
The physicist Max Tegmark (Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Cambridge, USA) has suggested consciousness may be a "state of matter" ("perceptronium") 14 - perhaps this is a state of matter that our Sun, and stars more generally, possess.
Furthermore, there may be a correlation between earthquakes and major atmospheric disturbances, such as cyclone activity, on our planet. 16
When we look at traditional mythologies and ancient beliefs, many past cultures considered the Sun and stars to be conscious entities - and this can perhaps be seen as the basis of astrology.
The gods were associated with stars (including objects in the sky that we now classify as planets), and the ancient Egyptians (to give but one example) hoped to be united with the Sun and stars upon death.
Plato in Timaeus (circa 360 BC) wrote,
Building on such ideas, my wife Katie has speculated that perhaps when human beings die their hydrogen is released (hydrogen can potentially carry information, and many would argue that information is an essential element of consciousness) and at least some of the hydrogen escapes to space where it collects as clouds, collapses under gravitational attraction, is compressed, and ultimately gives rise to stars - stars which may retain some of the information, some of the consciousness aspects, of the former beings who gave up their hydrogen. In this way, perhaps we (and possibly all biological organisms) may be reborn as stars.
Of course, this is a highly
speculative hypothesis, 18 but if we can demonstrate our
other stars are conscious, it may lend support to the idea that
ultimately (perhaps after a number of incarnations on Earth) we join
our consciousnesses with those of the Sun and stars.
What might we conclude? Is our Sun conscious?
While the consciousness of our Sun and the stars has yet to be definitively demonstrated, I do not think we should simply dismiss the idea.
Indeed, a conscious Sun and stars may go a long
way toward explaining various "anomalies" that standard paradigms
cannot readily accommodate.