2012 - Science Or Superstition?/LEJ
LEJ: If that were the only thing I knew, that it was a consistent, ancient prophecy, I would note it - I might shudder in the dark of night - but I would leave it, if it were not for the coincidence of contemporary solar physics, with the sun spots climaxing in 2012. [Talk]
LEJ: The 12-21-12 prediction of the Mayan calendar is predicated on the assumption that the solar system travels around the galaxy in a predictable path and that on that particular date we will eclipse the center of the galaxy. There will be the Earth - here's the Sun - here's the center of the Milky Way. We will be cut off from a direct connection to the center of the Milky Way galaxy and we will therefore be deprived of a certain "energetic sustenance" that we require for continuing to live as we have. What could that mean?
The best description that was given to me - and I did go down to Guatemala and spend some time with Mayan shamans and they related to, when you lose power in your house, for some appliances and some functions, there's no problem - when the power comes back on, the lights go back on. But there are certain things - the VCR clock and the microwave that are thrown out of kilter, even for being cut off from that sustenance for just a second. And that is their physical explanation for the danger of this eclipse. [Talk]
LEJ: Solar storms will climax in 2012 and the global satellite system is, therefore, at risk. Let's examine what the global satellite system means to us: telecommunications, funds transfers, military, climate - everything bounces off a satellite. The fact of the matter is that a lot of these satellites are not "hardened" sufficiently against increased solar output. Moreover, I found out that a lot of our military communications had been, for reasons of budget - and I'm not sure why else - fobbed off onto commercial satellites, which are not hardened. So a lot of the basic military security that we rely on in the satellite system is open to solar attack.
Now what does that mean - solar attack? It's not that the Sun doesn't like us and is after us, there's no paranoia in this, it's simply that when the Sun has storms, it shoots out million-ton blasts of protons and other radiation. Most of it goes off in other directions, but a certain percentage of it will hit the Earth - it's just the law of averages.
Recently, we have found strange occurrences: usually it takes about 2-3 days for a coronal mass ejection - a CME, which is the term used for this blast - to travel from the Sun to the Earth. But in January 2005 there was one that made it in 30 minutes! Unless I'm suddenly seriously mistaken, if that thing had cut another 22 minutes off of its travel time - went down to eight minutes, which would be the speed of light, we would have been completely obliterated.
California-sized cracks are opening up in the Earth's magnetic field. The magnetic field is our shield against these coronal mass ejections and solar radiation, and when the crack opens up, our shields are down, Scotty. [Talk]
LEJ: There are a number of theories as to why the Sun is acting up in this way, and why in 2012 will be the next climax of such activity. I have become familiar with the world of a Dr. Alexey Dmitriev, a Russian geophysicist who for about a decade [as of 2008], has contended - in a nutshell - that our entire solar system is moving into an interstellar energy cloud. And this cloud is responsible for exciting the atmospheres of the planets, including the Earth, and particularly, the Sun. And the reason why the sunspots are growing stronger and more frequent is because we are moving into this cloud.
He based his findings on a lifetime of esteemed work and particularly, his team meticulously analysed Voyager satellite data. And we're seeing things we've never seen before. And he believes, and has devoted a good fifteen years to proving, that we've entered an energy cloud that we will remain in - probably, he guesses and cannot verify this - for about 3000 years, and this energy cloud is simply shaking things up. It's having its strongest direct effect on the Sun, which in turn, has effect on all the other planets, including the Earth.
So that's the most well-researched theory as to why the Sun is behaving strangely. Most scientists, I think, will give you that it may well be the most active that the Sun has been since the end of the last ice age. So we can't really infer reliably from earthbound data, which is all we have, how the Sun acted before the end of the last ice age. But it appears that since then, this is the wildest it has been. Virtually everyone well agree that 2012 is the next year of solar climax. [Talk]
LEJ: Lots has been said about a potential pole shift. It seems clear that the [magnetic] poles are beginning to move at rates that have not been ever measured before. Whether or not this is the beginning of an actual pole shift, or more, how long this will actually take, I don't think anybody can say. But of more immediate concern is 2012. The consequences for us, here, are going to be greater, for the satellite system, for our health in terms of skin cancer and cataracts in the eyes - a host of health-related issues, and perhaps - there is a growing body of evidence that earthquakes, volcanoes and hurricanes are related to solar input. We have to learn and fast. At least we have to get a sense of the magnitude of this connection and what we might be able to do to minimise this effect. [Talk]
LEJ: If a pole shift occurred within the next few years, it would disrupt civilisation as we know it. Would it be the end of life as we know it? No. But it would be such a major change that it would mark the end of an era that we probably all had assumed was eternal. [Talk]