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Saul/Paul on the Road to Damascus: Cosmic Airburst?

saul damascus

 

The early evangelist Paul became a Christian because of a dazzling light on the road to Damascus, but one astronomer thinks it was an exploding meteor

NEARLY two thousand years ago, a man named Saul had an experience that changed his life, and possibly yours as well. According to Acts of the Apostles, the fifth book of the biblical New Testament, Saul was on the road to Damascus, Syria, when he saw a bright light in the sky, was blinded and heard the voice of Jesus. Changing his name to Paul, he became a major figure in the spread of Christianity.

William Hartmann, co-founder of the Planetary Science Institute in Tucson, Arizona, has a different explanation for what happened to Paul. He says the biblical descriptions of Paul’s experience closely match accounts of the fireball meteor seen above Chelyabinsk, RussiaMovie Camera, in 2013.

Hartmann has detailed his argument in the journal Meteoritics & Planetary Science (doi.org/3vn). He analyses three accounts of Paul’s journey, thought to have taken place around AD 35. The first is a third-person description of the event, thought to be the work of one of Jesus’s disciples, Luke. The other two quote what Paul is said to have subsequently told others.

“Everything they are describing in those three accounts in the book of Acts are exactly the sequence you see with a fireball,” Hartmann says. “If that first-century document had been anything other than part of the Bible, that would have been a straightforward story.”

Falling meteor may have changed the course of Christianity, New Scientist, April 22, 2015

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  • Hermann Burchard

    Brilliant paper by Wm Hartmann, very carefully researched & sourced.

    No doubt, the Road to Damascus event was Chelyabinsk-like. This interpretation of the event had never occurred to anyone before, apparently.

    WH mentions several other historical & similar meteors, including Ensisheim of 7 November 1492 seen by Albrecht Duerer from Basel near the flight path. He depicted the bright flash in his famous engraving “Melencolia I,” see Ursula Marvin, Meteoritics 27, p 28 (1992).

    Ursula Marvin (age 93), Harvard-Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory, has an asteroid and an Antarctic mountain named after her.
    https://www.cfa.harvard.edu/hea/sws/marvin.html

  • Steve Garcia

    Hermann, yes a very good paper. Turning an ancient account into something scientifically objective is a freaking difficult thing to do, and it appears William Hartmann has done a great job of it. I can envision this paper being cited in other papers, long into the future.

    One possibility not mentioned in the paper is that Saul may have actually been knocked unconscious briefly.

    – The one account in Acts mentioned that the others were standing, but Saul had been knocked to the ground.

    – During a brief unconscious event dream-like episodes can occur within seconds. This would not be terribly unlike the near-death experience of a tunnel and people encouraging the nearly dead person to “go to the light”. (I can attest to such dream-like episodes in two such events, though they were not near death experiences.)

    – During brief nodding-off periods sounds in the immediate environment can be incorporated into a dream. This does, of course, happen during normal dream states, too.

    – The static-like sound which to others would not have sounded like talk might have been heard in a dream state as a voice – and in the dream Saul could have seen himself responding to the perceived voice.

    Thus, if what Saul experienced was an airburst whose shock wave knocked him to the ground, then if it also knocked him unconscious for a few seconds, Saul hd not a hallucination but a dream state in which his dream mind interpreted the static sounds as a dialog between someone else and himself. Upon recovering consciousness, slower than the others, Saul would have seen them standing up (already or still). When he asked if they also had heard the voice that he had “heard” in his dream state, they would have reported in the negative.

    All of the above about Saul getting knocked out is speculative but based on what is in Hartmann’s paper and not much of a stretch. The other accounts and paintings/drawings showing prone people suggests that those people were not just knocked over but perhaps knocked out, too. And if that is possible with those, why not with Saul, too?

  • This article was very interesting, but I wasn’t ready to post. I’ve been a lurker here for years and had given up on posting in public forums. After reading over 120 books on this subject I was compelled to publish a book that I’m sure some here will find a real eye opener. After reading a boat load of comparative mythology it has become clear that mankind globally, all tell the same story of fire from the sky being the cause of four dark ages. Come to find out, mythology evolves through the generations and they loose the true meaning of the story, but retain enough of the story that when seen juxtaposition it all fits together. They speak of when, where, and how, plus describe the phenomena in the atmosphere and orbital positions and cycles of where it came from and where it went. It is strange no one has put it all together until now. When I started really searching for images of Gobekli Tepe a couple of months ago I was shocked that others can’t see what it means. For instance the three ‘locks’ or ‘man bags’ are libation pails to propitiate the gods, this is later seen numerous times in Sumerian art as three vases on the top “shelf”. And there is more, I didn’t even put that last part in the book because I have yet to figure out exactly what it means, but I hint at what it could be. It seems that mankind is Comet-ose to his own knowledge.

    https://sites.google.com/site/fromthedeepoceanabove/

  • Steve Garcia

    [Version 1] The men who were traveling with him stood speechless, hearing the voice but seeing no one. Saul arose from the ground; and when his eyes were opened, he could see nothing; so they led him by the hand and brought him into Damascus. And for three days he was without sight… a disciple at Damascus named Ananıas [came to the house where Saul was staying,] laying hands on him … and immediately something like scales fell from his eyes and he regained his sight.

    And when I could not see because of the brightness of that light, I was led by the hand by those who were with me, and came into Damascus. And one Ananıas, a devout man according to the law, well-spoken of by all the Jews who lived there, came to me, and standing by me said to me, “Brother Saul, receive your sight.” And in that hour I received my sight and saw him…

    There is such a thing as “Blast-Related Ocular Trauma”. Wiki: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Blast-related_ocular_trauma

    It discusses war-related injuries mostly, but a blast is a blast, differing in certain ways, but as it can affect the eyes, one of the symptoms is blindness which may or may not be temporary.

    Under “MECHANISM OF INJURY” is this:

    “Ocular trauma may result from primary blast exposure. Spallation forces arise as the blast wave displaces a dense medium across a less dense interface, and inertial forces may cause displacement of optical structures. Primary blast ocular trauma therefore comprises non-penetrating mechanical injuries such as hyphemas [blood showing in the white or iris], ruptured globes, conjunctival hemorrhage, serous retinitis, and orbital fracture..”

    Not all hyphemas have visible blood. Some hyphemas heal naturally by themselves.

    The ocular trauma discussed is specifically experienced in war zone explosions, normally in close proximity (including IEDs). I would GUESS that such trauma experiences higher PSI than an airburst such as Saul is hypothesized to have experienced. I’d have to think that if the other members of his party didn’t even notice anything then somehow they WERE shielded from it, not only from overpressure but also from not seeing anything related to an airburst – no flash in the sky, no “boom!” – and certainly no overpressure. All of this suggests Saul’s experience was far from the airburst itself and probably a weak overpressure. Certanily had the airburst been close or very large, the others would have experienced SOMETHING. In the lack of evidence of them experiencing any or all of that, the local effects near Saul must have been diminished, including lowere overpressure levels.

    Add in that “Saul, receive your sight” is a TRANSLATION, we initially do not know WHAT was actually said. It could have been “Saul, it looks to me like your sight is going to return.” Which the then Paul would have presented in the most faith-based manner. IT’S A MIRACLE!

    One can speculate this scenario:

    1. By chance, Saul was facing the airburst.
    2. By chance, the others weren’t.
    3. Due to some vagaries on how the people were arranged/turned/shielded by terrain (or even trees), Saul got the full brunt of the overpressure wave while the others did not.
    4. Saul was hit by the overpressure wave with his eyes affected especially.
    5. Saul was knocked over and knocked out, but only briefly.
    6. When Saul arose, he had been blinded by blast-related ocular trauma.
    7. Saul experienced a slight case of hyphema.
    8. Saul was blinded, but only temporarily.
    9. Saul’s blindness lifting when it did may have simply been a coincidence.
    10. Ananias was a religious man who was also a healer of some sort (he laid his hands on Saul), whose experience was respected and consulted.
    11. Ananias saw something that told him that Saul’s eyesight was going to come back very shortly.
    12. Saul’s blindness spontaneously went into remission, as it should have from a weak overpressure situation.
    13. Ananias was credited by the religious yokels (within which classification we place Saul/Paul himself) as having removed the blindness (metaphorically lifting “something like scales” from Saul’s eyes).

    This last quoted phrase is simply too close to the Christian idea of “faith lifting the scales from one’s eyes”, and it should be seen in terms of using THAT phrase by THAT person – the one who STARTED the whole belief system of Christianity (and turning Jesus into more than a revolutionary Jewish rabbi and into “The Son of God”).

    I mean, these guys with Saul were neither trained observers nor mental giants, not in that group with THAT group think, nor was he. Though his companions were anti-Christian, they obviously were religious zealots; it takes a religious zealot to go around attacking others and their religion. Logic and critical thinking were pretty much by definition not present. In addition, this IS from Saul/Paul himself, writing AFTER his possibly self-delusional “conversion”. IOW, the phrase might very possibly have been projected onto the scenario by a faith-based person – SAUL – much like people who think their prayers or prayers of others cured someone. The phrase to me is a dead giveaway that there were no actual scales; it’s just almost word-for-word the same Christian phrase about faith. For someone like Saul/Paul, who wanted to bludgeon everyone who didn’t believe like he did, EVERYTHING was about winning the argument and forcing others to think like he did. So, ALL phrasings of all scenarios after his conversion had to do with convincing people. This story – being so central – simply can NOT be taken at face value but as a post-event editing job/spin job/sales spiel.

    That Saul/Paul also put himself in a position of reneging on his historically violent approach to Christians, and in doing so, he HAD to convince people of the legitimacy of his “conversion”. So, with the writing begin done later – when Saul was embroiled in all of that suspicion about WTF his motives were and could anyone trust him – and this moment having been THE one he had to convince them of – OF COURSE he was going to phrase it so that the Christians would believe him. He might as well have been an ad man trying to SELL “Paul, the new, CHANGED man!” He NEEDED it to sound like a miracle.

    An airburst even now is a not-well-understood event. So much less so in that time. And they are – as we know – rare. THAT part was “a miracle”, that Saul just happened to be there then, and that it happened close enough to affect him with overpressure and far enough away that he was not blinded for life. What happened to him, he didn’t know. That no one else with him did, makes the entire account weird, to say the least. But – if we can believe a KNOWN conniving (shall we say?) “used car salesman” and his account – it is QUITE cogent that no one else with him experienced anything of what he describes. A fish story? A miracle.

    With the slow progression of studies and thinking about impacts and airbursts that Gene Shoemaker blessed us all with, whenever any scientist finds ANY account that has characteristics of an ET event, it IS incumbent of on him/her to pursue the possibilities and lay them out for all to see.

    Hartmann did a nice job with this.

  • Steve Garcia

    The mention of Chelyabinsk and the New Scientist article “Russian meteor will teach us about future bigger hitshttps://www.newscientist.com/article/dn23178-russian-meteor-will-teach-us-about-future-bigger-hits/ intrigues me.

    That article was dated Feb 15, 2013, the very same DAY that the meteor airburst south of Chelyabinsk.

    Things in it that made me cringe:

    Q1. Did they actually learn anything in the weeks and months that followed? About what? Airbursts? Or “hits”?
    Q2. Did what they ended up learning have any lessons about “big hits”?
    Q3. Did Chelyabinsk have anything about it that was a “big hit”? (LOL — What IS this? A Top-40 musical hit list? Was Chelyabinsk’s meteor a rising hit “with a bullet”?

    A1. Chelyabinsk was an airburst. Not a hit.

    A2. Ahhh, yeah the one meter thing at the bottom of lake Chebarkul – but if that is a “big hit” we all are being stroked. BADLY.

    A3. Chelyabinsk was the biggest ANYTHING since another AIRBURST, Tunguska. It is possible that the last accepted “big hit” was the Barringer crater object – 50,000 years ago. If you count our YD impact object, then the last one was 12,800 years ago. (Even Barringer, at 50kya, is a rebuttal to all the “big ones only happen every million years or three” poppycock…)

    What I learned from Chelyabinsk:

    S1. Bolides come in at low angles. I don’t think there is even ONE videotaped bolide that came in higher than 45°, and I don’t think any of them came close to 45°. Al of them are damned near horizontal as they appear on videos – suggesting that they were all at or below Chelyabinsk’s 20° entry angle. (And since the longer they ar in the atmosphere the steeper the angle gets, the initial entry angles of video-ed bolides had to be even LOWER than what has been seen.

    There is NO way an object the size of Tunguska (200 to 600 feet across) could come through our very thin atmosphere at a steep angle and not make it to the ground. So, one had to think that the ANGLE of Tunguska’s entry is what made it an airburst. It’s long time within the atmosphere shrunk it – just as Chelyabinsk shrunk by about 90% before the big airburst.

    But THAT is alarming, unless the scientists allowed for the 90% ablation losses and determined that Tunguska was 200-600 feet across as it ENTERED the atmosphere, not 200-600 feet when it airburst. If the latter, the initial object would have been ~10 times bigger. THAT is scary.***

    S2. Chelyabinsk’s qualitative characteristics seem almost identical to Tunguska, except for the size. It came in on a VERY similar geographical heading, from slightly south of east. It came in about dawn, whereas Tunguska was early morning before dawn. The REGION was even the same – Siberia. The latitude was very similar. Does this suggest when bigger objects come in, that they tend to come from THAT heading? Is there anything about Apollo asteroids that would suggest such similarities?

    S3. Chelyabinsk’s size at that low entry angle was incapable of doing any major harm. 10,000 similar meteors would do what? Okay, class, now, answer with me… “They will break glass, which will cut people.” This UNMENTIONED FACT has been completely MISSED by the astronomers.

    But this is a VERY freaking important quality of Chelyabinsk – it didn’t do SQUAT. It was insufficiently large and insufficiently coherent to survive very far down into the atmosphere. It was in the atmosphere so long that it shed 90% of its mass (to ablation), and the remaining ~10% was a cream puff, as far as any danger to the Earth is concerned. Why would 10,000 of them act like Chelyabinsk did? Because there is no “team” in incoming meteors. Each one does its thing alone. Whether 500 meters away or 500 meters ahead or behind, each one does one thing: It compresses air ahead of itself, and this compressed air in turn heats up the leading face of the object. What is happening to one of them does not affect how its “neighbors” act..For each one, it is ITS speed compressing ITS “target air”, and that target air affects the object back. There is nothing in that equation that indicates that one object will affect how its neighbors act.

    Ergo, we do NOT have to worry about Chelyabinsk meteors – 1 or 2 or 120 or 1,000 of them or even 10,000 or more.

    S4. Taken with Tunguska, Chelyabinsk kind of brackets semi-large meteors. Not only did Chelyabinsk not do much, Tunguska didn’t either. Blowing over a bunch of trees frankly doesn’t impress me, and I DO know how string trees are. (They were evergreen trees, and like most if not all evergreens, their wood is soft and WEAK.) If Tunguska had blown over a county full of oak trees or maples, I’d be more impressed, by far. Not only that, but I pretty clearly remember a freak STORM in central Wisconsin, around the city of Phillips. This was back in the late 1970s or early 1980s. I googled it once and didn’t find much online. A swath of trees running WSW>ENE was clipped off about 10 feet off the ground. The swath ran for about 100 miles or so, and it was a few hundred yards wide. The total area was not a while lot less than the area of the Tunguska trees. A bit later it was suggested that the jet stream had somehow dipped low, almost to the ground, an the high-velocity jet stream winds are what felled all those (perhaps) millions of trees. So, knocking over a really lot of trees is not something unique to Tunguska.

    So, if not even Tunguska would have done much more than destroy one small city, what reason should we have to fear ANY Chelyabinsk-sized meteors?

    S5. Something unique to yours truly… A reading of the “mythical” account of Phaeton, sounds like Chelyabinsk, almost to a “T”. I won’t go into it right now, but trust me, it doesn’t take a lot of twisting of the story to see it in the sky over Chelyabinsk that day.

    In that way, Phaeton, Chelyabinsk and Saul’s conversion all kind of fit the same mold.

    S6. One of the ways blasts are measured or “reverse-measured” is by the PSI (GPa) of its shock wave – overpressure (which we all got into back in 2013). There is every reason to believe that a sufficiently large airburst would have an overpressure strong enough to knock out Saul. It only takes 1 PSI or so to blow out glass windows. This simple chart lays out the basics, as they are understood at present: imagehttp://image.slidesharecdn.com/blastdamageresultingfromoverpressure-150416041746-conversion-gate01/95/blast-damage-resulting-from-overpressure-5-638.jpg?cb=1429157947

    So, Chelyabinsk seems to have been between 1 and 2 psi overpressure – probably about 1.25 or so. But no one was injured by the overpressure directly, only from the flying glass shards. This would suggest that Saul’s airburst – if real – would have to have been higher at his location, but not TOO much higher.

    S7. Let’s not forget how much I learned about ablation. I’d asked before, “WHAT in a meteor is exploding???” I didn’t understand THAT at all. And it turned out that meteors do not explode after all, not the way we normally think of exploding. It’s all ablation and then – when the object gets small enough by ablating away the body materials – a weakened object breaks apart in a big flash, more or less like a space shuttle does without shielding.

    *** At the same time, if Tunguska was 200-600 feet across at the time of airburst – and much larger earlier – we would have widened the “safe” range of ET objects by a LOT. THAT is not a bad thing… I need to check which is true, though…

  • The Russians said that the light was so bright that one had to look away. Arc welding blindness produces a feeling of sand in the eyes and one gets crusty eyelids from sleeping afterwards. In antiquity people heard voices in the rustling of leaves, waves, and thunder. Maybe the others were lagging behind and the spectacle was blocked by a mountain, because they said they heard the voice, but didn’t see the light. There are better stories from even older sources.

    From the Egyptian Destruction of Mankind : There is no eye among mankind which can withstand thine eye when it descendeth in the form of the Goddess Hathor.

    From cuneiform text : Marduk, taking his most powerful weapon, the thunderbolt, in his hand and mounts his chariot, which is driven by fiery steeds. He set the lightning in front of him, with burning flame he filled his body and made straight for the hostile camp. The sight of the God inspires terror on all sides. The Lord clothed in terror of overpowering brightness, which all beheld, came nearer with his eye fixed upon Tiamat, piercing with his glance at Kingu her consort. Kingu starts back in alarm. He cannot endure the, majestic halo, which surrounds Marduk. Kingu’s associates – the monsters – are terrified at their leader’s discomfiture. Tiamat alone does not lose her courage. Marduk, brandishing his great Thunderstone Weapon, addresses Tiamat : Why hast thou set thy mind upon stirring up destructive contest ?

    “Then the earth did shake and quake, the foundations also of the mountains did tremble ; they were shaken, because he was wroth. Smoke arose up in his nostrils, and fire out of his mouth did devour ; coals flamed forth from him. He bowed the heavens also, and came down ; and thick darkness was under his feet. And he rode upon a cherub (winged bull), and did fly ; yea, he did swoop down upon the wings of the wind. He made darkness his hiding-place, his pavilion round about him ; darkness of waters, thick clouds of the skies. At the brightness before him, there passed through his thick clouds hailstones and coals of fire. The Lord also thundered in the heavens, and the most high gave forth his voice ; hailstones and coal of fire. And he sent out his arrows, and scattered them ; and he shot forth lightnings, and discomfited them. And the channels of waters appeared, and the foundations of the world were laid bare, at thy rebuke, O Lord, at the Blast of the breath of thy nostrils.” Psalm XVIII 8 : 16

    I’m certain that the term “lightning” is corrupted/evolved and should be interchanged with “bright bolide” in many cases. Around the world cultures describe serpents and glowing light coming down from the heavens. When I see lightning it is instant (not wavy) and doesn’t go (travel) across the sky. And it certainly doesn’t smoke or leave two vorticies as is demonstrated around the globe. The central American people depict the phenomena with a flowing mustache and the Chinese describe two dragons chasing a pearl (which is a great analogy of a bright bolide). If you look on my site https://sites.google.com/site/fromthedeepoceanabove/ I think it is clear that the vorticies and the “lightning” symbol of Adad and also of Ishtar are much more representative of the super bolide than of lightning. Also “lightning” is associated with the Thunder Axe which is a very ancient symbol and is most probable the hammer of Thor which is thrown and we all know hammers are only used that way when very angry.

  • Steve Garcia

    Bard – Good stuff. While I sometimes point out that scientists will simply not accept ancient accounts, I MYSELF don’t diss them at all. If nothing else, they are good pointers for looking for evidence of impacts. Bolides will be rally tough to find evidence of. Even for Chelyabinsk and Tunguska, were we KNOW the event occurred, finding fragments is not so easy. The snow at Chelyabinsk helped a LOT, but still not that much mass outside of the lake at Chebarkul has been found. And that was only a 1-meter left-over chunk with a hole in the ice pointing straight at it. How much more difficulty would it have been if it was summer?

    It would be LOVELY if accounts like the above could lead people to fragments. Not likely, though.

    In terms of what the descriptions say, some of the passages I’d like to comment on…

    YES, don’t EVER look directly at what an arc welder is doing. Even a brief look – less than a second – can screw up your vision for a good bit and burn out part of your retina if you look longer.

    “The Lord clothed in terror of overpowering brightness” — Think of the normal wood fire of the times. It’s color even in an efficient fire would only sometimes reach blue. Mostly it is orange and yellow – very cool for a fire. A white light is common for US, but super uncommon for them then.

    Hahaha – during the recent meteor shower, I was up at 3:00-4:00 am. I saw quite a few small blip shooting stars. But ONE flared right in my line of sight – more than a hand span long. It widened and widened, before flaring fully and then shrinking quickly to nothing, and the image was on my retinas for maybe 5-10 minutes. I wasn’t counting. I KNOW that had I been around Chelyabinsk that morning in 2013 I would have looked directly at the flaring object with its white center. MAYBE I’d have thought in terms of welders and realized I needed to look away a bit. In my mind’s eye, I can see the afterglow on my retina better than I can the initial flare-up.

    WHAT would an ancient people have done? Looked at it. Saul would have. They wouldn’t know WTF it was. From HIS religious acculturation, he would have projected a god out of it. He might easily also have projected that the god wouldn’t BE there if it wasn’t for some purpose. And being the massive egocentric that he seems from the Bible, Saul would have rad it all as meant for him, telling HIM something. Add to it the time spent blind until his sight came back, he’d have seen it as a lesson to him, direct from his GOD Himself. During those many hours he’d have asked himself, “Lord, WHY am I being punished with blindness?” And when his vision was restored, he would have projected AGAIN – that that god was sparing him.

    I submit that it was not any discussion or unconscious hallucination, but his conscious projection of all of that that convinced him of the miracle that led to his conversion. His being spared was the biggest of the miracles, and it would have been easy for him to project back from that and concoct a scenario with himself in the starring role – just him and God/Jesus.

    It ALSO would explain why he pushed the “Jesus as God” thing upon the world. His being spared while persecuting Jesus’ followers could only have been read as that bolide BEING Jesus – as God. I don’t like Paul, so I am projecting a massive egocentricity onto him and his experience. To him only THE god was important enough to interact with Saul/Paul. Being the zealot that he was, he simply transferred his Saul-centered world view (that was behind his persecution mindset) to the other side – immediately naming himself not just A member, but THE member – the Leader of those he in his mind became instantaneously aligned with. I have no difficulty at all seeing such a maniac being able to change sides so quickly, even thinking it might have been a conscious one-man plot to become even more important in his own eyes. The time of his blindness would have been spent in him wondering why that god had chosen HIM, and his ego would have answered, “Because I am someone important! That God chose ME!” He had plenty of time to run it all over in his mind and build it up as something special. Asses were not, after all, a rapid manner of transportation. Upon his sight returning, it was only a simple step to Saul thinking that BOTH developments were God choosing HIM – feeding his massive ego, “I have been SPARED! BY GOD! BY THE GOD OF JESUS!”.

    Yeah, all of that is me reading into it what my opinion of him suggests to me of what an egocentric would have read into it all. But there are egocentrics and manipulators of events in all ages. To me, this was the equivalent of Rush Limbaugh having something unique happen to him and causing him to switch over to the Liberal side of things and touting the greatness of Barack Obama or Hillary Clinton – and declaring himself the head of the Liberals by dint of the miracle of his experience.

    Slanted? Yeah. Do I think it is plausible? Yeah. Color me jaded and cynical…LOL

  • Steve Garcia

    Bard – I fully agree with your reinterpretation of “lightning” as “bright bolide”. Making that one change turns the entire passage’s understanding into a description of an airburst event or land/water impact. That Tiamat (the goddess of the OCEAN and seas) is mentioned puts the interpretation clearly down as an ocean impact. She (Tiamat) DID do battle with Marduk – or vice versa. That the Psalms passage mentions both the “foundations of the Earth” and the “channels of waters” also ties it all to water.

    Let’s take a look at that Psalms verse and see what ET/bolide/impactor features can be possibly understood within it, and if there is any consistency to that. Assignments of any features to any god we will dispense with as a cultural interpretation, as opposed to a physical interpretation:

    “Then the earth did shake and quake, the foundations also of the mountains did tremble ; they were shaken, because he was wroth.”
    —– There was a lot of noise that happened to start it all off.

    “Smoke arose up in his nostrils,”
    —– This is so easily compared to Chelyabinsk and its TWO smoky trails.

    “…and fire out of his mouth did devour”
    —– It was as bright as fire.

    “…coals flamed forth from him.”
    —– The ablating bolide was throwing off (glowing) fragments which were “shooting out”. This also seemed to happen with Chelyabinsk. Certainly the pattern of fragments FOUND on the ground were mainly right around the big flare-up point, in a kind of elliptical pattern.

    “He bowed the heavens also, and came down”
    —– The path was a downward curve, as viewed from the speaker’s location.

    “…and thick darkness was under his feet.”
    —– Even though it was bright, some part of it – perhaps the smoky trail – was wide enough to cast a shadow.

    “…And he rode upon a cherub (winged bull), and did fly”
    —– Similar to Phaeton in Helios’ chariot, it was moving, so from the speakers’ viewpoint something must have been conveying it along, and this was seen as a winged bull. The concept of a big rock entering the atmosphere at several kms/sec was beyond their comprehension, so a vehicle or winged creature had to be doing it.

    “…yea, he did swoop down upon the wings of the wind.”
    —– “yea” often begins a repetitive telling of something; in this case, this was the overall perception of the bolide’s downward angular path

    “He made darkness his hiding-place, his pavilion round about him ; darkness of waters, thick clouds of the skies.”
    —- At some point the bolide disappeared from view, after its velocity dropped low enough that ablation was no longer occurring. At Chelyabinsk, this was immediately after the big flare-up.

    “At the brightness before him, there passed through his thick clouds hailstones and coals of fire.”
    —– (This seems out of sequence, and may be something added about an earlier stage in the overall event. Not having word processors, they couldn’t very well cut and paste it earlier into the account where it seems that it might better belong.) It seems to reiterate the part above about “coals flamed forth from him“. I.e., glowing fragments were ablating and breaking off.

    “The Lord also thundered in the heavens, and the most high gave forth his voice”
    —– A great loud sound was heard. A religious person who interprets it religiously would, I suppose, project great power to the voice of his/her omnipotent god.

    “…hailstones and coal of fire.”
    —– The glowing fragments were raining down to the surface.

    “And he sent out his arrows, and scattered them”
    —– Continuing the fragmentation description, the glowing fragments were raining down to the ground, causing everyone to run for cover.

    “…and he shot forth lightnings, and discomfited them.”
    —– Yes, sir, they were afraid for their lives.

    “And the channels of waters appeared”
    —– Whew! This part suggests that a water impact occurred and that the water surged over the banks – a tsunami. At a bit of a distance from the shore, the water would have already begun to follow the drainage patterns of the land. Depending on where the speaker was located, he would have experienced this different ways for different distances from the shore.

    …and the foundations of the world were laid bare,”
    —- This phrase sounds EXACTLY LIKE a description of the immediate approach of a tsunami, when the water recedes from the shore.

    “…at thy rebuke, O Lord, at the Blast of the breath of thy nostrils.”
    —– Wow, “Blast of the breath” is not talking about just any old exhalation, but a BLAST. Sounds a LOT like the Chelyabinsk shock wave that really surprised everyone and broke windows. Guess what? No windows back then! So all they could experience was the shock of the shock wave – as a blast.

    I’d agree that these are passages worth keeping in mind, as good examples of how impacts or airburts were/”may have been” described.

  • That is a very intriguing interpretation mainly because when one reads many myths it is obvious that mankind spoke of the deep and of water as synonymous with the atmosphere and space and you have chosen the mirror image of the sea receding. It is much akin to the theory of the pyramids of Giza being a mirror image of Orion’s Belt. There is still much work to be done to unravel the mysteries. The bull symbolism is most assuredly a representation of the Taurus Constellation and more specifically the Pleiades as to where the fire from the sky originated. This is why in India they let the bovine wander, the Minoan’s leap over the bull, Spanish bull fights, running of the bulls, and the bull images at Gobekli Tepe and Catal Huyuk. The academic promulgate that the bull is a regenerative symbol and that the sky dragons ‘vultures’ taking off peoples heads are to transport their souls to the other world when the opposite is true, the bull is a death symbol and they were propitiating the God to stop killing them.

    I am constantly astounded why there is Mountains of evidence and almost every culture on Earth simultaneously stands up and points directly to the defendant, ie., the Pleiades and the jury sits scratching their heads. I also wonder how much the globe spends on NEOs and their defection when we have finally become able to contend with one of our most contentious adversaries and yet to understand its importance after 13,000 years! What a mind blow it will be when our prodigy find a real “alien” vehicle on the moon that fits their body after they have rebuilt from the next apocalypse because we were so busy fighting over each others interpretation of the SAME phenomena on our jewel planet. It brings up an image of Charlton (…charlatan…) Heston pounding his fist into the playa at the Statue of Liberty with seven tattered spikes on HER diadem representing the Pleiades.

  • Barry Weathersby
  • Yesterday morning around 3:30am there was an aurora borealis show over the Yoopers. There was a green glow across the northern horizon with green and pink vibrating spikes similar to audio display bars. Over that where low wave length pulsating waves of green light like an upside down lake. Last time that I had seen them was back in the winter of 1981 which was a spectacular display with many colors and huge ghostly motions that had my girl friend clinging to me in fear as we walked the empty road.

  • Steve Garcia

    Bard – The aurora is one of the few things I envy the folks up north. Before YouTube, videos of them were not common or so easy to find. Up until about maybe 10-12 years ago, I really didn’t know what they looked like. But then the aurora extended much farther south, and I was flabbergasted by them.

    Because of the fundamentally different electrostatic conditions at the poles, when the thing 20+ years ago about the ozone hole came out, I kept looking to see SOMEONE mention that they had eliminated electrostatic conditions as a possibility of causing the changes in the ozone hole – or even that the ozone hole was actually important. I never heard ANY discussion that mentioned the electrostatics. That made no sense, that no studied that possibility. Ozone is definitely connected with electricity and electrostatics when down at human scale.

  • Steve Garcia

    Barry –

    Hahaha – That bolide was cool. And instructive, from my POV, anyway. Catch how short of a time it was in the atmosphere. It is actually the very first one I’ve seen come DOWN, rather than at a low entry angle, and it did not seem to be just the perspective. Chelyabinsk, no matter what angle it was shown from, was in the atmosphere for a good long time. This one was a blip, suggesting it was essentially straight down.

    The one meteor in the meteor shower I saw about 5 weeks ago was not too much less than the one in the video, BTW. Maybe 1/3 to 1/2 as wide.

  • Steve – Not as envious as living in perpetual summer, winters are brutal up here. I suppose, I’ve tried to explain snow to people who have never seen it and it isn’t easy.

    About five years ago I went to bed and after 20 minutes waiting to fall asleep I noticed this green fluttering light as if polarized, or like venetian blinds opening and closing rapidly. I opened my eyes and noticed that there was hardly any difference in intensity which was very strange. As I laid there opening my eyes and closing them as an experiment to its effects my wife asked “Do you see that?” Playing stupid I asked what and let her describe the same thing and then I asked her if it was the same with her eyes closed and she confirmed it. After ninety seconds it stopped. The only thing I can think of is that the aurora energy was streaming directly through the house from above.

    I’ve never investigated all that much about auroras and certainly not a connection to the ozone hole, but your observation seems negligent. I would think the magnetic field of our planet would go in at the North and out at the South then wrap back around, maybe that has something to do with the ozone hole being more prominent over the South Pole…