sábado, dezembro 20, 2008

Ufos e Terremotos

Por falar em terremotos (sim, eu trabalhei em modelos de terremotos com criticalidade auto-organizada), faz tempo que se fala em uma conexão entre UFOs e terremotos. Me perguntaram outro dia porque virei cético quanto a UFOs e isto é parcialmente a resposta (quando adolescente eu descobri essa conexão - e depois descobri que Persinger publicou primeiro, argh!).
No Blogpulse a correlação também apareceu...

Sightings of aliens have been linked to electrical fields caused by quakes.

Jerome Burne

You are driving along an empty road late at night when several large, disc-shaped lights suddenly fly in front of you. One stops and hovers above the road. Your ignition cuts out and your curiosity turns to panic. The glowing ball is on the ground in front of you now. Is that a figure emerging..? You are having a UFO experience which could mean: a) you have actually been contacted by
aliens; b) you are having hallucinations, are stressed or schizophrenic, or it is a false memory implanted later under hypnosis; c) you have walked on to the set of a sci-fi B movie in the making. But there is another possibility - you might simply be receiving advance warning of an earthquake. This is the theory of Michael Persinger, a professor of psychology and neuroscience at Laurentian University in Sudbury, Ontario, who is the subject of a television documentary tomorrow night [Ref: Equinox : Identified Flying Objects]. Mr Persinger's research project is odd and intriguing.
For 20 years he has been working on a theory that connects not only UFOs and earthquakes, but also powerful electromagnetic fields and an explanation of paranormal beliefs in terms of unusual brain activity. "Beneath the Earth's surface seethe massive geophysical forces," says Mr Persinger. "Around the time of an earthquake particularly, the tremendous seismic pressure on rock crystals produces powerful local electrical fields, measuring several thousand volts per metre, more than enough to produce balls or columns of light." Depending on the culture, these can be interpreted as dragons, mystical visions or flying saucers. In one study Mr Persinger found that 90 per cent of the accounts of luminous events in the sky reported between 1820 and 1926 could be linked to a rise in seismic activity at the same time.
More recently, noting the connection between large dams and a build-up of seismic strain he has found a link between UFO reports and five major American dams.An apparent epidemic of UFO reports in Manitoba, Canada, in 1975 was found to have coincided with a severe earthquake in the area. An apparent rash of UFOs in Missouri during 1973 and 1974 occurred at just the same time as the only two recently recorded earthquakes in the region. Two British researchers, Paul McCartney, a geochemist, and Paul Devereux, writer, have found that Clev Hill in Wiltshire, long a favourite haunt of UFO spotters lies, beside the only two fault lines in the area. But these geomagnetic fields are not only producing balls of light, they are also capable of having an effect on the brain. In a series of laboratory studies Mr Persinger has found that electromagnetically stimulating two parts of the brain involved with memory and meaning - the amygdala and the hippocampus - can suddenly release a flood of images from the past that are automatically imbued with a tremendous sense of reality and importance. He has also found that stimulating another area, the temporal lobes, can produce all sorts of mystical experiences, out-of-the-body sensations and other apparently paranormal phenomena.
Susan Blackmore, a psychologist and presenter of the television programme on Mr Persinger, has reported how she felt when her temporal lobes were stimulated with a pulsed magnetic field of the same intensity as that of a commercially available relaxation device. "It felt for all the world as though two hands had grabbed my shoulders and yanked me upright... I felt as though I had been stretched halfway up to the ceiling. Then came the emotions, Totally out of the blue, but in tensely and vividly, I suddenly felt angry. Later... I was terrified." So not only can the electromagnetic field produced by tectonic strain produce UFO-like luminous shapes but the subjective experiences of those having close encounters begin to make sense too. Reports of blacking out as the "ship" gets near and subsequent amnesia suggest an assault on the brain's electrical system, which could also explain why car engines often fail.Then there are sinister aliens and sexual experiments, "Temporal lobe stimulation can evoke the feeling of a presence, disorientation, and perceptual irregularities," says Mr Persinger. "It can also activate images stored in the subject's memory, including nightmares and monsters that are normally suppressed." Strong magnetic fields affect the genitals,sensations which can be interpreted as "spacemen did tests on my genitals".
Mr Persinger's theory also implies that UFO spotting could seriously damage your health. "Exposure to intense magnetic fields has been associated with an increase in cancers of the blood, brain and sexual organs and a rise in depression, suicide and alcohol abuse," says Mr Persinger. He notes that of three children who were closest to the famous lights, interpreted as a vision of Virgin Mary, at Fatima in Portugal in 1917, two died within three years, one from a solid lung tumour.

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