Olmec Olmec jadeite mask 1000–600 BCE The Olmec were the first 'major' civilization in Mexico following a progressive development in Soconusco. They lived in the tropical lowlands of south-central Mexico, in the present-day states of Veracruz and Tabasco. It has been speculated that Olmec derive in part from neighboring Mokaya and/or Mixe–Zoque. The Olmec flourished during Mesoamerica's formative period, dating roughly from as early as 1500 BCE to about 400 BCE. The aspect of the Olmecs most familiar now is their artwork, particularly the aptly named "colossal heads". The Olmec civilization was first defined through artifacts which collectors purchased on the pre-Columbian art market in the late 19th century and early 20th century. Etymology The name "Olmec" comes from the Nahuatl word for the Olmecs: Ōlmēcatl /oːlˈmeːkat͡ɬ/ (singular) or Ōlmēcah /oːlˈmeːkaʔ/ (plural). Overview Origins La Venta Decline Art Fish Vessel, 12th–9th century BCE.
Ancient Maya Astronomy - the Sun, Moon and Planets The ancient Maya were keen astronomers, recording and interpreting every aspect of the sky. As they believed that the will and actions of the Gods could be read in the stars, moon and planets, they dedicated much time to doing so and many of their most important buildings were constructed with astronomy in mind. The Sun, Moon and planets (Venus in particular) were studied by the Maya. The Maya and the Sky: The Maya believed that the Earth was the center of all things, fixed and immovable. The Maya and the Sun: The Sun was very important to the ancient Maya. The Maya and the Moon: The Moon was nearly as important as the Sun for the ancient Maya. The Maya and Venus: The Maya were aware of the planets in the solar system and marked their movements. The Maya and the Stars: Like the planets, the stars move across the heavens: unlike the planets, they stay in position relative to one another. Maya Architecture and Astronomy: Maya Astronomy and the Calendar: Source: McKillop, Heather.
Mixtec The Mixtecs were one of the most influential ethnic groups to emerge in Mesoamerica during the Post-Classic. Never an united nation, the Mixtecs waged war and forged alliances among themselves as well as with other peoples in their vicinity. They also produced beautiful manuscripts and great metal work, and influenced the international artistic style used from Central Mexico to Yucatan. During the Classic period, the Mixtecs lived in hilltop settlements of northwestern Oaxaca, a fact which is reflected in their name in their own language, Ñuudzahui, meaning "People of the Rain". Even though surrounded by more textual writing systems, the Mixtecs opted to write in a more minimalistic manner. The above example came from the Codex Zouche-Nuttall. Like other Mesoamerican cultures, the Mixtec used a 260-day sacred calendar. Unlike the Western system of months and days, the Mesoamerican sacred calendar moves the coefficient AND the day sign in parallel. Related Links
Mayan Calendar baktun 13 katun 0 tun 2 uinal 1 kin 8Haab: 1 MuanTzolkin: 11 Lamat Mayan epoch: 11 Aug, 3114 B.C.E. ...date based on local time 11:24:12pm, Thu Jan 8, 2015 The Mayans had an elaborate calendrical system, no longer in use, which obviously evolved in complete isolation from those of the old world. This system ended with the fall of the Mayan civilization. The Mayans were skilled mathematicians, and this shows in their calendar; besides having a concept of zero, they also had a firm grasp of modular arithmetic; they also worked extensively in base 20. The Mayans used three separate calendars. It's the end of the world as we know it... There is a great deal of nonsense that has been written about the Mayan long count. For one thing, this is a theoretical reconstruction of the Mayan calendar, since it hasn't been in use for hundreds of years. Long Count The long count was broken down into five components: The zero day of the Mayan calendar is the date given above as the 'Mayan Epoch'. Haab Date
Book Sealed With Seven Seals. Decoding of the Message of an Unknown Advanced Civilization "History is a vast early warning system." — Norman Cousins The calendar has come to us from Ancient Egypt and we still use it to this day. the 4-year cycle of leap years;the 7-day week cycle. Both of these cycles were well known in the ancient times. One description of the 4-year cycle that we know was found in the Canopus Decree. The Canopus Decree (stone plate with trilingual inscription,238 BC, Egypt). "...on account of the procession of the rising of the Divine Sothis1 by one day in the course of 4 years,... it shall be that a year of 360 days and 5 days added to their end, so one day as Feast of the Benevolent Gods2 be from this day after every 4 years added to the 5 epagomenae before the new year..." 1 Divine Sothis: Sirius. 2 Benevolent Gods: The ruler Ptolemy III Euergetes and his wife Berenike. This rule was also introduced in the Seleucid calendar adopted in 312 BC. The origin of a 7-day cycle also dates back to antiquity. Hence, the length of a year was approximated as 365.25 days.
Mesoamerican calendars Stelae 12 and 13 from Monte Alban, provisionally dated to 500-400 BCE, showing what is thought to be one of the earliest calendric representations in Mesoamerica. Mesoamerican calendars are the calendrical systems devised and used by the pre-Columbian cultures of Mesoamerica. In addition to the basic function of a calendar—defining and organizing periods of time in a way that allows events to be fixed, ordered and noted relative to each other and some absolute progression—Mesoamerican calendars were also used in religious observances and social rituals, such as for divination. Among the various calendar systems in use, two were particularly central and widespread across Mesoamerica. These two 260- and 365-day calendars could also be synchronised to generate the Calendar Round, a period of 18980 days or approximately 52 years. The existence of Mesoamerican calendars is attested as early as ca. 500 BCE, with the essentials already appearing by then as fully defined and functional.
Millennium Simulation Project Introduction: The Millennium Simulation The Millennium Run used more than 10 billion particles to trace the evolution of the matter distribution in a cubic region of the Universe over 2 billion light-years on a side. It kept busy the principal supercomputer at the Max Planck Society's Supercomputing Centre in Garching, Germany for more than a month. By applying sophisticated modelling techniques to the 25 Tbytes of stored output, Virgo scientists have been able to recreate evolutionary histories both for the 20 million or so galaxies which populate this enormous volume and for the supermassive black holes which occasionally power quasars at their hearts. By comparing such simulated data to large observational surveys, one can clarify the physical processes underlying the buildup of real galaxies and black holes. Movies of the simulation A 3-dimensional visualization of the Millennium Simulation. Get this movie in different versions: Get this movie in different resolutions: References
Ontology Parmenides was among the first to propose an ontological characterization of the fundamental nature of reality. Etymology While the etymology is Greek, the oldest extant record of the word itself, the New Latin form ontologia, appeared in 1606 in the work Ogdoas Scholastica by Jacob Lorhard (Lorhardus) and in 1613 in the Lexicon philosophicum by Rudolf Göckel (Goclenius). The first occurrence in English of ontology as recorded by the OED (Oxford English Dictionary, online edition, 2008) came in a work by Gideon Harvey (1636/7–1702): Archelogia philosophica nova; or, New principles of Philosophy. Leibniz is the only one of the great philosophers of the 17th century to have used the term ontology. Overview Some fundamental questions Principal questions of ontology include: what it is (its 'whatness', quiddity, haecceity or essence)how it is (its 'howness' or qualitativeness)how much it is (quantitativeness)where it is (its relatedness to other beings)
Irreversible Damage Seen From Climate Change in UN Leak Humans risk causing irreversible and widespread damage to the planet unless there’s faster action to limit the fossil fuel emissions blamed for climate change, according to a leaked draft United Nations report. Global warming already is affecting “all continents and across the oceans,” and further pollution from heat-trapping gases will raise the likelihood of “severe, pervasive and irreversible impacts for people and ecosystems,” according to the document obtained by Bloomberg. “Without additional mitigation, and even with adaptation, warming by the end of the 21st century will lead to high to very high risk of severe, widespread, and irreversible impacts globally,” the UN Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change said in the draft. Related: The study is the most important document produced by the UN about global warming, summarizing hundreds of papers. Leaked Report Climate Change Jonathan Lynn, a spokesman for the IPCC, declined to comment on the contents of the report. Ice Melting
Six Reasons Why The Wall Is Holy 1) Site of the Holy Temple The Western Wall is a surviving remnant of the Temple Mount in Jerusalem, which was destroyed by the Romans in 70 CE. The Temple was the center of the spiritual world, the main conduit for the flow of Godliness. When the Temple stood, the world was filled with awe of God and appreciation for the genius of the Torah. Jewish tradition teaches that all of creation began in Jerusalem. It is here, on Mount Moriah, that Isaac was bound for sacrifice. Although other parts of the Temple Mount retaining wall remain standing, the Western Wall is especially dear, as it is the spot closest to the Holy of Holies, the central focus of the Temple. 2) Eternal Symbol The Sages prophesied that even after the Temple's destruction, the Divine Presence would never leave the Western Wall, and that the Wall will never be destroyed. Jerusalem was destroyed and rebuilt nine times. 3) Place of Pilgrimage and Tears Jerusalem became the focus of the non-Jewish world as well.
Spin From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia Spin or spinning may refer to: In mathematics, science and technology In computing In telecommunications In entertainment In music In sports Other uses See also What Happens to Consciousness When We Die Where is the experience of red in your brain? The question was put to me by Deepak Chopra at his Sages and Scientists Symposium in Carlsbad, Calif., on March 3. A posse of presenters argued that the lack of a complete theory by neuroscientists regarding how neural activity translates into conscious experiences (such as redness) means that a physicalist approach is inadequate or wrong. Where is Aunt Millie's mind when her brain dies of Alzheimer's? The hypothesis that the brain creates consciousness, however, has vastly more evidence for it than the hypothesis that consciousness creates the brain. Thousands of experiments confirm the hypothesis that neurochemical processes produce subjective experiences. Where is the evidence for consciousness being fundamental to the cosmos? How does consciousness cause matter to materialize?
What College Can’t Do - The New Yorker There’s a special joy in giving someone advice that’s sure not to be followed—“Wake up at the same time every morning”; “Don’t check your e-mail while on vacation”—and William Deresiewicz must have felt it when writing his recent cover story for The New Republic, “Don’t Send Your Kid to the Ivy League.” Hypercompetitive colleges, Deresiewicz wrote, are the replicators of the ruling class, recruiting and training “young people who are smart and talented and driven, yes, but also anxious, timid, and lost, with little intellectual curiosity and a stunted sense of purpose.” Better to go to a state school, where the student body is more socioeconomically diverse, or to a “second-tier” liberal-arts college, where “real educational values” persist, than to submit yourself or your child to the careerist “machine” of élite higher education. To think about busyness in terms of modernity is to think about its deep roots. In many ways, élite colleges are premodern places.