Wednesday, December 27, 2006

Northern Lights and More: A Riddle for the Coming New Year - LexiLine Journal 443

Father Christmas!

What a wonderful holiday season, especially for J.R.R. Tolkien fans:

"It was the biggest bang in the world, and the most monstrous firework there ever has been. It turned the North Pole BLACK and shook all the stars out of place... The tap turning on the Aurora Borealis fireworks is still in the cellar of my old house. The North Polar Bear knew he must never, never touch it... Anyway he was nosing around the ruins this morning soon after breakfast (he hides things to eat there) and turned on all the Northern Lights for two years in one go."

Yes, the Sun really took a shot at us in December of 2006.

It lit up the sky like the celebrations of fireworks that will be taking place on New Year's Eve.

We wish everyone a Happy New Year 2007.

In honor of the occasion, we have designed a "Secret Doodle" which contains several secrets.
If you can not see the graphic below, please go to this link to see it.

secret  Doodle

1) What is the message of the "Secret Doodle"?

You should be able to ascertain this without too much difficulty as we have made it easy for you to get an Inkling. Be HAPPY. Did we not just post on Happiness? But you might have to take a NEW look. In a pinch this YEAR, you might even engage in a Gobelin count (at least in French).

2) Where do the symbols of the "Secret Doodle" come from?

Is this the writing of a prehistoric "rock art" culture of the type we discuss at some of our other websites? You may want to ask your local mainstream archaeologist or resident expert decipherer for clues to clues, which is their profession. Perhaps these symbols were used by the small, Lilliputian - previously nameless - hobbits (modernly baptized Homo floresiensis) that mainstream science recently claimed to have discovered in Indonesia? Alas, a pipedream species in an academic area of study where fantasy, fiction and myth unwillingly meet the hard hand of evidence. A story for J.K. Rowling?

Another way to find out why the LawPundit's Secret Doodle "rocks" is to consult your local linguist about rocs and orcs and arks, or as written about Noah's Ark and rocs in 1604 by Michael Drayton - who in his youth worked as a Page boy for which you have to have a Brain (well, nearly so) :
All feathered things yet ever knowne to men,
From the huge Rucke, unto the little Wren;
From Forrest, Fields, from Rivers and from Pons,
All that have webs, or cloven-footed ones;
To the Grand Arke, together friendly came,
Whose severall species were too long to name
Which may be why we've waited 'til this day
Floresiensis as a species to portray!
3) What other special "coding" does the message contain?

You might just try some Google search words for local color or Yahoo some other clues you have already been given to arrive at the doubled rainbow at the end of a pot of gold. What are words to the hues of nature?

Is there really any perceptible difference between a Yahoo and an Orc? and it is not far from Google to Goggle to Gobble to Goblin, now is it? But that is just a play on the alphabet.

We repeat, Happy New Year. 2007.

Make this world a better place, if you can.

Wednesday, November 29, 2006

Egyptian Heh and the Palm Ribs of Infinity? : Staff Alignment based on the Concept of Parallel Lines Extended? - LexiLine Journal 442

William Glyn-Jones wrote about Heh, the Pharaonic representation of Infinity:

"[L]ast night (in the middle of the night, when I would rather have been fast asleep) I had an interesting thought about the parallel lines business. Heh was the Egyptian god who represented infinity and he was frequently showing holding two straight palm ribs, one in each hand, vertically, to either side of himself. [link added by LexiLine Journal]

These ribs are shown with the infinity symbol at the base.

Egyptologists tell us that the palm ribs was used as a bay – a pole held vertically – when finding and aligning to true north from the pole star. I pondered and pondered and pondered what process could have involved holding two bays. I pictured it in my head – two alignments being plotted due north from two bays, side by side. The Egyptians would have noted no angle between them, they would have seemed to be parallel, and parallel lines meet at infinity. So we have Heh, infinity, holding the two vertical (and of course also parallel) palm ribs.

It seems to me we have some kind of Euclidian thing going on with Heh and his staffs. What do you think?"

Evidence-Based Management : A Lesson for the "Soft Sciences" ? - LexiLine Journal 441

We have been preaching "best evidence" to the soft sciences for 30 years but they are still not listening.

Perhaps Robert I. Sutton at Stanford would have more success than we do if he applied to mainstream academia in the humanities what he teaches at the Department of Management Science and Engineering and at the Graduate School of Business at Stanford University.

Professor Sutton offers managers a course in Organizational Behavior: An Evidence-Based Approach which he describes as follows:
"This course tackles fundamental organizational behavior issues (e.g. employee selection, rewards, teamwork, culture, innovation) from an evidence-based perspective. Evidence-based management is a simple idea. It just means finding the best evidence that you can, facing those facts, and acting on those facts - rather than doing what everyone else does, what you have always done, or what you thought was true. It isn't an excuse for inaction. Leaders of organizations must have the courage to act on the best facts they have right now, and the humility to change what they do as better information is found. The course includes active discussion, industry guests, and case studies."
Professor Sutton, how about if you offered that same course in principle to the archaeologists, Egyptologists, Near East scholars, Biblical scholars, and historians of astronomy on this planet, who generally "do what everyone else does", who persist on "doing what they have always done" and "who do what they think is true" rather than acting on the best evidence available, which often contradicts what they think.

In any case, we are on your side.

Society needs a more solid evidence-based approach in many fields of human endeavor, rather than the witchdoctor-like tea-leaf reading which prevails in many of the soft sciences today. Apparently, the same problem prevails in management as well.

Wednesday, November 22, 2006

The Seven Wonders of the Ancient World and New Wonders and Technical Enchantments of Modernity - LexiLine Journal 440

The Seven Wonders of the Ancient World

Herodotus in his travels was the first to refer to the "wonders" of the world and Callimachus of Cyrene in the 3rd century BC as a scholar at the library of the Alexandria Mouseion wrote A Collection of Wonders around the World .

The original idea of identifying Seven Wonders of the Ancient World comes from a list originally compiled in the 2nd century BC by Antipater of Sidon, who, instead of the Lighthouse of Alexandria listed below, included the Ishtar Gate.

These wonders, however, were not wonders of the natural world, but were all man-made engineering and construction wonders which the ancient Greeks as travelers (tourists) could visit several thousand years ago.

Listed in their order of construction, the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World were:
  1. The Great Pyramid of Giza
  2. The Hanging Gardens of Babylon
  3. The Temple of Artemis at Ephesus
  4. The Statue of Zeus at Olympia
  5. The Mausoleum of Maussollos at Halicarnassus
  6. The Colossus of Rhodes
  7. The Lighthouse of Alexandria
The Seven Wonders of the Medieval World

Various locations accessible to travelers in the Middle Ages - and some of these of course were totally unknown to the ancient Greeks - have been included by various sources among the much later Seven Wonders of the Medieval World. This is our selection from a longer list of alternatives: New Ancient Wonders of the World

Modern archaeological discoveries have also opened up our eyes to new, previously unknown wonders which fully qualify as Ancient Wonders of the World, of which this list, created by us, is only a limited example: The Seven Wonders of the Modern World

As world populations and technology have expanded, it has become more difficult to pick out just seven world wonders from the many now available. The Seven Wonders of the Modern World according to the American Society of Civil Engineers (in 1994) were: World Wonders Built in Recent Years

In our view, a number of new building structures definitely fall into the category of world wonders: To those - as follows - we can add modern skyscrapers and similar tall structures which mark the modern age as mankind continues to reach for the stars.

The World's Tallest Man-Made Structures and Buildings

The Council on Tall Buildings and Urban Habitat and Emporis have partnered recently and rank the world's tallest structures and buildings. As written at Emporis: "Taipei 101 is the world's tallest building, surpassing the height of the Petronas Twin Towers in Kuala Lumpur in late August 2003."

See the Wikipedia for a current list of tallest buildings and structures in the world, ranked by category. Many of these man-made structures are true world wonders in our modern age. See also a list of the historical development of the world's tallest man-made freestanding structures on land.

Greatest Engineering Achievements of the 20th Century

The National Academy of Engineering has a list of their selection of the Greatest Engineering Achievements of the just past 20th century but none of these are architectural or archaeological tourist travel sites, even though they are world wonders in their own right: As one can see from that list, in ancient times mankind's wonders of the world were confined to things that men built and constructed. In our modern age, the wonders of the world are rightly expanded to include the many new and wondrous things that man has created beyond architecture alone.

Monday, October 30, 2006

Happy Halloween 2006 ! The Origins of Halloween and Connections to Ancient Cultures - Aveni - Freeman - LexiLine Journal 439

We can not yet upload graphics here directly to LexiLine postings (we hope Yahoo! will ultimately enable this) so we have uploaded our 2006 Happy Halloween Pumpkin Cat to our LawPundit blog at

For some connections between Halloween and ancient cultures and civilizations, see: - Anthony Aveni on Archaeoastronomy

For a more comprehensive article see Celtic Spirit - Mara Freeman on the origin of Halloween in Samhain, the Celtic end of Summer and the Beginning of Winter, the Celtic New Year, plus many other revelations - this is a MUST read if you want to understand the origins of Halloween in the English-speaking world.

Wednesday, October 25, 2006

Marking the Equator - Now as Compared to Ancient Eras - Ecuador Mitad del Mundo Catequilla - LexiLine Journal 438

Just how accurate ancient astronomers may have been is exemplified by a site in Ecuador which was recently brought to my attention by a graphic relating to the pre-Inca site of Catequilla , Ecuador (a mountain on the eastern side of San Antonio de Pichincha, near Quito , the capital of Ecuador), sent to me by Enrico Calzolari, a long-standing member of LexiLine, who himself is the discoverer of The Mark of Cassiopeia in Italy.

In a posting entitled "something interesting", Mickey at the blog 3 Old Men Building Things in the Woods does a superb job of describing the factual situation, accompanied by several easily understandable cartographical maps from Google Earth .

The situation is essentially this. In the year 1736 the French (see Louis Godin, Pierre Bouguer, Charles Marie de la Condamine) measured the exact location of the Equator - something which in those days was not easy to do because the equatorial regions consist primarily of ocean, other waters, swamps and jungle.

Finding "hard ground" to measure the Equator led the French to Ecuador and the region north of the city of Quito, where the point of La Mitad del Mundo ("The Middle of the World") was established, where it still exists today as the "Equator Line Monument", which was built 200 years later in 1936 over the old French point to commemorate its measurement, and is today the leading tourist attraction in Ecuador .
[For our German members, this French historical measurement of the earth has been described by Daniele Jörg in Ecuador – Armes reiches Land, Stipendien-Aufenthalt in Ecuador, 25. März bis 06. Mai 2004, "Die Vermessung der Erde".]

A geopage by Olivier Auverlau at the University of California at Berkeley provides panorama photos of the Middle of the World Monument as well as the orange line marking the Equator in Ecuador. Take a look. The photography is quite impressive.

With the arrival of satellite-driven GPS technology, scientists discovered to everyone's surprise, however, that the 1736 French measurement was not quite accurate, being off by about 300 meters. The correct line of the Equator turned out to run straight through the middle of a nearby pre-Inca ruin, Catequilla. See photo and cartographic map marking at the 3 Old Men, who comment this development as follows:
"A group in Ecuador has found all sorts of alignments with other ruins suggesting that the Ancients knew a lot more about how to find the Equator than the French scientists."
At the site of the Mexican Jaguars a detailed article is found which we definitely recommend as important background reading material:

It is an article about Catequilla written December 22, 2005 by a writer in Ecuador who discusses the AMAZING DISCOVERIES at EARTH'S EQUATOR (we include only excerpts here - be sure to read the original article):
"... In 1936 ... a monument was constructed near Ecuador's capital, Quito ... at the line reckoned by the 18th century French scientists to be zero degrees latitude ....

Recent findings have slightly relocated the equator.... in 1997 the seemingly insignificant ruins of a semicircular wall were discovered on top of Mount Catequilla, which lies a little to the north of Quito. Using ... the Global Positioning System (GPS), investigator Cristobal Cobo discovered that one end of this wall was located precisely on the equator. (On the other hand, GPS places the famous Middle of the World monument some 1,000 feet to the south of the true equator).

[A] line connecting the two ends of the wall creates a 23.5-degree angle to the equator ... almost precisely the angle at which earth's axis is tilted.... Further, one end of the connecting line points to the rising of the sun on the solstice in December; and the other end, to the setting of the sun on the solstice in June....

As more astronomical alignments were plotted on a map, a figure began to emerge --an eight-pointed star....

The Quitsa-to Project, directed by Cobo, is amassing compelling evidence of the astronomical acumen of the early natives. ('Quitsa-to' comes from the language of the Tsachila Indians and means 'Middle of the World.' Some believe that Quito is a name derived from this term.) More than a dozen archaeological sites and many ancient towns have been found to line up perfectly along the astronomical star figure when it is superimposed over the equator with Catequilla at its center...."

The website Exploring Ecuador writes about Cristóbal Cobo, the driving force behind this research, as follows :
"Cristóbal Cobo is an Ecuadorian scientist who has engaged in extensive studies about pre-Incan astronomical wisdom. His theories have already led to the discovery of several archeological sites in and around Quito, dating back to 1500 BC. Cobo holds that all the pre-Incan archeological sites in Quito and its surroundings are either in line with or parallel to the ecliptic and solstices axes running through Catequilla. He believes all these complexes are the work of the Quitus-Caras, a culture of which very little is known ...." I believe that Catequilla was the middle of the world for the Quitus-Caras, the point where their cosmological and spiritual belief systems came together." (Geographical, September 2002).

Cobo also discovered that several colonial churches in Quito, built over antique pre Incan sites, are aligned with the sunrays of the solstices....

Cristóbal Cobo is the director of the scientific research project Quitsa-to (Quitsa-to is the original name of the city, meaning "middle of the world"). His research findings are displayed at the "Solar Culture Museum" close to the Middle of the World Monument. He may be reached at or at his cell phone 099-701-133. Contact him to learn about activities programmed for December 22nd."

This research is having its public impact. writes in their sailing log book:

"We spent one day in Quito adjusting to the high altitude which at 9200 feet was necessary for our sea level adapted bodies. Just outside Quito at La Mitad del Mundo (the middle of the world) where the equator passes through, we found a scientific research project exploring this past discovery using GPS.... It is now known that the monument is in fact 300 meters away from the equator but that a pre-Inca site on a nearby hill was built exactly on the equator proving this ancient civilization had more accurate calculations. In old town Quito there are a cluster of about 15 churches all built on top of ancient pre-Inca solar sites. On the solstices and equinox the sun shines in on the faces of the Christ above the altars. Much of the Indian weaving seen in the markets depict the layout of these sites in their designs."

One of our members, Enrico Calzolari, the discoverer of the Mark of Cassiopeia in Italy, recently sent me a photo of Catequilla in Ecuador, together with the following information:

"Catequilla (Ecuador)
Latitude: 00° 00' 00"
Longitude: 078° 25' 43,3"
Elevation: m 4 000
Datation: 980 years B.C.
The semicircular wall between winter and summer solstices is the Real Middle of the World (quitsa-to).
Copyright of the Photo: Project Quitsa-to
Director of the project: Cristòbal Cobo
Archaeologist: Oswaldo Tobar"

I was going to upload that photo for you here on Lexiline, but in order to save me time and work in formatting that photo for our purposes, I found instead a similar photo of Catequilla and several related photos online at the following photography website:

Saturday, October 21, 2006

Germanic Archaeoastronomy Gustav Friedrichs - LexiLine Journal 437

This posting presents information about the work of Gustav Friedrichs in the area of archaeoastronomy in the early part of the 20th century.

As reported previously, I present a paper each year at the annual conference of the Walther Machalett Association for Prehistory and Early History (Arbeits- und Forschungskreis Walther Machalett für Vor- und Frühgeschichte e.V.) and I work together closely with the former attorney, Dr. Gert Meier, President of this Association [since renamed Der Forschungskreis Externsteine e. V.]
See in this regard:

In the course of discussions about the upcoming annual 2007 and 2008 conferences (which always take place starting on Ascension Day in Horn / Bad Meinberg, Germany), Dr. Meier recently sent me a copy of a rare book previously unknown to me which he had just located in a local German library.

TITLE: Germanische Astronomie und Astrologie während der Stein- und Bronzezeit [Germanic Astronomy and Astrology during the Stone and Bronze Ages ] + Die Gertrudenberger Höhle bei Osnabrück: eine germanische Kultstätte um 1600 v.Chr. [The Gertrudenberg Cave ]
AUTHOR: Gustav Friedrichs (who was a "Rektor", i.e. a school principal, in Osnabrück, Germany)
PUBLISHER: Lindenberg, Hellerau bei Dresden, 1929.

Friedrichs is also apparently the author of Gustav Friedrichs, Die Geschichtszahlen der Alten sind Kalenderzahlen , Verlag Wilhelm Heims, Leipzig 1910 and also Gustav Friedrichs, Deutung und Erklärung der germanischen Märchen und Mythen, Verlag Wilhelm Heims, Leipzig 1934.

A bookseller writes as follows: Broschur, Umschlag mit Beschädigungen, 88 S. 15,7x23,2. Aus dem Inhalt: Die verschiedenen Arten der Märchen-, Mythen und Sagendeutung; Die astrologische Weltanschauung; Vollmondzeit wird durch drei, Neumondzeit durch zwei Personen vertreten; Jeder der drei Brüder wird durch zwei Personen vertreten; Erlösungsmärchen; Höllenmärchen; Himmelsmärchen; Astrologische Körperteile; Astrologische Wunderdinge. 18,00 EUR, #413).

Book Review by Karl Kaiser in ZfdPh 63 (1938), pp. 398-401.

Friedrichs' book on Germanic astronomy is of great interest because it anticipates some of the discoveries that I discuss in my book Stars Stones and Scholars, not only in my conclusions about megaliths in general but also about German megalithic sites in particular.

Friedrichs claimed, as do we, that there were astronomical lines of sight to be found at ancient Germanic megalithic sites and he also argued that ancient megaliths and mounds represented stars of the heavens. For example, he identified a megalithic site at Giersfeld (map, illustrations), Ankum, near Osnabrueck in the county of Bersenbrueck as the stars of Ursa Major.

As noted in Destination Germany at visit-germany info :
"The Giersfeld, the Osnabrück region's largest area of prehistoric graves, has 6 megalithic tombs and 4 tumuli which offer an insight into the New Stone Age and Bronze Age."
See in this connection also, Das Giersfeld by Wilhelm Tiede (in German language).

Friedrichs' observations have in part been criticized by the German astronomer, Dr. Andreas Hänel , President of Dark Skies Germany, Museum am Schölerberg, Osnabrück, Natur und Umwelt - Planetarium, Am Schölerberg 8, D-49082 Osnabrück, Tel.: 0541-5600326, Fax: 0541-5600337,, who himself later has however written about Neolithic astronomical alignments at megalithic sites (Dr. Andreas Hänel, Astronomie in der Steinzeit - astronomische Orientierung von Megalithgräbern), abstracted as follows in German:
"Auf der Suche nach den frühesten Hinweisen auf astronomische Beobachtungen sind wir auf mögliche astronomische Orientierung von Bauwerken angewiesen. Geeignete Monumente sind die megalithischen Bauten des Neolithikums, wobei die Zugänge von Grabkammern besonderes Interesse erfahren. Die Methoden der Messungen werden beschrieben und die Orientierungen neolithischer Grabkammern in Nordwestdeutschland, der Bretagne und Katalonien wurden vermessen und werden in einem europäischen Zusammenhang diskutiert."
Friedrichs, as Hänel has written, may have made some initial amateurish, pioneering types of errors, but our review of his work indicates that he was on the right archaeoastronomical track in an era when the mainstream academia totally negated the idea that Germanic peoples had any Neolithic astronomy of any kind, much less the sophisticated kind of astronomy alleged by Friedrichs. The recent discovery of the Nebra Sky Disk has of course laid such erroneous notions to rest. What Friedrichs wrote, therefore, is plausible.

A Coming Documentary: As Above So Below - LexiLine Journal 436

There are many signs that the mainstream world is slowly moving toward our correct pioneer position on the meaning of the megaliths as ancient hermetic astronomy and land survey by the stars .

Via the Stone Pages Archaeo News and their October 15 posting, Irish passage tombs explored in a new documentary, we were directed to The Meath Chronicle in Ireland (free registration required) and their October 14 article titled Passage tombs explored in a new documentary which states:

"THE Boyne Valley passage tombs are to feature in a special film by the documentary-maker Roel Oostra.

Oostra, who has worked with such great names as Robert Bauval, Graham Hancock, Archie Roy, Bill Sullivan and Hertha von Dechend, was in Ireland to film part of a documentary about how ancient cultures tried to replicate what they saw in the sky on the ground. Tentatively entitled `As Above, So Below', the one-hour documentary will take a year to complete. [emphasis added by LexiLine]

In addition to featuring the famous Boyne Valley tombs, the documentary team will also visit England, Holland, Egypt, Japan, South America and Sri Lanka.

During his visit here, Roel Oostra, who was accompanied by camerman Ge Aarts, concentrated on the Boyne Valley, and in particular the Sygnus Enigma theory formulated by Anthony Murphy and Richard Moore who have been studying the archaeology and myths of Ireland and their associated astronomy for the past eight years.

The documentary-makers filmed at Newgrange, Knowth, Dowth and Fourknocks over the course of two days. As well as exploring the Cygnus Enigma, they were particularly keen to impart the notion that the Boyne complex builders were concerned with much more than just the solstice sun. [link added by LexiLine - we think the Cygnus Enigma is a nice idea, and it corresponds in general to our identification of nearby County Monaghan and Drumnart as Cygnus in the ancient survey of Ireland by astronomy]

There was a great emphasis on the moon here, as well as the stars. There is a well-formed theory that the megalithic monuments of Bru na Boinne are astronomical constructs which have yet to be fully fathom."

Thursday, October 05, 2006

Chronos & the Chronology of Time - LexiLine Journal 435

Few elements of ancient history have been as severely botched by mainstream scholarship as ancient chronology. But we write about this all the time.

What about the term "chronology" itself?

The etymology of the word chronology is generally traced back by mainstream linguists to the Greek term chronos viz. khronos meaning "time" as combined with the word logos meaning "discourse".

But in fact, the term chronos can be traced back further to more basic terms in other Indo-European languages, such as e.g. the archaic Latvian language, which has the word gariens (= khronos) meaning "length (of time)". Similarly, Greek aeon "a longer segment of time" can be traced back to older Indo-European terms such as Latvian gājien- "passage (of time)".

The mainstream view can be summarized as written below:

"In Greek mythology, Chronos ... in pre-Socratic philosophical works is said to be the personification of time. He emerged from the primordial Chaos. He is often mythologically confused with the Titan Cronus ....

He was depicted in Greco-Roman mosaics as a man turning the zodiac wheel. Often the figure is named Aeon (Eternal Time), a common alternate name for the god. His name actually means "Time", and is alternatively spelled Khronos (transliteration of the Greek), Chronos, Chronus (Latin version). Some of the current English words which show a tie to khronos/chronos and the attachment to time are chronology, chronic, and chronicle."

Chronos is a late development as a Greek concept. In the fragments of the pre-Homeric ancient Greek Mousaios (Mousaeus, Musaeus ), which deal with Time and the Sphere of the world, the term Chronos does not appear. As written by the Presocratics Study Group :

"Thus in the conception of Mousaios time in the sense of the succession of day and night played an important role. This warrants the suspicion that it came up for discussion in his work, too. In the fragments the Greek word for time—chronos—does not occur. "
As written by Eric S. Gruen , who - erroneously and without the slightest shred of probative evidence - calls such tales fables:

"For the Greeks, according to Artapanus, Moses was a revered figure, identified with the mythical Greek poet Mousaios, reckoned as the teacher of Orpheus, and even made equivalent to Hermes in his capacity as patron of literature and the arts (Eus. PE 9.8.1-2; Clement, Strom. 1.154.2-3). So Moses emerges here as culture hero, a source of inspiration to Hebrews, Greeks, and Egyptians alike."
Many misguided classical scholars such as Gruen denigrate and wrongly assess such historical information as legends without substance, apparently because such tales contradict their own personal erroneous historical views, which diverge from the historical accounts. There is in fact not one piece of probative evidence to indicate that the historical account of Artapanus is not true. In fact, as we have been writing for years, Artapanus is a pillar of veracity and reliability, whose biography of Moses contains important basic chronological foundations for reconstruction of the true chronology of the ancient world, including a redating of Exodus to conform to the eruption of Santorini.

The previously mentioned emphasis on the succession of day and night as an early concept of time is found in the Greek term dyna- as embedded in the word dynasty. The term Dyna- is nothing more than a variant of ancient Indo-European word for "day", e.g. the Latvian term diena "day".

A better understanding of ancient chronological terms will help to bring about a better understanding of ancient chronology.

Astronomers Win Nobel Prize in Physics - LexiLine Journal 434

As just reported today (one hour ago) by Dennis Overbye in the New York Times, two American astronomers have just won this year's Nobel Prize in Physics for their contributions to cosmology and to our understanding of the universe in which we all live.

This Nobel award is quite remarkable, as Nobel Prizes for astronomers are rare.

We thus congratulate heartily

John Mather of NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Maryland
George Smoot of the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory at the University of California.

Really, to the question, "what's it all about, Alfie?", the answer is, it is all about astronomy.

As we have previously written :
"Eusebius wrote regarding Manetho's lists for the length of the rule of Egyptian Pharaohs that:
"ALL [reigns] were astronomy".

The secret to ancient chronology is thus stated in ancient sources quite clearly - it is ALL astronomy."
And that is one of the main themes of this list.

To understand the universe, you have to understand astronomy.

To understand the ancient world, you have to understand astronomy.

It is really quite simple.

Friday, September 29, 2006

Feng Shui and Hermetic Ancient Astronomy in China - LexiLine Journal 433

Most of us have heard about "Feng Shui", but did you know that the origins of Feng Shui are found in astronomy?

Indeed, these origins of Feng Shui support our view of ancient astronomy as a hermetic science (as above, so below), i.e. as an attempt to conform the order of things on earth to the order visible in the heavens. This is the cardinal principle elaborated in depth in our book, Stars, Stones and Scholars: The Decipherment of the Megaliths as an Ancient Survey of the Earth by Astronomy .

The excerpted text below is taken from the website page The Great Wall of Knowledge and the Rise of Feng Shui by Feng Shui Master Val Biktashev, as he has taken it from The Complete Idiot's Guide to Feng Shui (Alpha Books, 2002), by Elizabeth Moran, Master Joseph Yu, and Master Val Biktashev. We presume that this duplication does not violate any copyright provisions since that website page permits the entire text there to be e-mailed to other persons... which we are in effect doing. Here are our selected excerpts from that website page of Val Biktashev, Feng Shui Master Consultant :
"The Great Wall of Knowledge and the Rise of Feng Shui

(From The Complete Idiot's Guide to Feng Shui (Alpha Books , 2002, Complete Idiot's Guides) , by Elizabeth Moran , Master Joseph Yu , and Master Val Biktashev )

... The practice of feng shui was born out of China's reverence for nature. The Chinese believed if they could reflect the balance of nature's forces in their daily lives, they could achieve a more harmonious living condition....

Made in China

... China's four most important inventions are the developments of papermaking, printing, gunpowder, and the compass. The compass is the tool of the feng shui practitioner.

China's Greater Nature

The ancient Chinese took what they called "Greater Nature" (Da Zi Ran) very seriously. Its forces inspired, awed, and humbled. It was a favorite subject of artisans. Greater Nature even gave rise to earth sciences like geology, cartography, and chemistry.

Skywatcher for Hire

When Marco Polo visited China in 1275 C.E., purportedly he described Beijing as a city of 5,000 skywatchers. He probably was right. Some of those skywatchers were astrologers, some were astronomers. Both ran flourishing businesses in interpreting and divulging nature's secrets....

Feng shui derives, in part, from astrological observations.... feng shui studies a building's fate....

The Science of Astronomy

Astronomy is based on factual information derived from studying the cosmos. Chinese astronomers dealt with the practical needs of society. They developed almanacs and calendars....

Aided by astronomical instruments, the Chinese also observed and recorded a number of celestial events:

* They began noting eclipses of the moon in 1361 B.C.E. and eclipses of the sun in 1217 B.C.E.
* They recorded a nova (an exploding star) in the area now known as Antares in 1300 B.C.E.
* They witnessed Haley's comet in 467 B.C.E.
* They documented a supernova (a really big exploding star) in 1054 C.E. Their accurate observation allowed modern astronomers to establish that the supernova was the origin of the Crab Nebula.

By 400 B.C.E., the Chinese skywatchers had recorded 1,464 stars, dividing many of them into the 28 constellations of the zodiac....

Change is in the Wind

A lot of misinformation has been written about the origin of the Yijing [The Book of Changes]....

Initially, the Yijing was called the Zhouyi, or The Changes of Zhou. Initiated by King Wen and completed by his son, the Duke of Zhou of the Zhou dynasty (1045-221 B.C.E.), the Zhouyi draws on information gained by some of China's legendary figures. Specifically, the 8 trigrams and 64 hexagrams (composed of 2 trigrams each) are thought to have been devised by Fuxi.

As the story goes, the mythical sage-king Fuxi invented the eight trigrams after observing celestial and terrestrial activity. The idea was to create heaven on earth, to emulate nature's perfection. Perhaps to reward his efforts, Fuxi received a gift from heaven, a diagram of the perfect world. A world that was motionless, void of change. Sometime later, heaven bestowed a gift on another sage-king, Yu the Great. He also received a diagram, but this one represented the world in motion. Called the Loushu, (its parts correlated to the eight trigrams) it provides the foundation for a classical method of feng shui called Flying Star.... [emphasis added by LexiLine]

How Does Feng Shui Fit in?

Classical feng shui combines elements of astrology and astronomy, geology, physics, mathematics, philosophy, and intuition....

Neolithic Feng Shui

Feng shui is a lot older that you might think....

In 1988, a Neolithic gravesite was excavated in Henan province in central China. It revealed that the ancient Chinese were practicing some form of primitive feng shui some 6,000 years ago.

The head of the gravesite is rounded and points toward the south. The grave is squared at the body's feet, facing north. This arrangement conforms to the Chinese view of the cosmos. Symbolically, the sky is represented as round or domed, and the earth as square or flat. On each side of the remains, and outlined with shells, is a representation of two Chinese constellations—the azure dragon and the white tiger. A representation of the Big Dipper (Beidou) lies in the center. These artifacts testify to the fact that the Neolithic Chinese were already orienting their graves with the revolution of the Big Dipper around the North Star, the polestar (in Ursa Minor) in the northern hemisphere toward which the axis of the earth points.

The Form School of Feng Shui

... [A]ncestor worship was an intrinsic and important part of the Chinese belief system.... Fortunes could be made or lost depending, in some measure, on the favorable location and orientation of their ancestors' tombs.

The orientation of homes is also a part of Form School feng shui. Landforms and waterways were intensely scrutinized to determine the location of the dragon's lair (long xue), the place on the terrain where qi converges....

The Compass School of Feng Shui

... In Chinese, the school that uses a compass and analyzes heavenly (time) and earthly (space) forces is called Liqi Pai....

The Compass School is based on the concept that each of the eight cardinal directions holds a different type of qi. Around this central premise, other factors are added, including astrology and numerology. The Compass School method is very computational, relying on intellect, observation, and experimentation rather than intuitive insights.

The tool of the trade is, you guessed it, the compass. An early version dating to about 83 C.E. was a two-part, south-pointing instrument—a metal spoon made of magnetic lodestone and a square baseplate called a sinan. This developed into what is now called a luopan compass used by practitioners today. The luopan has anywhere from 4 to 40 concentric rings of information featuring things like the 8 fundamental trigrams, the 28 constellations, the 5 phases of qi, and the 9 "stars" or numbers of the Luoshu.

Feng Shui Today

Today, both Form School and Compass School methods are used to perform an accurate feng shui reading. For the most part, today's practitioners have combined both schools into one system commonly referred to as "classical" or "traditional" feng shui.


Feng shui master Val Biktashev travels worldwide providing feng shui for individuals and businesses. Several articles have been written about his work in local, national, and internationally distributed newspapers and magazines. Also, Val is regularly featured on television, including being the feature subject on the CBS news magazine program, Sunday Morning. He is the co-author of the highly acclaimed book, The Complete Idiot's Guide to Feng Shui . Reviewed as "an American masterpiece that tops the lot" by Feng Shui For Modern Living Magazine, the book consistently ranks among the top ten feng shui books (out of 709 entries) on amazon. At the First Annual World Classical Feng Shui conference in Germany, Val was a feature speaker. He can be contacted at or at 323-810-8180. He lives in Los Angeles.

Elizabeth Moran has studied feng shui and Chinese astrology with a number of classical masters. She is a highly sought lecturer and teacher of feng shui. In 2002, Elizabeth was a feature speaker at the First Annual World Classical Feng Shui Conference in Cologne, Germany. She is co-author of the best-selling books, The Complete Idiot's Guide to Feng Shui (Alpha Books, 2002) and The Complete Idiot's Guide to the I Ching (2001). You may contact her at Elizabeth lives in Los Angeles with her husband, feng shui master Val Biktashev.
This book looks like a good addition to any serious library on the history of astronomy.

And let us ask a serious quesion. Does anyone out there - except for the misguided mainstream scholars - really think that ancient astronomy in the Western world was that much different from what the Chinese evidence tells us?

And were in fact the megaliths (as also ancient cave paintings and rock art) oriented to the stars, as the Chinese (and Pawnee Indian) evidence would lead us to believe, and as we have alleged all along?

You bet.

Wednesday, September 13, 2006

What's the meaning of an ibex in rockart in the Negev Desert, Israel? - LexiLine Journal 432

Yehuda wrote:

A rockart with drawn ibex is very common here in the Negev Desert. It appears in about 60% of the petroglyphs so it must be important symbol, but why? Sometimes it is drawn alone and at other times it appears with a dog to the left or right of it. Some experts here are claiming that it the symbol of an ibex is the representation of the God Sin ( the moon ). I think there is more to this, especially when it appears with a dog and other symbols in the rockart. I'm looking for additional meaning and would appriciate any thoughts you have about it.

Andis Kaulins replied:

See the article by Kristina Berggren at titled "When the rest of the world thought male ibex, why did the people of San Giovenale think female sheep?" PECUS . Man and animal in antiquity. Proceedings of the conference at the Swedish Institute in Rome, September 9-12, 2002. Ed. Barbro Santillo Frizell (The Swedish Institute in Rome. Projects and Seminars, 1), Rome 2004, where she relates a mainstream archaeologic theory that the ibex marked Sin, the Moon, which I sincerely doubt, because the many figures of the Ibex found in the Middle East are never found together with a depiction of the Moon at all. This common interpretation by mainstream archaeologists derives from a lack of knowledge about ancient astronomy.

As written by Richard Hinckley Allen in Star Names: Their Lore and Meaning (p. 88):
"[I]n Akkadian times the commencement of the year was determined by the position of this star [Capella in Auriga] in relation to the moon at the vernal equinox".
Hence, the Moon, if significant for the Ibex, was significant only in terms of the stars at the start of season (in the instant case, the Spring viz. Vernal Equinox. The Ibex thus more likely marks stars and not the Moon.

Berggren notes in footnote 13:
"The Hebrew word ayil – used twice more (Gen.15.9 and Ex.29.32) – can mean either male sheep, male goat or ibex."
It has nothing to do with the Moon.

In fact, Berggren writes about the "duality" of the horned ibex in Eastern civilizations and the sheep in Western civilizations.

Elsewhere the 1911 Encyclopaedia Britannica writes that:
"The ibex is found in the Sinaitic peninsula and the hills between the Nile and the Red Sea, and the mouflon, or maned sheep, is occasionally seen in the same regions. "
The discussion of goats and sheep contains the following observations:
"In many languages, such as Chinese the word for sheep, goat and ram is the same. And most city folk generally are not aware of the distinctions.

This is further complicated by the fact that some species of sheep are quite goatish in appearance, such as the Jacob's sheep. This kind of sheep with its characteristically spotted or variably coloured fleece, is descended from an ancient Syrian breed, and it can have as many as 6 horns.

The confusion of terms is increased further by the fact that in sheep, the females, or ewes, are often larger than males and can have horns -- that is, they may appear to be rams [male sheep. ]
Ultimately, the ram or mouflon came down to us as meaning the constellation of Aries (where it marked the Spring Equinox) and the ibex (viz. goat) was seen anciently as the region of Capricorn at the Winter Solstice. However, we may have a shift of positions from Capricorn to Aries over time due to precession of the stars, equinoxes and solstices.

The Journal of Near Eastern Studies
(January-April 1965, Volume XXIV, Numbers 1 and 2, 82nd year), has an article by Willy Hartner titled "The Earliest History of the Constellations in the Near East and the Motif of the Lion-Bull Combat", where he affiliates the ibex with the region of Capricorn and Aquarius.

Similar thoughts are found at

See the following link for a discussion of the horned animals in the early Zodiacs:

Gary D. Thompson in Essays Relating To The History Of Occidental Constellations and Star Names to the Classical Period engages in a general discussion of ancient stellar constellations, including the ibex.

See the following LexiLine files for decipherments involving horned-animal-type symbols at the stellar positions of Orion and Aries:

Add to this the observation that the constellation Auriga above Taurus also came down to us to mean a "flock of goats". See . However, Auriga was originally also connected with the shepherd and the not sheep (or the goats) alone.

The presence of a dog (sheep dog) near the Ibex may speak for Aries as the Ibex in Negev. Indeed, in ancient China, Aries was marked by both the Dog (Heang Low) as well as by the White Sheep (Pih Yang).

Also significant is the direction in which the ibex or ram is facing. Aries faces right, Capricorn faces left.

Lastly, one must view other figures which surround the Ibex. A male figure above the Ibex will most likely mark Perseus (with the phallic pulsating star Algol, the demon), which together with Taurus, the Bull, often marks male fertility in the heavens (again, as a sign of the Spring Equinox).

See e.g. ,

Monday, September 11, 2006

Questions of Proof - LexiLine Journal 431

I just posted the following posting to my LawPundit and Hand Proof blogs and include it here because the subjects discussed bear directly on the area of cognitive psychology which deals with how we view things. It is especially the "entrenched" view of things in mainstream science which is a major problem in getting mainstream scholars to comprehend and accept many of the ideas which we present at LexiLine, and indeed, we generally do not care much whether the mainstream comprehends and/or accepts what we write anyway, for the reasons given below.

Psychoanalysis, Socratic Education, Evidence and Hand Proofs

There are advantages, disadvantages and pitfalls both in the exercise of judgment as well as in the exercise of intuition. Socratic education - in our view - is one method to make students aware of the complexities of thought and to inculcate the ability (viz. habit) to engage in critical thinking in analyzing evidence and in formulating proofs.

In the Abstract to Psychoanalysis and Socratic Education*** by Trevor Pateman (article available as an .rtf document), it is written that:
"A range of concepts are introduced to argue similarities between Socratic Education and Freudian psychoanalysis. The concepts are these: the talking cure; floating attention; knowledge and acknowledgment; judgment and intuition; (prior) theoretical understanding; attending for truth; acting in role; play; negative dialectics; the training of the self ... "
What interests us particularly is Bateman's discussion of judgment and intuition, the former - in his definition - involving what we know or think to to know in an appeal to shared knowledge and the latter - in his definition - involving the subjective expression of how things look or feel to us as individuals. Bateman writes:
"The exercise of judgment involves appeal to what I know or think I know at some articulate level of consciousness. Typically, judgment appeals to shared knowledge: what everyone knows or thinks. So rationalization and self-deception find ready-made support in all kinds of conventional wisdom...."

In contrast, intuition is the expression of a personally experienced connection, drawing on a reservoir of inarticulate consciousness. Intuition is the expression of how things look or feel to me.... [I]ntuition will get us to a (correct) result well before we have the means to judge its correctness ... [M]athematicians have the concept of a hand proof. In a hand proof, there is no (real) proof, just a lot of handwaving. But it gestures to an intuition that if we set out in the general direction indicated by the hand proof, we will get to the proof we want to reach. Intuition is then like a compass. [emphasis added]

But intuition does not always work like this; sometimes it leads us astray. Shown the Muller-Lyer lines, I may intuit that one is longer than the other, but I am actually wrong; judgment is against me. But it still remains that the lines look that way. (The Muller-Lyer lines are the ones placed parallel to each other, but with arrow-heads pointing in opposite directions)...."
To see a graphic of Muller-Lyer lines, see the Epistemology of Perception at The Internet Encyclopedia of Philosophy.
*** "Website version 2004. A first version appeared, under the same title, in a 1993 issue of Aspects of Education (University of Hull, England), number 49, pages 76 - 80. A second version, again under the same title, appeared in S.Appel, editor, Psychoanalysis and Pedagogy (Bergin and Garvey: Westport, Connecticut), pages 45 - 51. Copyright material used by permission."

The basic problem with "hand" proofs as opposed to "mechanical" proofs is that, as noted by Neeraj Suri, Michelle M. Hugue, and Chris J. Walter in Synchronization Issues in Real-Time Systems:

"As hand proofs are sensitive to the skills of the prover, mechanical proofs are sensitive to the correctness of the theorem prover and its underlying logic. "
In other words, to employ a phrase used by Thomas Kuhn in The Structure of Scientific Revolutions, if the paradigms (viz. "mechanical" proofs) underlying a given view of "shared knowledge" are wrong, then that knowledge is likely also wrong. What this means is that someone along the way has done an intuitive "hand proof" which does not conform to the judgmental mechanical proofs in vogue. A hand proof made by a skilled prover is thus always at the root of progress - in any field.

Another example of "hand proofs" is the method by which our legal system relies upon the opinions of judges, rather than on computer-produced verdicts applying fixed mechanical theorems. Here, "skilled" provers are viewed as superior to a computer theorem.

As concerns the progress of science (and law), Thomas Kuhn's theory of scientific revolutions is thus in our view more accurate than Karl Popper's ideas concerning scientific thought as the falsifiability of mainstream statements because "hand proofs" - also in fields other than mathematics - are generally made to conform to the observations at hand, often initially ignorning completely any presumed attempt to "falsify" existing mainstream ideas.

In law, precedents may in fact have to be overturned, but that is not the main purpose of an opinion which overrules prior judicial decisionmaking. Rather, new rules are being made to conform to new observations and events.

Only after an observation-fitting hand proof is made and then compared with the mechanical proofs in vogue does the battle with the inertia of existing paradigms begin.

Mainstream scientists want the ensuing discussion to proceed under their terms and thus demand that their theories be proven false. This, however, does not accurately describe the process of scientific discovery, nor does it describe the primary motivation for overturning precedents in law - and this constitutes Popper's main error in analysis. Popper, by concentrating on mainstream science, does not actually describe the actual process of scientific (or legal) advance - rather, he describes the process of mainstream resistance to advance and the inefficient mechanisms by which that resistance is or can be broken.

The true pioneers in science (or law), on the other hand, and this is where Kuhn's analysis is the more accuracte, have no interest to waste their time on developing proofs to falsify the erroneous theories in vogue, but rather, prefer to be busy building up their own systems which correspond to the evidence at hand. The falsification process of the erroneous prevailing theories is then later carried out by others, i.e. the innovators and early adopters of new theories.

A good example here are the "hand proof" works of Isaac Newton, which present new interpretations of observed phenomena and spend as little time as possible wasting time in disproving the erroneous ideas of others.

Another example of new paradigms and hand proofs is the Constitution of the United States, which is a "new discovery" that concentrates on new things to be achieved, rather than on old things to be "disproven". This in fact is still the genius of America, several hundred years later. America is a "Kuhnian" world of new paradigms and "hand proofs", whereas the Old World (Europe, Middle East) is in part still caught in a maelstrom of Popperian inertia of resistance to change, functioning by antiquated and long outdated mechanical solutions (unreformed social systems, entrenched social classes, overemphasis on tradition, no longer state-of-the-art customs, deference to nobility at the cost of modern social innovation, and in the Middle East, totally outdated religious dogma, etc.)

As the "hand proof" says, "go for it". That's the American way which is sorely lacking in the Old World.

Friday, September 08, 2006

Cahokia Mounds Earth Sky Map - Updated Decipherment - LexiLine Journal 430

To the LexiLine files at in the directory North America - USA Canada at I have uploaded a new graphic cahokiamounds1.png (the graphic below)

presenting my revised decipherment of the Cahokia mounds as an Earth Sky Map based on a new map of the mounds sent to me by Steve Burdic (the old decipherment is here).

The maroon, purple and green elements (mounds and lines) are from Burdic's original map. I have added the blue (arrows), red (constellation lines) and black (text explanatory) materials.

The basic decipherment has remained the same, although there are some small additions, and this map will be much easier for most of you to read and understand than the previous one.

There is now no doubt in my mind that this decipherment is correct, since it fits in a number of new elements from Burdic's new map which I was not familiar with before, but which integrate without problem into the previous decipherment.

Steve Burdic suggests that there may also be solar alignments present, and I do not doubt this, but this is not my major scope of interest and I thus leave that research to others.

The Cahokia mounds are seen as being relatively recent by the archaeologists (ca. 800 to 1400 A.D.), but there is no question that the cardinal stellar positions used for the stars must date back much further in time.

Tuesday, August 29, 2006

New Evidence Proves that the Santorini Eruption was a Blockbuster and Bigger than Currently Assumed - LexiLine Journal 429

As we reported in LexiLine at
33 LexiLine Newsletter 2006 IMPORTANT New Chronology of the Ancient World
mainstream science has erred significantly in the chronology
of the explosion of the volcano Santorini (Santorin) on the island of Thera (Thira).

Thera is the ancient name for the island whereas Santorini is the modern name for that same island, naming it after the volcano. I have often thought that Thera as a name for this volcanic island is related to the heavenly smithy Thor, since prior to Thera, the island is said to have been called Kalliste and Kalejs is "smithy" in Latvian, i.e. it has the equivalent meaning to Thor.

If the explosion of Santorini is currently misdated, as it clearly is by the available PROBATIVE evidence, then this also means that the chronology of the entire Mediterranean area is flawed, including that of Egypt and the ancient Near East, and also including Biblical chronology.

Egyptologists have matched their view of the chronology of Egypt with the presumed - now provenly erroneous - date of explosion of Santorini. Egyptian chronology for that period will have to be moved backward in time. We conlcuded that already years ago, based on other overwhelming evidence in the same direction of argument.

See - Our Revised Chronological Timeline - Chronological Errors of Flinders Petrie - Our Challenges on Chronology to Mainstream Scientists - The Tomb of Moses, The Chronology of Exodus

Via StonePages Archaeo News
we now read an August 23, 2006 press release from the University of Rhode Island, Department of Communications, News Bureau, titled
"Santorini eruption much larger than originally believed "
which demonstrates additionally that mainstream science has also significantly erred in assessing the size of that explosion and its impact on the Mediterranean area, including Egypt and the ancient Near East, and also including the Biblical world of that region.

To put it bluntly, what the scholars have been publishing about that era as the history of Egypt, the history of the ancient Near East, and the history of Biblical regions, is tantamount to a fairy tale.

Obviously, if the Santorini eruption was massive then of course the ancient written records of that period in Egypt and the ancient Near East, including Biblical regions, will have clear reference to this gigantic happening - of course, not in the scientific terms that we use today, since in those regions they could not know that a volcano in the Mediterranean had exploded, nor could they draw a causal connection to the catastrophic events that they witnessed far from that exploded volcano.

Rather, the ancients wrote about the observed effects of the explosion in the only terms that they knew in that period of time - referring to the calamities and events which were experienced as the acts of God. But of course they specifically DESCRIBE what they observed, without knowing its cause - the River Nile running red, frogs and burning coal falling from the skies, the sea parting, etc.

Instructive in this regard are - Egypt (Thebes) and Judah, Where was Judah? (Giza) - Judah and Judea are NOT the same, Judah was NOT Israel - Egypt, the Jews and Exodus

The reader quoted in an e-mail which led to that last posting wrote:

"The things you have said have made a lot of sense. I hope someday you are proven correct !"

Well, exactly that is happening ... sooner than expected.

Friday, August 25, 2006

IAU (International Astronomical Union) Zaps Pluto as a Planet - LexiLine Journal 428

In a decision which in our opinion is difficult to support, the International Astronomical Union (IAU) and its 26th General Assembly have just zapped the status of Pluto as a planet.


The International Astronomical Union (see ) was founded in 1919 and regards itself to be the naming authority for astronomical bodies .


In addition, in 1930 the IAU fixed the present boundaries of the stellar (starry) constellations by adopting a system devised by Joseph Delporte, which fixed those boundaries along lines of right ascension and declination for the epoch B1875.0 , a so-called Besselian epoch (365.242198781 days), which has since been superseded in mainstream astronomy by Julian epochs (based on Julian years of 365.25 days and calculated by the formula
J = 2000.0 + (Julian date - 2451545.0)/365.25.

The fixing of starry constellations at its present number of 88 had the drawback that not all ancient constellations are included in this system, nor did the ancients necessarily use the exact same stars for a given constellation as used by more ancient astronomers.

See generally in this regard, Richard Hinckley Allen, Star Names: Their Lore and Meaning, Dover, N.Y. 1963, see StarPath (the book online) or Amazon.

Moreover, different cultures saw the stars somewhat differently in terms of their representations, even if there are substantial overlaps among cultures in the way they saw the sky.

Finally, the present "fixed" constellations give the appearance that the stellar constellations were always viewed the same way we view them today, which is simply false.


The IAU has now dimply redefined what a "planet" is and in the process has eliminated Pluto from its previous classification as a planet. See the CNN article, Pluto gets the boot

As reported there by Associated Press:
"For now, membership will be restricted to the eight "classical" planets in the solar system: Mercury, Venus, Earth, Mars, Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus and Neptune.

Much-maligned Pluto doesn't make the grade under the new rules for a planet: "a celestial body that is in orbit around the sun, has sufficient mass for its self-gravity to overcome rigid body forces so that it assumes a ... nearly round shape, and has cleared the neighborhood around its orbit.

Pluto is automatically disqualified because its oblong orbit overlaps with Neptune's.

Instead, it will be reclassified in a new category of "dwarf planets," similar to what long have been termed "minor planets." The definition also lays out a third class of lesser objects that orbit the sun -- "small solar system bodies," a term that will apply to numerous asteroids, comets and other natural satellites.
The idea that sheer "size" (i.e. mass) and gravitational effect rather than "orbit" should be the determining factor for defining a planet shows in our opinion a serious lack of insight into the nature of the universe, which seems to us to be defined more by principles of "distribution" of matter, rather than by the "mass" of the matter per se. Indeed, the ancient Greeks (as in our opinion also ancient man) saw the stellar constellations as consisting not only of stars of the heavens but also of the spaces inbetween. Modern astronomers have often lost sight of the "spaces" inbetween, also as far as the planets are concerned.

Not only the Titius-Bode Law (more correctly called a "rule of the distribution of planetary mass by orbits""), but also an analysis of other known orbital systems such as the moons of Jupiter, shows that there is always an orderly "spacing" of "planetary" bodies around an orbited object.

In fact, according to the orderly spacing of objects around the Sun in our own Solar System, it is not only the Asteroid Belt (including Ceres) - which appears to us to be a disintegrated planet at that location - but also the "brothers" Neptune and Pluto (whose orbits overlap) should be regarded as planetary orbits, because their astronomical spacing around the Sun follows an orderly orbital system- in the case of Pluto, it is Pluto and not Neptune which actually occupies the orbital position predicted by the Titius-Bode Law. Keeping Neptune but throwing Pluto out of this system is just ludicrous.

As written at the Wikipedia :
"One plausible explanation other than chance is that orbital resonance from major orbiting bodies creates regions around the Sun that are free of long-term stable orbits. Results from simulation of planetary formation seem to support the idea that laws like the Titius-Bode law are a natural consequence of planetary formation, according to the current theories in this area.

Dubrulle and Graner have shown that power-law distance rules are a natural consequence of collapsing-cloud models of planetary systems possessing two symmetries: rotational invariance (the cloud and its contents are axially symmetric) and scale invariance (the cloud and its contents look the same on all length scales), the latter being a feature of many phenomena considered to play a role in planetary formation, such as inverse-square force fields and turbulence
The elimination of Pluto as a "planet" by the IAU does not take orbitals of heavenly bodies into account, which in our view is a grievous mistake, since it is not size (mass) which should be determinative of planetary status, but rather the orbital location of the orbiting body, regardless of its size.

We think the IAU has made a serious mistake.

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