An Ancient Greek Philosopher Was Exiled for Claiming the Moon Was a Rock, Not a God

Anaxagoras, who lived in the fifth century B.C., was one of the first people in recorded history to recognize that the moon was a rocky, mountainous body. (Eduard Lebiedzki / Public Domain) 2,500 years ago, Anaxagoras correctly determined that the rocky moon reflects light from the sun, allowing him to explain lunar phases and eclipses By David Warmflash Close to the north pole of the moon lies the crater Anaxagoras, named for a Greek philosopher who lived in the fifth century B.C. The eponym is fitting, as Anaxagoras the man was one of the first people in history to suggest the moon … Continue reading An Ancient Greek Philosopher Was Exiled for Claiming the Moon Was a Rock, Not a God

Samurai text tells secrets of sword-fighters’ ‘supernatural powers’

A Japanese samurai warrior, around 1880. (Photo by Hulton Archive/Getty Images) By Owen Jarus Live Science Contributor A newly translated samurai text called “Twelve Rules of the Sword” reveals the secrets of a sword-fighting school that mastered a technique that seemed to give supernatural powers. Dating back to the 17th century, the text contains knowledge passed down from a samurai named Itō Ittōsai (born around 1560), who fought and won 33 duels in Japan. Researchers aren’t sure when he died, but historical records suggest he may have lived to be over age 90. Ittōsai never wrote down his “Twelve Rules of the Sword,” and … Continue reading Samurai text tells secrets of sword-fighters’ ‘supernatural powers’

Women’s minds matter

Déesse V Nine Goodbye Kisses by Delphine Lebourgeois Feminists never bought the idea of the computational mind set free from its body. Cognitive science is finally catching up Sally Davies is a senior editor at Aeon and a writer with interests in science, philosophy and feminism. She lives in London. Edited by Brigid Hains We are shackled to the pangs and shocks of life, wrote Virginia Woolf in The Waves(1931), ‘as bodies to wild horses’. Or are we? Serge Faguet, a Russian-born tech entrepreneur and self-declared ‘extreme biohacker’, believes otherwise. He wants to tame the bucking steed of his own biochemistry via an elixir … Continue reading Women’s minds matter

WHAT ARE CRIMINALS ‘SUPPOSED’ TO LOOK LIKE?

After a break-in, a crime writer imagines her burglar, and reckons with our cultural notions about good-looking criminals.  BY AMY LLOYD HANOVER SQUARE PRESS When we got home, our house wasn’t as we left it. We stood for a moment, not yet understanding why all our belongings were on the floor, how each drawer had been pulled out, tipped empty. There was a space where my laptop should have been and there were loose wires hanging from the television unit. Our fridge door had been left open, the fuse had burnt out, our food was turning bad. We were in the … Continue reading WHAT ARE CRIMINALS ‘SUPPOSED’ TO LOOK LIKE?

Do These Skeletons Hold the Secret to the Fall of the Roman Empire?

Photo Illustration by The Daily Beast/Public Domain A recent discovery in England has some claiming proof for one of the grand theories for the demise of one of history’s greatest empires. by Candida Moss An international team of scientists led by the Max Planck Institute for the Science of Human History has discovered the first direct genetic evidence of the Plague of Justinian in the British Isles from the Anglo-Saxon site of Edix Hill, in southern Cambridgeshire. The Plague of Justinian is believed by many researchers to have been one of the primary causes of the fall of the Roman Empire but … Continue reading Do These Skeletons Hold the Secret to the Fall of the Roman Empire?

Who really owns the past?

European tourists having a picnic in a temple in Egypt, 1898. Photo by LL/Roger Viollet/Getty Images Cultural heritage is an ideal imposed from above. It’s time to listen to what communities value about their own histories by Michael Press is an archaeologist and writer living in Bloomington, Indiana. He is the author of Ashkelon 4: The Iron Age Terracottas of Ashkelon and Philistia (2012). Edited by Sam Haselby Mosul’s old city lies in ruins. A major section of the third largest city in Iraq has been destroyed by war. Two years after the Iraqi government and the United States-led coalition recaptured it from … Continue reading Who really owns the past?

THE OMNIPRESENT SURVEILLANCE STATE: ORWELL’S 1984 IS NO LONGER FICTION

by John W. Whitehead, Rutherford Waking Times “You had to live—did live, from habit that became instinct—in the assumption that every sound you made was overheard, and, except in darkness, every movement scrutinized.”—George Orwell, 1984 Tread cautiously: the fiction of George Orwell has become an operation manual for the omnipresent, modern-day surveillance state. It’s been 70 years since Orwell—dying, beset by fever and bloody coughing fits, and driven to warn against the rise of a society in which rampant abuse of power and mass manipulation are the norm—depicted the ominous rise of ubiquitous technology, fascism and totalitarianism in 1984. Who could have predicted that … Continue reading THE OMNIPRESENT SURVEILLANCE STATE: ORWELL’S 1984 IS NO LONGER FICTION