Thursday, March 31, 2011

Angels on Earth


The Children of Now is a groundbreaking work that shows that a large number of kids come into the world bearing inherent gifts that are beyond strange—they are telepathic, understand subtle energies, and/or have amazing psychic abilities. Many of them remember where they were before they came to Earth and often can describe past lives. Here we share an excerpt from Chapter 11 Angels on Earth. Enjoy!

Throughout history, we have read or heard about angels who come to Earth to be of assistance to us. This surprisingly common phenomenon was aptly and vividly illustrated in the following story:

I was driving down a road at a fast speed, and all of a sudden I realized that there was a large piece of wood in front of me. It was a long square post of some kind. Before I realized what was happening, I ran over the wood, and as I did, both of the tires on the driver’s side of my car blew out. From that point on, everything seemed to be in slow motion. One millisecond at a time, I was aware of every intricate part of the progression of events.

“Angels!” I pleaded, “Help me!” The driver’s side of my car was off the ground, and I was careening forward at an excessive speed on two wheels. I was also in the fast lane and needed to move over to the shoulder of the road without wrecking my car, hitting someone else, or completely losing control of the car. The balance of the vehicle felt dangerously precarious. Faster than I could comprehend, I began to receive instructions that calmly spoke to me. “Easy,” the voice said. “Don’t panic. Turn your steering wheel ever so slightly this way, not too much or the car will flip.” I could see that! “Now, use the momentum of your car to steer it. Ease over to the other lane—now! That’s it. Now touch the brakes gently so that the car stops in a straight line—good, good. Now, pull off of the road and come to a stop.”

In spite of my predicament, I felt calm and perfectly guided as I followed the instructions. As I got out of the car and saw the extent of the damage, I began to shake all over. The adrenaline that was pumping through my system was maximized. Automatically I went to the trunk for my spare tire and jack, only to realize a second or two later that I had only one spare. I was too wobbly from the shock of the accident to even try to use the jack anyway.

“I need an Angel, God,” I said, as I held onto the car for support. As I finished my prayer, I looked up to see a van turning around in the median and heading my way. The van pulled up and a kindly older gentleman got out. Even in my distress, I couldn’t help but notice a glow around my rescuer. He was very quiet, but the few words he did say were calming. He spoke only enough to communicate what was necessary and nothing more. He helped me with everything, and before he left, I asked his name. He gave me one, and said that he lived in a certain community which I was familiar with. Later, when I tried to find him to thank him for assisting me, I found that he didn’t exist. The address didn’t exist. No one had heard of my gentle hero. He wasn’t of this Earth—my prayers had been answered, and an angel had come.

There are countless stories like this in which angels come to the rescue and then disappear just as quickly, never to be heard from again. This type of angelic interaction is typical of guardian angels.

However, the angels I will describe here are very different. They are being born in human form, wings and all. Their wings aren’t visible to everyone, but there are some who can see them. There is an etheric quality to these children, which words are insufficient to describe. The few I have met are having a very hard time. They are cosmically sad for humanity. They do not feel as if they truly belong in our world and at the same time, they know of God, Spirit, and the Light, and they experience the depth of feeling that comes from that knowing to their very core.

Michael

About seven or eight years ago I received a call from a good friend, who asked me to talk with a young man she knew. He was in his early twenties. She felt he might be in trouble, and she told me that I would understand when I spoke with him. At the time I was still working on sorting out my own awakening, and I was very excited to hear the story this young man had to tell. I will call him Michael.

Before I could call him, he called me. Michael was a bit timid with me at first. He was on the other side of the country and alone. I could feel sadness oozing through the telephone. As he and I talked, Michael began to open more and more to me and tell me his story, and as he did, I wanted to reach through the phone and hold him. “I have wings,” he said. “I feel like I have to go out into the world and share messages of love. I have literally been wandering around the world for the last year. I went to Europe and walked barefoot everywhere I went. I can’t stand wearing shoes because it is like having my feet in a box. I need for my feet to feel the ground because it helps me stay anchored in earthly reality. I usually feel as if I am barely here. I really need help. I had some wonderful experiences in my travels, especially when I went to Padre Pio’s.” (Padre Pio was a devout priest who was known for healing others miraculously. He had the stigmata, the marks of Christ’s crucifixion, on his body.) “When I was there, I could feel the light, the love, his miracles—and I was comfortable. I managed to gain possession one of his gloves. The energy contained in his glove is a treasure and a good reminder to me that one person can affect many others. I don’t know what to do or where to go next. I know that I must share what I know. I know that I will touch people—heal people in their bodies, hearts, and souls—but right now I am lost and alone. Can you give me any information that would help?”

I closed my eyes and looked at this being energetically. He truly did have wings! They were white with a golden glow that undulated around the edges. His entire energy field was so nearly perfect that to gaze upon him, even ethereally, was very difficult because his brightness was so great. God, another reality shift! I had had some experience by then of wings and angels, but I hadn’t really expected to hear from one on the phone. We talked for several hours, and as we did, his profound sadness permeated his words. He was so ungrounded that even participating in logical conversation was difficult for him. His spirit was so pure. To Michael, the injury that humanity had inflicted upon itself was so great that he felt too small and powerless to make any positive changes here on Earth.

With human insight, I helped him to better understand compassion, love, and choices. I spoke with him about personal safety, and how his vulnerability was both a treasure and a difficulty. He was so innocent, so pure, that he couldn’t understand why everyone couldn’t understand God, the light, and love. For a while I spoke with him only of mundane things, such his body’s need for food and sleep. He was having a hard time sustaining his physical body, because his mission was first and foremost in his focus. He often forgot to eat, and he slept very little. He was exhausted and had lost an extreme amount of weight.

Michael was all about love, and that was the message he wanted to share with everyone. “You are love,” I said. “Yes, I am,” he replied. “It is my message as well.”

“Michael,” I said, “you must remember how to use your wings. It is vital to your journey. There are things that you can do with them that can touch others profoundly. You can comfort people, heal people with them.”

He said, “I am so tired, but I have to keep going.”

“Yes, you do, but if you don’t take time to regenerate, to replenish yourself, you won’t make it.”

“I know I just don’t know what to do with this body. It is foreign to me in every way.”

So I gave Michael suggestions about how to find balance in his situation, and how to ground himself so that he could function more clearly. There he was, an angel of perfection, bound in an imperfect body in an imperfect world, and the extent of his emotions were overwhelming him.

Toward the end of our conversation I asked him what he was going to do next. He suggested that he might wander elsewhere, and said something about going to Tibet, among other places. I encouraged Michael to call me regularly but I never heard from him again. I still wonder. I hope he made it.


Lovingly called “Dr. Meg” by her audiences worldwide, Meg Blackburn Losey, Ph.D., is the author of soon to be released The Secret History of Consciousness, Parenting the Children of Now, the international Best Seller, The Children of Now, Conversations with the Children of Now, Pyramids of Light, Awakening to Multi-Dimensional Realities and the Online Messages which are distributed globally. She is also a contributing author to The Mysteries of 2012.

Dr. Meg is a Keynote speaker and has recently served as a consultant to Good Morning America and 20/20 News. Her expertise in relation to issues of children of the consciousness evolution is greatly in demand.

Known as an “in your face” author and teacher because of her forthright approach to every subject, she loves teaching classes and sharing personal interactions with her students and clients. Dr. Meg also takes groups on mystical journeys to sacred sites in such places as Mexico, Peru, Egypt, Scotland and England where she takes her students into a full immersion of local cultures and ceremonies as well as initiation rites.

She is a Master Healer, speaker, and teacher. She is a dually Ordained Minister in both Spiritual Science and Metaphysics. She is a Ph.D. of Holistic Life Coaching and holds a Doctoral Degree in Metaphysics. She is a medical intuitive and the developer of the Seventh Sense Attunement® healing process.

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Weird News of the Week


Future Firefighters could fight fire
with blasts of Flame-Bending Electricity

Click Here to Read More



MIT Lab creates the World's first Feasible 'Artificial Leaf'

Click Here to Read More



Tumeric could be used to Detect Explosives

Click Here to Read More

Monday, March 28, 2011

Time for Some Dragonlore

Excerpted from Dragonlore

by Ash "LeopardDancer" Dekirk

Chapter 1: Dragons of the World

Dragons Of The Americas

What do you think of when you hear the word dragon? Probably Europe or China, yes? It never occurs to most people that dragonlore occurs in the Americas with just as great a frequency as it does elsewhere. Dragons are present in large numbers in the Native cultures of the Americas. Think for a moment. Surely you have heard of the Aztec god Quetzalcoatl? The great feathered serpent? Quetzalcoatl and his predecessor, Kulkulcan are types of dragons similar to the amphiteres we saw in European myth. An even older variation of this same feathered dragon is Palulukon.

Dragons of every variety roam the wilds of the Americas. Likely, if you live in the United States you have dragons in the ancient (or not so ancient!) lore of your home state. And if you live in Central or South America then your local folklore is likely rife with them!

North America

*Amhuluk: This dragon of Oregon myth was a sea serpent with horns on its head. One of the amhuluk’s favorite things to do is lure people close to the water and then drown them. The amhuluk is believed to undergo a series of transformations, each one leaving it even more formidable than before. This dragon is associated with thieves, but the reasoning is lost to the past.

*The Ancient One: This sea serpent of Piute myth dwells in Lake Pyramid. The Ancient One, like the amhuluk, enjoys snagging people from the shore and drowning them. Whenever the Piute see whirlpools in Lake Pyramid they avoid it as it means the Ancient One is about and looking for victims.

*Angont: The angont is a sacred serpent-dragon found in Huron myth. The angont is a viscious and poisonous dragon known for causing disease, illness, and disaster. Indeed, the very flesh of this dragon is poisonous, much like poison dart frogs. The angont lives in desolate places such as caves, wild forests, and the depths of lakes.

*Az-I-Wu-Gum-Ki-Mukh-Ti: This dragon of Inuit myth has a walrus-like head, a dog-like body, and dog-like legs/feet, a whale fluke for a tail, and black scales. This immense beast can sink ships with one blow from its tail and is much feared by the Inuit fishermen.

*Gaasyendietha: This dragon of Seneca myth is believed to have come from the meteors that fall from the heavens to crash in the earth. For this reason it is also known as the meteor dragon. The gaasyendietha is a huge dragon that dwells in rivers and lakes. Meteor dragons show up in the popular anime series and card game Yu-Gi-Oh as the Meteor Dragon and Black Meteor Dragon, the latter of which is a most powerful creature.

Gloucester’s Sea Serpent: This 45-55-foot-long beast was reportedly spotted in the Boston Harbor. It had a horse-like head and moved as most sea serpents are given to move—more like an inchworm than a snake.

*Gowrow: The gowrow is a 20–30 foot long lizard-like creature found in the legends and lore of Arkansas. This dragon has giant tusks protruding from its jaws and is believed to be a subterranean dragon, coming out from caves and fissures to feed. The last recorded sighting of a gowrow was in 1951, in the Ozark Mountains.

*Haietlik: This serpent dragon of the Nootka and Clayoqut Indians is called the Lightning Serpent. This dragon has a serpentine body and a horse-like head. Haietlik dwells in the lakes and waterways. Pictograms of the Haietlik adorn the rocks in the area so as to promote successful hunting and fishing.

*Horned Serpents: These dragons can be found all over North America. They are hugeserpent dragons sporting one or two horns upon their heads. The horned serpents are gilled water dwellers, however, they can also breathe out of water. The horned serpents are the mortal enemies of the Thunderbirds.

*Kikituk: This dragon of the Inuit is saurian in appearance. It is a huge creature with four feet, but lacking in wings, much like the European drake.

*Kolowisi: A dragon of Zuni myth, the Kolowisi is an enormous, water-dwelling serpent dragon with horns adorning its head and fish-like fins in place of feet and hands would be and along its back.

*Meshkenabec: This giganitic sea serpent had plate-sized scales of a ruby red color and a wedge-shaped head. Meshkenabec was slain by the warrior Manabozho.

*Msi-kinepeikwa: A serpent dragon of Shawnee myth, it also called kinepeikwa. This dragon grows slowly and through metamorphoses much like its Asiatic brethren. Each transformation takes place by shedding the previous form away, much like a snake sheds its skin or a tarantula sheds its exoskeleton. In the first stage kinepeikwa is a fawn with one red horn and one blue one. The final transformation leaves behind a massive, lake-dwelling serpent dragon.

*Ogopogo: This sea serpent dwells in Canada’s Lake Okanagan. It is roughly 70 feet long, with the horse-like head so commonly seen in sea serpents. Ogopogo has numerous fins running along its serpentine body.


*Piasa: The name Piasa means “destroyer.” This dragon is a hodgepodge of animal parts, much like the Asiatic dragons. They are said to have the head of a bear, the horns of an elk, scales like a fish, and bear’s legs with an eagle’s claws. The Piasa has a mane around its head and shoulders and sports a tail that is at least 50 feet long and can wrap around the body three times. The Native Americans call this dragon Stormbringer or Thunderer. In 1673 Father J. Marquette saw a rock painting of the Piasa along the Illinois/Mississippi River. This painting, fitting the above description, was painted in natural blacks, reds, and blues. Unfortunately, in the year 1876, a land developer destroyed the rock sculpture in his greed to build yet more buildings. The current Piasa rock painting located along the Mississippi River near Alton, Illinois is a reconstruction of the one Marquette reported seeing. This 48x22 painting is located on a 100x75 section of the bluffs. PIC #16

*Pal-rai-yuk: This Alaskan dragon has six legs on a long, snake-like body. Spikes run along the dragon’s spine. The pal-rai-yuk lives in the rivers and waters of Alaska and the Inuit peoples would paint its picture on their canoes before using them so as to serve as a ward against the fearsome beast’s attentions. PIC #17


*Palulukon: These dragons are part of the plumed serpent family of amphiteres along with the dragon gods of Meso-America. They are powerful dragons, but are neither good nor bad. They just are. The palulukon are weather workers and represent the Element of Water. They are in charge of bringing the rains and it said that the world is carried through the cosmic ocean on the backs of two of these colossal beasts. If mistreated the palulukon can wreak much damage by unleashing natural disasters such as drying up wells, rivers, and water holes and allowing the rains to cease falling. They may even cause earthquakes to happen.

*Polar worms: These are dragons of Inuit legend like the wurms of Europe. These were long serpentine creatures with dragonesque heads and ferocious tempers.

*Sisiutl: This two-headed supernatural sea serpent has the ability to shapeshift into a self-propelled canoe. To maintain his energy he has to have a steady diet of seals.

*Stvkwvnaya: A dragon of Seminole myth, the stvkwvnaya is also called a tie snake. These dragons are huge serpentine creatures with a single horn sprouting from their foreheads. The horn of the stvkwvnaya, when powdered, was believed to be a powerful aphrodisiac. The only way to get a stvkwvnaya’s horn was to summon it and chant to keep the beast calm.

*Tatoskok: A sea serpent that also goes by the more modern designation of Champ. It lives in Lake Champlain and is believed to be one of the horned serpents by the Abenaki. Tatoskok is roughly 30 feet long with a horse-like head. This sea serpent has been spotted many times over the years and a popular explanation is that like Nessie, it is a remnant of a plesiosaur, basilosaurus, or other prehistoric beast.

*Tcipitckaam: Also called the unicorn serpent, this horned serpent species has a serpentine body, a horse-like head, and a single spiraling horn jutting from its head. It dwells mainly in lakes. Some tcipitckaam have been described as resembling a drake in appearance, having a stockier body and four stubby legs, but still sporting the spiraling horn on its head.

*Teehooltsoodi: This dragon of the Navajo is kin to the ying-long of China. It has a slinky, otter-like body and buffalo-like horns on its head. The teehooltsoodi live in rivers and can cause them to overflow.

*Uktena: This dragon, found in Tennessee, North Carolina, and South Carolina, resembles a giant serpent. The uktena has the girth of a large tree, with stag horns on its head, giant eagle wings, and scales that gleam like fire. It has spots of color all along its body and can only be killed by wounding it at the seventh spot from the head. The uktena sports a gem in its forehead, called an Ulun’suti. This gem, as with the Asiatic dragon pearls, is a source of power. If a man can claim an Ulun’suti he can become a great worker of miracles and wonders. However, to try and seize the gem is a great folly. The uktena’s gaze can daze a man and make him run towards the serpent instead of away from it. In addition the uktena has a poison breath that can kill instantly.

*Wakandagi: An unusual dragon of the Mohawk Indians. It is possessed of a long slinky body, a slender tapered muzzle with sharp teeth, deer antlers on its head, and hooves for feet in place of claws.


Meso-America

*Chac: This dragon of Mayan myth controls the rains and rules over all the waters. He required a sacrifice in order for the rains to come, but he repaid the human sacrifices with his own blood. He has a long, serpentine body scaled like a fish and catfish whiskers at the end of a tapered snout. Stag horns adorn his crocodilian head, as do deer-like ears. Chac is often depicted holding his lightning axe in one paw.

*Coatlcue: A dragon of Aztec mythology, Coatlcue represents women’s fertility and fecundity. She is also known as Chihuacoatl or “Serpent Skirt.” Coatlcue is often depicted as a hydraesque creature with a serpentine body and two heads. This form sometimes sported claws and at other times did not. In another form she is a human-looking female with a necklace of severed human hands and a skirt of writhing serpents. A statue of Coatlcue can be found at La Troba University in Melbourne.

*Itzamna: This dragon-god of the Mayans was the son of the Sun god Hunabku. Itzamna is a patron god of doctors, of writing, and learning, much as Hermes is to the Greeks and Thoth to the Egyptians.

*Kulkulkan: The Mayan equivalent to Quetzalcoatl, this plumed serpent god was a bit more bloodthirsty. He required sacrifice whereas Quetzalcoatl allowed it to be voluntary.

*Lord Nine Winds: The Mixtec equivalent to Kulkulkan and Quetzalcoatl. Like the previous Plumed Serpent gods, Lord Nine Winds is an amphitere. He is a creator god as well.

*Quetzalcoatl: The Aztec feathered serpent god, controls the winds and rains. He is the God of Knowledge and of the finer crafts and arts. Quetzalcoatl is credited with creating the calendar system. Other names for the well-known specimen of the amphitere family are Ehecatl and the Lord of the Dawn. Quetzalcoatl has multicolored scales and feathers. He is often depicted soaring through the sky, creating a rainbow. The serpent god was also known to take the form of a human on occasion. Quetzalcoatl was believed to have departed from this realm for the east, traveling on a raft made from serpents and would one day return. The Aztecs viewed the coming of Cortez and his Spaniards as the return of the Great Plumed One.

*Xiuhcoatl: Called the Turqoise Fire Serpent, Xiuhcoatl is the Aztec god of droughts. This dragon is very serpentine and has a head at each end, with an upturned snout much like a hog-nose snake.

South America

*Bachue: A dragon goddess of the Chibcha peoples of Columbia. Long ago she emerged from Lake Iguaque in the form of a human. With her she brought a small boy who she later married and had six children with. Thus they were the progenitors of the human race. Once these humans had grown up and learned to live on their own, Bachue turned her mate and herself into dragons and they returned to the depths of Lake Iguaque, where they still dwell today. Bachue is the goddess of agriculture and the harvest, as well as the goddess of famine.

*Faery dragon: Also called fairy dragons, fey dragons, or penny dragons, this type of dragon is prevalent in South America. They range from the size of a mouse to about a foot in length. The faery dragon resembles a classical dragon of Europe in build but there are several important differences (besides the size, that is!). Penny dragons sport two sets of dragonfly or butterfly wings. They have longer, more tapered snout, large iridescent eyes, and are colored to blend in with their surroundings in the same manner that moths, butterflies, and other insects do. However, if the light hits them just right, the faery dragon’s hide will shine with a rainbow of colors.

*Iemisch: This Patagonia dragon is much like the tatzelwurm of Europe. It has a serpentine body with the forequarters of a fox. The iemisch will use its body to ensnare victims and crush them like a boa or python.

*Ihuaivulu: This South American dragon dwells in volcanoes. It has a slinky, serpent body with burnished copper and red scales. The Ihuaivulu is a South American version of the hydra and sports seven heads. As a volcano dweller, it can breathe fire.

*Iwanci: A sea serpent from the Equadoran Amazon basin, this dragon is a shapeshifter with two forms. One is Macanci, the water snake. The other is Pani, the anaconda.

*Lampalugua: A drake that inhabits Chile, it has dusty-reddish scales and preys upon both livestock and people.

Ashley “LeopardDancer” DeKirk, Professor of Lore and Divination at the Grey School of Wizardry, has extensive knowledge of myth and folklore around the world. She holds a B.A. in anthropology, specializing in dragonlore and Asiatic/Native American myth. Professor DeKirk is a Dun’marran Priest who lives with her three cats, Rufus, Drizzt and Bakura.

Friday, March 25, 2011

Join Maureen Seaberg at Tibet House US Gallery 4/14 @ 7 PM


Recent studies (Walsh, UC Irvine) have shown that the more one practices Buddhist meditation, the more one experiences synesthesia, a blending of senses. In fact, the highest states appear to be invariably synesthetic.


In the new book, Tasting the Universe, journalist Maureen Seaberg and Tibet House Director of East West Research, Dr. William C Bushell, go on a quest to determine the truth of this noetic state which occurs naturally in about five percent of the population and is being feverishly researched around the globe in top neuroscience labs.


Dr. Robert Thurman, Dr. Amit Goswami, Dr. Stuart Hameroff, Lama Za Rinpoche and other top thinkers provide a spiritual and even quantum context for the experience through interviews appearing in the book. And adding glamour to the mix, they get the first-time testimony of synesthetes Itzhak Perlman, Billy Joel and the family of Marilyn Monroe (who has recently been found to have been a synesthete).

Thursday, April 14


Tibet House is Located in New York City at 22 West 15th St New York, NY 10011

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Shakin’ All Over by Marie D. Jones & Dr. John M. Savino Ph.D.


Yellowstone, Supervolcanoes and Mega Quakes – Any Connections?

With all eyes on Japan and the catastrophic 9.0 Sendai quake that devastated the nation, many in the U.S. have wondered about possible links between mega earthquakes and recent upheavals of the caldera floor at the mighty Yellowstone supervolcano. The general question is - could a mega earthquake such as the 2010 Chilean 8.8 or the Sendai event possibly trigger seismic activity on a fault or beneath a volcano at distances of thousands of miles including on the other side of the planet?

There is good news, and there is bad news. The good news first. The seismic network that monitors activity in and around the Yellowstone supervolcano shows no significant increase in background seismicity during the week following the magnitude 9.0 Japan earthquake.

The bad news is, there is so much scientists still have yet to learn about what makes mega quakes and supervolcanic eruptions occur when they do. While current research indicates possible links between global seismic activity, as well as links between large earthquakes and seismic activity beneath volcanic zones, predictions of when mega earthquakes or major volcanic eruptions will occur remain an elusive goal.


In our book Supervolcano: The Catastrophic Event That Changed the Course of Human History, we documented new research by a number of sources, including USGS scientists, scientists from the Carnegie Institution, and from the Institute of Geophysics and Planetary Physics at the Scripps Institute in La Jolla, CA (see pages 199-205). These studies noted several instances where seismic activity was triggered beneath volcanoes by the passage of seismic surface waves generated by large earthquakes that originated thousands of miles from the volcanoes.

A press release by the University of Utah in 2002 described two cases involving Yellowstone
***November 4, 2002 -- A major, magnitude-7.9 earthquake that rocked Alaska on Sunday apparently triggered scores of earthquakes some 2,000 miles away at Yellowstone National Park in Wyoming. By 8:30 a.m. MST Monday Nov. 4 - about 17 hours after the Alaskan quake - more than 200 small earthquakes had been detected occurring in clusters throughout the Yellowstone area. The quakes were recorded by the Yellowstone seismic network operated by the University of Utah Seismograph Stations. The smallest events were of magnitude less than 0 and the largest of about magnitude 2.5. National Park Service rangers at Old Faithful and Canyon Village reported feeling some of the earthquakes. While the data are preliminary, they suggest that the Yellowstone earthquakes may have been triggered by the passage of large seismic waves generated by the Alaskan earthquake more than 3,200 kilometers (almost 2,000 miles) from the park. The apparent triggering is suggested by the fact the Yellowstone activity began within a half hour of the Alaska earthquake, which hit at 3:12 p.m. MST Nov. 3 (1:12 p.m. local time in Alaska). There also are preliminary reports the Alaska quake may have triggered smaller tremors at The Geysers geothermal area in northern California. Scientists once believed that an earthquake at one location could not trigger earthquakes at distant sites. But that belief was shattered in 1992 when the magnitude-7.3 Landers earthquake in California's Mojave Desert triggered a swarm of quakes more than 800 miles away at Yellowstone, as well as other jolts near Mammoth Lakes, Calif., and Yucca Mountain, Nev. The apparent triggering of the Yellowstone tremors by the Alaska quake "confirms what we are beginning to see worldwide - that earthquakes can be triggered by other earthquakes at great distances, more so than we had thought before," said Robert. B. Smith, a University of Utah professor of geology and geophysics and coordinating scientist for the Yellowstone Volcano Observatory. Clusters of small earthquakes in time and space are common in Yellowstone. However, the clusters of Yellowstone earthquakes following the Alaskan mainshock extended across much of the park and were not concentrated in a single location. The small Yellowstone quakes are not considered to pose a threat to the public, but are of great interest to scientists who want to confirm if they were triggered and understand how. Investigation is ongoing and may take some time to complete, said Sue Nava, seismograph network manager at the University of Utah Seismograph Stations. There has been some suggestion that seismic waves from a large, distant quake may jostle the ground at Yellowstone, triggering small quakes by moving the hydrothermal fluids responsible for Yellowstone geysers and hot springs.***


In SuperVolcano, we focused mainly on the Southern San Andreas fault and the potential of a mega quake there triggering a supereruption at the nearby Long Valley caldera, which to this day remains, in our opinion, worth watching as much as Yellowstone. Yet the studies we cited also suggested that even Yellowstone was close enough to the Southern San Andreas, approximately 770 miles away, to potentially be influenced by a major quake.

There has been research into whether quakes at the edge of one tectonic plate can trigger second quakes at different locations and times. In the January 31st issue of “Nature,” a team of researchers from Penn State University, California Institute of Technology and the University of California, Santa Cruz looked at two large quakes that occurred near Japan in late 2006 and early 2007. The team, led by Penn State associate professor of geoscience Charles J. Ammon, found that the first quake on November 15th 2006, a magnitude 8.3 on the edge of the Pacific plate thrusting under the arc of the Kuril Islands, may have influenced a second magnitude 8.1 quake that occurred sixty days later, in January of 2007, in the upper portion of the Pacific plate, thus producing one of the largest recorded shallow extensional quakes.

Though the team did not find direct cause, they labeled this a “doublet,” two earthquakes that are linked by the sequence of seismic activity. “Such large doublet earthquakes, though rare, could be an underestimated hazard,” Ammon stated in a story for Science Daily in February of 2008. “Within minutes of the Nov. 15 quake, seismic activity began on the Pacific plate in the area where the January earthquake would take place,” Ammon continued.

Another Science Daily story in December of 2008 showed links between L-waves, the slow moving seismic surface waves produced by large quakes, and smaller quakes. Seismologists led by Kris Pankow, assistant director of the University of Utah seismic stations in Salt Lake City, Utah, looked at how these L-waves cause smaller quakes as they travel along the ground. The team followed 15 large quakes and found that 12 of them did indeed trigger smaller quakes. They distinguished these smaller quakes from aftershocks because of the time and proximity.

In 2004, scientists monitoring Yellowstone caldera began to see the ground above the caldera rise upward at rates as high as 2.8 inches a year. Though the rate did slow between 2007 and 2010 to just a centimeter a year or less, ground levels over the volcano were raised up by up to 10 inches, or 25 centimeters, at some points around the caldera. University of Utah’s Bob Smith, quoted in the press release above, stated in National Geographic in January of 2011 that the uplift was extraordinary, but went on to state that these kinds of uplifts, which occur when magma reservoirs four to six miles below the surface of the caldera floor surge, do happen and have happened over thousands of years without an eruption. Ground deformation can indeed be a precursor to an eruption, as magma moves towards the surface. This did happen in the months before the 1980 eruption of Mount St. Helens.

But it doesn’t always happen. The story also quotes Smith as saying, “Based on geologic evidence, Yellowstone has probably seen a continuous cycle of inflation and deflation over the past 15,000 years, and the cycle will likely continue.”

Predicting a supereruption is quite difficult, because we have no written records of what exactly happens before it does occur. Continuous records at Yellowstone alone have been available only since the 1970s. The last supervolcanic eruption occurred in New Zealand over 26,500 years ago. Unfortunately for scientists, there was nobody around with a laptop taking notes of exactly what happened in the days, weeks and months before.

Large quakes have been found to have a link to caldera uplift and deformations, but as Smith concludes, “How those intrusions stress the adjacent fault, or how the faults might transmit stress to the magma system, is a really important new area of study.”

In the meantime, the USGS makes available, via the Internet, the constant monitoring of the two main calderas we in the United States should be concerned with – Yellowstone and Long Valley, California. One can easily pull up the recent status reports and updates for the Yellowstone Volcanic Observatory and the Long Valley Observatory (go to http://volcanoes.usgs.gov) and see the current volcanic alert levels, quake activity, ground deformation and any other pertinent information.

And so for the good news…As of this week, all activity at both monitoring stations was normal. Yellowstone volcanic alert level: Normal. Earthquake activity continuing at normal levels. Ground deformation shows that the period of accelerated caldera uplift HAS STOPPED. Long Valley alert level is also Normal, with some small quake activity under 1.5 since March 11th of 2011. Deformation is showing minor fluctuations in uplift and subsidence, but remains roughly 80 cm higher than in the late 1970s. Diffuse carbon dioxide gas flux in the Horseshoe Lake tree-kill area has shown little change from relatively high levels of 50 to 150 tons per day, the sustained rate over last few years. Tree-kill is another potential clue to supervolcanic eruptions.

That doesn’t mean something won’t happen. Nobody was prepared for Japan’s 9.0. But it does mean that, for now, we can focus on the disasters at hand as we continue important research into the ones we hope never happen.

Dr. John Savino, Ph.D. is a geophysicist with a background in earthquakes and volcanoes. He has assisted the Department of Energy (DOE) in reviewing research conducted by earth scientists at several national laboratories and universities. Dr. Savino has also participated in the DOE’s Public Outreach Program, delivering presentations on earthquakes and volcanoes. He has presented papers at numerous scientific conferences and published articles in refereed journals, technical reports, and abstracts in conference and meeting programs. He lives in Big Bear Lake, California.

Marie D. Jones is the author of SuperVolcano, PSIence, 2013, 11:11 The Time Prompt Phenomenon, The Resonance Key, Deja Vu Enigma, Trinity Secret and Destiny vs. Choice. She lives in San Marcos, California.

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Positive News of the Week


Banana Peels, Ground Up, Can Help Clean River Water

Click Here to Learn More




Fifth Grader Donates Savings to Stop Teacher Lay-Offs

Click Here to Learn More



Shockwave-Generating Wave Discs Could Replace
Internal Combustion Engines in Cars

Click Here to Learn More


Dyed-in-the-worm Silks could have Interesting Medical Applications

Click Here to Learn More

Monday, March 21, 2011

A Time to Be Informed about Potential Disasters


Given the number of disasters in the world today we thought we would share some information from our book Supervolcano: The Catastrophic Event That Changed the Course of Human History (Could Yellowstone Be Next?) from authors Marie D. Jones and John Savino. Being informed and prepared about the possibilities that exist in this world are important lessons that everyone should learn. This excerpted section is from Chapter 9: The Lurking Mega-Disaster.

In the case of Yellowstone, there are typically 1,000 to 3,000 earthquakes that occur each year within the park and its immediate surroundings. Although most are too small to be felt, these quakes, recorded by seismograph systems located in and near the Park, reflect the fact that the Yellowstone caldera is an active volcano, and one of the most seismically active areas in the United States. Each year, several quakes of magnitude 3 to 4 are felt by people in the park. Although some quakes are caused by rising magma and hot-ground-water movement, many emanate from regional faults related to crustal stretching and mountain building. The most notable earthquake in Yellowstone’s recent history occurred in 1959. Centered near Hebgen Lake, just west of the park, the earthquake had a magnitude of 7.5 and killed 28 people, most of them in a landslide that was triggered by the quake. Geologists believe that large earthquakes such as the Hebgen Lake event are unlikely within the Yellowstone Caldera itself, because subsurface temperatures there are high, weakening the bedrock and making it less able to build up sufficient strain to result in a rupture. However, quakes within the caldera can be as large as magnitude 6.5. A quake of about this size occurred in 1975 near Norris Geyser Basin, and was felt throughout the region.

Map of the Yellowstone Park area showing the locations of major earthquakes occurring in the past 48 years, and the caldera rim associated with the supereruption 640,000 years ago.

As for deformation of the caldera, geologists most familiar with the Yellowstone region point out that while the caldera has been relatively dormant in terms of major volcanic activity for more than 70,000 years, it has been rising and falling for at least the past 15,000 years, at times more than 10 feet. In more recent times, between 1923 and 1975, the entire Yellowstone caldera rose about 3 to 4 feet. Suddenly in 1985, it reversed and started subsiding; in 1990 it reversed again and started to inflate.

Between 1997 and 2003, the northern part of the Yellowstone caldera began to bulge. The bulge, measuring about 25 miles across, rose approximately 5 inches. Simultaneously, there was a sudden rise in temperatures, new steam vents, and the awakening of the geysers in the area. Steamboat Geyser, dormant for nine years, erupted in May 2000, and then several times between 2002 and 2003. The nearby Porkchop Geyser awoke after 14 years of dormancy. Unusual thermal phenomena at the nearby Norris Geyser Basin resulted in such high ground temperatures in 2003 that Yellowstone officials decided to close some boardwalks out of fear that visitors might be burned.

A LONG VALLEY CALDERA

We now turn to the Long Valley caldera. In 1978, a Richter magnitude (M) 5.4 earthquake struck 6 miles southeast of the caldera. This event ended two decades of relatively low earthquake activity in the area, and was followed in May 1980 by an earthquake swarm that included four strong M 6 earthquakes. These events struck the Mammoth Lakes area on the southern margin of the Long Valley caldera. The largest of the M 6 earthquakes occurred one week after the Mount St. Helens eruption of May 18. A report in the Mammoth Times newspaper dated September 7, 2000, recalled how the southern California news media in late May 1980, through implicit association of the Mount St. Helens eruption and the strong earthquakes near Mammoth Lakes, had Mammoth ready to blow. The Mammoth Times report went on to note that, “local governments worked to create an all-encompassing emergency plan. Mammoth got an escape route, known euphemistically as the Scenic Loop.”

In response to continuing seismic activity and uplift observed within the central portion of the Long Valley caldera, the U.S. Geological Survey issued a “Notice of Potential Volcanic Hazard” in 1982. The notice was blamed for causing a severe drop in tourism, and also a downturn in what had been a boom in the Mammoth Lakes housing market. When, after a period of time, a volcanic eruption didn’t happen, the residents of Mammoth Lakes began referring to the USGS as the “U.S. Guessing Society,” among other names.

An ominous sign of unrest beneath the Long Valley caldera occurred in 1989 when magma intruded beneath Mammoth Mountain, a volcano located on the western rim of the caldera, and the site of a major ski resort. While magma did not erupt, large volumes of carbon dioxide were discovered seeping into the soil in an area known as Horseshoe Lake. In a paper published in Nature in 2002, scientists reported the results of a soil-gas survey begun in 1994 where they observed carbon dioxide concentrations of 30–96 percent in a 75 acre region of dead trees. Based on their study, they concluded that, although the tree kill coincided with the episode of shallow dike (magma) intrusion, the magnitude and duration of the carbon dioxide flux indicated that a larger, deeper magma source and/or a large reservoir of high-pressure gas was being tapped.

In 2003, researchers reported the results of geodetic and gravity surveys conducted in the Long Valley caldera. They concluded that the results of their surveys did not support hydrothermal fluid intrusion as the primary cause of unrest, instead confirming the intrusion of silicic magma beneath the caldera. Various signs of unrest continue at the present time, and should serve as a reminder of the boiling cauldron that lurks below the surface.

On November 3, 2002, the largest inland earthquake in North America in almost 150 years struck Alaska, about 85 miles south of Fairbanks. This M 7.9 event, known as the Denali fault earthquake, ranks among the largest strike-slip ruptures of the past two centuries. Its length and slip magnitudes are comparable with those of the great California earthquakes of 1857 and 1906. Horizontal displacements of up to 26 feet were measured along sections of the roughly 200-mile-long fault. Large-amplitude surface waves from the Denali Fault earthquake triggered a series of earthquake swarms and changes in geyser activity at Yellowstone, along with strain offsets and microseismicity under Mammoth Mountain on the rim of Long Valley caldera. The amazing thing is that the Denali fault earthquake was about 1,940 and 2,160 miles distant from Yellowstone and Long Valley, respectively. This leads to the question of what impact a very large (M > 7.75), but closer, earthquake might have on the calderas. For instance, could a large earthquake in southern California trigger an eruption at either Long Valley or Yellowstone? Major earthquakes in southern California in 1992 and 1999 suggest a possible answer to this question.

A EARTHQUAKES AS A TRIGGER?

On June 28, 1992, a M 7.3 earthquake occurred near the town of Landers, approximately 100 miles east of Los Angeles in the Mojave Desert of southern California. Even though the earthquake was more than 770 miles (1,250 km) southwest of Yellowstone, the large-amplitude surface waves from this event changed the relatively periodic eruption rate of one of the geysers in the park from approximately 56 minutes to an erratic rate of about 34 hours, and triggered a swarm of small earthquakes beneath the caldera.

In their Summary of Long Valley Caldera Activity for 1992, the USGS scientists commented:

Certainly the most remarkable and energetic event in the caldera during 1992 was the abrupt surge in local seismicity that began immediately following the June 28, M=7.3 Landers earthquake, which was located in southern California some 400 km south of the caldera. The surge in seismicity triggered by the Landers earthquake was the strongest “swarm” in the caldera during 1992. It included two M>3 earthquakes and over 250 smaller events in the first six days after the Landers earthquake.

Signals associated with transient periods of deformation near the western boundary, and within the caldera, also accompanied the triggered seismicity.

In the October 29, 1998, issue of Nature, two scientists from the Carnegie Institution of Washington reported results of an analysis of the historical record of earthquakes and volcanic eruptions conducted to see if there are significantly more eruptions immediately following large earthquakes. They noted that their study was, in part, motivated by the triggering of seismicity and deformation at the Long Valley caldera by the 1992 Landers earthquake. They found that, “within a day or two of large earthquakes there are many more eruptions within a range of 460 miles (750 km) than would otherwise be expected. Additionally, it is well known that volcanoes separated by hundreds of kilometers frequently erupt in unison; the characteristics of such eruption pairs are also consistent with the hypothesis that the second eruption is triggered by earthquakes associated with the first.”

On October 16, 1999, a year after the Nature paper appeared, another major earthquake occurred in the Mojave Desert in southern California. This event, referred to as the Hector Mine earthquake, was slightly smaller than the Landers earthquake, weighing in at M 7.1. The epicentral distances from the Hector Mine earthquake to the Yellowstone and Long Valley calderas were comparable to distances from the Landers event. While we are not aware of any reported triggering of activity at Yellowstone from the Hector Mine earthquake, deformation associated with the earthquake was observed at Long Valley, and was followed 20–30 minutes later by a swarm of small earthquakes localized beneath the north flank of Mammoth Mountain.

While the evidence for remote triggering of unrest at volcanic calderas by large earthquakes is reasonably convincing, what’s the possibility for an earthquake occurring in southern California with a significantly larger magnitude than the 1992 Landers event? Two studies that are relevant to this question were reported in 2005 and 2006. These studies consider the potential for a large earthquake along the southern section of the San Andreas Fault, which has been ominously quiet for way too long.

Map of the San Andreas Fault (dark line). South of San Bernardino, the fault is better referred to as a “system” where it’s likely that the San Andreas and the roughly parallel San Jacinto fault zone to the west (not indicated on this map) accommodate the bulk of the relative motion between the North American and Pacific tectonic plates. The 1857 M 8 Fort Tejon earthquake referred to in the text is thought to have originated near Parkfield, in the north and extended southeast for about 220 miles (360 km) to the San Bernardino area.

THE SAN ANDREAS FAULT

The San Andreas Fault is a continental transform fault that accommodates the relative right-lateral motion of the Pacific and North American tectonic plates. During a major strike-slip earthquake a person standing on the western, or Pacific, side of the fault would see someone on the eastern, or North American, side move to the right. On June 22, 2006, Yuri Fialko, an associate professor of geophysics at the Institute of Geophysics and Planetary Physics, Scripps Institution of Oceanography, University of California at San Diego in La Jolla, California, reported in the journal Nature that the southernmost segment of the San Andreas fault running from San Bernardino in the north to the Mexican border in the south is primed for a major earthquake with between 20 and 30 feet of displacement possible, most likely in a right-lateral strike-slip sense. This section of the San Andreas has not experienced a major earthquake for more than 300 years. The last major earthquake, an M 7.7, occurred in 1690 and ruptured about a 140-mile-long segment of the fault. Although a major event, it went largely unnoticed because hardly anyone lived there at the time. Professor Fialko’s study, which was based on both satellite and ground-based measurements of large-scale deformation, indicates that stress has been building up since then, and that this southern segment of the fault may be approaching the end of the interseismic phase of the earthquake cycle. He is quoted by the Scripps Howard News Service as saying, “All these data suggest that the fault is ready for the next big earthquake, but exactly when the triggering will happen and when the earthquake will occur we cannot tell. It could be tomorrow or it could be 10 years or more from now.” An earthquake in southern California would only be, on average, about 280 and 770 miles (450 and 1250 km) from the Long Valley and Yellowstone calderas, respectively, and could possibly trigger significant activity at either, or both, of those sites.

In the May 13, 2005 issue of Science, four scientists reported results of an investigation of spatial and temporal characteristics of large earthquakes that occurred since 1200 A.D. along the southern 340 miles (550 km) of the San Andreas Fault system. This section of the fault includes the 1857 M 8 Fort Tejon earthquake, which ruptured between 180 and 220 miles (300 and 350 km) of the northern portion of the section studied. They identified geologic records for up to 56 earthquakes, although some of the records may pertain to the same event. The lead author of the Science paper noted that most of the fault ruptures every 200 years, but because of uncertainty in dating the individual ruptures, they were not able to tell whether it was one earthquake or a number of closely timed earthquakes. The scientists determined the probability of the current lull in activity ending in the next 30 years to be 20 percent, 40 percent, and 70 percent, depending on how the earthquake ruptures were modeled in space and time. The principal conclusion of their study was that the next rupture may be one great earthquake of M 8 or greater, or a series of large earthquakes all smaller than M 8. In either case, the southern section of the San Andreas is locked and loaded.

The lack of experience that scientists have when it comes to recognizing the signs or signals coming from a volcanic system or caldera on the verge of a supereruption poses a major challenge to successful forecasting. Recall that the last supereruption, Taupo, occurred about 26,000 years ago. In addition, the last VEI 7 eruption, Tambora, occurred in 1815, well before instrumental records became available. Thus, volcanologists will be hard pressed to not only identify a signal from an eruption that could be imminent, but recognize a bona fide signal (for example, volcanic tremor) for a VEI 7 or 8 eruption, as opposed to a 4 or 5.

In a recent paper published in the Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society, scientists from the USGS and the University of Utah made the following concluding remarks:

With limited experience monitoring and responding to large-scale volcanic crises, society cannot expect a 100 percent success rate at avoiding future volcanic catastrophes. We can, however, make sure that we learn from the next VEI 6 or 7 eruption, by recording a full spectrum of signals emitted prior to eruption. At present, only a small fraction of Earth’s high-threat volcanoes is monitored in a manner that would provide a useful history of the run-up to a volcanic disaster. If we are to reduce the risk from future large eruptions, we will need to do better.


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