Thursday, January 31, 2008

Mars Rocks the Plains

Mars began its direct motion on January 30th after being retrograde since November 2007. The winter seasonal map shows Mars on the Midheaven over the central U.S. at 99 west longitude.

The Weather Alternative forecast based on this celestial event was published on December 20th, 2007 and predicted that the position of Mars "affects southern Texas northward through the Great Plains where we should see an increase in temperatures and dry conditions" between January 29th and February 2nd.

Well, Mars is giving us more bang for its buck than anticipated. A major storm has formed over the area and as of midday today up to 10 inches of snow has fallen in Southeastern Kansas. The storm will continue eastward and will impact a fairly sizeable area from Missouri to the Great Lakes.

All is not lost, however. The warm and dry conditions mentioned in the long-range forecast will arrive within the forecast period. The Accueweather map at left shows that by the 2nd of February temperatures will make a splendid recovery over the forecast area. A warm air mass from Mexico will push temperatures into the 60s and 70s in Texas, while 50s will be common in Arkansas and Oklahoma.

February 2008 Weather Outlook

Introduction to the Weather Alternative

How Long-Range Forecasts Are Made

LI TIANEN--Christian leader in Communist China

In 1960, when Mao's Utopian Great Leap Forward experiment was approaching its climax, Li was caught in yet another roundup of potential oppositionists. He was sentenced to ten years in prison.

Li was assigned to a labor camp in Anhui Province, digging and moving iron ore. Two prisoners were assigned to cell beds next to him to ensure that he didn't move his lips in his bed, and thus pray. If they reported to the prison authorities that he had done so, he was forced to stand against a wall, sometimes in winter, without a shirt, for up to six hours, with his arms and feet splayed out. He says that during these punishment sessions he never felt the cold.

Once, he tumbled thirty feet down from an ore heap and was thought to have died. During this time Li says his soul was flying around the camp and observing what was going on, "like an eagle." "I was dead for more than ninety minutes," he said. Meanwhile, the camp doctor was working on him, trying to see if Li could be resuscitated. He evidently thought not, and was ordering the inmates to prepare a grave when Li suddenly opened his eyes. Seeing he was coming to, the doctor bent over him and asked him who he was.

"I am Li Tianen," he replied right away.
"Do you believe in God?"
"Yes, I do."
"I believe in God now," said the doctor. He could not understand how life had returned to a prisoner who had stopped breathing and had no discernible pulse.

Jesus in Beijing by David Aikman

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