Posted on 04 March 2013.
From ancient times, people have always been fascinated with the unknown. In fact, because the world is full of things we can’t explain some people dedicate their lives to finding an answer to these mysteries. However, the allure of the unknown is usually more powerful and even though science has provided a perfectly logical explanation for the “mysterious” events, people can’t simply let go and prefer to believe the romanticized version of the story. Following is a top of the most widespread mysteries and their scientific explanations.
1. Death Valley’s sailing stones
700 pounds rocks moving around when no one is looking is quite creepy, especially since they remind me of the Weeping Angels from the Doctor Who series. However, the place where these phenomena are quite frequent is the bottom of a lake, which is dry most of the time. Once every two-three years the lake is flooded as ice rushes in from the surrounding areas. Considering that the sailing stones are said to move in the exact same timeframe, this isn’t just a coincidence.
2. Water turning to blood overnight
While some Christians perceive the transformation of water into blood as a sign of the Apocalypse, don’t give away all your earthly possessions just yet. Granted, it’s hard not to panic when you wake up to see the body of water next to your home bloody-red. However, there are numerous explanations to why this phenomenon occurs sometimes. For example, the water may contain a large amount of red sediments or there could be an increase in the population of phytoplankton that is just dying to suck the oxygen out of the water and kill everything around it.
3. The alluring corpse candles
Throughout history, there have been numerous stories involving mysterious lights that appeared in various spooky places – mostly marshes – and that drove people to an early grave. However, the corpse candles, as they are nowadays known, have had been explained ever since the beginning of the 19th century. Essentially, when night fauna, fluorescent fungi, ghosts and aliens were ruled out the only thing that could be responsible for the incidents are the marsh gas. The phenomenon is dubbed chemi-luminescence and it is a well-known chemical reaction.
4. The mystery of the Ley Lines
According to conspiracy theorists, the vast majority of ancient – and naturally mysterious – constructions are interconnected by a powerful linear alignment that allowed our ancestors to tune in with the mystical powers of the Earth. However, the configuration known as the Ley Lines is an unintentional mistake “discovered” by archeologist Alfred Watkins in 1921. Well, because Watkins was an authority of his time as well as a respected archeologist, his theory got quickly accepted by the gullible public.
5. Supernatural entities and particularly ghosts
When it comes to supernatural entities, the rule of the majority applies: if at least one third of the globe’s population believes in ghosts, therefore they exist. While it is true that not all ghost encounters can be explained, a team of Swiss researchers stumbled upon an interesting fact, namely that when some people receive a small electric shock to the left junction of the parietal and temporal lobes they start seeing things that are not there. Since the supernatural experiences are due to an overstimulation of the aforementioned junction, it’s no surprise that they stop once the electric shock dissipates.