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.
6. The Mystery Spot in California
In case you didn’t make any vacation plans yet, then The Mystery Spot in Santa Cruz is a great place to check out. For a small entry fee, you and your family will have the time of your life experiencing what the owner claims to be a gravitational anomaly. However, the water running up the walls, you walking parallel with the ground and the place where cats and mice live together in harmony are nothing more than a bunch of 20 degrees tilted buildings. In other words, a simple magician trick especially created to distort your perception.
7. Ball-shaped lightning
Often confused with UFO since the 17th century, the ball-shaped lightning bolts have a perfectly logical explanation. It has been proven in 2007 that if strong charges of electricity striking certain types of rocks (quartz and silica, both commonly found in sand), they will transform into a vapor. When the vapor cools and recombines with oxygen the effect are small chaotic balls of electricity.
8. The perfectly concentric, highly resilient Klerksdorp Spheres
The enigma of the Klerksdorp spheres has its roots in a fake NASA press release that allegedly claimed they couldn’t have been created elsewhere than a zero gravity environment. However, at a closer examination you’ll learn that NASA never studied these rocks and this is just another internet hoax. Moreover, their level of hardness only goes halfway on the Mohs scale, while their shape is far from perfectly round. The Klerksdorp spheres are simply an amazing creation of nature and the result of a phenomenon known as concretion.
9. The Nazca Lines in the Atacama Desert
Integrating drawings that spread over 900 feet across and only visible from the air, the common justification of the Nazca Lines in Peru is that they were made by aliens as a landing area. Simply put, the theory states that the only way they could’ve been manmade is if the Nazca had a means of floating above the ground in order to develop a large scale blueprint. According to author Jim Woodman, even though there is no evidence to suggest this civilization grasped the concept of a hot air balloon, they did have the materials and means to do build on. In addition, Dr. Joe Nickell and three of his friends managed to recreate a similar “mysterious” drawing using a simple kit with materials found in the Nazca times in just a few hours.
10. The puzzling cattle mutilations in Central and South America
The oddest thing about cattle mutilation is not the fact that herds of dead cows presented peculiar, surgical precision cuts and organ removal signs, but rather that the corpses were completely depleted of blood. While the most common explanations for this phenomenon include vampires, aliens and the notorious El Chupacabra, in reality the absence of the organs is related to the local scavenging animals that are fond of beef. In regards to the precise cuts found on the corpses, there is actually one perfectly valid explanation for this. The temperatures in the area were these incidents common occur are high enough to speed up the decomposition process so that the corpses blot and eventually explode, leaving perfectly clean tears. The lack of blood is also linked to the decomposition process and the maggots that like to feed on any soft tissue they can get their mouth parts on.