These sites present modern geological and hydrological research, discussions, and even photographs from land, sea, and space that illustrate the complexity and diversity of Earth’s geologic processes. Informal blogs and peer reviewed journals are both represented here to provide the full range of information and speculation on geology, hydrology, and volcanology.
Check the list out here: Geology Online
"A few more moons, a few more winters, and not one of the descendants of the mighty hosts that once moved over this broad land or lived in happy homes, protected by the Great Spirit, will remain to mourn over the graves of a people once more powerful and hopeful than yours. But why should I mourn at the untimely fate of my people? Tribe follows tribe, and nation follows nation, like the waves of the sea. It is the order of nature, and regret is useless. Your time of decay may be distant, but it will surely come, for even the White Man whose God walked and talked with him as friend to friend, cannot be exempt from the common destiny. We may be brothers after all. We will see. "
"Misfortunes will happen to the wisest and best of men. Death will come, always out of season."
"The creatureliness is the terror." - Ernest Becker
"Another insight into this came to light at Swartkrans when we found that the back of the skull of a child had two small round holes in its parietal bones. I noticed that the distance between these holes was matched very
closely by that of the lower canines of a fossil leopard from the same part of the cave. My interpretation was that the child had been killed by a leopard, probably by the usual neck-bite, and then picked up with the lower
canines in the back of the head and the upper ones in the child’s face. It was then carried into the lower parts of the cave, and consumed there. The Swartkrans Cave story, that gradually developed as my excavation progressed,
was that both our early human ancestors [Homo ergaster] and our relatives…[Paranthropus robustus] were living in an open savanna environment there between two and one million years ago and that they regularly sought shelter near the cave’s entrance, probably on cold winter nights. Here they were preyed upon by leopards and sabre-toothed cats, that consumed them in the deeper parts of the cave."
Travis Rayne Pickering
What dreams may come? What nightmares have been? The fear and terror that move the human being and its consciousness is rooted in the past evolutionary baggage. It was not ghosts and demons that harmed our ancestors but big cats, birds, and reptiles. The present horror movies with its ghosts and demons are very similar though in their presentation as the big cats and reptiles that terrified our ancestors. The leopard which is known as a great
primate killer hunts at night in the darkness when the prey is most vulnerable. The primate human fears the night and the darkness. It was advantageous to be alert to every shadow and sound in the night, to imagine what is lurking around the corner or what is behind that stone or tree. That baggage is still with us and now at times we imagine creatures that are a hybrid of our past killers with spirits and ghosts. The leopard is stealth at night and
with its claws and teeth the primate is a prime target. Many of the eyes, claws, and teeth of our past hunters have been moved to terrify us in horror movies attached to spirits and ghosts.
If you notice in horror movies the ghosts or demons are often making noises similar to big cats. Growls, roaring, mouth opening, fangs, and hisses. Something that our ancestors would take notice of in their natural habitat. The
haunting ghosts or demons climb on the wall or move on the ceiling like a big cat or poisonous spider or reptile.
The nightmares of the evolutionary past make for good horror movies of the present. The fear is to be attacked at night. The terror is to be eaten. The fear of the night when one is most vulnerable to the animals that could kill our primate ancestors and cousins. Do ghosts and demons need to kill and eat for food to keep their metabolism rate going? And yet we humans attribute the same features to these fictional beings because what terrifies us in our primitive core is what terrified us before the rise of technology and civilization. The superstition and fear of demons and ghosts is the imaginary world of our present that flows from our real evolutionary past. Present horror is steeped in the evolutionary past. Of course human beings in different situations on this rock are still getting maimed and killed by other animals just not at the same level of vulnerability as our ancestors.
But at those times that a shark, big predator, or crocodile takes us down it should remind our species that we are part of nature and despite the wonders of technology or the myths of our gods we are still subject to its cycle of consumption. Do not be concerned with the imaginary ghost or demon but the real and natural killers including human on human.
The Skull-Crushing Hyenas of Dragon Bone Hill
The Homo erectus heads, however, presented the hyenas with a unique problem. The jaw muscles and the tongue were the only easily-available parts worth eating, but inside the skull was the large, fatty brain. It would have no doubt been a delicacy for hyenas, and given what is known about the way living hyenas eat Boaz and colleagues attempted to reconstruct how Pachycrocuta opened Homo erectus skulls.
The hyenas probably started with what was most easily available. After stripping the jaw muscles from the skull they would have easily been able to crack off the lower jaw and eat the tongue. By this point a catastrophic amount of damage would have been done to the Homo erectus head, thus explaining why the faces of the skulls found in the cave are missing. Getting at the brain, however, was a little trickier. As reconstructed by the scientists, the hyenas clamped onto the front of the skull, braced the bottom against the ground, and pressed downward. With enough pressure this would have cracked open the skull so that they brain could be extracted, and whatever scraps of bone survived this ordeal would be left to litter the cave.
The individual hominins we once considered to be our proud, if murderous, ancestors were really “food
refuse” of giant hyenas. How so many Homo erectus fell prey to the hyenas over thousands of years is unknown, but it is possible that the cave was a sort of natural trap. The hyenas would simply have to wait for some animal to fall
or injure itself at which point they could dine at their leisure. The presence of scorched bones and tools suggest that Homo erectus inhabited the cave at some point for some period of time, but for much of its history it
appears that the cave was a hyena den.
Man the Hunted
The Top Ten Deadliest Animals of our Evolutionary Past
Even where we have beaten back our ancestral predators, we bear their mark. Our brains are wired for fight and flight because of predators. We are anxious. We readily fear what used to threaten us, such as snakes. We are who we were, but more so than that, we are what we wanted to escape. Our first words may have been uttered to
warn our family of cats, snakes or eagles. Even our screams, those wordless sounds we make when we are afraid, are an echo of the ghosts of our pasts. Whether we notice or not, our bodies remember those days in which
the wolf in Grandma’s bed may really have been a wolf; they remember the species we ran from, screaming as we tried to flee.
Rob Dunn is a biologist at North Carolina State University. His new book, The Wild Life of Our
Bodies It tells the stories of our changing relationships with other species (be they worms, bacteria or tigers). In doing so, it considers questions such as what our appendix does, why we suffer anxiety, why human babies tend to be born at night and whether tapeworms are good for us, all from an ecological perspective.
"There was also the threat of predators in the grassy woodlands. These were the home of browsers and
grazers and also the predators that eat them, like hyenas, leopards, and lions. This was a danger to the small and slow bipedal Australopithecines. They were not as talented in trees as apes or as facile on the ground as us. However, adaptation must have served them well, since the anatomical stability of the group over millions of
years attests to this. The very first Australopithecine discovery of a juvenile appeared to have been a victim of a giant eagle. At another site, there was convincing evidence that hominid remains were the remnants of leopard meals. At the site of Swartkrans, there was direct evidence that at least some of the South African early hominid fossils were victims of leopards. An immature skull was found with twin puncture marks, indicating a leopard bite mark."
"Damn nature, you scary." - Family Guy
A general introduction to the African American writers and philosophers.
"Just as Socrates felt that it was necessary to create a tension in the mind so that individuals could rise from the bondage of myths and half-truths to the unfettered realm of creative analysis and objective appraisal, so must we see the need for nonviolent gadflies to create the kind of tension in society that will help men rise from the dark depths of prejudice and racism to majestic heights of understanding and brotherhood."
Martin Luther King Jr., Letter from the Birmingham Jail
"I sit with Shakespeare and he winces not. Across the color-line I move arm in arm with Balzac and
Dumas, where smiling men and welcoming women glide in gilded halls. From out the caves of the evening that swing between the strong-limbed earth and the tracery of the stars, I summon Aristotle and Aurelius and what soul I will, and they come all graciously with no scorn nor condescension. So, wed with Truth, I dwell above the Veil. Is this the life you grudge us, O knightly America?"
W. E. B. Du Bois
"Whenever my environment had failed to support or nourish me, I had clutched at books."
"The paradox of education is precisely this - that as one begins to become conscious one begins to examine
the society in which he is being educated. "
Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr: "We're going to let our children know that the only philosophers that lived were not Plato and Aristotle, but W. E. B. Du Bois and Alain Locke came through the universe."
A general introduction to the writers and philosophers of Islamic thought and philosophy during the Medieval period.
"Our lives begin to end the day we are silent about things that matter"