Author Archives: phenomenica

Mysterious ‘Spellbook’ From Ancient Egypt Decoded

spell book ancient egypt

A mysterious ancient book written in an Egyptian language called Coptic has puzzled researchers ever since it was first found as part of an extensive papyrus collection at Macquarie University in Australia in 1981.

But now, two Australian scientists say they’ve finally translated the 1,300-year-old text, and it turns out that the text is a book of spells, Live Science reported.

The mystery remains, however, as to who wrote the book and used the spells.

“Many such Coptic magical texts were copied or used within monastic communities, and the degree of ritual knowledge in the invocations makes clergy or monks logical candidates for their production,” Dr. Malcolm Choat, director of the university’s Ancient Cultures Research Center and one of the scientists who deciphered the ancient book, told The Huffington Post in an email. “But other ritual practitioners can be imagined, and of course the spells could have been cast on behalf of ordinary people who needed their problems solved.”

(Story continues below image.)

The ancient book housed at Macquarie University.

Choat and his colleague Dr. Iain Gardner, a professor of religion at the University of Sydney, found that the text includes ritual instructions and a <a target="_blank" href="http://www.brepols.net/Pages/ShowProduct.aspx?prod_id=IS-9782503531700-1" —> Read More Here

Just How Green Will Electricity Production Be In 2050?

This story originally appeared on Climate Central.

Clues to the United States’ energy future are everywhere, if you know where to look.

By 2050, the technology will likely be available to provide 80 percent of the country’s electricity from wind, solar and other renewable sources.

But even if the nation doesn’t adapt to that degree, it is clear that the way Americans get their electricity and how it’s generated will be vastly different than today, toppling the current model of power flowing in one direction, from major power plants into American homes.

In the era to come, much of the power generated in the U.S. will come from renewables, and much of it will be generated on rooftops and in backyards, and the buildings using that electricity are likely to be much more energy efficient than they are today. That means many people will feed power back into the grid, a two-way system that changes the energy landscape dramatically.

In many ways, the country is already squarely on that path. Renewables now generate 20 percent of California’s electricity, a percentage expected to grow as new solar power generators come online and Los Angeles connects itself to a new wind —> Read More Here

Talk Therapy Drastically Lowers Risk Of Suicide

Each year, suicide claims the lives of more than 40,000 Americans — many of whom never seek professional care. But new research suggests that access to talk therapy may help to prevent these tragic instances among high-risk populations.

Even years after talk therapy treatment, individuals who have previously attempted suicide are much less likely to repeat a suicide attempt or die from suicide, according to the Johns Hopkins University research.

The researchers analyzed data for more than 65,000 Danish people who had attempted suicide between 1992 and 2010. Within that group, they examined over 5,600 who had received psychosocial therapy at a suicide prevention clinic in Denmark, and compared their data with a control group of over 17,000 people with similar risk factors who had not received therapy. The subjects were tracked for up to 20 years after their suicide attempt.

The data suggested that six to 10 therapy sessions was enough to make a long-term difference. Five years after the treatment ended, there were 26 percent fewer suicides among the group who underwent the treatment, as compared to a control group that did not. Even after 10 years, there was still a small —> Read More Here

Beacon’s ‘L1′ EP Gravitates Toward The Dance Floor As The Duo Redirects Their Orbit

before the beat drops

Brooklyn-based duo Beacon — Thomas Mullarney III and Jacob Gossett — are preparing to release their fourth studio product and third EP, “L1,” next week, and The Huffington Post is pleased to premiere the exclusive stream of the record.

After several months of touring, Beacon decided to design their new EP with the live reinterpretation in mind, Gossett explained. Seeking out a more dance floor-friendly vibe, they started experimenting with new gear and considered expanding their live members — contemplating a drummer first — and reconstructed their sound from there. The result is a medley of minimal, hard-hitting beats and vaporous R&B that is as balancing as it is frantic.

The EP opens with some metallic clankering, gradually building up layer after layer of synth and skittering percussion until it swirls into a wall of noise at its end. The title track keeps things smooth with a more straightforward stream of shakes and snare snaps, while “Minor Structures” kicks things up a notch by offering the project’s most quick-paced drumbeat. “Better Love” slows things down before heading into the final track, “Only Us,” which carefully climaxes into the most uplifting moment on the EP.

Mullarney explained —> Read More Here

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