The third eye… Light… Darkness…

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Just like land plants, algae use sunlight as an energy source. Many green algae actively move in the water; they can approach the light or move away from it. For this they use special sensors (photoreceptors) with which they perceive light.

The decades-long search for these light sensors led to a first success in 2002: Georg Nagel, at the time at Max-Planck-Institute of Biophysics in Frankfurt/M, and collaborators discovered and characterized two so-called channelrhodopsins in algae. These ion channels absorb light, then open up and transport ions. They were named after the visual pigments of humans and animals, the rhodopsins.

Now a third “eye” in algae is known: Researchers discovered a new light sensor with unexpected properties. The new photoreceptor is not activated by light but inhibited. It is a guanylyl cyclase which is an enzyme that synthesizes the important messenger cGMP. When exposed to light, cGMP production is severely reduced, leading to a reduced cGMP concentration – and that’s exactly what happens in the human eye as soon as the rhodopsins there absorb light. (1)

See too much light.

And your eyes will close.

It is darkness you seek.

So that your eyes open.

For only in the dead of the night, can you detect brightness…

Only there, standing alone in the complete absence of any source of light, can you realize that the only thing emitting light in this cosmos is you… And this knowledge will be the darkest knowledge you will ever have.

Cherish that knowledge.

And never seek light outside you.

If you do, you will find it.

And the whole cosmos will instantly fall into darkness…

Walking on the moon… Looking in the Sun…

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A new controversial study claims that the moon was able to sustain life at some point in time. (1)

We used to dwell in the darkness.

We used to worship the dark Dionysus.

We were not only born in darkness. We were molded by it. Yes, we used to live on the moon. But now we cannot. We are so much accustomed to life. That death seems only a distant dream…

But the only reason we started seeing the Sun was because we already knew how to look at the Moon…

Look at that blind man…

He only sees light…

Looking for shade…

Inside the raging storm…

Life… Death… Night sky full of stars…

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Astronomers are exploring what might be described as the first astronomical observing tool, potentially used by prehistoric humans 6,000 years ago. They suggest that the long, narrow entrance passages to ancient stone, or ‘megalithic’, tombs may have enhanced what early human cultures could see in the night sky, an effect that could have been interpreted as the ancestors granting special power to the initiated.

These spaces are thought to have been sacred, and the sites may have been used for rites of passage, where the initiate would spend the night inside the tomb, with no natural light apart from that shining down the narrow entrance lined with the remains of the tribe’s ancestors. These structures could therefore have been the first astronomical tools to support the watching of the skies, millennia before telescopes were invented. The team intend to apply these ideas to the case of passage graves, such as the 6,000 year old Seven-Stone Antas in central Portugal. Dr Fabio Silva, of the University of Wales Trinity Saint David, explains that, “the orientations of the tombs may be in alignment with Aldebaran, the brightest star in the constellation of Taurus. To accurately time the first appearance of this star in the season, it is vital to be able to detect stars during twilight”. (1)

Watch the stars in the night.

Experience life through the silence of a grave.

It is in the darkest hour, that you can see everything…

It is in the fleeting moments, that you can experience eternity…

Zooplankton. Light. Dark. Sun. Moon. Nothing.

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The daily rising and setting of the sun propels what is thought to be the world’s largest migration: Tiny zooplankton move from the near-surface waters — where they spend the night feeding — down into deeper, darker waters during the day to avoid predators that rely on sight for finding a meal. It was thought that in the perpetually dark waters of the Arctic winter that such a migration wouldn’t happen. After all, there’s no sunlight for weeks or months.

Now a new study that combines 50 years of observations from locations across the Arctic shows that zooplankton are still migrating in the depths of winter. But with the sun gone, they have tied their timing to the next biggest source of light — the moon. In spring and fall, when the sun sets and rises daily in the Arctic, zooplankton follow their normal pattern of vertical migration, moving down deep in the day and rising toward the surface at night. But after the sun sets for winter, the zooplankton adjust their schedule, swimming up and down the water column not every 24 hours but every 24.8 hours, following the rising and setting of the moon. And every 29.5 days, when there is a full moon, the mass of zooplankton fall to a depth of about 50 meters, where they can keep out of the brightest moonlight. The movement may help hide the zooplankton from predators that need light to find their prey, the researchers say. [1]

From the Moon to the Sun and back.

Once we worshiped the Moon, then we followed the Sun. Once we were creatures with emotions. Now we are creatures with logic. Once we worshiped Dionysus and Panas. Then we worshiped Apollo.

Then Jesus came to Earth. And set things straight. There is no Sun. There is no Moon. Have faith and you will see. There is only Light. Deep within.

Let go of the Moon. Let go of the Sun. Follow your Heart.

Unseen creatures…

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Earlier this month, scientists observed the black seadevil species of anglerfish alive in its natural habitat for the first time.

You might recognize this sort of bony monster from Finding Nemo. One of them nearly swallows Marlin and Dory after luring them toward its gruesome jaws with the pretty bauble dangling from its forehead. It turns out, Pixar was pretty on point in that scene. Anglerfish hunt with their glowing protrusions in the deep sea, where they are rarely spotted.

According to the Monterey Bay Aquarium Research Institute (MBARI) in California, the group responsible for this footage, fewer than half a dozen anglerfish have ever been recorded in their natural habitats. As the video notes, this anglerfish is a female—males are much smaller and lead very different life cycles. For more on that weirdness, we refer you to this illustrated guide from The Oatmeal. (1)

Invisible creatures.
Lurking in the dark.
Unseen.

And yet you know they are there.

You are afraid of the dark.
Because there is something there.
Because there is always something there.

Deep fear.
Unseen wisdom.
Dark and yet so full of meaning.

Listen to the sea.