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Carl Sagan on: The Colliding Worlds of Immanuel Volikovsky Part II

In this chapter we will examine Velikovsky's hypotheses one by one and compare them with reality

to part a

Velikovsky's doubts
Problem: 1 Ejection of the planet Venus from Jupiter

This event has never been observed by astronomers, and does not correspond to the knowledge we have about the physics of celestial bodies. Volikovsky promised that a detailed explanation of the chain of catastrophes that lead to such an event will appear in the sequel to 'Colliding Worlds' (p. 373). 30 years have passed since then, and the sequel is gone.

It is possible to prove that any process resulting in the ejection of a comet or a planet from Jupiter would have raised the heat of the comet to at least several thousand degrees, whatever the composition of the comet (rocks, ice, organic compounds, etc.), such heat would have transformed it per meter of small, opaque dust particles, which does not exactly fit the description of the planet Venus.

Another problem is that the escape velocity from the Sun's gravity, in the area where Jupiter is located, is about 60 km/h. But the mechanism of ejection from justice does not know this, of course. Therefore, if the comet leaves Jupiter at a speed lower than approximately 60 km/h, it will fall back onto Jupiter's surface, while if its speed exceeds 63 km/h, it will be thrown out of the solar system. No, there is only a range of speeds corresponding to Volikovsky's hypothesis which is very narrow, and therefore improbable.

Another problem is that the mass of Venus is very large - more than 1027x5 grams, or it was even more. According to Volikovsky's hypothesis, before the star passed near the Sun. Therefore, it is easy to calculate that the kinetic energy needed to accelerate Venus up to the said escape velocity is around 1041 erg, i.e. equal to all the energy that the sun radiates into space for an entire year! We are asked to believe. Therefore. Without any additional evidence or discussion, in an event whose intensity is greater than any activity of the sun known to us, and the sun is high in energy, much more than the justice.

Any process that creates large objects also creates many small objects. This is especially true of collisions. Here the physics of crushing is well known: a ten times smaller particle will be created in a hundred or thousand times larger amount. It is true that Volikovsky speaks of stones falling from the sky, and swarms of rocks are carried away in the wake of Venus and Mars in their flight (the swarm of rocks of Mars, according to him, is what brought an end to Sennacherib's army). But if this is true, if we did have near-collisions with planetary-mass objects only thousands of years ago, we should have been bombarded by lunar-mass objects hundreds of years ago as well; Whereas the bombardment with objects capable of creating a crater with a diameter of a kilometer should have visited us every two weeks, and yet, there is no sign, neither on the earth nor on the moon, that indicates frequent collisions that have recently occurred with such objects. On the other hand, those few objects known to be in collision orbits with the Moon are enough to explain (on a geological scale of time) the number of craters observed on the lunar plains. The absence of small objects in large quantities, whose orbits cross the Earth's orbit, is another fundamental contradiction to Volikovsky's basic assumption.

Problem: 2 repeated collisions between the Earth, Venus and Mars

"The possibility that a comet will hit the Earth is very unlikely, but the idea is not absurd," Volikovsky writes (p. 40). it's very true; All that remains is to calculate the probability, which Velikovsky, unfortunately, did not bother to do.

But fortunately, the physics relevant to the subject is very simple and it is possible to make a calculation of orders of magnitude even without considering gravitation. Celestial bodies with very eccentric orbits, moving from the vicinity of Jupiter to the vicinity of the Earth, move at such high speeds that the determination of their orbit is almost unaffected by the mutual attraction between them and the object in close proximity to which they are supposed to pass. A single star with an aphelion (orbital point farthest from the Sun) near the orbit of Jupiter, and a perihelion (orbital point closest to the Sun) in the orbit of Venus, will require at least 30 million years before it hits the Earth. The odds against a collision in any given year are therefore 107x3 to 1, and the odds that a collision will not occur in any thousand years are 30,000 to 1, but Volikovsky describes not one, but five or six near-collisions between Venus, Mars and Earth - and each of them looks as a statistically independent event; That is, it is not a chain of near-collisions determined by the relationship between the orbital cycle times of the three planets. (If there was such a thing, we would have to ask what is the probability of such a 'planetary pool game' within the time constraints of Volikovsky). If the probabilities are independent, then the total probability of five such encounters in that thousand years is -5(3×107/103)=4.1×10-23 or one in 100 billion trillion. The probability of six encounters in that thousand quadrillion (7.3×10^-28).

In fact, the probability is much lower, both for the reason mentioned above and because a close contact with Jupiter is very likely to throw the offending object out of the solar system, like the Pioneer 10 spacecraft was thrown after it came close to Jupiter.

These are the odds by which it is appropriate to assess the validity of Volikovsky's theory, even without yet addressing other problems. Hypotheses with such a low degree of probability are still generally considered unstable. And taking into account additional problems that have already been mentioned, and unity that will be mentioned later, it becomes clear that the likelihood of the correctness of any explanation presented in 'worlds colliding' becomes zero.

Problem: 3 rotation of the earth

Much of the froth that came out about 'Worlds Colliding' woke up. Apparently. Because of Volikovsky's claim that the story of Yehoshua ben-Nun's battle in Gibeon, as well as other stories, show that the rotation of the earth around its axis has ever slowed down to the point of a complete stop. It is true that a gradual slowing down of the Earth's rotation can occur in a period of time much smaller than a day, without anyone being harmed by this in itself, not even stalactites or other delicate chemomorphological forms. The energy needed to stop the rotation of the Earth is not enough to melt it, although a noticeable increase in the degree of heat will certainly be felt: the waters of the oceans will reach the boiling point - a phenomenon that is ignored by Volikovsky's ancient sources.

But these are not the most serious reasons for opposing Volikovsky's interpretation of the book of Joshua. Perhaps the most serious of them is actually the other side of the same coin: how did the earth begin to rotate again, and at approximately the same rotational speed? The Earth cannot do this by itself, because of the law of conservation of angular momentum. It seems that Volikovsky was not even aware that this was a question to be considered.

Nor is there any hint that stopping the Earth through a collision with a comet is more complicated than any other change in its rotation speed. In fact, the chance that a close encounter with a comet would cancel out exactly the rotational angular momentum of the Earth is quite small; And the chance that such re-encounters, if they do happen, will set the Earth spinning again even at a rate similar to one rotation per 24 hours is tiny squared.

Problem 4: National geology and the limestone craters

Volikovsky believes, rightly, that a situation on the verge of a collision between the Earth and another planet is likely to bring about dramatic results - in general the effects of gravity and waves, as well as electric and electromagnetic forces (on this point his words are not very clear). According to his claim (pp. 97-96), during the Exodus period, when the whole world shook and shook... all the volcanoes spat lava and all the continents trembled." (emphasis mine)

There is almost no doubt that earthquakes would indeed have occurred at the brink of such a collision. According to the findings of the seismometers placed on the moon during the 'Apollo' missions, the maximum frequency of moon-quakes is when the Earth's center is closest to it, and there are signs that earthquakes are also more frequent at that time. But the claim about increased volcanic activity of "all volcanoes," is another story. Determining the age of volcanic lava is fairly easy, and what Velikovsky had to do was make a histogram of the number of lava flows on Earth as a function of time. I am convinced that such a histogram would prove that not all volcanoes were active between 1500 and 1600 BC, and that during this period there were no unusual volcanic phenomena at all.

Volikovsky believes that the geomagnetic field reversals are created by the influence of an approaching comet, but the recorded findings from magnetic tests of rocks clearly show that these field reversals occur about once every million years, almost with clockwork precision, and have not happened at all in the last several thousand years.

Volikovsky's claim that the formation of the mountain ranges took place a few thousand years ago is fundamentally refuted by all the geological findings, which prove that the mountains were formed tens of millions of years ago, and even earlier.

Volikovsky believes that the moon, which is not immune to disasters like those on Earth, was hit by similar tectonic events some thousands of years ago, and that many of its craters were formed then. This idea also raises several problems: samples from the lunar soil collected during the Apollo missions do not indicate any rock melting that occurred there less than a few hundred million years ago.

Furthermore. If the whitewash craters were indeed formed in abundance. 2700 or 3500 years ago. After all, at that time, craters should have formed in a similar way on the surface of the earth, and with a diameter exceeding a kilometer. The drift on the surface of the earth is not enough to erase any letter of such age and size; And indeed, there is no one like that. Regarding these questions, it seems that Volikovsky ignored decisive evidence, which seriously undermines the foundations of his hypotheses.

Volikovsky believes that the transits of Venus or Mars in close proximity to the Earth created tidal waves with a height of at least kilometers and columns (70, 71); As a matter of fact, if the planets did come closer to each other to the extent of several tens of thousands of kilometers (as he believes), tidal waves (both of water and of solid material from the earth's crust) at a height of hundreds of kilometers should have been created. This can be easily calculated based on the tidal waves created by the influence of the moon these days. As far as I know, there is no geological evidence for a global flood at any time between the sixth and fifteenth centuries BC. If such floods had occurred, even for short periods of time, they should have left behind them some clear geological traces. And what about archaeological and paleontological findings? Are there known clear cases of animal kidney failure as a result of such floods, in those periods?

Problem 5: Chemistry and biology of the "terrestrial" planets

Volikovsky's thesis has some weird biological and chemical implications and also just confusing basic concepts. He does not know, apparently (p. 10), that the oxygen on the surface of the earth is created in the photosynthesis process of green-leafed plants, he does not mention the fact that Jupiter is composed mainly of hydrogen and helium, while the atmosphere of Venus (which according to his hypothesis was ejected from Jupiter) is composed mostly of iron Carbon monoxide. These key facts put his ideas into serious doubt.

Volikovsky believes that the manna that the Israelites ate in the Sinai desert originated from a comet and therefore carbohydrates are found both on the surface of Jupiter and Venus. On the other hand, he cites many sources regarding fire and fuel materials that are cut from the sky, and he interprets this as a fuel material such as oil that is found in the bodies of the sky, and which was probably ignited in the oxidizing atmosphere of the earth.

Since Volikovsky is convinced of the truth of these two types of events and of their identity, he demonstrates a fundamental confusion between carbohydrates and hydrocarbons, and it probably seems to him that the Israelites ate motor fuel and not heavenly food during their wanderings in the desert?

And it is even more difficult to take seriously Volikovsky's conclusion that the polar caps of Mars are made of the same mana, which is a material "which, apparently, is as good as carbon" (p. 366), but the infrared spectrum tests of the Martian poles, made by the Yamariner spacecraft 6 and 'Mariner' 7 in 1969 prove that the polar composition is very far from being similar to carbohydrates. These spacecraft, as well as 'Viking' 1 and 'Viking' 2 have collected enough evidence to clearly prove that the polar caps of Mars are covered with frozen water and frozen carbon dioxide.

It is difficult to understand Volikovsky's insistence on the extraterrestrial origin of oil-soil, or petroleum. The stories of Yagash Hash and the Naphtha that he himself cites are found in exactly those parts of the world blessed with natural oil deposits, and therefore there is a direct and simple explanation for those stories. Also, it is very difficult to understand from his version, how is it possible, if indeed the oil fell from the sky in 1500 BC, that the oil-soil deposits are mixed with mostly chemical and biological fossils, which are tens and hundreds of millions of years old. On the other hand, an immediate answer to this can be given by the simple geological explanation, which is that the origin of the oil in the soil is from the vegetation of the coal period and other ancient periods, and not from comets.
Even more strange are Volikovsky's ideas about an extraterrestrial life. He believes that the 'guarantee' mentioned in the book of 'Shemot' - and especially the flies - is indeed a homer from his comet. If so, should we expect to find houseflies or the 'Drosophila, melanogaster') in the clouds of Jupiter and Venus, in our next studies? Volikovsky states explicitly: Yahnuga. and therefore also justice. Inhabited by "Arobiyi" (Ami 369). Will Volikovsky's theory collapse if no flies are found there? The idea that of all the animals of our world, the fly alone has its origin outside the earth, reminds in a strange way of the angry statement of Martin Luther, who said "Unlike all the other animals, which were created by God, the fly was certainly created by the devil, since it has no practical use ,” however, the flies are respectable animals, and closely related anatomically, physiologically, and biochemically to the other insects. It is unthinkable that 4.6 billion years of independent evolution on the surface of Jupiter - even if it was identical in physical essence to that of our world - gave birth to creatures that are indistinguishable from terrestrial organisms. Flies have the same enzymes, the same nucleic acids and even the same genetic code (which translates nucleic acid information into protein information), as all other organisms living on earth. It is not possible, therefore, that their origin is completely different.
In the book of Exodus chapter 32 it is said: "And all the Egyptians died, and not one of the children of Israel died." In the same chapter, a plague is described that affected flax and barley, but did not affect wheat and buckwheat (verses 31-XNUMX). Such 'specialization' of pests is typical for insects that have evolved in the environmental conditions of the earth, and it is very strange for a 'guarantee' from a comet who had no previous biological contact between him and the earth.

And another strange fact: all species of flies breathe molecular oxygen, which is known not to be found on the planet Jupiter. Is it conceivable that the entire mechanism of metabolism. Based on the use of oxygen, evolved in living organisms on the surface of Jupiter only so that they could ever use it when they got to Earth? After all, such a thing was miraculous even from all the collision theories. Volikovsky mentions "the ability of various small insects to live in an oxygen-free environment," but in this he misses the point. The question is how can an organism that evolved on Jupiter exist in an oxygen-rich atmosphere.
The next problem is - the resistance of the insects to the heat. Small insects are similar in size to small meteorites, which burn up completely at an altitude of about 100 km, due to the friction with the air. Therefore, the same 'guarantee' that was carried, so to speak, on top of the comet, not only would have immediately turned into 'roasted flies', but would have evaporated into atoms and would not have hit Egypt and the house of Pharaoh.
In the same way, it is also impossible that those insects could have endured the heat that accompanied the comet's ejection from Jupiter, as happened in Volikovsky's opinion - in short, those 'comet insects', whose very existence is impossible and condemned twice to be roasted - do not pass the test of logic.

Problem: 6 manna

According to the etymology of the book of Exodus, the name 'man' comes from the question 'from whom is he?', meaning 'what is he' (Exodus 15:XNUMX). Indeed, a good question! The idea of ​​food falling from a comet is not so simple. Optical spectroscopy of comet tails testified (even before 'Colliding Worlds' was written) to the reality of simple components of hydrocarbons, but not of aldehydes - the building blocks of carbohydrates. But this does not mean that these cannot be found in comets, but it is not at all clear whether they do not actually contain poisons such as hydrogen cyanide or methyl cyanide. It is not at all clear if the comets are good for food?
But let us ignore this difficulty, and make a small calculation. How much manna is required to feed the hundreds of thousands of Israelites during the forty year period? According to Exodus chapter 20 verse XNUMX we learn that the manna that was not collected and left until morning was eaten by worms and fire, meaning it could not be stored. Let's assume that the amount that fell from the sky every day was precisely enough to feed all the children of Israel (although Volikovsky cites Talmudic sources according to which the amount was also enough for two thousand years). If we assume that each person ate a third of a cage man every day, we will reach a total amount of more than a million kg. However, it should not be imagined that the same foodstuff, which fell every day (in fact, according to what is said in the book of Exodus, manna fell on every day of the week except the Sabbath. Instead, a double amount fell on Friday, and it was not damaged by worms. This makes the hypothesis of Volikovsky in a strange light: How could the comet know? And this raises a more general problem with Volikovsky's historical approach. There are quotations from religious and historical sources that he claims to take literally, while others he dismisses as "imaginary additions intended for decoration," but based on what Determine the distinction? After all, there must be some objective criterion that does not depend on any prejudice for or against Volikovsky's version) of the tail of the comet, he preferred precisely the same desert region where the Israelites wandered. If it were so, then this is a miracle that does not fall out of the biblical story as it is. The area where the Israelites wandered is a few tenths of a millionth of the surface of the earth. No, for that reason, those forty years should have accumulated over our world

About 1018 grams of Manna, a sufficient amount to cover the entire world at a height of about 2.5 cm. If indeed this is what happened, then this is definitely an event worthy of mention, and perhaps we can even attribute to it that house made of sweets, from the children's story 'Ami and Tami'. Moreover: there is no reason to assume that the manna fell only on the earth. During forty years the comet's tail must have traveled a distance of the order of 10^10 km if it only moved in the inner region of the solar system. A simple calculation shows that the amount of manna supplied to the inner region of the solar system in such an event exceeds 10 to the power of 28 grams. This is an enormous mass, which is not only greater than the mass of any comet known today, but also greater than the mass of the planet Venus. But it is not possible for a comet to consist entirely of mercury; Comets are known to be made up mostly of ice blocks. So if we assume that the ratio between the mass of the comet and the amount of manna it is supposed to contain is at least 1000, then we arrive at a total mass similar to the mass of the planet Jupiter, and if we accept the words of the Talmudic sources quoted by Volikovsky, then it will become clear to us that the mass of that comet It should have been similar to the mass of the entire sun, and it could be expected that by this day the entire interstellar space would be full and overflowing with man... I leave it to the reader to assess for himself the validity of Volikovsky's theory, in light of the above calculations.
Volikovsky's guess about the presence of hydrocarbons or carbohydrates in the clouds of Venus has been read many times, and they have considered it a successful scientific prediction. Volikovsky claims in his book that "the presence of hydrocarbon gases and dust in the clouds surrounding Venus will be a decisive test" of the correctness of his ideas, and on the same page he further says, "Based on this research, I assume that the planet Venus is rich in flammable gases," - a statement that appears to be a sharp reference - means natural gas components such as methane, ethane, ethylene and acetylene.
And here, the question of the composition of the clouds of Venus, which was an enigma for many generations, was recently solved. It turns out that these clouds consist mainly of a solution of sulfuric acid. The latest study of this planet's atmosphere disproved the theory of the hydrocarbon or hydrocarbon clouds. So where did the common opinion emerge that the study of the planet Venus confirmed Volikovsky's hypotheses? Simply because of an incorrect report that was circulated following the close flyby of Venus by the American spacecraft 'Mariner 2' in 1962. The same incorrect report was later copied, circulated, and misled the public. No spacecraft and no observation has produced any finding confirming the existence of hydrocarbons or carbohydrates in gas, liquid or solid form in the atmosphere of Venus. Volikovsky's idea that the clouds of Venus are composed of hydrocarbons or carbohydrates is fundamentally wrong. And the 'crucial test' failed.

Problem 7: The temperature of Venus

Although the high temperature of Venus is often mentioned as another successful prediction of Volikovsky. The considerations behind this conclusion, and the results that result from them, are rarely mentioned.

Let us begin with his ideas regarding the degree of heat of Mars (p. 367). He is convinced that Mars, which is relatively small, was more severely affected by its encounters with Venus and the massive Earth, and therefore its degree of heat must be high. He suggests that it could be a kind of mechanism for converting movement into heat" (a slightly vague wording, since heat is nothing but the movement of molecules). Or (and this is a much more imaginative idea), by "interplanetary electrical breakdowns", which may trigger atomic fusion and the subsequent radioactive radiation and emission of heat.'' In the same paragraph he boldly states, "Mars emits more heat than it receives from the Sun," What should support his collision theory, this statement has no merit.

American and Russian research spacecraft measured the temperature of Mars again and again, and did so in every possible part of the planet, and the temperature corresponds exactly to the amount of heat absorbed from the Sun by the crust of Mars. Moreover - this was actually already known in 1940, before Volikovsky's book was written. It is difficult to understand how Volikovsky twisted the findings of scientists that he cites in this regard, and I am willing to be generous and justify it by saying that he simply confused the visible part of the electromagnetic spectrum (where the sun heats Mars), and the infrared part of the spectrum where Mars radiates into space ). But the conclusion is clear. According to Volikovsky's theory, Mars should be a 'hot planet', even hotter than Venus. If it were found that Mars is indeed unexpectedly hot, we might hear about "further confirmation of the correctness of Volikovsky's ideas." But no one mentions the fact that the completely normal temperature of Mars disproves, in fact, his theory.

We also find similar arguments regarding Venus. It is strange to me that Volikovsky does not attribute the heat of Venus to its emission from justice (see problem 1); On the other hand, he claims to us that because of the close encounter with Mars and the Earth, the planet Venus must have become very hot, and in addition to that "the head of the comet... passed near the sun, and consequently became hot," and then, when it became Venus, the star must have still been " very hot," and "heat output." And here Volikovsky mentions astronomical observations from before 1950, which prove that the dark side of Venus is about as hot as its bright side, at the measured infrared radiation level. Here Volikovsky correctly quotes the scientists, and concludes from their works (p. 371) that "I think that what Volikovsky is trying to say here is that Venus, and also Mars, emit more heat than they receive from the Sun, and that their heat comes from the same "excitement". ancient and not from the current sun's radiation. But this is a serious mistake. The part of the solar radiation reflected from Venus corresponds perfectly to the degree of infrared heat of its clouds; As a student, the degree of heat of the clouds of Venus is exactly what is expected based on the solar radiation reaching the star. Volikovsky claims that both Mars and Venus emit more heat than they receive from the Sun. He is wrong in both cases.

According to his version, the planet Venus is hot because of its encounters with Mars and Earth, and because of its transit near the Sun. Since Mars is not particularly hot, the heat of Venus must be attributed mainly to its passage near the Sun, when it was another comet, according to the theory offered to us. But it is easy to calculate how much energy Venus would receive in such an approach to the Sun, and in how much time it would radiate it back into space. The calculation shows that he would have lost all of that energy within months or at most a few years, and there is no chance that any part of it would be preserved to this day. Volikovsky is not

indicates how close to the Sun the star was supposed to pass, but a very close pass further adds to the already serious difficulties raised in problem number 2. Volikovsky returns and claims that the planet Venus cools and shrinks with time. As mentioned, he attributes his high fever to the same fervor that befell him when he passed near the sun. On different occasions, Volikovsky compares the degree of temperature of Venus as measured at different times, and tries to prove the same long-awaited cooling. However, all microwave measurements and the radiation of the infrared part of the spectrum, if they are presented correctly and without bias, do not have the faintest hint of that temperature drop.
The high degree of heat of Venus's face is considered by Volikovsky's followers to be another 'proof' of his beliefs. However, it is because we see that: a) the temperature at issue was never specified precisely; b) The mechanism proposed as responsible for that temperature is not acceptable; c) Contrary to claims, the surface of the star does not cool over time.

Problem: 8 craters of Venus and Harrio

In 1973, Dr. Richard Goldstein and his assistants, using the radar observatory of JPL Laboratories, discovered an important feature of the surface of the planet Venus, which was later verified by many repeated observations. They found, based on the radar waves that penetrate through the clouds of Venus and are reflected from its face, that the planet is slightly mountainous here and there, and heavily cratered; It is even possible that, like our moon, it is 'saturated with craters' - that is, they cover it so densely that they overlap each other. These craters, like the craters on the 'Yami' of the moon, and like the craters of Mercury and Mars, are formed almost exclusively as a result of the impact of 'interstellar debris' of sorts. Large objects do not disintegrate and disintegrate when they penetrate through the atmosphere of Venus, despite its high density. It is impossible that those objects reached the surface of Venus in the last ten thousand years, since otherwise the Earth would also be covered in craters. The most probable source of those collisions are celestial objects called 'Apollo-objects' and these are asteroids whose orbits cross the orbit of the Earth), as well as small comets.
But for Venus craters to be formed by such objects, the 'cratering' process had to continue for billions of years. Another possibility is that the craters were formed in a shorter period of time, but in the early days of the solar system, when that 'interstellar debris' was much more abundant. But it is by no means possible that the process took place recently. And it is clear that if there was indeed Venus in the belly of Tzedek only a few thousand years ago, then the craters could not have formed on it. Here is another refutation of one of the foundations of Volikovsky's theory.

And to conclude: the obituary 'Colliding Worlds' is an attempt to validate the biblical stories and other legends as historical truth. I tried to approach the book without prejudice. I admit that the similarities and correspondences between different mythological stories are interesting and amazing, and definitely deserve further research, but can probably be explained through distribution or other explanations. In spite of all the 'proofs' that Volikovsky's followers claim to exist, the scientific part of his book poses many more difficulties than the ones I listed before, and they are also quite serious.
An agreed scientific claim must be based on a clear chain of evidence, if you break even just one link in that chain - the whole claim falls. In the case of 'worlds colliding' we have the opposite situation in fact all the links are broken, one by one. In order to save the theory, it is necessary to find convincing claims to an unusual degree, to invent a dubious new physics, and to selectively ignore an abundance of contradictory evidence. No, it seems to me that there is no possibility of defending Volikovsky's basic thesis based on physical principles. Furthermore: there is a potentially dangerous problem regarding the mythological material in the book. The supposed events are reconstructed from fragments of legends and folktales, but all those global catastrophes are not remembered at all in historical records or in the folklore of many cultures.

Volikovsky attributes this strange omission (if he even refers to it) to "mass forgetting". Because yes, he wants to grab the stick at both ends. When there is some kind of correspondence between the stories, he is ready to draw the most exciting conclusions from it. When there is no such match, he dismisses the matter on the grounds of 'mass forgetting', at such a level of error, it is indeed possible to 'prove' anything. So, how did 'Worlds Collide' become so popular, despite these huge flaws? Here I can only guess. First, this is an attempt to validate a religious belief, based on scientific evidence. The stories of the Torah are simply true, Volikovsky tells us, if only we interpret them correctly. The people of Israel, for example, which was saved from the pharaohs of Egypt, the kings of Assyria and countless other harms, thanks to the intervention of a comet, is absolutely entitled - so one can perhaps conclude from Volikovsky's words - to see itself as a chosen people. Volikovsky tries to save not only religion, but also astrology: the results of wars, the destinies of entire nations, are determined by the position of the stars in the sky. His work provides, in a certain sense, a basis for the hope that there is a deep 'cosmic connection' between the human race and the universe. Such deep cosmic connections undoubtedly exist - as I myself tried to show on another occasion (Carl Sagan refers here to his book 'The Cosmic Connection' from 1973) - but Volikovsky's thesis is not one of them.

The scandal caused by scientists, who were usually peaceful and calm people, around the book 'Colliding Worlds', gave rise to a chain of results. Some people rightly reject the arrogant arrogance of scientists, or feel concerned about what they see as the dangers of science and technology, or perhaps simply have a hard time understanding science. They may derive considerable pleasure from seeing the scientists in their folly.

In the whole affair there is only one aspect that is even worse than the pretentious, rude, and incendiary approach of Volikovsky and his supporters, and that is the disgraceful attempt by some people who called themselves scientists to ban the publication of Volikovsky's writings. Due to this experience, the entire scientific enterprise suffered. Volikovsky was not at all seriously trying to be objective; At least there is no hypocrisy in the fact that he brushed aside the entire massive amount of data contradicting his claims. But the scientists could be expected to know, to understand that we must allow freedom of speech and free debate however heated it may be so that each idea can be judged on its merits.

Because the scientists did not give a balanced and factual response to Volikovsky's works, they themselves are responsible for spreading his confused views. At the same time, scientists cannot engage in all areas of 'fringe science'. The thinking, calculations and preparation of this article, for example, took a lot of time from me, which I very much need for my research. But it certainly wasn't a boring job, and at least I enjoyed a little of many beautiful fairy tales. The attempt to save an old religion, in the dawning generation desperate for any religious roots, for some cosmic meaning for the existence of humanity, is perhaps worthy of praise, and perhaps not. I believe that there is a lot of good and a lot of bad in the old religions. But I don't understand why all these dubious 'proofs' are needed. If we have to choose between them and religion (and obviously we are not forced to do so), then isn't it better to prefer the God of Moses, Jesus or Muhammad over Volikovsky's comet?

10 תגובות

  1. From a statistical point of view, I think that the probability of the development of biology is much smaller than chemistry, not to mention the structure of the eye, the brain, the operation of the mitochondria

  2. To my father Blizovsky, hello
    You bring Sagan's criticism of the book "Colliding Worlds" which Sagan repeated and published in several of his books, but originally, in the text of the article he read and distributed at the AAAS symposium in 1974, and which was later published in the book Scientists confront Velikovsky, Sagan relied on the appendix - in this way:
    "In Appendix No. 1, calculations were made that indicate that one comet (having an ephelion near the orbit of Jupiter and a perihelion within the orbit of Venus) will take 30,000,000 years before it impacts the Earth" and therefore "the probability that this will happen within a period of a thousand years It is one in 30,000, but Lolikovski not one, but five or six near collisions... if they are independent of each other, then the probability that five such encounters will happen, within a thousand years, is around:
    (3×107/103)-5 = 4.1×10-23
    It is interesting to note the unscientific and ambiguous way in which Sagan worded the above paragraph - central to his probability calculations - in which he writes that he calculated the probability for an actual impact (impact), and then writes that "colliding worlds" are described as "almost collisions (near collisions) then he adds and writes: "If they are independent of each other" (while they did cause each other and in some cases even had cycles) but he continues and calculates the probabilities as if they were indeed all independent of each other, and all of them were real collisions ! And he published the result, without any reservations, in all the press, scientific and general.

    My answer to him was published in the prestigious journal Physics Today which can be read in Hebrew at the link:
    The editor of PhysicsToday at the time, Harold Davis, sent my letter to Sagan so that he could respond on the spot, but Sagan did not respond, and how could he - because I show that he read only part of the book he is criticizing and also contradicts my own words. After further attempts to persuade him, the editor decided to publish the letter even without Sagan's response. Then many other readers responded.
    The additional responses, and my answers to them, were published in the brochures April 81 and again in June 82, in which some more of Sagan's "scientific" approaches are emphasized; Their translation into Hebrew is given in the appendix to "Before Dawn".

    On the other hand, I quote here from what scientists wrote who did read Velikovsky's books:
    Prof. Robert H. Pfeiffer, Dean of the Faculty of Semitic Studies and Languages ​​at Harvard University, wrote about the cover of the original "Periods of Chaos":
    "Dr. Velikovsky shows enormous knowledge and extraordinary sharpness. He writes well and records all his assertions in the sources... If Dr. Velikovsky is right, this book is the greatest contribution to the study of ancient history ever written."

    Professor Etienne Dreuton - who was the director of the antiquities services in Egypt, Lolikovski wrote:
    "I received your book this morning and I've almost finished reading the whole thing, it's so charming and moving... You collapse many of our historical assumptions that we thought were well-founded, but you do so without any prejudices and with full documentation..."

    In "Harper's Magazine" Larabi wrote:
    "By breaking down the barriers between the various sciences, Emanuel Velikovsky reaches conclusions that no science has reached on its own. This is the real challenge, and this is the basis of his research and is fundamental to them."

    Horace Cullen, philosopher and educator, who headed the New School of Social Research wrote about Velikovsky's theses:
    "The strength of the scientific imagination, the audacity of the structure and the scope of the research and information fill me with admiration. If his theory is proven to be correct then not only astronomy but also history and many of the anthropological and social sciences will have to reconsider both their content and their explanations."

    Dr. Azriel Karlibach, editor of "Maariv", wrote in relation to "times in chaos" in a large article "Six hundred years that were lost and the Exodus that was found":
    "Whoever comes and writes a novel is only putting in the shade the other stories that were not so successful, - and one can still argue about taste and smell. But whoever comes and discovers in science... a genius discovery... everything that the others wrote is again not a matter of taste and talent but is simply - incorrect, absurd, ridiculous...
    "Now go out and learn how all these scholars will rise up, stand up for their lives over this Velikovsky. Because he sinned in two iniquities that have no atonement at the same time: both in genius and in all professionalism, also in that which does not have the guspanka of narrow horizons duplicated in one channel of science, and also in that which is original..."

    Professor Harry H. Hess) Dean of the Faculty of Geology at Princeton University and Chairman of the Space Committee of the National Academy of Sciences in the USA, Lulikowski wrote:
    "You indeed predicted in advance that Jupiter would be found as a source of radio waves, that Venus would be found to have a high temperature, that large electric charges would be found on the Sun and the other bodies of the solar system, and a number of other such predictions. Some of these predictions are said to be impossible. All of them were predicted by you a long time before the proof came to us that they were true, and on the other hand, I do not know of any prediction that you claimed has since been proven to be wrong.... Whether you are right or wrong, you deserve a fair hearing."

    The winner of the Israel Prize, Professor David Flosser, added a preface to the book about Greece, in which he wrote:
    "Were we not misled by a false Egyptian chronology... Was the history of Egypt much shorter in reality than people believe today? If this could be shown, then the problem of the dark ages in Greece would disappear. Only unprejudiced experts can reject or accept Velikovsky's solutions... the book's merit is that it brings a solution to a real problem. Would there be enough good experts willing to deal with the proposed solution?”

  3. Mr. Blizovsky, have you read Velikovsky's books? I guess his... Do you really think that Einstein would have conducted extensive scientific correspondence, and spend tens of hours of in-depth discussions face-to-face (!) with a person who understands nothing about science?! Velikovsky's work is very systematic, and is built on a multitude of sources of all kinds and types.

    If you claim that the science community did not enter into hysteria, I recommend that you learn a little about the history surrounding the Horma war that they waged against him, they were really afraid and trembled to give him a platform, and invite him to lectures, so that the students, God forbid, would not be exposed to facts that are outside the false "scientific methods".

    For this and more, see the introduction to Velikovsky's book (in Hebrew) "The Land of Noise", as well as his book "Boycott in the Name of Science"...

  4. David, Velikovsky did not challenge anything. Anyone who understands anything in one of the scientific fields he used realized that his science is far-fetched and lacks consistency and logic, and only came to prove a religious thesis.

  5. come on; Brian O'Leary is among those who support conspiracy theories in the relevant contexts. according to which we may not have landed on the moon either...

  6. Carl Sagan was part of the establishment's concealment mechanism regarding astronomy and the existence of extraterrestrials and UFOs.
    Carl Sagan can't be trusted on a dime.

    Astronaut Dr. Brian O'Leary, who worked with Sagan at Cornell University, reveals in a fascinating interview:

    INTERVIEWER: But isn't there a time in which you and Carl Sagan sort of had a falling-out, or a distancing? Can you describe what happened there?

    O'LEARY: Yes. Well, for one thing, Carl was very angry I left Cornell when I did. It was... One very cold snowy day in May, I landed in Syracuse, and there was a horizontal blizzard — in May — and I said: That's it for upstate New York. And Carl thought that was very frivolous. Because, of course, he was kind of an empire-builder kind of guy; and he also had a huge ego.

    It was only later, when I began to embrace the UFO phenomenon and the cover-up, studying all these organizations that were covering up, and having some direct experience, myself, as a researcher no longer beholden to funding from NASA or the university environment , that I began to double-check some of Carl's work.

    I saw, for example, the famous "Face" in Cydonia on Mars, photographed by Viking in 1975, which shows this gigantic mesa that resembles a human face, about a mile across. Carl and I debated this.

    It was very, very disappointing to me, because not only was Carl wrong, he also fudged data. He published a picture of the "Face" in Parade Magazine, a popular article, saying that the "Face" was just a natural formation, but he doctored the picture to make it not look like a face.

    I began to realize, just directly from the scientific point of view, not only hearsay, that this man was colluding with NASA, that there might be more to this than before. And then, when I started studying things like MJ12 and other organizations that were covering up the UFO phenomenon...

    Carl was on a committee with a number of notable people. There was a report issued by the Brookings Institution in 1961 — and that's about when I knew Carl, during those years; the '60s mostly was when I worked closely with him — that he and this other group said: Well, if any ETs ever showed up on the Earth, it has to be covered up. That's the only way we're going to be able to manage this, because if we can't, then it would be too much of a culture shock.

    So their recommendation to the government in 1961 was to cover up the UFO phenomenon, and I think in a way that provided a justification for the ongoing cover-up way back in '61 — was to keep things secret. And of course they still are.

    Minute 22.40

  7. Carl Sagan, the fantasist of the last century who imagined developed civilizations on other planets and lived in some bad science fiction movie, tried his hand against Velikovsky for one reason and one reason only - he threw all the nonsense of the scientists under their feet!

    What to do when the clergy of evolution control the temples of higher education, and there is no freedom of thought, there are only "scientific methods", a person who dares to express an opinion that does not fit the mainstream or dares to write something in the test that is against the position of the university - will fail!! Their attitude - you must not think! Do not express an opinion! Inquisitorial persecution to the end after every opinion that reeks of a different approach! And just watch to see how the entire scientific establishment rose to its feet in panic against Emmanuel Velikovsky in the 50s, let this be a lesson for us.

    I have his books at home, and just as Einstein (!) sat patiently to read his words, and attached importance to them, so we should all respect him in this. And I am sure that those who study his books will gain an abundance of new ideas, which the evolutionists try to hide.

  8. The author, whose time was very precious, devoted much of it to reading Velikovsky's essays, even though the connection between the so-called science in them and reality is tenuous. I am convinced that the same ignorance Sholikovsky demonstrated in astronomy he also demonstrated in archeology and the study of ancient cultures, as Sagan himself writes.

  9. It is obvious that the author of the article has not read "Artez Rasha" which in my opinion is the most fascinating and question-provoking book of Velikovsky. It is clear that Velikovsky's thesis is not perfect at all, but the contradictions he finds in the historians and geologists are amazing. Therefore, it seems to me that despite the certain ignorance shown by Velikovsky in the field of astronomy (whether due to a lack of knowledge or due to a person's lack of information from the 50s) it is still highly recommended to read his books, if only because his questions may yield better answers in the future.

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