Lighting up the stars tonight: The Northern lights at Hvalfjorour fjord in Akranes near Reykjavik change the look of the landscape completely The Aurora Boralis over a golf clubhouse, and in the distance, the Second World War lighthouse, in Seltjarnes. In northern latitudes the effect is known as the Aurora Borealis, named after the Roman goddess of dawn, Aurora, and the Greek name for the north wind, Boreas.
By Cody Cottier April 9, 8: But studies show our ancestors were chewing, brewing and blazing long before they started to record their intoxicated escapades.
Virtually all human societies use mind-altering substances. Many psychoactive plants we consume today, and those that have fallen out of style, date back thousands of years.
A Psychoactive Sampling Before we made drugs a societal menace, we respected them and used them for healing and spiritual purposes. Psychoactive plants fell under the jurisdiction of shamans, and some scholars believe early religion is rooted in their prophetic hallucinations, though this has been contested.
Others wonder whether drugs played a part in the origins of symbolic life and major intellectual breakthroughs. Use of Peyote, a desert cactus with natural hallucinogens, dates back as far as 5, years.
Peyote, a small spineless cactus, has been getting people high for thousands of years.
Three strapping young men with long black hair moved around the circle, pounding on a water drum and singing an urgent chant. In the same region, another hallucinogen called the mescal bean, which was used in a similar way to peyote, has been found in caves and rock shelters extending back to 9, years ago.
In Peru, the oldest remains of the psychoactive San Pedro cactus date to 6, B. More familiar today is opium —its descendants are heroin and morphine — and it was equally renowned in the antiquity of the Old World. It produces euphoria, pain relief and drowsiness, and it seems to be the most widespread of the ancient drugs, reaching most of Europe by the sixth millennium B.
A figurine of the Poppy Goddess from Gazi, B. Chewing the leaves of this plant, from which we now derive cocaine, helps to stave off fatigue, hunger, thirst and altitude sickness.
Many indigenous tribes also use it in ritual contexts.
Smoking pipes in Argentina have been dated to as early as 2, B. As for marijuana, Neolithic Chinese farmers were growing hemp for various reasons by the fifth millennium B.
Prehistoric Homo sapiens were so enamored of the fantastic fungi that many formed sacred cults around them in Mesoamerica. Small sculptures of human figures crowned with umbrella-like mushrooms are common throughout the region, dating between B. Around his burial site lay various plants, including the stimulant ephedra.
Some have disputed this evidence, as the grave also contained the bones of a gerbil-like rodent that may have hauled in the plants itself. Some wild animals have been observed to act inebriated after eating overly ripe fruit, and this points to one theory of the human-alcohol dynamic.
Before they hunted for meat, our primate forebears foraged for fruit. The hypothesis suggests a strong desire for the smell and taste of alcohol, produced in fruit as yeast converts its sugars into ethanol, would help them to detect dinner at peak ripeness.
Intentional fermentation likely came after humans began using psychoactive plants, many of which are consumed raw. One of the first confirmed alcoholic beverages was a Chinese concoction of wild grapes, hawthorn fruit, rice and honey.
Considering that all staple cereals — like barley, wheat and maize — are fit for brewing, some have even suggested that humans may have domesticated these crops for beer rather than bread.
They experimented with snorting, injecting and inhaling their intense new creations. The increasing potency of drugs in an unrestricted environment has led to numerous epidemics throughout history, and today addiction is a global dilemma. As for the U.
More than 33, Americans died from opioid overdoses inand the next year about 64, died from drug overdoses in general. But the perception of drugs as a public enemy, and the push to eradicate them, seems to be a fairly new concept.
Elisa Guerra-Doce, a Spanish researcher, published a review of archaeological evidence for psychoactive drugs in prehistory. She and many others argue that despite contemporary problems, drugs have traditionally served socially constructive purposes. By examining the way humans have used them for millennia, we may gain a better understanding of how to benefit from them without the harm.An aurora (plural: auroras or aurorae), sometimes referred to as polar lights, northern lights (aurora borealis) or southern lights (aurora australis), is a natural light display in the Earth's sky, predominantly seen in the high-latitude regions (around the Arctic and Antarctic)..
Auroras are produced when the magnetosphere is sufficiently disturbed by the solar wind that the trajectories of.
WHAT IS THE AURORA BOREALIS? The Aurora is an incredible light show caused by collisions between electrically charged particles released from the sun that enter the earth’s atmosphere and collide with gases such as oxygen and nitrogen.
Dec 20, · The Great White North is a forbidding and eerie place, which has spawned many fantastic stories and tales of folklore. Even in the real world, there are many historical and scientific mysteries about the frozen reaches beyond the Arctic Circle. The northern lights, or aurora borealis, offer an entrancing, dramatic, magical display that fascinates all who see it — but just what causes this dazzling natural phenomenon?
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Northern Norway is amongst the most comfortable and interesting places to see the northern lights and to experience the unbelievable colours move across the Arctic sky.
Find out where to go and the best time to see the aurora borealis.