Category Archives: The Mysterious Universe

Interesting Facts About Evolution!

    1. Ultimately every living thing can trace its ancestry to a bacterium that lived billions of years ago.
    2. Bears, seals, and dogs are closely related carnivores but are on a different branch of the evolutionary tree than cats and hyenas.
    3. Some snakes have hipbones, which shows they once had four legs like lizards, their close cousins.
    4. Early whales had large back legs.
    5. Inside some whales and dolphins are small bones that show they once had back legs and that their ancestors walked on land. These occasionally reappear as tiny rear flippers.
    6. Birds evolved from dinosaurs and both are descended from reptiles. The closest living reptilian relation of a bird is the crocodile.
    7. Evolution rarely follows a straight line from species to species. Instead, it is more like a tree with many branches. Some branches lead to new branches, while others become dead ends.
    8. An elephant’s trunk is an amazing example of evolutionary development. It is a combined nose and upper lip that lengthened as the elephant’s ancestors became taller and their tusks grew bigger. With its heavy head, it needed an easy way to reach the ground.
    9. Physically, the human body seems to have changed very little in the last 50,000 years. However improvements in diets, increased lifespan, and developments in biotechnology may start to speed up the evolutionary process.
    10. All humans develop a tail in the womb that eventually dissolves.
    11. The penises of human ancestors were covered in hard spines. Theorists believe these spines possibly helped a man’s sperm overtake that of his competitors. As humans became more monogamous, the spines became obsolete.
    12. Charles Darwin did not come up with his theory of evolution while at the Galapagos Islands. His ideas came later, after his return from the voyage.
    13. Darwin (1809–1882) did not come up with the phrase “survival of the fittest” to summarize his theory. Rather, the philosopher Herbert Spencer (1820–1903) coined the phrase.
    14. Darwin did not argue that humans came from monkeys. Rather he wrote only thatmonkeys, apes, and humans have a common ancestor.
    15. Approximately 550 million years ago, humans had a common ancestor with a lancelet, a rod-like sea animal.
    16. Humans share about 31% of their genes with yeast, a single living cell that replicates every 90 minutes. They share about 50% of their genes with a banana.l
    17. A pair of parents would have to have 1,000,000,000,000,000 (a quadrillion) babies before they possibly might have a child with the same genes as any of their other children. This genetic variation between individuals is the key to how species have evolved.
    18. A descended larynx, which allows humans to speak, evolved roughly 350,000 year ago. Humans also possess a descended hyoid one, which allows humans to articulate words. In contrast, the larynx in a chimp, for example, sits higher in the throat than in a human.
    19. A hobbit-like species of human lived about 18,000 years ago. About the size of a 3-year-old, they lived with pygmy elephants and 10-foot-long lizards.
    20. The changes in a human pelvis that allow humans to walk upright also made bearing children unusually more dangerous than the rest of the animal kingdom. Additionally, the lumbar curve in the lower back, which helps humans maintain balance, is more vulnerable to pain and injury.
    21. A square inch of human skin on average has as much or more hair-producing follicles as other primates. The difference is that human hair is thinner, shorter, and lighter.
    22. Researchers believe that goose bumps are a remnant of thick hair that covered early humans.
    23. While other primates have opposable thumbs, humans are unique because they can bring their thumbs across the hand to their ring and little fingers. Humans can also flex the ring and little fingers toward the base of the thumb. This allows humans to have a powerful grip and dexterity to hold and use tools.
    24. The development of human clothes has influenced the evolution of other species. For example, unlike all other kinds of louse, the body louse clings to clothing not to hair.
    25. Evolutionary biologists hypothesize that species that cooperate rather than compete value sameness, which has led to right-hand dominance. Lefties constitute just 10% of the normal population; yet they make up 50% of elite athletes.
    26. Researchers suggest that the discovery of fire influenced human evolution. Fire allowed humans to cook their food, which made food easier to chew and digest—which, in turn, contributed to the reduction of human tooth and gut size.
    27. While most animals reproduce until they die, humans have evolved to survive long after the ability to reproduce. Scientists believe this has helped ensure the success of a woman’s family.
    28. The theory of evolution has three basic parts: 1) it is possible for an organism’s DNA to change or mutate; 2) the change is harmful, beneficial, or neutral; and 3) after a long period of time, the mutations cause new species to form.
    29. Mutations fuel evolution by providing new genes in the gene pool of a species. Many factors cause DNA mutation, including X-rays, cosmic rays, nuclear radiation, and random chemical reactions in a cell.
    30. In 1861, the fossil of a primitive bird named Archaeopteryx (“first bird”) was found in Germany. It has impressions of feathers and a long, bony tail. Scientist believe this fossil links birds and reptiles and was the first solid evidence to support Darwin’s theory of evolution.
    31. In the 1870s, Ernst Haeckel, a German biologist and naturalist, developed the idea of “evolution as progress,” which assumes that all nature is moving toward a final goal: human beings.
    32. The discovery of DNA (strands of hereditary material) provides the strongest proof for biological evolution. By comparing genomes of different living things and observing the changes in the coding of genes, scientists can figure out how closely different species are related to each other and identify how long ago a common ancestor lived.
    33. Modern evolution theory recognizes that evolution does not always mean progress. If the environment changes, more advanced animals can die out while less advanced relatives survive.
    34. Darwin was not the first to propose a theory of evolution. His real achievement was that he was able to present a more coherent argument for evolution backed up by a mass of accurate information.
    35. In revolutionary France, a theory of evolution (by Jean Baptiste Lamarck) was used to challenge the authority of the church and the king. Fearful of similar uprisings, England made evolution a scandalous idea.
    36. Scientists believe that the nictitating membrane (the small pink tissue in the corner of a human eye) is a remnant of a third eyelid, similar to the semitransparent eyelid used by birds, reptiles, fish, and other mammals. It is used to protect the eye or moisten it.
    37. Eighty-five percent of the population cannot wiggle its ears or control the Auricularis muscles that surround the outer ear. Scientists believe this muscle allowed human beings’ primate ancestors to move their ears in different directions to pinpoint the locations of sounds. They lost the need to move their ears when they started to live in groups.
    38. Scientists believe that wisdom teeth and the appendix are leftover “equipment” from when humans ate a primarily leaf-based diet. As the human diet changed, these appendices have become essentially useless.
    39. The term “Junk DNA” refers to regions of DNA that are noncoding—or, in other words, they do not code for a protein. Scientists note that evolution is messy, incomplete, and inefficient and, consequently, it results in DNA sequences with varying degrees of function or no function at all. In the human genome, almost all (98%) of DNA is noncoding.
    40. Hiccups may date back to humans’ watery ancestors. Wiring in the brain that pushes water over fish gills and makes amphibians gulp air has been imperfectly rewired in mammals. It can make the diaphragm go into spasms, which causes hiccups.
    41. Because of evolution, many animals lay hundreds of eggs each year to ensure that even a few reach adulthood. If all the froglets survived, the world would be knee-deep in frogs within 10 years.
    42. The platypus is the earliest mammal offshoot from the reptiles. It lays eggs but produces milk like other mammals. It also has evolved the ability to produce venom independently of its reptile ancestors.
    43. The plantaris muscle in the foot is used by animals to grip and manipulate objects with their feet. For example, apes seem to be able to use their feet as well as their hands. In humans, however, this muscle is so underdeveloped that doctors often remove it when they need tissue for reconstructing other parts of the body. About 9% of humans are now born without it.
    44. Humans have very little hair compared to other primates. Researchers believe humans have evolved this feature because 1) it made it easier to forage for food in shallow water, 2) it helped humans lose heat faster on the hot savannas, and 3) it helped reduce the number of parasites on the body.
    45. Human evolution has taken 5 million years. Modern man, or homo sapiens (“wise man”), emerged 250,000 years ago. Until 25,000 years ago, humans lived alongside the Neanderthals, who were stronger and more stocky. Scientists are unsure what happened to the Neanderthals.
    46. The evolution of the mammalian ear can be clearly tracked through fish, amphibian, and reptile fossils. Mammals have three small bones in the inner ear that began as the jawbones of fish. Over time, they changed form and function, shrank, and moved away from the jaw. This allowed mammals to develop a superior sense of hearing.
    47. Madagascar split from Africa 165 million years ago, which was before Africa’s large mammals, such as elephants and giraffes, evolved. Hence, elephants and giraffes do not live on Madagascar. Hippos are thought to be the only large mammals to have swum to Madagascar.
    48. Some scientists believe that if humans colonize other planets, colonizers would face new environment conditions, such as low gravity and oxygen. Over centuries, the colonizers and the plants and animals they took with them would evolve to look and behave differently.
    49. A panda’s thumb is actually an enlarged wrist bone that has evolved to allow the panda to hold onto its favorite food: bamboo.
    50. Birds haven’t had teeth for 70 million years, but researchers have found them in the embryos of mutant chickens. Researchers believe that chickens lost their teeth to grow beaks—although, they still have the potential to make teeth.
    51. Most people had brown eyes until about 10,000 years ago when a single genetic mutation from the Black Sea switched the eyes from brown to blue. Approximately 8% of the world’s population now has blue eyes.
    52. Researchers are unsure if humans are still evolving or if they have reached their evolutionary peak.
    53. A new species is achieved when two populations of the same living thing become so different that they can no longer breed with each other.
    54. Evolutionary biologists note that a symmetrical face is more attractive around the world because symmetry signals good genes for reproductive health.
    55. According to evolutionary biologists, women are more attracted to men with a large jaw and prominent brow, which are shaped by high levels of testosterone. Men are attracted to women with smaller chins and less prominent brows, which signal higher estrogen levels.
    56. One study found that men who were hungry preferred women with higher body weights. Researchers suspect this happens because of an evolutionary response to resource scarcity; in other words, a heavier woman advertises access to more resources, such as food.
    57. Historically, men prefer women with an hourglass figure. Researchers believe this is a product of evolution because the waist-hip ratio (WHR) serves as an indicator of reproductive health.
    58. Scientific studies have shown that blushing helps ease hostile responses by communicating that a person is ashamed or apologetic. Studies show that blushing elicits sympathy, which helps keep the subject alive. Humans are the only animals capable of blushing.
    59. Lip twitching when angry is an evolutionary leftover. It is the first part of baring teeth at an intruder and can also be seen in wolves, bears, and chimpanzees.
    60. Many people feel the urge to lift their feet or climb to a more elevated position when scared or feeling anxious. Evolutionary biologists claim this is a remnant instinct from when early ground-dwelling mammals would climb trees when threatened.
    61. Evidence for evolution is continually being gathered and tested; consequently, scientists argue that evolution is both a fact and a theory.
    62. The Tiktaalik is a fossil that shows the transition between a fish and a walking tetrapod. This “fishapod” had developed wrist and finger bones that enabled it to prop itself up on its fins. Holes on top of its head suggest it may have breathed air through primitive lungs.
    63. The term “evolution” dates from the Latin evolutionem, meaning “unrolling” or “an opening of what was rolled up.”
    64. Scientists believe that red hair and pale skin was evolutionarily advantageous in northern Europe because it helped humans to synthesize vitamin D more easily.
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The Island Where Everyone Wears A Gas Mask!

Mount Oyama

Resting atop a chain of volcanoes, Miyake-jima is an island in the Izu group, southeast of Honshū, Japan. About 160 kilometers south of Tokyo , this town is a hub for volcanic activity where over the past century, the volcanoes have erupted six times. The worst of these occurred in June 2000 when, after a repose of 17 years Mount Oyama which is an extremely active volcano spot erupted & 17,500 earthquakes hit the island between June 26 and July 21.

Inside of Mount OyamaEruption of Mount Oyama in Miyakejima Japan Picture

During the assault of eruptions and earthquakes, ash plumes soaring as high as 10 miles enveloped Miyake-jima, and heavy ash fell as the craters collapsed. High levels of toxic sulphur dioxide would regularly rise up through the ground, making 20 percent of the land not fit for habitation. Covered with a cloud of harmful sulphur dioxide gas, spewed into the air by volcanic eruptions, the islands heavy weather systems and cold make it worse. At one point, it was so bad that it was polluting the air with 42,000 tons of sulphur dioxide per day. Those who have studied the volcano’s patterns have found that it goes off in intervals of 20 years.  But even when Mount Oyama isn’t mid-eruption, it continues to emit sulfuric gas.

Miyakejima Panorama Photograph

The eruptions released so much toxic gas into the air that three months later in September, the government had to force a mass evacuation of the entire island. Over 3,600 people evacuated the island in 2000 because of the toxic gases which could harm their lungs. For five years, Miyake-jima was declared off-limits, with the barren island resembling a post-apocalyptic world. Dead trees and rusted cars peppered the derelict space. Mount Oyama continued to emit 10,000 to 20,000 tons of sulphuric dioxide gas from its summit every day for two years following the eruption. Slowly, though, the evacuation order began to lift, and in 2005 citizens were allowed to return to their homes.

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Despite the high level of volcanic activity that causes poisonous gas to leak from the earth, some island denizens just can’t stay away! Some opted to remain in their relocated houses in Tokyo, but about 2,800 chose to return, taking back the island’s abandoned buildings. They have adopted ways to suit the living conditions in the island.

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Considering the re-populating of the island, nearly a third of Miyake-jima remains permanently uninhabitable and the government mandates regular health checkups and enforces age restrictions in certain areas. In terms of monitoring the air quality, the Tokyo Metropolitan Government has been watching the volcanic activity through videos, helicopter and satellite images.

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In the meantime, civilians walk around with gas masks to protect themselves from the toxicity. All residents and visitors are required to carry gas masks, and an air raid alarm goes off when the sulfur levels get unhealthily high. So when the air quality gets bad enough, the town turns into a masked extra-terrestrial looking crowd of people seemingly attending the same themed costume party.

Miyakejima The Gas Mask Town

But all that poisoned air does have its perks. While many wouldn’t exactly call this an ideal spot for tourists, some curious about this town where the citizens wear gas masks do venture through. Gas mask tourism is a huge draw for people who want to pretend they’re living in the post-destruction age. With disposable masks sold at ferry stations and local stores, this gas-soaked village hasn’t kept tourists away. The city’s site advises visitors to learn about the harmful effects of sulfur dioxide before visiting as it can be quite damaging to one’s health. They even suggest tourists get a respiratory medical exam before booking the trip. Visitors can also take tours of abandoned houses, flattened cars and a school gym half-destroyed by lava or dip themselves in hot spring baths, until self-awareness hits and visitors realize that they find disaster enjoyable enough to pay for.

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Time – One Of The Greatest Mysteries Of The World!

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                                                                                                                                                          For millennia man has dealt with the strange concept of time and time is by far one of the Greatest Mysteries of the world. But before moving on to those concepts that will be dealt at length in this article, lets first understand the concept of time.

So what is Time? We normally perceive time by looking at man-made calendar’s or clocks which have been developed after observing the nature of seasons and which to some extent standardize something so infinite as time. Well, if you notice, some aspects of this world can be perceived through a particular sense like we see colours and can smell fragrance. And objects for instance a phone can be perceived through more than one sense. But what sense do we use when perceiving time? We cannot see, hear, taste, smell or feel time, can we? So is time an illusion? And just for a moment if all our senses were prevented to function, would time still move on through the changing pattern of our thoughts? We perhaps notice time through the perception of other things but how does this happen? One way to think about time is to imagine a world without it. There would be no movement because time and movement cannot be separated. We know that time has passed when something changes. This moment, the present which feels real is time. No matter how much you remember the past or anticipate the future, you live in the present. The moment during which you are reading this sentence is no longer happening but this one is. The present is updating itself and makes you feel that time flows. The future soon becomes the present and then the past. So it leads us to believe that with time, we have a fixed past, immediate present and an open future. But is that it?

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How does the Mind Perceive Time? It is a scientific fact that the brain operates on a certain frequency. When the brain perceives an event, it waits for a repeat of the event and then judges the time between occurrences of the event. It seems practical to think that if the brain works on frequencies, so does time. In fact, time has no beginning or end but it truly exists and it is a part of the universe. If the universe manoeuvres on frequencies, so does everything that exists in it. So if time does the same, then the brain’s perception of time is a matter of arbitrating the recurrence of signals. Since people have experienced missing time, they have been experiencing an altered frequency. What that means is when an event occurs, the brain records it but that event may not be on the same frequency that time is on, which makes time seem to stand still for the one experiencing it.

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So what exactly is “Missing” time? To begin with let’s give this concept a more relevant term which would be “adjusted” time experiences in relation to the time-space theory. If we have to explain the concept in simple terms, it is an individual’s personal experience of altered time and space and is a gap in the conscious memory identified with a certain time period. Normally memories of instances taken place during that time period can be retrieved through dreams or by hypnosis. Chances of experiencing such a phenomenon can occur when you are either in a deep meditative state or when you are at such a place which is near a natural earth portal or it can also be triggered by your own energy field with a high frequency vibration. It seems strange, but cases of missing time and distance are as common as they are confusing and some don’t even realize or pay attention to it.

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To make you understand better, think about this. If people could teleport from one time zone to another from east to west, they would have gained a couple of hours in the new place though in the previous place they would have experienced that time and vice versa. Similarly if you fly to the east of the world, your flight time will be shorter than flying between the same destinations to the west. The simple reason is the rotation of the earth, ie; if you fly to the east your destination becomes closer as the earth turns. Now what if earth stops rotating itself? Will time stop? Can time stop? It can lead to more time complexities. Now picture yourself holidaying at Kiritimati Islands on a Monday at 2 am. So if you had to teleport to Paris, you’d get your Sunday back and you’ll be at a time zone that will be on a Sunday 2 pm. So you might have had a great barbeque session with friends on the islands on a Sunday but in a snap you’ve got that Sunday back again. And that’s because you’ve entered a different time zone. So by traveling west, you gain time and while travelling towards the east you lose time. In a similar way, your frequencies can work in a weird way that can make you experience missing time. It’s complex, but that’s the way it is.

So we are now aware of how complicated time can be with altered frequencies. Though there is no stigma around missing time experiences now, science is still seriously digging for answers to the many questions surrounding this peculiar phenomenon and one such question that is really bothering them is to figure out the answer to what latent abilities unknown to the one experiencing it makes them capable of going through such a prodigy that allows them to be tapped for these experiences.

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Everyone possesses some level of psychic ability. Many do not pay attention or are too cynical to believe that such things can happen. Wouldn’t it be great if children were taught in school right from a tender age on ways to develop their psychic abilities? But unfortunately, our society tends to ridicule what it doesn’t comprehend. In the past, people were killed for thinking or being different, but thankfully with time, scientific learning has advanced to a great extent. Quantum physics proves that the power of the mind is phenomenal, while paranormal studies use intelligent machinery to capture the frequency of the deceased and sometimes even interpret their words. These things have come out of the realm of the unknown and are no longer called witchcraft. Earlier, people who saw Unidentified Flying Objects or were captured by them were ridiculed and considered maniacs. Now we are aware that they operate on a different frequency and therefore only certain earthlings capable of processing that data are privy to these experiences. Those who have experienced this capture have learnt first-hand about astral projections and bilocation astral travels. UFO experiences have yielded their victims lessons from another frequency which makes it necessary for us to understand that all do not operate on the same frequency levels all the time.

People who have had out of body experiences may have felt something that they wouldn’t have otherwise felt within the body’s theory of time and space. Quantum physics has taught these experiencers that time travel is possible and that one can communicate on different frequencies with other-than-earth dwellers. But, just like surviving jet lag from time zones when flying east to west, these people suffered the same sort of jet lag between frequencies and they kind of missed a few minutes to hours or days or even more.

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But as we all know human imagination does not surpass the scopes of reality, however preposterous they may seem and some of the most brilliant inventors have believed the impossible and proven the world wrong in their cynicism. Albert Einstein was one such genius who suggested the possibility of time warps or black holes as an energy force-field which causes objects to move at a different speed with altered arrangements which could not be comprehended by science. Of course all scientific theories do not seem to agree with the quantum explanations except that which has a pattern or consistency.

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To make the definition of a time warp much clearer, it is believed to be an area where the magnetic and electric forces are altered in such a way that it creates an erratic energy-force field, often resulting in a fast and spinning or circular motion that forms a tunnel of some sort in the centre. When objects enter these force fields, their structure is altered and often projected to another place or time-speed. A branch of science that defies consistency is quantum physics which promotes the idea that energy is random. The atomic world is very different than the world as humans perceive it. Some may find these ideas outrageous, but in consideration of several real-life examples, sceptics would have to at least reconsider.

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One of the interesting examples of time warp energy fields that would perhaps spark your curiosity would be the Bermuda Triangle. This area in the ocean is believed to be a form of time warp. There have been a lot of disputes but this still hasn’t been proven untrue. Several airplanes and ships have mysteriously disappeared after entering a certain area in The Bermuda Triangle. Some emerged again after a long period of time while others have been wiped out without a trace. There may possibly be is a small area similar to a whirlpool where amplified magnetic and electric fields meet thus forming a time warp.

Similarly in 2006, a black hole was discovered in the constellation named Scorpius. This black hole was said to be a spinning force which caused an imprint on space-time, just as Einstein’s theory of relativity explained years before, which was mocked when he proposed it. There are plenty of tangible and intangible things in the universe which exist but yet defy explanation such as the emotion of love which cannot be explained completely by science. The mysterious nature of time may be one of these. If you’re a sceptic, take some time to consider some of the things that are believed to be surreal or supernatural and that which cannot be explained by science.

You be the judge!

The Mysterious Universe!

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                                                                                                                                                      Everyday we question about so many things, but how much do we ponder about this common yet underestimated subject called Life? Have you ever sat back and thought about how and why we are living this human life? Our purpose of living with other people and experiencing a life that is different from others? Is there really something called God? Are there underground secret societies? Why do we die? Near-death experiences – what are they? What is the purpose of birth and how important time, place and location of birth is? Do stars really write our destiny or can we mend them? What happens after we die? Is there heaven and hell? Do we reincarnate? How does the brain function in all of this? What makes us who we are? Past life experiences, out of body experiences – are they all true or just stories? What’s the big bang theory? What is intuition and the sixth sense? How do some people have extraordinary skills? How to awaken the potential powers of your brain? Are we the only planet with life in this universe? If we ain’t alone, do aliens exist and do they visit us? Why doesn’t the government or media tell us about all of this? How did people in days when there wasn’t a telescope come up with accurate positions of the stars in the sky and discovered astrology? What is right and wrong and who makes these belief systems? What do ancient structures tell us? What does the Illuminati do? Why do we have to work all day and get trapped in the corporate world? What if there was nothing called as money? What really happens at the Bermuda Triangle? Banks, Hospitals, Schools – are they really for our good, always? What is a secret society and does that really exist? Why are people experiencing weird and strange happenings around the world? What is missing time? Are alien abductions and crop circles real? Is love the purpose of life? Are we here to learn lessons and advance? Religion – why were they formed? Why does the media tell us what they want us to know and not what we are supposed to know? Why do we fight for our beliefs and why do we get influenced with what is told to us? How important it is to eat right? Are movies and music changing the culture and how do subliminal messages affect us in this change? Why do earthquakes and other natural disasters occur? Is there an end to this world? What is karma? And what on earth am I talking about? Well, I know it sounds all over the place and I’m sure many may not even connect to this because it’s never occurred to them before and there may be many who think about all these things like me and maybe it bothers ‘us’ just too much at times. I will try to answer all of the above and more in the articles I’ll write now on, tagged with #MysteriousUniverse. These articles will have thoughts I believe in and I do not intend to influence any of these thoughts unto my readers. What I write on my blog are my opinions and shouldn’t be taken as the gospel truth. You are free to form your own opinions and counter question me on the comments section, need be. I will be more than happy to participate in the discussion that will only widen my scope of thinking and eventually learn more.

Till then, cheers to Life!