Tag Archives: learn

Did You Know {79} ~ Horsetail Falls’ Firefall, U.S.A

It looks like a ribbon of lava cascading down the east face of the El Capitan walls in California’s Yosemite National Park in America, but it’s actually a regular waterfall illuminated by the bright light of the setting sun. The Firefall only occurs when conditions are perfect – when the sky is clear and the sun is setting at the correct angle.

When to visit: The phenomenon is difficult to time, as it only occurs during a 10-minute window around sunset for just a few days in mid-to-late February.

Ancient Books {2} ~ Bhagavad-Gita

The Gita is the sixth book of the Mahabharata, one of India’s most famous epic poems. It’s unclear exactly when the Gita was composed—estimates vary widely, but a number of scholars suggest it was completed around 200 CE and then inserted into the larger work; many see it as the first fully realized yogic scripture. Curious though it may seem that such an ancient text from a foreign culture has been so enthusiastically received by Westerners, the Gita, like all truly great works of literature, can be read on many levels: metaphysical, moral, spiritual, and practical; hence its appeal.

For those who haven’t had the pleasure of reading it, the Gita recounts a dialogue between Arjuna, one of five Pandava princes, and the Hindu deity Krishna, who in this epic serves as Arjuna’s charioteer. Arjuna and his brothers have been exiled from the kingdom of Kurukshetra for 13 years and cut off from their rightful heritage by another faction of the family; the Gita takes up their struggle to reclaim the throne, which requires that Arjuna wage war against his own kinsmen, bringing his considerable military skills to bear.

The story begins on the dusty plains of Kurukshetra, where Arjuna, a famed archer, is poised to fight. But he hesitates. He sees arrayed against him friends, teachers, and kin, and believes that to fight—and likely kill—these men would be to commit a grievous sin and could bring nothing good even if he were to win the kingdom back. Krishna chides him for his cowardice—Arjuna is from the warrior caste after all, and warriors are meant to fight—but then goes on to present a spiritual rationale for battling his enemies, one that encompasses a discussion of the karma, jnana and bhakti yogas, as well as the nature of divinity, humankind’s ultimate destiny, and the purpose of mortal life.

Ologies {3} ~ E-G’s

Ecohydrology to Gynecology
Ecohydrology: The study of interactions between organisms and the water cycle
Ecology: The study of the relationships between living organisms and their environment
Ecophysiology: The study of the interrelationship between an organism’s physical functioning and its environment
Edaphology: A branch of soil science that studies the influence of soil on life
Electrophysiology: The study of the relationship between electric phenomena and bodily processes
Embryology: The study of embryos
Endocrinology: The study of internal secretory glands
Entomology: The study of insects
Enzymology: The study of enzymes
Epidemiology: The study of the origin and spread of diseases
Ethology: The study of animal behavior
Exobiology: The study of life in outer space
Exogeology: The study of the geology of celestial bodies
Felinology: The study of cats
Fetology (foetology): The study of the fetus
Formicology: The study of ants
Gastrology (gastroenterology): The study of the stomach and intestines
Gemology: The study of gemstones
Geobiology: The study of the biosphere and its relations to the lithosphere and atmosphere
Geochronology: The study of the age of the Earth
Geology: The study of the Earth
Geomorphology: The study of present-day landforms
Gerontology: The study of old age
Glaciology: The study of glaciers
Gynecology: The study of medicine relating to women

Ologies {2} ~ B-D’s

Bacteriology: The study of bacteria
Bioecology: The study of the interaction of life in the environment
Biology: The study of life
Bromatology: The study of food
Cardiology: The study of the heart
Cariology: The study of cells; the study of dental cavities
Cetology: The study of cetaceans (e.g., whales, dolphins)
Climatology: The study of the climate
Coleopterology: The study of beetles
Conchology: The study of shells and of mollusks
Coniology: The study of dust in the atmosphere and its effects on living organisms
Craniology: The study of the characteristics of the skull
Criminology: The scientific study of crime
Cryology: The study of very low temperatures and related phenomena
Cynology: The study of dogs
Cytology: The study of cells
Cytomorphology: The study of the structure of cells
Cytopathology: The branch of pathology that studies diseases on the cellular level
Dendrochronology: The study of the age of trees and the records in their rings
Dendrology: The study of trees
Dermatology: The study of the skin
Dermatopathology: The field of dermatological anatomical pathology
Desmology: The study of ligaments
Diabetology: The study of diabetes mellitus
Dipterology: The study of flies

Ologies {1} ~ A’s

Actinology: The study of the effect of light on chemicals
Aerobiology: A branch of biology that studies organic particles transported by the air
Aerology: The study of the atmosphere
Aetiology: The study of the causes of disease
Agrobiology: the study of plant nutrition and growth related to soil
Agrology: The branch of soil science dealing with the production of crops
Agrostology: The study of grasses
Algology: The study of algae; the study of pain
Allergology: The study of the causes and treatment of allergies
Andrology: The study of male health
Anesthesiology: The study of anesthesia and anesthetics
Angiology: The study of the anatomy of blood and lymph vascular systems
Anthropology: The study of humans
Apiology: The study of bees
Arachnology: The study of spiders
Archaeology: The study of past cultures
Archaeozoology: The study of relationships between humans and animals over time
Areology: The study of Mars
Astacology: The study of crawfish
Astrobiology: The study of the origin of life
Astrogeology: The study of the geology of celestial bodies
Audiology: The study of hearing
Autecology: The study of the ecology of individual species