The First Moon Landing & Pogle's Wood (1969) by Ray Darcy
I was just six years old when the first man set foot on the Moon. I remember my mother pointing at the grainy image on the old black and white TV set, telling me `It's the Moon! Look - the spacemen are on the Moon!'
And the crackling static and an American voice, speaking every now and then. I'm sure that what they were saying would have been very informative.
Of course I was six years old and wasn't half as impressed as I would have been, if it had been `Pogles Wood' instead of this magnificent, historical event.
It wasn't until later that I became fascinated by space travel, sci-fi, space models, Dan Dare, Thunderbirds, Dr Who and PG Tips `cigarette cards' - `Race Into Space' (Google image search; lots of wonderful pictures of these cards here. Ah, nostalgia..
Over forty years on, I have travelled back in time using Youtube as my portal into the past, and have marvelled at the footage I'd only previously viewed through the old and bulbous, black and white cathode ray tube.
It's still black and white and perfect for reliving that moment.
I found a very good Youtube video on `Pogle's Wood', too, whilst on my travels.
Ah, a wonderful world created by Oliver Postgate. I don't know how many remember it, but Pogle's Wood was ever so slightly spooky and very other-wordly. The music is completely enchanting, too.
The Importance Of Being Earnestly Sceptical
By Denham Crow
Before I begin my little talk on why I believe that any one who is interested in elements of the paranormal should also be a sceptic, I want to clear up a few misconceptions which some people have with the word `sceptic'.
Definition of sceptic according to Oxford English Dictionary:-
Some people think that a sceptic automatically dismisses anything outside the realms of known science. Whilst there may be sceptics who do work in this fashion, a good sceptic does not dismiss an idea or suggestion without further thought or investigation.
Here at LightOfSirus, we believe that it is very important to investigate all claims of phenomena, as thoroughly as possible. Simply put, we believe that energy is wasted on believing in something which may not be real.
Although there are some things which cannot be proven or disproved such as the existence of God. We'll leave that subject for now, suffice it to say that many scientists are seriously considering the theory of Intelligent Design.
So how do you work out what is fact and what is fiction - at least in the media?
You cannot blame a nation for its naivety during a time when the radio or newspapers were the only source of information available. If such a thing happened today, we would waste no time in turning on the TV or radio, logging into Facebook, Twitter, Google, etc. and would soon, with a little common sense, be able to work out whether it was real or not.
But even then, it's not easy..
The Camera Never Lies
Oh but it does! Just the other year, using Photoshop, I created a photo of my brother holding a world record fish. I had superimposed his head to replace the original fisherman's head. My brother had the picture on the wall of his office and it fooled most people.
Similarly, I created this photo of a ghost in five minutes using an app for my phone:-
And yet still, I see newspaper reports on ghosts and suchlike, where if the journalist had researched the claims in more detail, online, someone will have given the game away somewhere, and they would have seen that the photo had been created with an app or in graphic manipulation programs such as Photoshop.
We are in search of the real but we are hindered by the proliferation of fakes, which only serves to muddy the waters. On the other hand, we cannot hate the fakes. After all, they often bring us relief from worrying current affairs.
The Cottingley Fairies
So, my final words on scepticism:-
It has become a bit of a cliche now but I can't resist it...
Keep an open mind but don't leave it so open that your brain falls out. :-)
Or more original, as I may have made it up (or heard it somewhere)...
Think outside the box - but don't lock yourself out of the box.
And just at that moment, I noticed that the rain had stopped and a rainbow stretched across the grey angry sky. It should have had the words written within the colours:-No Teletubbies.. well, you can't have everything!
`See - it's not all bad'.
Or `It probably won't happen - honest!'
Or `In every lifetime a little rain must fall'
Other weather related cliches are available.
I'll blog again one day soon when it's raining.
Peace & Light
(These views are mine and not necessarily shared by all at LOS).