Sunday, November 1, 2009

The Mystery of the Full Moon

The abilities of a full moon go back as far as the Bronze Age where people believed that on a full moon that a werewolf would emerge for an average human being. This became known in 1594 as lycanthropy, lykos meaning wolf and anthrospos meaning human.
What abilities does the moon possess? The moon controls the times in the oceans. The high tides are created because the oceans are closest to the moon during those times and the gravitational pull is at its strongest then. During the low tides it is farthest from the moon thus less grativational pull.
Are more babies delivered during a full moon than any other time? No according to hospital statistics there are no more babies born during a full moon than during any other lunar cycle.
Are there more crimes committed during a full moon? The legend of the effect has been seen for centuries. The words “lunacy” and “lunatic” are derived from the same Latin root that gives us the word “lunar,” as people often attributed intermittent insanity to the phases of the moon.
Back in 19th century England persons creating a crime during a full moon could literally be guilty by reason of the full moon" defense for their cases - pointing out that their clients could not be held responsible for acting under the control of the moon. Psychologist Arnold Lieber and his colleagues decided to test the old belief of full-moon “lunacy” which most scientists had written off as an old wives’ tale. The researchers collected data on homicide in Dade County (Miami) over a period of 15 years — 1,887 murders, to be exact. When they matched the incidence of homicide with the phases of the moon, they found, much to their surprise, that the two rose and fell together, almost infallibly, for the entire 15 years! As the full or the new moon approached, the murder rate rose sharply; it distinctly declined during the first and last quarters of the moon.
To find out whether this was just a statistical fluke, the researchers repeated the experiment using murder data from Cuyahoga County in Ohio (Cleveland). Again, the statistics showed that more murders do indeed occur at the full and new moons.
Dr. Lieber and his colleagues shouldn’t have been so surprised. An earlier report by the American Institute of Medical Climatology to the Philadelphia Police Department entitled “The Effect of the Full Moon on Human Behavior” found similar results. That report showed that the full moon marks a monthly peak in various kinds of psychotically oriented crimes such as murder, arson, dangerous driving, and kleptomania. People do seem to get a little bit crazier about that time of the month.
The same effect is also apparent in hospital emergency rooms. There have been numerous studies and keeping of statistics at hospitals to the numbers of people that come in during the full moon are generally 2 to 1 as opposed to any other time.
Hormonal reactions to increased positive ions in the air (Full Moon Effect) cause hyperactivity, depression, violent behavior, road rage, higher occurrences of migraines and asthma. Even bees are known to sting without provocation on higher positive ion ratios. Positive ions and negative ions are said to be the cause of a lot of the results we attribute to the Full Moon because the high positive ions are strongest during a full moon.
Animals attack each other and humans more also during the cycle of the full moon. As you often have noticed I am sure there are more animal deaths, particularly on the highways during a full moon. A study on London in 2007 showed that there were more emergency room visits for people bitten by dogs, cats and even horses during a full moon. No one really at this point has a clue why...it just happens.
So the next you are out on a full moon take the time to check out some of the information I given you here.
There is still much research to be done on the lunar cycles but for now...

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