Friday, October 11, 2013

SCIENCE!!: Fractals, Pterodactyls and Texts Monumental (10/6/13)

Activity: Walk and Museum
Distance: 3 miles
Sights: Charles River, Kendall Square, SCIENCE!!
Pivo Index: 2

Urvi and I had planned a weekend together.  Sunday, we were going to go out to Harvard for bike riding and apple picking.

Then, it turned out it was raining.  So, instead we went to the Museum of Science where she could blind me with Science. SCIENCE!!

I don't know when I first learned of the Dead Sea Scrolls.  Perhaps they have always existed in my reality; perhaps it stems directly from reading Karen Armstrong's History of God fifteen or so years ago. Either way, I have owned a hard cover translation of them for nearly 15 years.  And, in that time I've probably read 10% of it.

Vases, figurines etc.  

This mysterious sect - the Essenes - lived in the area around Qumran at the edge of the Dead Sea.  And it appears that after the destruction of the Second Temple in the Jewish Revolt, the Essenes hid their texts in cliffs near the Sea.  They stayed hidden until the year before Israel was created a Jordanian-Palestinian shepherd boy found the first scrolls while looking for a goat... (I guess he was a goatherd.)

These texts have led researchers to connect the Essenes with the Zealots at Masada and the small movement of Galileans near Capernaum who followed a teacher from Nazareth.  What they probably show is a general theological and philosophical belief system upon which both the Zealots and Jesus also built their own teachings.

But I digress.  These 972 texts found throughout the area around Qumran have become a rich treasure trove of documentation on first century Middle East.  There were people there interested in the Ancient Near East (discussions of Linear B swirled around me while we waiting in line); there were people taking their kids to see biblical history; and, even a Rabbi showing young Hebrew students the changes in letters from the first century until today.

There were probably only 12 fragments on tour, but it was amazing to see not only the texts but also some of the archaeology to put it into context.

It's Electric!

Urvi - Normal Distribution



The Sun...

Afterwards we wandered through bits of the Museum en route to seeing Rocky Mountain Express at the IMAX, and Explore: The Universe at the Planetarium.

Thomas Dolby-She Blinded Me With Science by adiis

We finished off with a light dinner and beers at Meadhall.  I had the Westmalle Tripel, maybe the best Trappest Tripel I've had.

#deckaday update:

Tue 10/1 - 208 Push-ups/208 Sit-ups; 26:05
Wed 10/2 - 208 Pus-ups/208 4-count leg lifts; 26:49
Thu 10/3 - 208 Push-ups/208 ab wheel crunches; 28:24
Fri 10/4 - 208 Push-ups/208 Cross over crunches; 20:51
Sat 10/5 - 208 Push-ups/208 "Spiderman" planks; 26:21
Sun 10/6 - 208 Push-ups/208 4-count crunches; 25:15

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