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Saturday, September 20, 2008

Mother Earth

There is no accurate record of how Mother Earth came to be. Despite that fact
theories abound. From the simple creation theory of fundamental believers, to
complicated big bang and expanding matter theories offered by the scientific
community. None of us know for sure what spark started our planet's birth.

Even the history of the planet has been shrouded in misdirection and false
beliefs for thousands of years. The earliest attempts to accurately date our
home were thwarted by the established church's efforts to make history conform
to biblical dates. This went on until sometime in the 1800's when carbon
dating and other scientific advances made it impossible to ignore the
empirical evidence. Earth is some 4.6 billion years old.

In that very early beginning, there was no life. The atmosphere consisted of
gases like methane and ammonia. For the first 800 million years the surface of
our planet was molten. This period is called Hadean time. Meteorites and Lunar
debris are the only physical remnants of this very distant past. Carbon dating
puts the oldest of this impact material at 4.5 billion years old.

Archean time marks the solidifying of Earth. The continental plates form and
photosynthetic bacteria form. The oldest stones come from this period, 3.8
billion years ago. Fossils of bacteria found on Archean stones in South Africa
and Australia are the oldest evidence of Earth's birthing process.

The longest geological measurement of time is the Proterozoic period. It spans
Earth's formative years from 2.5 billion to a more recent 543 million years
ago. It was also the most violent time in the planet's geological history. The
continents that formed during the Archean era began to move. Molten magma
bubbling beneath the surface of these land masses was constantly seeking to
escape. For the next billion years or so, our Mother would endure some intense
growing pains.

To help you imagine how much things changed during this time period, North
America, which would end the Proterozoic era in its current position began the
era with the West coast of California laying in an East to West direction,
parallel to the Equator. Africa was at the South Pole.

Life on Mother Earth would go through dramatic changes during this period as
well. Oxygen began to build up in the atmosphere through the middle millennia.
While this caused the extinction of some life forms, for the first time multi
cell organisms began to appear and animals. Marking the beginning of Paleozoic
time.

Over the span of these two eras many of the gemstones and crystals we enjoy
today began their journey of birth as well.

Some gems are the remnants of the planet's primordial mountains. These
prehistoric mountain ranges no longer exist except as minor bumps and hills on
our modern landscape. Natural erosion wore down these ancient ranges while
colliding land masses created huge pressures and heat which would transform
the sediment created by the erosion. Hundreds of varieties of gemstones and
crystals were born during this process. So, the next time you enjoy your
favorite gemstone, remember that you may be holding the remnant of a once tall
and proud mountain peak. Perhaps this is why so many crystals grow into
points.

Some of the oldest mountains still visible on the planet are the Ozark
Mountains in South Central US and the Appalachians along the East coast of the
United States. Both of these mountain ranges began forming as the result of
colliding land masses between 650 and 400 million years ago. Africa ran into
the East coast of North American and South American was slamming into the
Southern area of the continent.

Remnants of even older mountains can be found around Mother Earth. Avarallis
is a primal mountain range that can still be seen as hills around Delhi India.
In their youth (1 billion years ago) the peaks of the Avarallis Mountains
would have dwarfed the Himalayan mountains that we recognize as Earth's
highest today.

The Himalayas are the youngest mountains on our planet. During the reign of
the mighty Avarallis peaks, India was not a part of the European/Asian
continent as it is today. According to geological theory, about 140 million
years ago the Indian continent (aka Gondwanaland) began moving across the now
extinct Tethyan ocean which separated it from Asia.

It took 60 million years for this land mass to complete its journey and
conjoin with the Eurasian continent. Primordial sediments from the floor of
the Tethyan Ocean, crumbled remnants of the Avarallis peaks and all matter of
stone and debris from the contact area were thrust together to form the infant
Himalayas (and untold treasures of gems and crystals).

Apparently Gondwanaland has not stopped moving (ultimately all of the Earth's
land masses are in constant motion). Over the last 1 million years the
Himalayan Mountains and the regions in its shadows have risen another 5,000
meters above sea level. Tibet is considered one of the highest regions on
Earth. Today geologists calculate this area is rising an average of 10 meters
every 100 years. In the last century Mt. Everest has grown 8.2 meters.

Our Mother Earth is in a permanent state of change. Volcanos are still
erupting, continents constantly moving causing earthquakes. This is not a good
place to come for peace and quiet.

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