Despite the technological and scientific progress, our world is still full of phenomena, stories and sites that raise questions and/or are difficult or impossible to explain rationally.
Human nature is attracted to mystery and strange and often creates long lasting myths that survive scientific explanations.
Let’s take look at the 5 greatest mysteries of our planet that have endured the test of time and scientific research and continue to engage millions of people.
Unidentified Flying Objects (UFOs) or the mystery of extraterrestrial life
The UFOs are not a mystery per se as the term refers to unidentified flying objects, not necessarily alien spacecraft. But, since the 2nd World War, UFOs are synonymous with spaceships of extraterrestrial civilizations visiting Earth.
Sightings from ordinary people, from aviators and astronauts, stories about alien abductions, conspiracy theories to conceal the truth, autopsies of extraterrestrial beings, compose a colorful puzzle in which is often difficult to discern the truth, the lie, deliberate deception, unintentional misinterpretation and possible conspiracy. This is the mythology of UFOs of the second half of the 20th century, the essence of which is concentrated in the big question: "are we alone in the universe?".
Read a historiographical analysis of the modern UFO phenomenon: UFOs: Where Fact Meets Conjecture
What were the foo fighters? World War II Foo Fighters
How reliable are the various reports of UFO sightings? The ability of eyewitnesses
How justified is skepticism towards the phenomenon of UFOs? The Truth About UFOlogy and Debunking
How informed, reasonable and scientific, are the relevant theories? Stupid UFOlogy Tricks
Are there realistic approaches to extraterrestrial life? The Search for Extraterrestrial Life
The Bermuda Triangle
The piece of the Atlantic Ocean that became known by this name is the focus of one of the great mysteries that gained public interest in the 20th century. The Bermuda Triangle is reportedly the site of a large number of disappearances of ships and aircraft, under mysterious circumstances, and usually without a trace. Strange natural phenomena and climatic conditions, unknown forces, UFOs, supernatural interventions, even the possible correlation with the lost Atlantis, compose a mosaic of theories that still fascinates and intrigues.
See here one of the most comprehensive and integrated approaches to the mystery of the Bermuda Triangle: The Bermuda Triangle
The story of Atlantis is the most famous but not the only story that refers to the memory of an ancient lost civilization. The mythologies of all civilizations are full of stories that a restless mind can attribute to unknown, advanced civilizations that might have existed before the prehistoric man.
Is the city described by Plato in Timaeus and Critias and the war with the Athenians a reality that contains historical memory elements, or a dialectic practice to develop ideas and views?
On the other hand, many researchers believe they have discovered clues that identify the location of Atlantis and other interesting elements of the legendary civilization: The Atlantis: history, not myth (article in Greek).
Besides Atlantis, various monuments and archaeological discoveries all around the world can create the feeling that there are significant gaps in mainstream archaeology and academically accepted history:
Supernatural and Parapsychology
Is there life after death, and if so, what form and substance does it take? Are there parallel worlds or realities that in some places or times cross paths with our own? Are ghosts and haunted houses the result of the intersection of these worlds?
Is there in the depths of our brain hidden code for sensory functions that we do not know how to use? Are there people who due to special circumstances became aware and capable of using these senses? Can these senses form bridges to the supernatural?
Even if the supernatural and the paranormal are not identical, they are linked by the common property that they exist outside the accepted and proven scientific laws and theories. Most skeptics argue that what 2000 years ago was considered supernatural, today is scientifically explained and that the progress of science will increase the understanding of the world we live in.
On the other hand, they constitute an attractive interpretation of unexplained phenomena, without this approach being necessarily simplistic, as it has become a research field for recognized academics: Physicists examine parapsychological phenomena (article in Greek).
The monster of Loch Ness
The Scottish Highlands are the ideal setting for stories with monsters and dragons. Myths about a monster hiding in lake Ness are several old, but Nessie didn’t gain its worldwide fame until the 20th century. Scam or some unknown member of the animal kingdom, probably a remnant of a bygone era?
But apart from the monster of Loch Ness there are many other cases of strange creatures in various regions of the world. Some of them live in the sphere of local myths and legends like Bigfoot in the forests of North America, the Snowman of the Himalayas and the Chupacabra in Central America. There are others whose existence is scientifically proven, although very rarely appear to human eyes, as the giant squid that lives in the depths of the oceans and reaches length of 10 to 13 meters.
The most famous picture of the monster of Loch Ness, was shot by Robert Wilson in 1934, and has been proven to be fake and produced using a child's play. The 1967 short film with Bigfoot is often questioned, although it has not been proven beyond doubt that it was faked.
While there is no doubt that we have not yet identified all of the animal kingdom species, these cases are not just a new insect, or a deep ocean species, but are either missing links in the theory of evolution (Bigfoot), or remnants of a distant era in which the earth was dominated by the huge reptiles (Loch Ness).
Unless they are simply examples of inventive entrepreneurship that exploits the attraction and interest produced by mystery and strange.