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Pagan News Beagle: Earthy Thursday, February 11

A new discovery shows Babylonian astronomers were more advanced than we'd guessed. Wild orangutans engage in shocking violence. And the scientific community combats sexism within its ranks. It's Earthy Thursday, our weekly segment on science and Earth-related news! All this and more for the Pagan News Beagle!

In this post for her personal blog, our friend and collaborator Alison Leigh Lilly offers her thoughts on the Malheur Wildlife Refuge occupation that ended today as well as what we as humans can learn from nature about justice.

Mesopotamia's contributions to the mathematics and astronomical science have long been recognized. But now a new discovery indicates that inhabitants of ancient Iraq may have had an even greater aptitude for science than we thought. Read more about the fascinating find at Discover Magazine's website.

Do you know what the solar system looks like? Space can sometimes be difficult to visualize, but NASA gives it a try in these maps hosted by Scientific American.

There's long been a debate over how peaceable or violent our closest relatives in the primate family are. Generally, it's agreed that it varies from species to species. But while chimpanzees are widely understood as one of humanity's more violent relatives, few expected the female-on-female violence among orangutans researchers recently found in Indonesia.

Science is a vital tool for understanding the world around us. But scientists aren't always perfect examples of humanity. Few know that better than other scientists. Astronomer Phil Plait outlines the problem of sexism in the scientific community and how to combat it.


 Top image by Antonio Ciccolella

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Aryós Héngwis (or the more modest Héngwis for short) is a native of the Pontic-Caspian steppe, born some 5000 years ago, near the village of Dereivka. In his youth he stood out from the other snakes for his love of learning and culture, eventually coming into the service of the local reǵs before moving westward toward Europe. Most recently, Aryós Héngwis left his home to pursue a new life in America, where he has come under the employ of BBI Media as an internet watchdog (or watchsnake, if you will), ever poised to strike the unwary troll.

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