could this yearly phenomena of nature be influencing you in ways you are not conscious of?
how does perihelion affect you?
The day that the earth and sun are at their closest point is called Perihelion, greek for ‘close to the sun.’
You maybe haven’t heard that word before or if you have you don’t know when it happens. Pretty much everybody knows when the solstices and equinoxes occur. Yet when the earth is closest to the sun remains elusive to most people. It is not mentioned in the media. Not even a casual factoid on the nightly weather report. There is no holiday that commemorates that day.
It is a basic fact, but not common knowledge.
Earth’s distance from the sun is constantly changing. speeding up and slowing down. A predictable asymetrical pattern throughout the year.
This significant yearly event is never even casually mentioned in the weather reports. This obviously important event receives only two sentences in basic high school science textbooks.
In fact, most otherwise well educated people I ask don’t have the correct answer either. When is the perihelion?
When the earth is near the sun is uncontroversial.
It is fact.
While practically everybody knows when the solstices and equinoxes occur, hardly anyone can tell you the date of perihelion.
While dates such as Christmas, Valentine’s Day and Halloween seem significant, such a basic fact of life as the fluctuating distance of the sun remains completely unknown to most people.
January 4th is Perihelion time… roughly.
Many people are surprised to know that the day the earth is closest to the sun is in fact around January 4th. (I say around because it does wobble a bit between January 3rd-6th because the earth’s orbit around the sun is affected by other factors such as the orbits of the other planets.) For the sake of argument let’s just assume that January 4th is Perihelion Day.
Does seem contradictory at first. Afterall January 4th is a cold dark winter day. Very close in fact to the shortest, and darkest day of the year. And it seems like it should be warm not colder if the distance is closer.
Well that would only be true if you live in the northern hemisphere. Anybody south of the equator is celebrating New Years in the middle of summer.
Northern vs Southern hemisphere
If you live in the Southern Hemisphere, a city like or Buenos Aires or Cape Town, or Sydney it may not seem so counterintuitive that January could be the closest approach of earth and sun. In fact January in those latitudes can be very hot. This Northern Hemispheric bias is inherent in the misperception of the perihelion effect. That civilization developed mostly north of the tropics has also influenced that perspective. It has caused confusion for hundreds of years that it overlooked the obvious. Winter solstice in the northern hemisphere is summer solstice below the equator.
The Speed Earth Is Moving On January 4th Is Much Faster Than On July 4th When The Earth Is At Its Farthest Point Away From The Sun.
Not only is the distance changing. From Kepler’s Laws we know the velocity of the planet is much faster.
Perihelion Is Not Winter Solstice
Distance of the earth from the sun has nothing whatsoever to do with earth’s Axial tilt. But the angle of the tilt and orbit do wobble which causes ice ages.
The length of days is due to the earth’s 23 degree tilt on its rotational axis.
This has nothing whatsoever to do with the relative position of the sun and earth. In fact the four seasons, have nothing to do with the proximity either.
Johannes Kepler (December 27 1571) born to a poor mercenary in Württemberg, Germany, who tracked the orbital path of Mars and published his three famous laws of planetary motion — which validated Copernicus’s theory of a sun-centered solar system — and later helped Isaac Newton discover the law of gravity.
Kepler was nearly blind from a smallpox epidemic when he was three, and he developed the first eyeglass designs for nearsightedness and farsightedness.
Kepler was a pioneer and was first
- to explain that the tides are caused by the moon,
- to propose that the sun rotates on an axis,
- and to use planetary cycles to calculate the year of the birth of Jesus Christ.
The eccentricity of the Earth’s orbit is much less pronounced than this example. It is currently about 0.0167; nearly circular. However this offset is enough to produce noticeable effects. In the past epochs, the earth’s orbit was far more eccentric.
circle vs earth orbit eccentric elipse. Small but obvious difference.
The difference between the closest and farthest point is over 3,000,000 miles!
That is over ten times the distance from the earth to the moon. The moon is 238,000 miles away. (on average)
the distance from earth to sun varies more than 10 times the distance to the moon’s 240,000 miles!
That is a big difference in distance and huge difference in velocity as well
speed at perihelion is 30,300 m/s and at aphelion it’s 29,300 m/s.
The planet is traveling through space at approximately 1000 meters per second faster at perihelion than at the farthest point. That would be 3,600 mph faster than about 67,000 mph on average.
Which is about 4 times faster than the International Space Station orbits the earth. At this speed, you could get from Los Angeles to New York in 3 minutes.
How does perihelion/Aphelion affect you?
If you ask most scientists they would say there is no effect. More rightly there is no known effect because this type of paradigm has not been examined. It is possible, even likely that there is, but a cross disciplinary approach has not been undertaken on a worldwide scale.
how the perihelion effects you is highly speculative and requires further enquiry.
Next Perihelion will be
the pulse | the slingshot | Holiday Highs and Lows....
Wide ranging implications of a perihelion effect remain unexplored
Science and facts Vs Pseudo-Science And Fake News.
It seems undeniable that there must be some effect from this variable distance and change of orbital velocity.
If this is a universal phenomena than it should have global effects. Many different thought experiments and anecdotal ideas could be the basis for farther research. This is also true of the academic and personal layers of experience.
For example. this so-called perihelion effect might be reflected in the structure of the holidays and patterns of behavior during the December holiday cycle.
consider your own experience.
- Have you noticed a sudden rise of energy that pivots and falls in December and the later part of year?
- Do you notice the heightened emotions of others around you?
- How often have your heard someone comment ‘I hate the holidays’?
- What about post-new year malaise, weight gain and depression? Could this be somehow related to some perihelion effect?
- Are human perceptions and emotions affected by an increase of solar energy?
We do not know because it has not been thoroughly investigated.