(IFITEDUNU, DUNUKOFIA, ANAMBRA STATE, NIGERIA AND MISSISIPI, USA)
This is the title of one of Charles Dickens novels, though many only associate Charles Dickens with his popular novel, Oliver Twist. My interest in Dickens’ other book was because of an acquaintance who memorized the whole of the abridged version. He could practically read the whole book by heart. He was so popular for this that in those days, we nick-named him ‘a-tale-of-two-cities’. And he went on to tell other tales that made everyone want to hang around him. I never knew his real name.
Severally in those days, he told us of rainmakers in his town, Udi, Enugu state, Nigeria and their masquerades who could ascend palm trees as well as stand on the tip of a palm frond (which cannot support the weight of a man). He also told tales of several ‘jazzing sessions’ similar to the Yoruba martial art known as ‘Aki’ where native doctors and ‘jazz men’ try to outdo one another by pushing themselves down from a distance. We enjoyed these tales, believing he was just trying to entertain us as he did with his renditions of ‘a tale of two cities’.
So some days ago, I got a web link demonstration of a high-tech approach to rainmaking. Curiously, a few days later, I got another web link demonstration of a ‘low-tech’ approach. Since my friends know that I am interested in weather modification technologies, I am usually updated of these events and I am always grateful for it. Some years ago, a friend gave me the book ‘Angels don’t play this HAARP’ by Nick Begich and Jeane Manning, in which the controversial High-Frequency Active Aurora Research Project in Alaska was discussed in detail.
Getting back to the primary tale of this article, the contrast of these two cities is so much that it is difficult to imagine what could link them in a tale. Firstly, the names NASA and Jeremy Clarkson rings several bells with a lot of scientists and gear heads. Jeremy has for years been the anchor to the BBC television series, Top Gear, while anyone who has heard of the moon knows about NASA.
In contrast, Umunnanwaezuaku-1 and Nduka Orjinmo cannot ring a bell but flashes primitivism considering the huts, palm trees, kola nuts and earthen road in the video clip. Yet, these two cities are linked by the art of rainmaking.
But, the more exciting thing was the perspective many of my friends had on this issue. For them it was a simple demonstration of the power of technology over voodoo, or another example of backwardness and lack of a scientific mindset by charlatans who hoodwink
ignorant natives. The scientific demonstration of determinism and the brute force approach used to subdue nature is pitched against a probabilistic, pseudo-random approach in which even the best mind would dismiss because it is difficult to relate kola nuts, strips of red and yellow cloth, candles and gong, in any imaginable way, to rainmaking.
Scientifically, the major breakthrough in the Mississippi demonstration was Joseph Priestley (or was it Carl Wilhelm Scheele) discovery of oxygen and Henry Cavendish discovery of hydrogen. Technologically, the NASA breakthrough (note the NASA logo on the test rig) was controlling the process of combining oxygen and hydrogen so that you don’t end up with a hydrogen bomb while trying to make rain. The hellish temperature in the device will of course require some high-tech materials we can only imagine the composition while the pressurized oxygen and hydrogen units hidden within the contraption may well be the stuff of science fiction.
As amazing as the process is, Jeremy assures us that it is just like spraying large quantities of small droplets of water into the atmosphere. Of course it is expected that in a few hours, whatever went up must come down as rain. Even without knowing the full story, the conspiratorially minded will easily conclude that this is the side effect of a test rig used to evaluate a high-tech propulsion system using hydrogen as propellant because NASA is more interested in space-bound vehicles than watering crops, or cooling ‘Missisipians’. (I confirmed this when I researched the video with a twitter account annotation and found it was a hacked top gear video)
The technique of the rain pusher, judging by the video, is buried somewhere in the kola nut, gin, candles, strips of colored clothing and little smoke in the vicinity. Also the ‘wise owl’ may be distracting everyone with his gong while he had already setup the process in the smoke, if his method involves the burning of leaves and other ingredients. On the other hand, he may be trying to raise his ‘vibration’ to match that of ‘rain’ if there is a psychic component to his rain pushing. The result, one can say, is probabilistic as there is now the possibility of imagining that the rain would have fallen naturally.
As divergent as these two approaches may appear, they have the following similarities:
Fire and Smoke of some sort
Noise – one deafening, the other subtle
A one or two-hour delay between action and reaction
This is on the assumption that the rain pusher is seeding the cloud. There are techniques that do not involve the physical seeding of clouds which are used by rainmakers. Some are known to also ‘arrange’ thunder and lightning.
Recently, I was sent another tale from someone who attended a traditional marriage ceremony in Leija, Nigeria. A duel ensured between two rainmakers and the shaman resident at the wedding is said to have deflected the lightning ‘sent’ to disrupt the occasion to a nearby palm tree. Weird as these may sound, these tales usually have some validity.
It is nice to remember that the Ifitedunu demonstration was setup specifically because of claims and invitation by the rain pusher. So a skeptic can relish the thought that the rain pusher is a first-class weather forecaster- which, by the way, is not a ‘chin-chin’ affair. One must also ignore the meteorologist trailer in the video which stated that no one can control the weather because this statement is out of touch with current scientific and unscientific reality.
One thing I love about ‘Top Gear’ is the manner in which Jeremy dismisses years of engineering effort. In one of my favorite endings of ‘Top Gear’, Jeremy suddenly parked a spanking new BMW X6 uphill, stepped out of it … and walked away. It is almost impossible to outdo him in this art so one can only follow the circuitous means of giving a verdict on these two cities.
One undisputable fact is that the NASA method is guaranteed to work all the time as the energy input and output is huge. Though it is not very clear how both will fare if forced to make rain in the desert, away from the Mississippi river or its tributaries.
In terms of efficiency, that is when the energy input and output is taken into consideration, it is not very clear whether the NASA method is superior.
In terms of science, one may be dealing with a quantum process in the rain pusher case if he is not using burnt leaves while the Jeremy’s classical model is very clear as water is bound to come down if you push up water vapor. People tend to fear and at times under-rate what they don’t understand. Without a drop of rain falling, the rain pusher’s demonstration is scientifically more significant if he managed to drop the ambient temperature by a few degrees or move the cloud to reduce sun glare with a success rate greater than chance.
Having researched weather modification technologies for a while now, I have come across things that made me shift focus to these villagers. Make no mistakes about this, the rain pusher knows a lot more that you can imagine. And this includes other things that have nothing to do with rain pushing. Secrets of plant, accurate historical issues as well as revolutionary techniques and ideas related to him by his father and elders of his village. I don’t know the rain pusher, I never met him but I know he is not bluffing because I have met a lot of shamans and can recognize the universal demeanor of ‘men of power and knowledge’. That look cuts across continents and gender, and is hard to fake. It can also be observed in the ‘Brain Surgery in Africa’ video.
Finally, On the Mississippi demonstration, I am reminded of a quote (I think, by one Benard Rudolfsky) I read decades ago from ‘The Architectural Digest’ magazine:
What seems like ingenuity to the layman is a mere multiplication of unimaginative solutions.
On the Ifitedunu demonstration, Arthur C. Clarke’s quote is most apt:
Any sufficiently advanced technology should be indistinguishable from magic.
PYTHON AND THE RAINMAKER – An Investigation of the highly improbable…coming soon.
See below for download link of a Tale of Two Cities pdf