Love it, Erich von Däniken’s “[amazon ASIN=0285629115]Chariots of the Gods[/amazon]” has been dragged up again, this time by Fortean Times who have a festive post about the strange light seen and followed by the Three Wise Men!
Däniken was and I guess still is a bit of a hero for me, as he filled my head with wonderful ideas and questions when I was a kid.
Whether his stories are true or not doesn’t really matter, especially if they make us ask questions and go out and explore the world and see some of the wonders for ourselves.
Maybe the Star of Bethlehem Wasn’t a star at all – Neil Young
According to St Matthew’s account in the Bible, sometime after Jesus was born, ‘wise men’ came from the east looking for the baby, bringing with them gifts of gold, frankinsense and myrhh. Their only navigational aid was a star, which eventually “came and stood over where the young child was”.
The wise men, it is generally believed, were Persian astrologers known as Magi. So is it possible that the star was not a conspicuous object in the night sky at all – Matthew doesn’t say it was particularly big or bright – but an astrological deduction?
Few people find that a satisfying explanation. Almost since the beginning of Christianity, scholars have been looking for an astronomical explanation. The third-century theologian Origen speculated that the star might have been a comet. It is a theory with which one modern astronomer agrees
Read the whole story: “Star of Wonder” at Fortean Times.