“It is the very error of the moon.
She comes more near the earth
than she was wont. And makes
—William Shakespeare, Othello
I appreciate the goodies science has brought us. My appreciation of science doesn’t go beyond that and that is why I never went to a science class in high school. It bores the hell out of me. Anyways just when I thought my nightmares were over, I was shocked when I found myself in one science class this semester, the course is compulsory. What on earth does Law have to do with Scientific methods? I agree that there might be common grounds even at that, I am not so interested.
However, I got the most shocking yet funny story of my life(maybe not my entire life), when my good-looking professor told us the relationship between full moon and lunatics, that is, why there are more mad people during the full moon. You find it funny right? And probably wondering how that is scientific. Well, since I know the reason and you don’t, you will have to read this piece to the end.
It is a saying that, ‘there are more mad men when the moon is full’, and you might have heard people ask if the full moon is out when you behave strangely. My lecturer gave a religious explanation of this. I will also attempt to give the scientific view on this(feeling like a scientist!).
According to my professor, when God sent Lucifer and his cohorts from heaven, they came to a place, which is where the moon(lunar) is said to be now. So as a result of this, anytime the full moon is out, you tend to see more mad people.
The term lunatic is derived from the Greek word lunar, meaning moon. The belief that full moon has certain effects on animals including humans is called lunar effect. According to Wikipedia:
” Two studies found evidence that those with
mental disorders generally exhibit periods of
increased violent or aggressive episodes during
the full moon, but a more recent study
found no such correlation. An analysis of
mental-health data found a significant effect of
moon phase, but only on schizophrenic patients.”
In an article written by Hal Arkowitz and Scott O in 2009:
” Greek philosopher Aristotle and Roman
historian Pliny the Elder suggested that the
brain was the “moistest” organ in the body and
thereby most susceptible to the pernicious
influences of the moon, which triggers the tides.
Belief in the “lunar lunacy effect,” or
“Transylvania effect,” as it is sometimes called,
persisted in Europe through the Middle Ages,
when humans were widely reputed to
transmogrify into werewolves or vampires
during a full moon.”
They went further to talk about the fact that hospitals and rehabilitation centers have more people behave weirdly when the full moon is out and law enforcement agencies are also aware of the possibilities of having more law breakers.
However, some scientists have rejected this theory claiming that the moon is so far to the earth, and because of this, there is no way its molecules can have effect on humans.
Any which way, I still find it funny. So next time, you see your friend misbehaving especially if it goes on for more than the usual ‘five minutes madness’ , then you might want to check if the full moon is out!!! Love you!!!
Oyekan Oluwaseun O