If you have been watching science news over the past week, you may have seen a story about the supposed unidentified flying object at the bottom of the Baltic Sea off the coast of Sweden and how explorers have been trying to determine what exactly it is. The object estimated to be about two hundred feet around was first spotted in 2011 as treasure hunter Peter Lindberg's crew was dragging sonar above the ocean floor while mapping it. He came across this large round circular object on the bottom of the ocean about 300 feet deep off the Swedish coast.

Lindberg speculated the object could be part of some type of underwater "Stonehenge" while others guessed that it could be a crashed UFO or flying saucer. One story on the website RedOrbit.com describes the object as having an egg shaped opening on the top of it with circular formations resembling fire rings around the hole. It also appears to have lines and boxes drawn on it. The object appears to be at the end of a runway or "downhill" path that leads from the anomaly lending some speculative proof that it could be a UFO.

Critics point out though that for a UFO one would expect a metallic object rather than the stone item observed in the ocean. Some scientists discount its possible unusual origins by claiming that it is a natural formation and that round objects like this one are seen in oceans all over the world. They believe the orifice is a vent that might have allowed steam to escape from beneath the ocean floor. The lines could be natural erosion marks as well. Others claim that the formation could have been created accidentally from the actions of fishing trawlers.

One theorist even thinks that the object could be the dome atop a pillar still intact and buried at the bottom of the sea, possibly a remnant of Atlantis. Fuelling the idea of supporters that the stone is unusual are several other large stones nearby around the runway. To them the rock formations seem out of place. It is intriguing to think about this large stone as the gateway to the fabled lost city, but at this point it is just fantasy. While the stone may just be a stone, one issue that does not seem to be addressed yet is why there is no silt on this particular rock. Silt covers the entire ocean floor but for some reason does not exist on the rock. I have not read an explanation for this yet.

Popular Mechanics sided more with the critical science community when they studied the phenomenon back in February. Their review of the evidence led them to speculate the resulting sonar images were due to poor use of the equipment, lack of knowledge for interpretation and bad data. All of their criticisms are possible explanations for the images and sometimes the simplest is the best bringing us to the use of an Occam's Razor style analysis.

Usually Occam's Razor is an appropriate methodology to use to determine what a mystery like this might be. The principle behind Occam's Razor is the "simplest explanation is most likely the correct one." The romantic idea of lost civilizations and ancient alien aircraft may be fun to dream of as a passing fancy, but realistically this "spaceship" is most likely a natural rock formation created over time by natural processes. One alternate plausible explanation is also that it is the remnant from an ancient harbor that slipped into the sea. Old harbors supposedly contained large stones like this one. Hopefully one day someone will be able to solve the mystery completely but until then one can always dream.

One thing I did not dream about was an investigation I had recently in which an Ovilus played an important role. The Ovilus is a ghost hunter's tool used to communicate with random words programmed to respond when the device is in the presence of the EMF waves that we believe are markers in the environment for spiritual energy. The box typically speaks a limited word set of about 500 English words. To use it, one simply turns it on and begins talking with a possible spirit and the box will respond with words. It lasts about fifteen minutes until the batteries need to be replaced.

I was with three laypeople and two other investigators last Saturday. The box was with us and I voiced my skepticism of it like I have done on previous occasions. We turned it on and used it anyway. For a few minutes, the box did nothing. Then it said, "Teacher". One of the gentlemen in our group said, "Yes…that's me." and the box began saying "teacher" again. The man asked, "What do I teach" and the box said, "Words". The man confirmed that it was an apt description.

What happened next though has no explanation or rationale. As the man and the box "talked", the box began speaking and answering his questions. So far I could explain it away as the luck of randomness, but the box was not done yet. To our surprise and astonishment, this Ovilus programmed ONLY to speak English words began speaking in German to the man using several foreign words before switching to Latin and then Hebrew. As if speaking in languages was not crazy enough, the box then recited the names of several ancient gods as well as our God in Latin no less. An English speaking box talked in four different languages in that time period none of which are currently programmed in its hardware.

It just shows us that when we think we know this world around us, it is already ready to throw us a curve ball. What do you think?

Til next time…