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Tragedy, Awe, and Acts of God

The violent storms that have just hit North Texas have left tragedy in their wake; lives have been lost and dreams shattered.  The details are very sad, yet it's possible from a distance to experience a sense of awe and wonder at how the Universe works in the midst of such tragic events.

In the work with the MoodCompass Project we see that on a societal level, that tragic events or disasters may not be random.  There is a theme or pattern that occurs in social mood that often happens just before a natural disaster such as this.  We call this particular pattern "Nature vs. Civilization."  This is what we said on our webpage on May 14:

"The types of natural events most associated with the current pattern would reflect the theme of Nature vs. Civilization, i.e. they are likely to "target" populated areas and /or cause disruption to power, communications or transportation. The risk for damage from natural events is low as of May 14, but may suddenly spike higher during this period [May 14-19]."

On the morning of May 15, using only social mood data from Google Hot Trends and top U.S. news stories, our Natural Event indicator spiked to "serious damage possible today in the U.S."  The tornadoes hit that evening.  According to CNN, most of the fatalities occurred when the storm struck a Habitat for Humanity neighborhood.  Most of the 120 homes were destroyed.

When this type of mood pattern occurs, it often looks like Nature is "aiming" for cities or for necessary aspects of civilization such as transportation, communications or food production.  To see this pattern and then read the quote below from the CNN article may make one pause and wonder about the nature of Nature:

"The National Weather Service warned that a mile-wide tornado reported by spotters had shifted its track and was moving 'right at the city of Cleburne,' a community of about 15,000 people in North Texas."

What would it mean if there was some type of relationship between things we don't normally consider related or connected?  What if on large scales, events that have been considered random have an order, purpose or pattern to them?

The individual losses are tragic.  Yet, when one steps back and looks at these things from a larger perspective, one can be filled with awe and wonder.  Days before this tragic tornado outbreak occurred that was "aimed" right at the city of Cleburne or right at the heart of a subdivision, the collective mood of U.S. society foretold the possibility of a "Nature vs. Civilization" event.

For more information on the current outlook or the MoodCompass Project, see http://moodcompass.com.

You can also like The MoodCompass Project on undefined.

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