A halo around the sun startled people in Ethiopia during Sunday's local elections, with many seeing it as a miracle or a sign from God.But why is God revealing himself here through a Sun halo, when we have a decent scientific explanation for it? Come on, there should be a bit more supernatural element in a divine sign...
Churchgoers who had flocked to see the visiting Patriarch of Alexandria, Pope Shenouda, acclaimed the phenomenon as a miracle, or at least a sign of a blessing from God. Pope Shenouda himself believed it was a signal from above.
"We accept any sign from God to encourage us in our way," he said, "and confirm that we are going right in our way."
Abuna Paulos, the Patriarch of Ethiopia, added his voice to those who believe in signs from God.
"If God reveals himself from the sky," he told a press conference, "we believers do not get surprised. We only rejoice and double our efforts to thank God. Thank you, God, for revealing a sign."
In case you are wondering about the nature of secular interpretations:
But others looked for more secular implications.So...what is the implication here? Whenever ice crystals refract sunlight in the atmosphere few miles above Ethiopia, a military dictatorship falls. Except this time, because the government is simply too strong and can counter this crystal magic from the sky.
Older people in Addis Ababa remember seeing the ring around the sun once before - in the last days of the Derg, the despised military dictatorship, just before its leader Mengistu Haile Mariam fled to Zimbabwe.
But there is little prospect of the government falling in these elections.
Read the full story here. (from the BBC)