Of Asteroids and Exomoons

By Maryjo

The search for scientific knowledge continues…and some of it is turning out to validate Urantia Book teachings. Little by little, science is catching up to what Urantia Book students have known for a long time. Today we want to share two such findings.

These two articles: Found! Weird Asteroid in Jupiter’s Orbit Is 1st Interstellar Immigrant by Mike Wall – and – The Moons of Some Giant Alien Planets Could Host Life by Chelsea Gohd, both from Space.com report the results of research recently finished. We’ll blog about these below, but first, here are the pertinent findings from the articles:

About the “weird asteroid” and its relation to retrograde motion:

2015 BZ509 was discovered in November 2014, also by Pan-STARRS (which is short for “Panoramic Survey Telescope and Rapid Response System,” in case you were wondering). The space rock is an oddball: Its orbit is “retrograde,” meaning 2015 BZ509 moves around the sun in the opposite direction of Jupiter, Earth and most other bodies in the solar system.

And about life on exomoons:

No exomoons have yet been confirmed. But if any of those huge exoplanets have natural satellites — which seems likely, given how common moons are in our own solar system — they could be especially promising abodes for life, study team members said. For example, potential lifeforms on their surfaces could tap energy coming directly from their star, and light reflected off their parent planet as well.

Click to read: Found! Weird Asteroid in Jupiter’s Orbit Is 1st Interstellar Immigrant by Mike Wall

Click to read: The Moons of Some Giant Alien Planets Could Host Life by Chelsea Gohd


These two recent scientific articles will be extremely satisfying to Urantia Book students. Over the decades since The Urantia Book has been given to us, many discoveries by modern science have corroborated its cosmology and its astronomical revelations. It’s always a thrill to see science catch up! And the search continues.

A retrograde asteroid

Retrograde movement of space bodies has always mystified astronomers; the teachings of The Urantia Book explains the phenomenon, but now, we have scientific progress in that area, too. Regarding the movements of the known planets in our solar system, retrograde motion has been assumed to be something of an optical illusion, seen relative to the motion of the surrounding planets, but in this article, an asteroid was discovered in Jupiter’s orbit traveling in the opposite direction – truly retrograde, and not an illusion.

From the article:

“How the asteroid came to move in this way while sharing Jupiter’s orbit has until now been a mystery,” astronomer Fathi Namouni of the Côte d’Azur Observatory in France, who led the new study, said in a statement. “If 2015 BZ509 were a native of our system, it should have had the same original direction as all of the other planets and asteroids, inherited from the cloud of gas and dust that formed them.”

Namouni and study co-author Helena Morais, who’s based at São Paulo State University in Brazil, performed computer simulations that traced 2015 BZ509’s movements backward through time.  “We showed that 2015 BZ509 has been a retrograde co-orbital of Jupiter over the age of the solar system, i.e., since 4.5 billion years ago,” Morais told Space.com via email. “The solar system could not produce retrograde orbits so far back in time, so the only option left is that of capture from another system.”

This discovery and its resultant assumption by the scientists agrees with what the book says about retrograde motion:

57:5.14 All of the solar system material derived from the sun was originally endowed with a homogeneous direction of orbital swing, and had it not been for the intrusion of these three foreign space bodies, all solar system material would still maintain the same direction of orbital movement. As it was, the impact of the three Angona tributaries injected new and foreign directional forces into the emerging solar system with the resultant appearance of retrograde motion. Retrograde motion in any astronomic system is always accidental and always appears as a result of the collisional impact of foreign space bodies. Such collisions may not always produce retrograde motion, but no retrograde ever appears except in a system containing masses which have diverse origins.

Please see this section of see Paper 57: Origin of Monmatia—The Urantia Solar System for more about planetary movements and origins.


Life on other worlds?

Discovering life on another planet is a idea that has fascinated mankind for centuries. Urantia Book students know that there are trillions of inhabitable planets – 10 million in Nebadon alone! So, finding one may not be out of the realm of possibility in the future. But where to look? Many planets have been found in solar systems in the “Goldilock zones,” but to date, none of them give any evidence of being suited for life.

But now, the search has been expanded to include planetary moons – or “exomoons.”

The reasoning is given here, for the article above on the moons of giant alien planets:

“Researchers have identified more than 100 giant exoplanets that may have potentially life-hosting moons.  The new analysis could change the way scientists search for life in the cosmos, study team members said. That search has generally focused on places more or less like Earth — rocky planets in the “habitable zone” of their host star, that just-right range of distances where liquid water could exist on a world’s surface. Jupiter-like planets don’t seem like good candidates in this regard, because they have no discernible surface. But the rocky moons of such gas giants may be a different story, study team members said.  The research team pored through the databases of NASA’s Kepler space telescope, which has discovered about 70 percent of the 3,700 known exoplanets to date. They flagged 121 gas giants that appear to orbit in the habitable zone.

“No exomoons have yet been confirmed. But if any of those huge exoplanets have natural satellites — which seems likely, given how common moons are in our own solar system — they could be especially promising abodes for life, study team members said. For example, potential lifeforms on their surfaces could tap energy coming directly from their star, and light reflected off their parent planet as well.”

These findings agree with what the Urantia Book revealed decades ago:

49:0.4 Not all planets are suited to harbor mortal life. Small ones having a high rate of axial revolution are wholly unsuited for life habitats. In several of the physical systems of Satania the planets revolving around the central sun are too large for habitation, their great mass occasioning oppressive gravity. Many of these enormous spheres have satellites, sometimes a half dozen or more, and these moons are often in size very near that of Urantia, so that they are almost ideal for habitation.

49:0.5 The oldest inhabited world of Satania, world number one, is Anova, one of the forty-four satellites revolving around an enormous dark planet but exposed to the differential light of three neighboring suns. Anova is in an advanced stage of progressive civilization.

As you can see, the Urantia Book addresses the source of light for such a moon as well – agreeing with the findings in the article.


Knowledge accessible to all

One great thing about The Urantia Book is that its science and cosmology is presented in such a way that even the layman/woman can appreciate it. The magnificence of God’s creation is laid out in a user-friendly fashion. One need not have an advanced degree – in fact even those with minimal schooling can appreciate these revelations the same as the most educated PhD. The only requirement is a thirst for knowledge – for truth. Some of the concepts may be a stretch, but all are comprehensible and evidential of the presence and purpose of God:

“The most incomprehensible thing about the world is that it is comprehensible.” This is one of the most famous quotes from Albert Einstein. “The fact that it is comprehensible is a miracle.”

From The Urantia Book:

1:6.7 To assume that the universe can be known, that it is intelligible, is to assume that the universe is mind made and personality managed. Man’s mind can only perceive the mind phenomena of other minds, be they human or superhuman. If man’s personality can experience the universe, there is a divine mind and an actual personality somewhere concealed in that universe.