Wednesday, July 6, 2011


USA (Reuters) - Phoenix brushed itself off and returned to normal on Wednesday after a “historic dust storm” swept over the area, sending residents scrambling for cover, halting drivers and delaying flights. Day turned into night as the billowy plumes of dust rolled over the mountains and clogged the skies over and around Phoenix in the late afternoon and into the evening on Tuesday, according to meteorologists. “A very large and historic dust storm moved through a large swatch of Arizona,” the National Weather Service office in Phoenix said in a statement posted on its website, calling it an “impressive event.” Residents rushed inside as sand from the storm blasted the area in winds of up to 50 miles per hour, NWS reported. Near zero visibility forced drivers to stop on area roads until the worst of the storm passed, which was described as “miles long and moving fast”.

Flights at Sky Harbor International Airport returned to normal on Wednesday after the storm caused interruptions on Tuesday evening with a few flights canceled, some diverted to other airports and a dozen delayed, said airport spokeswoman Julie Rodriguez. A barrage of dust set off fire alarms in the terminal but crews quickly cleared the mess from the storm, known as a “haboob,” she said. Weather experts say haboobs frequently occur during the summer monsoon season in the southwest United States. That’s when thunderstorms produce downdrafts that can kick up dry, loose sand on the dessert floor, creating a wall of dust that travels outward, spanning a much larger area than the thunderstorm itself, according to Senior Meteorologist Jim Andrews on

A massive dust storm swept across the Phoenix area on Tuesday night, leaving a path of dust, debris and damage in nearly every part of the metropolitan area.  Although the cause of the storm's speed was yet to be determined, weather service officials said the storm's unusual density was caused by little rainfall in affected areas during the past several months.  The storm was so powerful, it blew a heavy cloud of dust into the terminals, triggering fire alarms.  As we are living in the plane of ignorance and error, we can not understand what purpose lies behind a climate natural phenomenon.

Only Krishna knows what purpose is served by the grass bending in the wind to this side, not that. ... The universal meaning of every event and incident, even the movement of a piece of straw, is all-purposeful and all-meaningful to the Absolute. It all contributes to the absolute satisfaction of Krishna. But that reading is not possible for the superficial jīvas. ... We may interpret in our own way the reason for an earthquake, a storm, or anything, but that reading is from our local interest - the real meaning is hidden. This is maya, and on the basis of that we are performing so many activities. All our interpretations are from the plane of local interest, so give it up!

Śrīla Bhakti Raksaka Sridhara Mahārāja :
“Hearing to See” - “The Plane of Ignorance and Error”
Published in Centenary Anthology (Navadvipa: 1995)
Rays of The Harmonist No. 13 Karttika 2003.
Bhaktivedanta Memorial Library -

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