Dreaded 26 or coincidence?
On December 26 an earthquake of 9.0 magnitude struck the west coast of the northern Indonesian island of Sumatra . In 2003, on the same date and same month, an earthquake measuring 6.5 on the Richter scale struck south-eastern Iran (Bam). In Japan on September 26, a strong quake with a preliminary magnitude of 7.8 hit the Northern Japanese island of Hokkaido at 4.50 a.m. On May 26, Sendai, Japan was hit by an earthquake. And on October 26, the Gansu Province in China was hit by two strong earthquakes.

In 2002, April 26, an earthquake measuring 7.1 struck Marianna Islands. In 2001, January 26, an earthquake struck Gujarat in India. And in the same year, in September, another earthquake hit Chennai.

The number 26 seems to have a strange link with earthquakes. History has recorded more earthquakes occurring on the 26th than any other date. "This is purely coincidental. There are many earthquakes occurring on different dates," said Prof. Sarath Weerawarnakula, the Director of the Geological and Mines Survey Bureau.

However, Dr. Hanz Vischjager, a Dutch psychotherapist, who has written books on psychotherapy and numerology and now conducts a counselling class, says it's all to do with the number eight.

"When you calculate the 2 and 6 in the 26, you get 8. Generally, number 8 is a difficult number because it includes twos and fours. To achieve anything, the 8 has to put in great effort. The positive side of number eight is that they have a burning desire to achieve material wealth. But the desire to accumulate material wealth will make them fall. Even if they succeed, it is for a short time," said Dr. Vischjager.

Dr. Vischjager added that the total number of December 26, 2004 was eight. "When these numbers end up in eight, we have to be cautious. There is a chance of some kind of destruction occurring on these days," he said adding that the Bam earthquake which occurred on December 26 had the total number of seven, which is not a number of destruction, but this year, the date had number eight.

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