Friday, January 1, 2016 dust in a sunbeam

It’s amazingly cold outside.  Its winter in middle Tennessee, but the spirit of Christmas present and its false promise of an ultra-super hallelujah beginning of spring last week is still laughing off in the distance.  I was thinking of gardening then, and now I’m back to hibernating in my warm woolly sweater and sipping from a cup of steamy hot coffee laced with a bit of cream, while through the glass I watch a downy woodpecker secure his place among the cardinals at the feeder despite a little harassment from the English sparrows.

My day hasn’t been as poetically descriptive as it perhaps could be, as the super practical defect in me has exploded into action as I cruse the internet on a never-ending quest to set my life up to handle any calamity weather or humans can bestow upon my existence.  Being of sound mind, I'm aware my home, the Earth, is on a constant quest to thin out the population if I relax when I should have reacted.

This planet…always in flux with hurricanes, tornadoes, straight-line winds, flash floods, slow floods, earthquakes, mud slides, rock slides, sleet, snow, and freezing rains…can shut off electricity in an instant.  A home that drops down to 30 degrees inside while it is an ice storm outside is indeed a home that needs to be reckoned with smartly.

It’s been a difficult battle within myself to even understand what actually is real and what is true.  A few years ago after several months with a new bible study group, a rude awakening threw me into a tailspin that I haven’t been able to recover from since.  Women are subservient to men.  If I am a Christian, then I believe women are subservient to men.  I can’t agree to that or be that.  It’s never going to happen.

And what about souls?  That animals are soulless and death is the end, opens up an endless succession of questions about myself.  It is not logical that only humans have souls, although it is indeed logical to believe that only humans are capable of corrupting their souls to the max.

And what about the real reality of creation.  Life in its simplest explanation is a mammoth food chain from the mightiest to the tiniest.  All procreate to populate the earth and all destroy or are destroyed to keep the cycle from careening out of control.

At a Neil deGrasse Tyson program last November, he talked about the camera on NASA’s Cassini spacecraft being turned back towards Earth and capturing a photo of Saturn’s rings and Earth…the pale blue dot.  A pale blue dot from Saturn…non-existent from twice the distance.  Humbling, isn’t it…we who think we are so important in the realm of all that exists.

“Look again at that dot.  That's here.  That's home.  That's us.
On it everyone you love,
everyone you know,
everyone you ever heard of,
every human being who ever was,
lived out their lives.
The aggregate of our joy and suffering,
thousands of confident religions, ideologies, and economic doctrines,
every hunter and forager,
every hero and coward,
every creator and destroyer of civilization,
every king and peasant,
every young couple in love,
every mother and father,
hopeful child, inventor and explorer,
every teacher of morals,
every corrupt politician,
every "superstar,"
every "supreme leader," 
every saint and sinner in the history of our species lived there --
 on a mote of dust suspended in a sunbeam.

The Earth is a very small stage in a vast cosmic arena.
Think of the endless cruelties visited by the inhabitants of one corner of this pixel
on the scarcely distinguishable inhabitants of some other corner,
how frequent their misunderstandings,
how eager they are to kill one another,
how fervent their hatreds.
Think of the rivers of blood spilled by all those generals and emperors
so that, in glory and triumph,
they could become the momentary masters
of a fraction of a dot.

From Carl Sagan's 
"Pale Blue Dot: A Vision of the Human Future in Space."


Tired, I'm taking a break to think of simpler things while I live on that mote of dust suspended in a sunbeam.  Take care.

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