It’s been a rough year. Maybe it’s the media bombarding us with political enmity, flood, fire, war, death, illness . . . but it does seem rougher than usual. My resiliency is running low.
To put things in perspective on this last day of the year I remind myself that this earth has been around billions of years and I am standing on a planet hurtling through space and haven’t fallen off . . . yet
The earth is moving about our sun at a speed of nearly 30 kilometers per second, or 67,000 miles per hour. Our solar system–Earth and all–whirls around the center of our galaxy at some 220 kilometers per second, or 490,000 miles per hour.
“There are anywhere between 200-400 billion stars in the Milky Way and an estimated 100 billion planets. Around one in five stars are like our sun, and astronomers have estimated that about 22% of them have planets the size of Earth in their habitable zone, where water can exist as a liquid. This means there could be 8.8 billion planets within the galaxy capable of supporting life (not accounting for composition of the planet or its atmosphere).”
“God has created the world as one—the boundaries are marked out by man.”
O, Thomas, will a Race one day stand really tall Across the Void, across the Universe and all? And, measure out with rocket fire, At last put Adam’s finger forth As on the Sistine Ceiling, And God’s great hand come down the other way To measure Man and find him Good, And Gift him with Forever’s Day? I work for that. Short man. Large dream. I send my rockets forth between my ears, Hoping an inch of Will is worth a pound of years. Aching to hear a voice cry back along the universal Mall: We’ve reached Alpha Centauri! We’re tall, O God, we’re tall!
“NASA New Horizons Pluto Mission Tribute Video! | NPRHundreds of images from NASA’s New Horizons mission to Pluto stitched together in retro newsreel form with audio of American science fiction author Ray Bradbury reading his beautiful poem “If Only We Had Taller Been.”‘
“Seeing Red This NASA Hubble Space Telescope infrared mosaic image represents the sharpest survey of the Galactic Center to date. It reveals a new population of massive stars and new details in complex structures in the hot ionized gas swirling around the central 300 x 115 light-years. This sweeping infrared panorama offers a nearby laboratory for how massive stars form and influence their environment in the often violent nuclear regions of other galaxies. The infrared mosaic was taken with Hubble’s Near Infrared Camera and Multi-Object Spectrometer (NICMOS). The Galactic core is obscured in visible light by dust clouds, which infrared light can penetrate.
The new NICMOS data show the glow from ionized hydrogen gas as well as a multitude of stars. NICMOS shows a large number of these massive stars distributed throughout the region. A new finding is that astronomers now see that the massive stars are not confined to one of the three known clusters of massive stars in the Galactic Center, known as the Central cluster, the Arches cluster, and the Quintuplet cluster. These three clusters are easily seen as tight concentrations of bright, massive stars in the NICMOS image. The distributed stars may have formed in isolation, or they may have originated in clusters that have been disrupted by strong gravitational tidal forces.
The winds and radiation from these stars form the complex structures seen in the core and in some cases they may be triggering new generations of stars. At upper left, large arcs of ionized gas are resolved into arrays of intriguingly organized linear filaments indicating a critical role of the influence of locally strong magnetic fields.
The lower left region shows pillars of gas sculpted by winds from hot massive stars in the Quintuplet cluster. At the center of the image, ionized gas surrounding the supermassive black hole at the center of the galaxy is confined to a bright spiral embedded within a circum-nuclear dusty inner-tube-shaped torus.”
The false-color image was taken through a filter that reveals the glow of hot hydrogen in space.
Image Credit: NASA, ESA, and Q.D. Wang (University of Massachusetts, Amherst)
A big part of my job as a psychotherapist is helping people see things from a different perspective. When they come to me the perspective they are stuck in isn’t helping, working, it’s outdated or just plain wrong for the circumstance they are in.
Personally and professionally I know how hard it is to look at our own lives objectively. For that matter it’s hard to look at other people’s lives objectively. since our own experiences, beliefs, personalities and biases color the lens we look through.
Maybe it’s why I love psychology, creative expression and BLOGS – they all bring new perspectives to my world.
Take a look at this beautiful perspective of the world we all share.
Incredible Pictures from ISS by NASA astronaut Wheelock