August 13, 2013

Simple Pleasures: Stargazing

The Perseid meteor shower happens every August - it is a magical event.

“Magic exists. Who can doubt it, when there are rainbows and wildflowers, the music of the wind and the silence of the stars?” 

- Nora Roberts

It is unfortunate that we take the stars for granted. If these silent points of brilliance only revealed themselves once every thousand years we would flood into darkened fields on the appointed night and celebrate. We would sing their praises and dance to their brilliance.

Nothing puts life into perspective more elegantly than going out on a clear night and watching the stars. Their quiet message imparts knowledge of life and death, Yin and Yang, and the cyclical processes of nature.

The lessons of the night sky are hard to ignore when it puts on a spectacular light show like the Perseid meteor shower, which happens every year at this time.

Late last night I went out under the dome of stars and watched meteors streak through the sky with the Milky Way as a backdrop. Each flash and streak represented the death (changing of form) of a bit of space debris as it rubbed up against Earth's atmosphere.

As I lay on my back with the solidity of the Earth supporting me, and the heavens above, I felt an intense gratitude for being alive at this place, and during this moment in the history of the Universe.

I felt the magic, the connectedness to everything and everywhere. I could feel in every cell of my body that I am small, yet important, part of this greater whole. Then the neighbour's cat rubbed against my side and brought me back to my current form here on Terra Firma.

Stargazing teaches me about my place in creation, and is one of my cherished simple pleasures.

“The nitrogen in our DNA, the calcium in our teeth, the iron in our blood, the carbon in our apple pies were made in the interiors of collapsing stars. We are made of starstuff.” 
― Carl Sagan

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