Can you see Duke University in this picture?

This view of the twilight sky and Martian horizon taken by NASA's Curiosity Mars rover includes Earth as the brightest point of light in the night sky. Earth is a little left of center in the image, and our moon is just below Earth. (Photo: NASA)
This view of the twilight sky and Martian horizon taken by NASA’s Curiosity Mars rover includes Earth as the brightest point of light in the night sky. Earth is a little left of center in the image, and our moon is just below Earth. (Photo: NASA)

I had to remove specks of dust from my computer screen when I uploaded the photo above, because they were bigger than the focus of the NASA image: Earth, as seen from the surface of Mars.

It’s somewhat sobering, isn’t it? The picture reminds us that Earth is a mere speck of dust in the universe. So what does that make us? How significant — in the grand, endless universal scheme of things — are we as a species with all our man-made problems? And if we managed to destroy this speck of dust and wipe ourselves out, would there be any life out there in the great beyond that would be aware of our demise, let alone care about us?

(We are very much a generation lost in space, sisters and brothers . . . Amen to that, the flock nods in unison.)

True, the photo was taken from some 90 million miles away. But in terms of “outer space,” that distance is but a hop, skip and a jump away from Earth. Even more sobering is the reality that at certain distances, Earth and all it contains are invisible . . .

Which all reminds me just how insignificant some, if not most or all of today’s headlines are, such as the ones about some “Christian” Duke University students refusing to read a “pornographic” lesbian novel as a school assignment. Yawn . . . And this will affect the universe how, exactly? Even here, on terra firma, does anybody really give a damn, except for those students — and the media trying to use the story as click bait.

Hey, I’m guilty of it, too: I tend to get caught up in irrelevant news reports sometimes. But I have always been a transcendentalist at heart. Alice in Wonderland is gospel truth for me . . . life is but a dream, and not to be taken too seriously.

So what should be taken seriously in our lives? Well, first and foremost, our loved ones, of course. And love itself. It’s the greatest miracle of all. Sometimes I feel so fortunate that my loved one and I have come together at this particular point in space and time. Our connection transcends this speck of dust called Earth. When we are in each other’s arms, we are in heaven . . . Indeed, it gives me great faith that love is the universal principle, and that we are each particles of eternal love in essence, even if our physical abodes are invisible in the grand scheme of things.

Because we know love is real, even if we can’t put it under a microscope.

— Jillian

This view of the twilight sky and Martian horizon taken by NASA's Curiosity Mars rover includes Earth as the brightest point of light in the night sky. Earth is a little left of center in the image, and our moon is just below Earth. Two annotated versions of this image are also available in Figures 1 and 2.
An annotated version: This view of the twilight sky and Martian horizon taken by NASA’s Curiosity Mars rover includes Earth as the brightest point of light in the night sky. Earth is a little left of center in the image, and our moon is just below Earth.

5 thoughts on “Can you see Duke University in this picture?

  1. Reminds me of the old saying: “tell a man/woman that there are a 1B stars in the universe and he/she will believe you. Tell him/her that the park bench has fresh wet paint, and he/she will touch it” Still, Einstein identified a ‘strong force’ and a ‘weak force’; as there is light and black-holes. Love and Hate. The conundrum is attempting to know the difference between the two. But, imo, you got one thing right, we are very frail, insignificant and temporal. This is why I sent my name to Mars %P%D

    Like

      1. Well, it’s not special, but it has been in the news recently because some students there are refusing to read a “lesbian porn novel” that was assigned to them, and many right-wingers have been going on and on about it. But it is such a non-issue — I mean, so what if a few spoiled brats won’t read a book.

        Like

      2. Actually it may be more significant than one thinks. Duke is in North Carolina. Did you know it is the home State of the KKK? It is also very Ivy League after Harvard, Princeton, Yale. If one does not live in NYC, LA or Chicago. Not to mention Seattle you begin to understand how USA may just elect a Donald Duck. If you understand the understatement here %S

        Like

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s