Category Archives: APOD, NASA,

Why All the Stars, Ben?

Another spectacular APOD (Astronomy Picture Of the Day) from NASA and the Hubble telescope: the Starburst Galaxy (M94)!  “A mere 15 million light years distant,” NASA tells us; that means that a beam of its light takes 15 million years to reach us.  Containing billions of stars, to us it is a tiny, faint point of light in the night sky.

I know I seem to be obsessing on these NASA photos.  But every new image I see paints a wider, deeper, and more wonderful picture of the universe our Lord has created.  And the incomprehensible distance grows between this universe and its beginning in an infinitesimally small seed in the palm of God’s hand barely 14 billion years ago.

Every APOD is a proclamation of the greater glory of God.

AFTERTHOUGHT:  I remember when NASA first launched the Hubble Telescope into space, back in 1990.  Shortly after launch, they discovered its main mirror was warped.  The TV comedians had a field day, mocking the scientists for their incompetence and calling it a boondoggle.  But NASA’s Space Shuttle astronauts fixed it in 1993, and it has been exploring the universe (and sending us these dazzling images) ever since. It is projected to continue working until 2030 or even 2040.

Thanks, NASA!  If only every government program worked this well.

The Mighty Mice

These “Mighty Mice” (astronomers can be quite poetic) are two enormous galaxies in the process of tearing each other apart. They have actually passed through each other and are pulling away.

Also this one, galaxy M96:

Both courtesy of NASA’s APOD (Astronomy Picture of the Day, the best use our tax dollars have ever been put to.)

And remember: a hundred billion galaxies of a hundred billion stars each, every star a sun; and once so tiny it would fit in the palm of your hand.

For more, check out here: “nasa.apod.gov“, or Psalm 19: “The heavens declare the glory of God.”

 

Reality

Another glimpse into the real universe, courtesy of NASA and their splendid site APOD (Astronomy Picture of the Day).

I have to remind myself, while gazing on this beautiful galaxy, that I am looking at a real thing, and not a work of art.

Remember: a hundred billion stars, one of a hundred billion galaxies; and all beginning with something infinitesimally SMALL. Something that could fit in the hand of a child – the child Jesus’ hand. (Or, as Edward Oakes wrote, “Infinity dwindled to infancy”, but in reverse.)

If you are watching this on a touchscreen device (smartphone or pad), you can touch the screen with two fingers and then expand the picture. By doing so, you will see deeper and deeper into the Heart of Light (as opposed to the Heart of Darkness). It is dazzling, mezmerising, overwhelmingly beautiful.

This was posted on May 15. Check the archives there (at apod.nasa.gov).

God bless NASA. “The heavens declare the glory of God.” (Psalm 19).