My husband roused me from my PBS addiction last night and dragged me outside to see the blood moon no less than three times. He’s trying to make as astronomer out of me. But truthfully, I was emotionally moved by that moon. Here are some stunning shots of it from all over the world. Two things struck me as I watched it.
First, phenomena like this offer a rare chance to contemplate infinity. When do we ever do that? But it’s important because we need to be reminded how tiny we are in the scheme of things. Stars and planets and the moon are windows to a vastness and an unknowingness (and we do LOVE to know, don’t we) that can be almost uncomfortable–unless you let go and understand you’re a piece of it, unless you feel the kindness and belonging behind it.
The blood moon in particular is so real–not the flat luminous disc we normally see–but so three-dimensional, so clearly solid, tangible almost, suspended like a balloon. The realization that we ourselves are on a planet that’s continuously rotating and hurtling through space in a large solar system within one vast universe of many such universes is something we seldom take time to experience. We’re in a little bubble of green lawns and little houses and trips to the store because that’s where we feel safe. That’s where we feel important and in control. But it’s good to be humbled by the immensity of space. It gives us a much better perspective on human life.
The second thing was the universality of the sight–everyone in the world was watching the same moon. I felt so comforted by that somehow. There was such a sense of unity in that simple fact, when the world is divided in so many ways that we can’t seem to overcome. It’s wonderful for all of us to have an experience of wonder together, to witness the mysterious beauty together.
I hope wherever you were, you took a few minutes out to appreciate the unique splendor of the blood moon.